Tuesday, November 21, 2006

A Thought About The Seventh

During some post election reflection I cannot help but wonder why the Democratic Party failed to truly support candidates in the House races of Virginia. My first thought was that the pundits got so caught up in the possibility of actually unseating George Allen in the Senate race that all the energy was focused to that end. Or was it that the Democrats simply just did not believe that they could take seats away from the likes of Eric Cantor or Virgil Goode for that matter. I cannot recall over the last ten years or so a single race where Eric Cantor had to hit the streets. Even back in his delegate days I do not recall Cantor ever being in the kind of race where going into election day his team was the slighest bit nervous at the polls. And yet, did the Democrats misjudge these districts, in particular the Seventh. Maybe, maybe not. Cantor won decidedly with 63% of the vote. His opponent did manage to almost break even with Cantor in Caroline, Rappahannock, and City of Richmond areas. What sticks out is his opponent managed 34% with very limited exposure. By limited I mean, try counting the number of signs from Chesterfield to Page County...thats right Page County is part of the Seventh. With limited resources Jim Nachman(D) ran a race where when he was out in front of voters he did well. No one I have spoken to witnessed a single sign in Hanover..result Cantor 73.5%. With what we are now seeing with the exit poll data and alot of the "ethics" data I can not help but feel Democrats dropped the ball. We see the results in Ohio and Indianna house races and across the country where incumbants were upset, but the fact remains in each of these races the incumbants were challenged. The Democratic apparatus failed to get behind Nachman or Weeds effectively in an election where the incumbants could have been vulnerable. Not to say that these seats would have been flipped, but it would have made for great debate had Cantor been held accountable for not only his record but his associations and dealings with Tom Delay of course and Jack Abramoff. Other races were lost in traditonally strong Republican districts by all accounts because of support for the war in Iraq by the incumbant. In the race for the Seventh we had a difference on the war issue, immigration policy, caimpaign finance (fraud) reform, child left behind, and some pretty big questions with regard to ethical behavior. Exactly how is Mr. cantor raising all that money for the Battleground. I never knew Mr. Cantor was one of the biggest money raisers in the Republican Party, in part due to a network that has some very questionable foundations. So why was their no real fight put up by the National Democrats? It just seems like Republicans dodged a bullet on this one and Democrats lost an opportunity to set the stage for the next election by beginning the fight in 2006.


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