Virginia House of Delegates 2005 Elections

Keeping You up to date on the status of Virginia's 2005 Delegate races!

Thursday, June 30, 2005

One NOT gone, Two NOTS to come?

Our friend Not Robert Roberts seems to have fallen off the edge of the blogosphere. Where are you NRR?

We are very sad about this development. :(

But this is your chance to be an anonymous web star!

As we see it both political parties in Virginia have two factions. "Conservatives" and "Moderates" among Republicans. Or to be less flattering, one group that Barnie Day would call "Flat Earthers" and another Phil Rodokanakis would call "RINOs". Among Democrats it's the younger "Liberal" group and the older more "Moderate" group. With Democrats it's much more regionally based with the "Liberals" in cities and the Moderate establishment elsewhere.

Well, the Moderate GOP faction has been well represented by "Not Jim Gilmore" and the younger "Liberal" wing of the Democrats has been well represented by "Not Brian Moran".

We need a blogger to fill the job of blogging for the "Conservative" wing of the GOP and the "Establishment" wing of the Democrats.

You may take whatever name you choose, but here are our two suggestions.

"Conservative GOP"- "Not John Chichester".

Chichester would be an obvious choice for the conservatives who feel that "RINO's" are no better than having a Democrat elected.

"Establishment Dems- "Not Ken Cuccinelli"

Often this wing of the party defines itself by what it is not, rather than what it is. What better name than "Not Ken Cuccinelli"!

Anyone interested? Please email me at

More from NOT Jim Gilmore?

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This thread is for discussion of Not Jim Gilmore. Do you want to hear more from NJG on candidates and how that may play into future votes?

Let us hear from you.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

NOT Brian Moran

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Do you, the readers of this site, wish to read a more frequent column by NOT Brian Moran? Let us know here.

Open Thread

Throw out your comments on whatever is on your mind today!

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Lt. Gov Race Update

Bolling's former associates at his insurance company will find out if they get jail time today in Richmond.....

Why is this not in the news yet?



AP is up with a story. The President and Exec. VP are going to prison. No charges have been brought against other VP's including Bill Bolling. Of course all the charges at Enron didn't hit together either.


Who Are We?

Poll Results from NRR's blog:

"Mike Shear": 23%
"A journalist": 20%
"Who Cares": 18%
"Ben Tribett": 15%
"A Democrat": 14%
"A Republican": 8%
"Don": 2%

Looks like a split decision there! Almost half believe we are a journalist, with over half of that group pointing the finger at Washington Post reporter Michael Shear. That's assuming of course, that you consider Mike a journalist.

The Blue Dog jumps on the bandwagon of speculation over at Bacon's Rebellion.

One comment to the Blue Dog. Senator Cuccinelli posted here last week that he was planning to blog. He decided to drop out. You can look through our messages to see his very clear message from him with an intention at that time. On the Englin's, as we said before, we got my wires crossed between the Del-Elect and his wife, and I apologize for that.

Meanwhile Norm leads the guessing game on who Not Jim Gilmore is.

No Comments from us. The list is only 17 possible, so we won't narrow.

Finally links to our fellow "Nots".

Not Bob Roberts has become one of our favorite blogs, and seems to have good analysis.

Not Mark Rozell's blog will be a better read when he stops taking pot shots at us all the time.

Monday, June 27, 2005

How dumb is Chris Craddock?

Email just in:

I got a call from Craddock tonight...unfortunately for him, I'm not in the district.

Click above to read about it first hand.

35th District Update

Outlook: Leans Democratic

Incumbent Steve Shannon got a break when the GOP primary turned into something out of the Jerry Springer Show.

Emerging as a surprise to some analysts (not us, we were perfect) was Jim Hyland, a former aide to John Warner.

Hyland ran an almost flawless primary campaign giving himself a win despite being outspent 4-1. He obviously learned a lot from his 2003 Board of Supervisors campaign when he was spanked. Hyland emerged from that embarrassment as a much stronger candidate this year.

Our GOP source in Vienna tells us the Hyland general election kickoff was a great event and the food was excellent. We don't change ratings based on good food, but it does increase the chance of "Not Larry" covering your event in person!

