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Saturday, June 23, 2018
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Polls Closed in Virginia; Results Thread

The polls are now closed in Virginia. I'll use this thread to follow the results. As of 7 pm, from everything I'm hearing and reading, I can't say it's looking great. Could Gerry Connolly lose?  Rick Boucher? Glenn Nye and Tom Perriello?  All possible. Stay tuned, and check out results at the State Board of Elections website.

UPDATE 7:11 pm: With 3% of votes counted, Morgan Griffith leads Rep. Rick Boucher 59%-39% in the 9th CD. Robert Hurt is slightly ahead of Rep. Tom Perriello with 2.3% reporting in the 5th CD.

UPDATE 7:24 pm: Just to get it out of the way, the following Virginia Republicans will win tonight: Eric Cantor, Bob Goodlatte, Frank Wolf, Rob Wittman, and Randy Forbes.

UPDATE 7:30 pm: With 17.8% of precincts reporting in the 5th CD, it's Robert Hurt 56.4%-Tom Perriello 41.3%. Nothing from Albemarle or C-ville, though.

UPDATE 7:38 pm: With 4.3% of precincts in, it's Scott Rigell leading Rep. Glenn Nye 51%-46% in the 2nd CD. In the 5th CD, with 27% of precincts in, it's Hurt leading Perriello 55%-42%. C-ville's starting to come in.  With 28% of precincts in, it's Morgan Griffith leading Rick Boucher 55%-43% in the 9th CD. Not looking good, Boucher could be in serious trouble.

UPDATE 7:50 pm: Good news per Jon Bowerbank - "Congrats to Joseph Puckett - winner, winner, chicken dinner ~1100-~800! Rick up in Russell County w/ 11/15 precincts reporting." Go Joseph!

UPDATE 7:51 pm: Oh, and it goes without saying that Rep. Bobby Scott will win reelection easily tonight.

UPDATE 7:53 pm: With 7% of precincts reporting, Jim Moran is winning easily in the 8th CD over Patrick Murray. With 4.8% of precincts reporting in the 11th, Keith Fimian is leading Rep. Gerry Connolly 55%-42%. Also, NLS has called the 9th for Morgan Griffith. Oh, wonderful.

UPDATE 8:00 pm: NLS tweets, "Gerry just won the most Democratic precinct in Fairfax City by 50 votes- horrible sign for him."

UPDATE 8:04 pm: In the 7th CD, Eric Cantor under 60% against unknown, unfunded Rick Waugh and Tea Partier Floyd Bayne. Not impressive. In contrast, Frank Wolf is romping over Jeff Barnett, 68%-29%.

UPDATE 8:09 pm: With 20% of precincts reporting in the 2nd CD, Scott Rigell is leading Glenn Nye 48.6%-47.9%. With 61% of precincts reporting in the 5th CD, Robert Hurt is leading Tom Perriello 53%-45%. Also, John Yarmuth has held on in Kentucky's 3rd CD.

UPDATE 8:20 pm: Isaac Wood tweets, "Bad news for Perriello in #VA05? Down 8%. 56% reporting. Good news? Albemarle & Charlottesville (his base) still to come."

UPDATE 8:22 pm: It's not looking good for Glenn Nye in the 2nd CD, where Scott Rigell is leading 52%-44% with 36% of precincts reporting.

UPDATE 8:25 pm: CBS has called the 5th CD for Robert Hurt over Tom Perriello. How depressing. (with 79% of precincts reporting, Hurt leads 52%-45%.)

UPDATE 8:28 pm: In the 2nd CD, with 43% of precincts reporting, Scott Rigell is leading Glenn Nye 54%-43%. So far, it doesn't look like Nye's strategy of having no principles or courage, not to mention being the least progressive Democrat in Congress, is paying off for him. What a shocker - despite his pathetic pandering, Republicans still attacked him as a "liberal" who voted with "Pelosi, Reid and Obama."

UPDATE 8:36 pm: With 30% of precincts reporting in the 11th CD, Gerry Connolly is trailing Keith Fimian by just 370 votes.

UPDATE 8:39 pm: AP calls VA-09 for Morgan Griffith over Rep. Rick Boucher. The irony of this one is that Boucher worked hard to water down the energy/climate bill and to lard it up with the coal industry wish list, yet he still got blamed for voting for "cap and tax." In a perverse way, maybe there's justice after all?

UPDATE 9:04 pm: The AP has called Scott Rigell over Glenn Nye in the 2nd CD. In the end, Kenny Golden was a complete non-factor, in spite of his support from the Modern Whig Party.  Seriously, the "Modern Whig Party."

UPDATE 9:24 pm: Still extremely close in the 11th CD, where Keith Fimian leads Gerry Connolly by under 900 votes with 69% of precincts reporting.

UPDATE 9:27 pm: In Arlington, Chris Zimmerman is winning reelection easily for County Board.  Sally Baird is winning reelection to the School Board easily. Congratulations to both!

