Where Was Frank Leone in 2009?

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    Suspend disbelief; somehow 2013 will be different than 2009 because a slate of insiders will shake up the DPVA. Democrats will win more because we will get more of the same old thing. Somehow maneuvering the rules to one’s advantage is more important than leadership, innovation, and success.

    “Democrats did an extraordinary job in winning Virginia for President Obama in 2008, but that momentum did not carry through to 2009 statewide campaigns…One my priorities for my next term on the DNC will be to work with DPVA and the DNC to have a smooth transition that will enable us to carry Virginia both for the Presidential and the Gubernatorial (and other 2013) campaigns.”  – Frank Leone’s blog

    DPVA played a passive role in 2008, staying out of Obama’s way after a lukewarm introduction. A fundamental deficiency of the DPVA: there is no ground game. Plankholders in the DPVA were late to the Obama wave and failed to fully embrace his candidacy or his Presidency. DPVA willingly rode along to the battle so long as Obama provided the army; reminiscent of first Manassas. The pitiable DPVA cheering squad, left to its own devices in 2009, fell back on an amorphous strategy of abandoning an identity with the Democratic Party. The entire strategy was centered on preserving incumbency. Even that limited objective was lost.

    What Democrats get in Virginia is a grand appreciation for accounting and an absolute disregard for investment. We focus on keeping an accurate count of our diminishing influence. That explains the redistricting fiasco. That explains why we counted on the Obama chickens but laid a statewide egg in 2009 when we couldn’t keep them in the coop. Where was Frank’s strategy then? But to be fair, he was and is really just an observer no matter the bloviating on his blog. There is nothing any DNC member can do to sway Senator Saslaw’s strategy of self-preservation, making much of Frank’s ideas hollow.

    So, if you want a DNC member who can explain the failure process precisely, you have your man. Or maybe Frank would put it this way: you have your NOVA white guy. Really? Vote for me because I’m the white guy from Arlington?

    Oh, and for a bit more accounting, be aware that these are not the only Virginia seats at the DNC table. There are at least two more that must be considered in the representative mix. But that doesn’t help Frank’s calculus.

    • totallynext

      DPVA and VA had the resources from the DNC to win in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008  through  a sound 50 state strategy.  We were a key state that the DNC under  Howard Dean knew could turn blue if we thru out the entrench attitude and go on the offense.   we fielded excellent candidates (even glen nye) in races and worked as a team, now we are back to letting powerbrokers decide to cover our eyes in certain areas of the commonwealth and hope the beating isn’t a blow out!  (I think the biggest surprise is Kaines willingness at the DNC to throw out the very strategy that helped VA while he was the de facto party leader give him a majority in the senate)

      I mean, come on, been there, done that, entrenchment strategy doesn’t work, nor does it engage areas of the commonwealth that should have at least a choice on the ballot.

    • really the lowest of the low: playing the race card.

      This may cost me some votes, but here are the facts.  At this Saturday’s Virginia Democratic Party Convention, delegates will elect four members of the Democratic National Committee.  According to the DNC Charter, two must be women and two must be men.   Moreover, to the best of my knowledge, since 1972 when Ruth Harvey Charity was first elected, one of these four DNC seats has been held by an African-American

      But wait, you ask, why do you have to vote for a white guy, Frank Leone, to get an African American guy – George Wallace (or Lionell Spruill, who Frank conveniently doesn’t mention) – on the DNC? Answer: YOU DON’T – you can vote for whatever combination you want, or just for 1 or 2 people if that’s your preference – but you do NOT have to vote for any “tickets,” “teams,” or anything of the sort, that’s just an outright lie!  So why is Frank Leone saying this s***? Basically, because he thinks that playing the race card will clinch his own election, that he can ride the wave of his “Unity Team”‘s (ridiculous concept and name, I know) hand-picked African American (George Wallace; Lionell Spruill having been booted off this go-around, for whatever reason) to elect white guy Frank Leone as well.

      By the way, I’ve just got to say that I’m with Martin Luther King, Jr. on this one, that people should be judged solely on the content of their characters – merit, in other words – not by religion, gender, ethnicity, race, or anything else. Just merit, that’s the American way.  On Saturday, I encourage everyone to vote for the candidate or candidates you think are the BEST, not based on anything other than merit. Then, let the chips fall where they may, if we end up with 2 African Americans, fine; if we end up with 1 African American and 1 Caucasian, fine; if we end up with 2 Caucasians, fine. I don’t care, as long as they’re the best people for the job.

      P.S. Note that we also saw this blatant appeal to the “race card” in the Susan Mariner-Gaylene Konoytan, where I actually had a certain Caucasian male (now running for Alexandria City Council) tell me point blank that the First Vice Chair for Organization position HAD TO BE HELD by an African American (because it supposedly “always had been”), thus disqualifying the superbly qualified Susan Mariner (in the end, Susan came within a few votes of winning the election; god knows what hell would have broken loose if that had happened – lol!). My response to that was a question: so, since the DPVA Chair has always been a white male, does it always HAVE to be a white male? What if there were a superbly qualified African American woman, Latino man, Asian American woman, whatever?  The response to me by the aforementioned individual making the race-based argument? Silence/sound of crickets chirping. Because what response could there possibly be after being caught in utter illogic and mush-headed “reasoning?”

    • lenbennett

      I have never met or heard from Frank Leone.  But I am very biased – as a consumer protection attorney – against the idea that a moral attorney can do harm for a day job and living, but remain just, compassionate and decent off the job.  On his law firm website, Mr. Leone describes his day job –

      “Mr. Leone’s broad litigation practice encompasses environmental law, and defense of toxic tort, consumer product, asbestos, and pharmaceutical products liability claims.

      Mr. Leone has special expertise in environmental litigation and counseling, including issues relating to Superfund, natural resource damages, hazardous waste, hazard communication, groundwater, surface water, wetlands, clean air, state environmental laws, and environmental auditing. He also litigates parallel tort actions seeking personal injury, property damage, and/or medical monitoring damages.

      Mr. Leone served as counsel for Norfolk Southern in Avondale Mills v. Norfolk Southern, Civ No. 1:05-2817-MBS (D.S.C. 2005), the largest single mass tort case in South Carolina history. Plaintiff Avondale alleged property damage to its textile plants arising from a January 2005 train derailment and chlorine release. Mr. Leone led the defense of scientific issues in the case and participated in the month long trial, which preceded a confidential settlement.

      Mr. Leone’s litigation experience also includes representing a large manufacturer in multiple state CERCLA enforcement actions and related personal injury/property damage cases in South Carolina, litigating a Consumer Product Safety Act case which was resolved through a joint industry-wide/CPSC mediation, and defending asbestos personal injury and property damage claims, including a client’s Havner challenges in connection with the consolidated Texas statewide asbestos docket.

      Mr. Leone is a member of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys, the National Association of Railroad Trial Counsel, and the International Consumer Product Health and Safety Organization.”

    • for everything good that happened in Virginia in 2005-2008, but not to take ANY blame for the disasters of 2009-2011. Fascinating how that works, huh?