According to our Democratic source, most of the Democratic activists are angry with Shannon and refusing to help his campaign over some of his votes. We have also been told Shannon has a real problem with keeping staff on board with him and basically has started from scratch in this campaign when no one wanted to come back.

While these factors look good for a possible Hyland upset we have this race as "Leans Shannon" for two reasons.

#1) Money- Shannon has always been an excellent fundraiser. He has a lot of cash in the bank, while Hyland who has not yet proven to be a good fundraiser in either of his campaigns spent what he raised for the primary. The July 15th report will tell us a lot about this race, Hyland has to catch up, and fast.

#2) Overeaching- We are seeing signs of a Hyland overreach after this primary. His website uses very strong language that "Steve Shannon has failed us", which may be too strong for this point in the campaign. Also, a GOP source complained to us that Hyland was lit dropping very partisan GOP lit from the primary to all homes in Nottoway precinct after the primary. According to the State Board of Elections website Nottoway is a very strong Democratic precinct that went for John Kerry by almost 300 votes. The piece apparently said Republican on it at least 8 times.

If Hyland can raise some money, and calm down enough to take a serious look at how to appeal to the vast number of independents in this district we could have a race on our hands. Until then, it's a "Leans Democratic" and something to keep on eye on.

UPDATE: NRR has a post up. He feels it is a little stronger to Shannon then we do. We really like NRR's blog a lot.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

NOT Jim Gilmore Column

By NOT Jim Gilmore

A special to Not Larry Sabato

Firstly, thank you very much to Not Larry Sabato for this opportunity to talk about this important election. I had considered requesting a chance to provide another perspective to the Cuccinelli and Englin columns, however I wanted to wait and see if that was needed. Since they were both cancelled, I was glad to offer to fill in! There's nothing better for a politician than an open microphone.

A little about myself. I serve as a member of the Virginia House of Delegates and I was part of the "gang of 17" that saved the state from last years budget stalemate.

The gang of 17 is really a myth. We had two key votes on the budget last year. 15 of us voted the correct way in both votes. Those members were Bryant, Carrico, Dillard, Fralin, Hurt, Ingram, Chris Jones, Danny Marshall, Morgan, Nutter, Oder, Parrish, Rust, Ed Scott, and Tata. Two others joined us on the first vote, Callahan and Reese. There's your first seventeen. On the second vote we lost those two but we picked up May and Orrock. There's your second seventeen.

The Democrats had 37 seats then and were able to deliver 36 of those votes- all except Joannou. You can see how tight the math was- 36 Democrats and 15 Republicans on both votes. The minimum 51. Four others who might give us some cushion if they liked the bill.

Today that coalition would stand at 52 with the Paula Miller victory to fill Thelma Drake's open seat.

When you look at the numbers this way it's easy to understand how important this month's primaries were for our coalition. The anti-taxers may have only challenged six of us BUT we need every seat. If they win 51 seats with Jerry Kilgore as Governor, then an aging and quite frankly, less popular Senate majority will be all that stands between an unraveling of all we worked so hard for.

In the end VCAP and others took two nominations from us. Chris Craddock's victory over Gary Reese was not a major blow as Gary was not one of our "solid 15". Michael Golden's win in Jim Dillard's seat will reduce our majority back to 51 if he is successful in November.

The point I want to make is this. 17 of 19 renominations is great, but we are not picking up seats on the GOP side with our message. We do not have seats to spare.

Now according to NLS all 17 of us are already returning to Richmond. That's 14 solid votes, 3 possible. Because of Joannou we need at least 38 Democrats elected to hold our majority in the next session.

If we use the NLS projections of 79 seats so far, the breakdown is as follows.

49 GOP (32 NO, 14 YES, 3 MAYBE)
28 DEM (1 NO, 27 YES)
2 IND (2 NO)

That's 41 Pro-Virginia, 35 Anti-Virginia and 3 fingers in the wind. With 21 seats left, everyone needs to be very aware that we have not won this election yet.

The outlook is even shakier from there.

In the 99th District Rob Whittman will succeed Albert Pollard. Rob satisfied both factions in the GOP to get the nomination uncontested. But he can only vote with one of us. That's a solid Yes vote turned into a question mark.