UPDATE 9:29 pm: In the end, it wasn't even close in the 2nd CD, where Glenn Nye is trailing by 11 points with 75% of precincts reporting. It turns out that the 5th CD, where Tom Perriello acted like a - gasp! - Democrat, is much closer than the 2nd CD, where Glenn Nye might as well have been a Republican.  More on this tomorrow...

UPDATE 9:36 pm: Sen. Mark Warner says, "I can't think of anyone who has worked as hard or been a more passionate advocate for his constituents than Tom Perriello. He has worked to make higher education more affordable and accessible, and he has been a fierce advocate for jobs, clean energy and economic renewal. I am certain we have not heard the last from this talented young man." Also, "Rick Boucher has been a fierce protector of his southwest Virginia constituents for nearly 30 years of public service. There is not a single community in the Ninth Congressional District that has not been touched in some significant way through Congressman Boucher's work, and it really is unfortunate that Rick was swept-up in a national wave of discontent and voter frustration."

UPDATE 9:47 pm: With 83.3% of precincts reporting, Gerry Connolly has pulled ahead of Keith Fimian, 49.09%-48.83%.

UPDATE 10:00 pm: With 98.7% counted in VA-05, real Democrat Tom Perriello is losing, but only by 4 points. In VA-02, quasi-"Democrat" Glenn Nye is losing by 10 points. Meanwhile, real Democrat Gerry Connolly is leading by about 500 votes with 95% of precincts reporting.

UPDATE 10:26 pm: With 97.02% counted in VA-11, Gerry Connolly is leading Keith Fimian by just under 700 votes. NLS has called it for Connolly, and there's nobody more knowledgeable about the 11th CD than Ben Tribbett, so I put a lot of stock in that. We'll see...

UPDATE 11:44 pm: Connolly's barely leading with almost all votes counted, but this one's probably headed for a recount.

UPDATE 11:46 pm: Guess who got the highest and lowest # of votes tonight among Virginia Democrats? From most to fewest: Jim Moran 116,264; Bobby Scott 114,416; Tom Perriello 110,561; Gerry Connolly 110,401; Rick Boucher 86,616; Rick Waugh 79,289; Wynne LeGrow 74,205; Krystal Ball 73,668; Jeff Barnett 72,272; and...Glenn Nye 68,531! That's right, the bluest of "Blue Dogs" got the fewest votes, while the most progressive Democrats - generally got the highest. So, in the end, Glenn Nye stood for nothing, had no soul, and also got the fewest votes, even running behind people with no name ID and no money - but with real Democratic convictions - like Rick Waugh and Wynne LeGrow and Jeff Barnett. Is there a lesson here? Hmmmmm.

UPDATE 11:54 pm: Mark Warner says, "Gerry Connolly has had a remarkable record of public service at the local level and now as a member of Congress, and I congratulate him on his hard-fought victory tonight. Northern Virginia will continue to have a strong advocate and an effective and reliable voice in Congress."

Condolences to Bob McDonnell

I just heard the news (on WAMU) that Bob McDonnell's father has passed away from Alzheimer's disease. My deepest condolences to the McDonnell family on their loss.

Hurt Supporters Break Into Perriello Office, Steal Walk Sheets

I'm told by multiple sources that there was a break-in last night at a Tom Perriello for Congress office in Charlottesville. Apparently, the ground-floor office was left unattended from 2:30 am to 5 am, during which time a screen to a window was bent back (see photo), enabling someone to reach in and open the window. The individuals then stole a box of walk packets and door hangers for a particular precinct. The thieves then intentionally distributed materials identifying polling locations to the wrong neighborhoods.  Today, the wrong door hangers started showing up on student doors.  This incident has been reported to the police, so we'll see what happens, but in the meantime, students still need to get out and vote, regardless of whatever dirty tricks Hurt supporters have up their sleeves!

Democrats Need to Shake Things Up After This Election’s Over

Whatever the results of the mid-term election today, and most likely they won't be great for the Democrats, I believe it's high time to shake things up at the White House, the DNC, and pretty much everywhere in the Democratic Party.  Why do I say this?  Let us count the ways. (warning: major rant ahead)

1. Total Messaging FAIL
Democrats over the past 2 years haven't been able to craft a compelling narrative to save their lives, and that's utterly inexcusable. For instance, did you know that the much-reviled Stimulus Act not only helped save us from Great Depression II, it also cut taxes by $288 billion, giving just about every American a tax break? It's true, yet most voters think the opposite ("By 52 percent to 19 percent, likely voters say federal income taxes have gone up for the middle class in the past two years.")!  I'm sorry, but that's inexcusable. Anyone involved in this failure to communicate should be fired immediately. They are utterly incompetent and should never work in politics again. Period.

Continuing on this same theme, the same poll shows that voters believe - incorrectly, once again - that most TARP money has been "lost." In fact, the Treasury "expects to turn a $16 billion profit" on TARP. But again, nobody knows that. WTF?!?

