Where We've Been
Going back over a decade ago, Virginia Republicans in 2001 had the "privilege" of controlling redistricting for the first time in the modern era. They leveraged this advantage into pressuring Virgil Goode, already a Democrat-In-Name-Only who had voted to impeach President Clinton, to officially leave the party and begin to caucus with the GOP. They also worked to shore up newly elected Congressman Randy Forbes in the 4th, who had won a special election by a very close margin.
Below, I've calculated the partisan lean of the post-2000 census drawn district based on the 2000 Presidential numbers relative to the national average. So a R +6 district is one in which George W. Bush ran 6 points ahead of his national showing (47.87%, or rounded to 48%), which as we all know was less than Al Gore's popular vote national...
I was in Rep. Tom Perriello's Danville campaign office last night when his regional field director said that while he was thrilled with the unexpectedly huge flood of volunteers the campaign is seeing, he'd love to have more cars & vans to get them from the office to voters in far-flung areas. Well, I said ... I know some blue Virginians who might be able to chip in to help out.
While not all of us can get to the 5th Congressional district, this is a great chance to support Tom's volunteers. Can you spare $25 or more to help Tom's volunteers be supplied with the resources they need to get out the vote?
I'm working out of Rep. Tom Perriello's Danville office through the election on behalf of the National Wildlife Federation Action Fund, which has endorsed Tom. I can't overstate how much energy there is for Tom here in Danville. Tom's office has been flooded with so many volunteers, they've expanded into additional office space across Main Street -- phone banks on the south side of the street, canvasses launching on the north side. In just the short drive to my canvass location tonight, I passed two other Perriello volunteers. Yard signs density in some neighborhoods is greater than I've ever seen for any candidate.
Most importantly, voters who came out to cast ballots for Obama/Warner/Perriello in '08 are closely engaged in this race.