The 67th will likely go to Chris Craddock. Unless something changes there, that's a loss of one possible for us.

The 37th could go either way, but we feel good that if Republican candidate John Mason wins he will be part of our majority as was Chap Petersen, so we should be good there.

Our numbers are also questionable in the 6th, 35th, 41st and 87th.

When we had conference calls with the Democrats last year one of them remarked that it "was like being in the majority". Indeed we have forged a majority for the Commonwealth. Please don't let our success in June lull you into believing we have won this election. We must win these competitive elections in November to be able to keep our end of the bargain.

If you find this article to be helpful let me know. I would be happy to do another one in the future talking about where the numbers currently stand for passing a real fix to our transportation mess next year. That will take even more seats for our coalition then just holding the line on the last budget.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Southwest Virginia

We're finally ready to start calling the races in Southwest Virginia. Let's start with the 3 easy ones. All three of these incumbents will either be unopposed or very lightly opposed.

3rd District: Jackie Stump
Safe Democratic

4th District: Joe Johnson
Safe Democratic

5th District: Bill Carrico
Safe Republican

The makeup of the House now has 49 GOP, 28 DEM, and 2 IND.

With both IND members joining the GOP Caucus, we can now officially project that the Republicans have won the House of Delegates.

June 25th, more than 4 months out from election day...

Now the last 21 uncalled races will be over the margin.

GOP Column Coming this weekend!

We got an email this morning from a moderate GOP legislator who has offered to take up the Republican side for columns on our site. He'll either be blogging as "Not Ken Cuccinelli" or "Not Jim Gilmore". Should be coming out tonight or tomorrow. This should be exciting!

Friday, June 24, 2005

NOT Brian Moran Column

By NOT Brian Moran

A special for readers of NOT Larry Sabato

There are many reasons the Democrats are solidly in the minority in the halls of power in Richmond. Some are out of the control of our Democratic "leadership" (I use that term loosely in relation to our current crop). But others land squarely on their shoulders.

This week at our meeting we could see them so clearly.

I hope to see the appalling number of districts in which Democrats don't bother to run somebody addressed another day, but for now I want to focus on even lower hanging fruit: the party hacks who do nothing to actually help the brave souls who do step up to the plate to challenge Republicans.

Brian Moran, how many doors have you knocked on for the party darling, Greg Werkheiser?

Lindsey Reynolds, how many of his phone banks have you been to?

How about you, Doug Dodson?

Kerry Donley, manage to hit any doors for challengers before you fled back to high school?

Among many lessons the elected Democrats should have learned from the drubbing they took by young Englin in the 45th is that our names mean NOTHING. Contrary to the sour grapes aired on this blog, coming from nowhere to beat five candidates, two of them with endorsement lists of electeds as long as the eye could see, with almost a third of the vote and by five points, counts as a big win! Had as many electeds spent three hours knocking on doors for their chosen candidate as put their names on various pieces of direct mail, websites, and letters, you'd all be celebrating the win of nominee Garvey or Mosqueda, rather than fretting about the win of nominee Englin.

What makes the situation worse is instead of learning a lesson from this defeat and welcoming the young man, caucus members this week spent much time complaining about his victory and spreading rumors that he may run for Caucus Chairman. My colleagues should know that I am not impressed with this type of behavior and in fact lose total respect for those members spreading this rumor rather then calling Mister Englin up and asking him themselves.

On another political blog, an Englin volunteer spelled out a "secret": hard work wins elections. The Democratic leadership in this state is strong on the easy stuff - attending events and adding their names to lists - but incredibly weak when it comes to doing the hard work it takes to win. It's costing us dearly.

I won't stay anonymous long. When you see a Democratic legislator out working harder then ever before to match what our new young friend has done you will know who I am.

The longer I stay in Richmond politics, the more I understand term limit laws.


Not Bob Roberts copy of our blog is off to an excellent start. He scooped us today on the story we are working on with GOP candidate Matt Lohr in the 26th District (Harrisonburg). We are still waiting for audio, if we get it we will report on it ASAP and let you know what was said, and more important, the tone in which it was said. Obviously, if true, this story is much bigger if the attack on JMU was serious rather than joking.