Yet another example: most Americans don't remember when this recession started (under Bush), don't know what caused it (lots of factors, including Republican policies that led to the housing bubble and collapse, rapidly growing income inequality, deregulatory policies that let Wall Street run amok, etc.), and aren't aware that the economy's growing again under the Democrats. They also don't give Democrats any credit for avoiding Great Depression II. It's maddening, and it's partly the result of the lamestream media and the Republican Big Lie, but we've also got to point our fingers at Major Democratic Messaging FAIL!

Election Day; Polls Open 6 am-7 pm in Virginia

It's 6 am, and the polls are now open in Virginia. If possible, try to vote first thing, before you go to work -- and of course vote Democratic!  Today, I'll be voting in Arlington to reelect Jim Moran to the U.S. House of Representatives; to reelect Chris Zimmerman to the County Board; to reelect Sally Baird to the School Board; AGAINST all three constitutional amendment questions; and FOR all proposed county bond referenda. I'm hoping to volunteer at a poll today as well, just waiting to hear back from the volunteer coordinator to find out which one and when.

So, when and where are you voting today, who and what are you voting for, and what are you hearing? Please use this as an "open thread." Thanks.

P.S. You can find out where to vote by clicking here.

How Do You Know When Eric Cantor’s Lying?

How do you know when Eric Can'tor is lying? That's right, his lips are moving.  Watch this interview with Ryan Nobles and see how many outright lies and/or distortions you can identify. My guess is you'll need more than one hand worth of fingers to count them...

Vote “No” on All Three Virginia Constitutional Amendments

I've been reading over the arguments for and against the three constitutional amendments on the ballot tomorrow, and I've decided that I will vote "no" on all three.  

The first ballot question would amend  Section 6 of Article X of the Constitution of Virginia "to authorize legislation that will permit localities to establish their own income or financial worth limitations for purposes of granting property tax relief for homeowners not less than 65 years of age or permanently and totally disabled."
On this one, I agree with the Roanoke Times, which argues that the amendment's flawed because it lacks "means testing." In addition, this amendment "fall[s] into that deplorable class of legislation that serves the political needs of lawmakers in Richmond to the detriment of localities...support[ing] tax breaks for seniors and veterans without having to deal with the fallout:" a "sudden reduction in revenue" to localities," the result of which likely will be "taxes must increase on everyone else." Not smart at all.

The second ballot question would amend the Constitution to " require the General Assembly to provide a real property tax exemption for the principal residence of a veteran, or his or her surviving spouse, if the veteran has a 100 percent service-connected, permanent, and total disability."
I join the Roanoke Times in opposing this one as well, for many of the same reasons as the first one. I also agree with Waldo Jaquith, who writes, "I don't think that the state has any business ordering localities to stop taxing some people...if the state wants to reduce taxes for veterans, they should reduce their own revenue, not localities'.

Finally, the third ballot question would amend Section 8 of Article X of the Constitution of Virginia "to increase the permissible size of the Revenue Stabilization Fund (also known as the "rainy day fund") from 10 percent to 15 percent of the Commonwealth's average annual tax revenues derived from income and retail sales taxes for the preceding three fiscal years."
On this one, I again agree with Waldo Jaquith, who writes:

...why not increase that cap so that, if it does look like it'll be a good idea to save up more quickly, it'll be possible to do that. On the other hand, why 15%? Why not 10%? Or 20%? Or 50%? Was there something wrong with 10%? I'd like to assume that there's some logic behind these particular numbers, but much like "three-strikes" laws, I fear that there's not.
A poorly written, poorly reasoned amendment. I'm voting "no."

Virginia Tech Families Call on Keith Fimian to Close Gun Show Loophole

The following press release is from Americans United for Safe Streets. Also, check out video from yesterday in Fairfax, where Virginia Tech parents attempted to ask Keith Fimian some questions on camera. As you can see, his campaign staff desperately wanted to avoid that scenario (can't blame them; god knows what crazy thing Fimian will say next!), eventually agreeing to a private meeting with the candidate.

Virginia Tech Families Call on Keith Fimian to Close Gun Show Loophole
Fimian refuses to stand with Virginia Tech families to close the Gun Show Loophole

Americans United for Safe Streets adds $100,000 to TV ad campaign, bringing total Virginia campaign to $450,000

Fairfax, VA - Americans United for Safe Streets expanded its campaign to urge Keith Fimian to close the Gun Show Loophole today and is joined by more Virginia Tech family members calling on Fimian to explain his refusal to stand with them.

Last week, Keith Fimian, a candidate for Congress in Virginia's 11th District, told a reporter the April 2007 Virginia Tech shooting would have been averted had students been "packing heat." On Friday, Fimian and his campaign backtracked saying it was an "offhand comment" and that "his words were very poorly chosen" and "did not...take into account the gravity of the situation." When asked if he supports closing the Gun Show Loophole, which enables criminals and the mentally ill to buy guns no questions asked, he refused to answer, and jumped into a car.

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