Not Mark Rozell has these thoughts on our thread yesterday.

Our first post from Not Brian Moran will be up in just a few minutes!

No Cuccinelli Cocktail

We got an email late last night from Senator Ken Cuccinelli letting us know he was going to be cancelling the Cuccinelli cocktail. No more information was in the email. If Ken would like to explain further we'll let him do so here, if not, that's all the information we have for you.

Obviously on that notice we have no GOP replacement for him this week. We have been working on a Democratic replacement for David Englin, and we have interest in a one time column from one legislator who "has some things on their chest". If that comes through today we'll post it as "Not Brian Moran".

Thursday, June 23, 2005

58th District

Outlook: Safe GOP

Our sources in greater Charlottesville tell us the campaign in the 58th District is over. Incumbent Rob Bell is strong, the district is GOP and his challenger Steve Koleszar is out telling people he doesn't need to raise much money- his campaign is "grassroots". Sorry Steve, to grow the grass you have to buy the seed.

We're calling this one for Bell.

41st and 42nd District Updates

Outlook: Leans Republican

From our good old source AlexGOP:

Driving home tonight, guess what I saw on the Englin's front lawn??? Democrat Greg Werkheiser. I walked back to try to listen into the conversation but couldn't hear much without being obvious, so I will just assume they were talking about being pro-partial birth abortion...

Interesting. If Werkheiser is listening to people like Englin we may have to upgrade him.

Outlook: Toss Up

Also, we got a post on another thread in the blog letting us know David Marsden had updated his endorsement list and now had Cathy Belter on his list. Good move by Marsden.

Couple of questions:

1) How many of these endorsements live in this district? I don't know where most of these people live, is there a Fairfax Democrat that can tell us?

2) Since Marsden's campaign apparently reads this blog and listened to our critique, here's another one. If you list an endorsement, list their title and district correctly.

Dick Saslaw has not been a Delegate in over 25 years, he is a Senator.

Toddy Puller has also been a Senator for 6 years. She is not a Delegate.

Brian Moran represents the 46th district, not the 35th.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

96th District

Melanie Rapp got the lowest percentage of any GOP incumbent re-elected in 2003, but this time Democrats have failed to recruit a candidate to challenge her. Given her prior performance we would have avoided calling the 96th for Melanie against a wet sock, but since the ballot is empty we can now project her as a winner this year. She will join Jack Reid and Bob Hull on Moira's "this could happen to you if you don't vote" tour.

Englin Elixir

We are having to cancel the Englin Elixir because of some things we won't get into.

We jumped the gun on announcing after we got approval from David's spouse, and we apologize for that.

We are currently working on getting another Democratic celebrity poster to fill in for David Englin.

As far as we know the Cuccinelli Cocktail is still on.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Primary challenge to Jim Moran in 2006

An email we just got. Developing...

David isn't the only Englin with designs on public office. People who were worried about David's support for the Morans should have looked a little deeper - who do you really think decided to put the Rosenberg sign out front of the Englin house? There's going to be an Englin running for Congress in 2006, but not the one you think. I know for a fact that Shayna has already been getting pledges for money for her race. "Team Englin" volunteers were told not to go far, that they'd have another Enlgin to stump for. David Englin is a nice guy just trying to do right. Shayna is the one with the great big ego and the great big ambition. Watch out, Alexandria. You may have wanted one Englin, but now you're stuck with another.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Where in the World is Chuck Caputo?

A source inside the Democratic Coordinated Campaign tells me the following:

Dear NLS,

I am a loyal Democrat, and I only write you this because your blog is so well read that perhaps someone far above my paygrade will see this and fix the situation.

I work for the coordinated campaign. We are focused on the statewide races, but we do coordinate our efforts with local Delegate candidates.

After Chris Craddock was nominated I was excited for a great pick up opportunity. I was more optimistic when I read here that you felt Chuck Caputo was a strong candidate for the seat.

However this is what I have learned since then.

Chuck is out of the country. Has been since before the primary. Won't be back for another week. His manager said he needed to "refresh in Europe".

Speaking of the manager, it is a 70 year old man who has no idea what is going on. This guy was asking the most insane questions, I won't say what they were as I am sure some Republicans are reading this, but let me just say he lacked any basic knowledge of how things operate.

Calling Democratic Leaders: Can someone PLEASE step in and get this guy the help he needs so he can defeat Chris Craddock.


Mad in McLean

So does anyone know where Chuck is today? Big Ben in London? Eifel Tower in Paris? Bull Riding in Spain? Eating in Italy? Let us know, maybe Kenton Ngo who did the maps for the statewide primaries will do another map of "Where in the World is Chuck Caputo".

Scandal Breaking....

We are hearing rumors of a scandal getting ready to break in the 26th district regarding GOP candidate Matt Lohr. Once we get anything concrete we will let you know what is happening...


41st District Update

Outlook: Toss Up

This one has gotten stranger.

First of all, former Indy candidate/Dillard challenger Michael Golden is now the owner of Jim Dillard's Republican nomination by slamming former Dillard primary challenger Bill Finerfrock. The results were:

Michael Golden 2,359 (73.6%)
Bill Finerfrock 848 (26.4%)

Golden, who was supported in the primary by both Senators Cuccinelli and O'Brien will now face party switching Dillard aide David Marsden in the general election.

Here's what we have heard.

Local Democrats have still not united around Marsden. Anyone who knows the 41st district will be surprised to see local school board member Cathy Belter who was pushed out of running is still missing from Marsden's endorsements. We understand divisions from the June primaries- but it has been over six months here...

We also received an email from another Springfield Democrat telling us that Marsden was having an event this week (maybe it was last week) with Governor Mark Warner up in McLean. As this local Democrat wrote "Is he too embarrassed of us to have an event within 10 miles of the district? The Governor can't come here to campaign?"

Meanwhile Golden has his own problems.

His status as one of only two VCAP candidates left has given Marsden almost automatic endorsements from teachers, firefighters and most other groups that endorse.

Also according to one local GOPer Marsden has been going door to door telling Republicans that he worked for Gilmore and is leaving out the part about running as a Democrat. Since these would otherwise be automatic Golden votes it does not help him to have to be reeducating his base on who the GOP nominee is. Great strategy by Marsden.

Finally Marsden has outraised Golden by almost $12,000 (87-75) but has a $33,000 cash on hand advantage as of June 1st because of the Republican primary that has probably gotten even greater since then.

On the other hand, Golden was out getting high visibility during the primary with that money, so it wasn't totally wasted.

For now, this district which voted almost identical to Virginia for Governor and Lt. Governor in 2001, and went for President Bush by less than one percentage point is a total tossup.

In the 37th we called it "Crypt Skeleton vs. Opie". Here on the comments a month ago someone compared Marsden to "Lurch" from the Addams Family. We'll go with that. So what about Michael Golden... We got it!

The 41st is "Lurch vs. Mary Tyler Moore". Do you agree?

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Women in Northern Virginia

Northern Virginia was the leader in the 1980s and 1990s on putting women (mostly Democrats) in the General Assembly. But recently the rest of Virginia has been catching up while Northern Virginia has gone back the other way.

Northern Virginia

In Marian Van Landingham's 45th district voters rejected outright appeals on the basis of sex to give the seat to David Englin. That's minus one for women next year right off the top.

In the four competitive districts in Fairfax County that we have covered from the start (35th, 37th, 41st, 42nd) only two incumbents (Shannon and Albo) are on the ballot, yet all 6 other nominees are men. Only one district, the 37th even fielded a female candidate in the primary.

The two other Fairfax County seats on the board are the 39th (Likely Democratic) where the Republican candidate is a man, against female incumbent Vivian Watts meaning at best a hold for women, and both the Democratic and Republican nominees for Gary Reese's recently opened seat are men.

This is on top of Adam Ebbin replacing a woman in 2003, and Bob Brink replacing a woman in 1999. As well of course to the 35th mentioned above where Steve Shannon replaced JeanneMarie Devolities-Davis.

Meanwhile in the outer suburbs women have the advantage for a hold in the 51st with Michelle McQuigg (Currently Likely Republican), and have a shot for one pickup in the 52nd with Hilda Barg. So at best, if all races with women go for the female candidate in Northern Virginia, the net will be the same.

Rest of Virginia

Elsewhere women have holding their own and beginning to pick up ground. In last years special election Paula Miller replaced incoming Congresswoman Thelma Drake. Jennifer McClellan was elected to replace Viola Baskerville this year. There also appears to be a likely pickup with the primary win of Roslyn Tyler to replace Paul Councill.

Women incumbents like Beverly Sherwood, Kathy Byron, Jeion Ward, Mamye Bacote and others are mostly safe.

Possible longshot female pickups include Supriya Christopher and Linda Crandell.

Also interesting is that none of VCAP's challengers were women.


So what gives? Is this a trend or is it just coincidence? It's especially interesting in Northern Virginia where so many of the competitive seats are, given that when all else is equal women have tended to defeat men in general elections. If it is a trend who's fault is it?

71st District Primary Recap

The Richmond Times-Dispatch has an excellent recap of the 71st in today's paper. Check it out. We have projected Jennifer McClellan as the November winner and the new Delegate-Elect.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

84th District Update

Outlook: Likely Republican

Democrats nominated a good candidate here in Supriya Christopher, but she has not been getting any breaks.

First of all, as we have told you before this is a solid GOP district. The closest any Democrat has come here was Mark Warner's six point loss in 2001.

Incumbent Bob McDonnell then managed to hand off the GOP nomination to his aide Sal Iaquinto without opposition in a year where it seemed every GOP race had a nomination fight.

Then McDonnell went and won the nomination for Attorney General giving Iaquinto a well known and locally popular ticket mate to run with. Meanwhile no Democratic candidate from the area is running statewide.

Given that this district has one of the lowest turnout rates in the state because of the military presence, turnout is even more important and a local turnout booster is a major factor.

Last week on that primary day, Republicans cast 84% of the ballots in this district, giving Christopher a list of only 281 Democrats to work with. It's doubtful anything new was gained by that.

Finally, with all these advantages, Iaquinto has taken a small fundraising lead, and has spent less giving him a $17,000 cash on hand advantage as of June 1st.

We may call this one soon.

Statewide Campaigns (AG)

We have avoided doing much coverage of the statewide elections during the primaries unless they impacted the House races. Now that the primaries are over, we will be increasing our coverage of the statewide races. With the exception of 2001 when Mark Warner lost 13 seats in the House of Delegates while he was becoming Governor, recent statewide elections have a major impact on House races. 2001 will likely stay the exception as the problems Democrats had were more redistricting based then top of the ticket.

Today, was the first debate for Attorney General. The AP already has a story up. One thing was very surprising. Bob McDonnell was trying to convince Creigh Deeds he is more moderate then his ticket. I understand downballot is supposed to do some dirty work, but saying your opponent is the most moderate Democrat on the ballot? How does that help McDonnell?

Round one to Deeds here.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Summertime Blogging

Major Announcement

We are thrilled to announce two celebrity bloggers that will be joining us every Friday this summer!

Virginia Senator Ken Cuccinelli is well known as the "Campaigner in Chief" for the Virginia GOP. Ken will be offering his opinion on one House candidate, or issue affecting House races each week.

Presumptive Virginia Delegate-Elect David Englin made a major point in his campaign of wanting to be a Democrat that helped other candidates from his seat. He'll use our platform, along with his very able wife Shayna, to highlight his opinion on one House candidate, or issue affecting House races each week.

We're calling this weekly series

"The Cuccinelli Cocktail vs. The Englin Elixir"!

Check back next Friday for the first installment!

Until then, we'll keep up our review of the primaries and where they leave us for the November elections.

Not Mark Rozell's New Blog

We congratulate Not Mark Rozell, a regular poster here, on his new blog. Apparently this comment from 2:14 p.m. on election day was so embarrassing to him that he needed to find a way to redeem himself:

Not Mark Rozell said...
The numbers in the 67th are way too lopsided to spell a huge victory for Craddock, despite what his supporters are saying here" .... "but I'm betting those high GOP numbers and woefully low Dem numbers in the 67th spell a tighter race than Craddock will admit. There are definitely Dem crossovers represented in there, even though this is a solid GOP district and there is no local Dem race to draw them to the polls.Remember, I have said all along this race would go for Craddock. Now I'm having second thoughts. There are too many firefighters and teachers involved on the ground to put this in the Craddock column. "
2:14 PM

LOL. This should be fun to watch.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Primary Predictions Perfect

A few people have asked us to review our predictions for the primary.

They were perfect!

Before we go over them one by one, pay attention to this. Elections are not static things. They move all the time, in little steps and big jumps.

Primaries are particularly hard to call because of the low turnout, and the different types of turnout each candidate is targeting. Just because their plan is good, or they are running the right kind of campaign does not mean the voters will be there for them.

With that in mind, it's impossible to see how we could have done better.

On the statewide races, with bloggers split in many different camps spinning you on candidates, we cut through the spin.

We let you know why Bill Bolling was a favorite for Lt. Governor even while Connaughton was claiming a big move. In the end as we said, to win Connaughton would have to win two uphill battles, the McDonnell voters in Hampton Roads and the Kilgore voters in Southwest. He had a plausible argument to them, but in the end this went to Bolling as we expected.

We told you exactly what Fitch's goal was (and he fell a few points short of that) against Jerry Kilgore.

We explained why Leslie Byrne was going to win the Democratic primary. As we said it turned out almost exactly like the 1997 GOP primary. Most pundits were busy predicting a Petersen victory- he finished a distant third.

We also told you about Bob McDonnell's advantages among Northern Virginia Connaughton voters as well as Southwest voters and predicted his victory in the Attorney General's race.

House Races- Safe

We rated 5 primaries as "Safe" and projected all 5 to win in November:

Prediction Result
Toscano-------------------- Toscano by 30 points

Easy win for us here.

Bryant-------------------------- Bryant by 50 points

Another easy win for us.

Parrish--------------------------- Parrish by 10 points

This one closed hard at the end, but was never in doubt. Literally, at 6:59 p.m. on election day 10 points was the closest Chapman had been the entire race. We told you Chapman had got some momentum with the Cuccinelli endorsement, and we also told you that would not be enough to get back into this race.

Hargrove -----------------------Hargrove by 48 points.

Easy win for us.

Wardrup----------------------- Wardrup by 48 points.

Another easy win.

House Races- Likely

We rated two primaries as likely winners. Both won.

Golden--------------------------- Golden by 48 points

Easy win there, we probably should have called this one safe, but we were too busy with close races in the days before election day.

Howell---------------------------- Howell by 22

We told you Howell would win this one unless Boose could make a move with the "droopy drawers issue". She tried but never quite did it strongly enough to make this race close. Or maybe most people liked the bill....

House Races- Leans

Mason----------------------------- Mason by 21

We had this as "Likely Mason" to begin with and made it a "Leans Mason" when it became clear that Chap was going to drain some of his vote into the Democratic primary. Mason's win was very impressive considering that was happening at the same time.

Purkey----------------------------- Purkey by 26

In this Virginia Beach primary Purkey pulled away to a large victory over Councilman Peter Schmidt. This race started out a lot closer, but as Schmidt began making himself a one issue, pro tax increase candidate- Republican voters in the Beach couldn't stomach it. This race is a classic one where issues overrode personal popularity.

May-------------------------------- May by 19

Joe May had the clear edge here and gave us another correctly called race. We kept this as a "Leans" rather then a "Likely" because of this district voting so overwhelmingly against Russ Potts in 2003. Oprison could not capitalize on that and this margin was bigger then it should have been.

McEachin--------------------------- McEachin by 1.3%

Phew! This was the closest we came to losing a race where we listed a favorite. McEachin had the clear edge here, but low turnout combined with Miles making a fantastic showing in his home base of Charles City made this one an election night thriller. We hear much of the credit for Miles late surge goes to his campaign manager Kwame Boadi who our sources tell us is a rising star in the Virginia Democratic party. We'll keep an eye out for where he goes next.

House Races- Toss Ups

45th------------------------------ Englin by 5%

We had this as a Leans Garvey to begin, then a Toss Up, and finally towards the end a slight lean to Englin. Englin really survived a lot here which we will talk more about later, but once he made it through the fire, we could feel a victory coming on here in the last week.

37th------------------------------ Bulova by 12%

We had this as a leans Bulova and then moved it to a tossup as Chap rolled up momentum and turnout became very unpredictable. Probably should have just kept it where it was, but too many question marks came up here because of the top of the ticket turnout.

71st------------------------------- McClellan by 29%

We had this one as "Likely McClellan" and then moved it to a tossup. Again, top of ticket momentum had a big impact, it was hard to tell how well Viola would move her base with all the problems her campaign was having. We told you if Viola was over 70% in her district McClellan would win big. Well, Viola hit that number, and McClellan indeed won big.

30th------------------------------ Scott by 29%

Once again the primary turnout made this election a big question mark. As we saw numbers coming in on the turnout we called this one in the afternoon as a Scott victory, and that indeed held up big on election night. Democratic crossover was big here.

35th------------------------------ Hyland by 10%

This one was a wild race with Hyland getting outspent by almost a 4-1 margin. We got a lot of emails from people claiming Robinson was well ahead and it should be called for him. We feel good about ignoring all the fundraising hype and keeping this race as a tossup all the way through.

54th------------------------------ Orrock by 10%

We told you this would be the second best showing for an anti-tax candidate and indeed it was. Almost every polling place was close, but in the end Kenney could not win enough places to pull this out. Democratic crossover was the difference here by a lot.

75th------------------------------ Tyler by 5%

We told you this could go for Tyler, Flowers or Councill. On election night Tyler and Flowers went back and forth. In the end Councill pulled enough votes from Flowers, and Tyler was the most consistent district wide and won a historic victory.

67th------------------------------ Craddock by 32%

We had this as a tossup, but the Democrats turned on Reese late and without them he really turned into a lame duck. We called this one as going for Craddock all day long on election day, and he proved us right in a big way.

100% in the primary. We hope to be able to that again in November.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Recap of 37th District Primary

We're going to spend the next few days updating the right hand side of the site, and getting ready to update ratings. Today and tomorrow, we'll give you some recaps of the primaries.

The story of the 37th was incumbent Chap Petersen. Chap clearly made a decision to blitz his district for turnout for the Lt. Governors primary. While turnout is great, every vote counts (insert third cliche here) history has proven that you won't win a statewide primary by making a heavy push in 1% of the state. Chap got great turnout, won all the precincts here and finished a distant third.

But Chap's GOTV made a huge difference in the primaries for his seat.

As we discussed before, John Mason and Chap shared a lot of voters in very independent Fairfax City. That forced many of them to have to pick primaries when they would have liked to vote for both.

Mason succeeded in keeping enough people in the Republican primary to beat back Jim Kaplan for the nomination. For the record, the 37th was the only district where someone was posting incorrect turnout numbers here on election day. We said we could not longer project a winner when afternoon turnout for the R's at one precinct was only 20 people. All the way until then, we had said this was a likely or leaning Mason victory. The truth was Mason was very successful in keeping a significant vote in the Republican primary, and won big in Fairfax City. Fairfax County was a little more spotty for Mason with some strong precincts and some weak ones. In the end, Mason was indeed the winner.

John Mason 1,683 (60.3%) 55% in County, 69% in City
Jim Kaplan 1,106 (39.7%)

Chap also had a big impact on the Democratic primary. Clearly Chap's county voters were much more inclined to David Bulova then his opponent Janet Oleszek. Oleszek was not able to run a complete campaign in the County, some precincts she stayed very close, others were a blowout. We had rated this likely Bulova, then leans Bulova and finally a tossup. Oleszek kept the race close and showed why we had closed the rating, but in the end Bulova won a solid victory.

Rather then blow a post election kiss, Raising Kaine took a little potshot at us for calling this race a "tossup". Given the clear momentum from Oleszek at the end here, the large turnout that was the most unpredictable in the state and the final margin we feel pretty good about this call. In fact, if we had it to do over again, we'd still call it a tossup! The final results were

David Bulova 1,969 (56.6%) 59% in County, 52% in City
Janet Oleszek 1,511 (43.4%)

Here's an interesting email we got on the 37th this morning.

NLS, when you talk about the final results of the 37th I would like to bring something to your attention. Many Fairfax City Republicans like Chap and voted for him in the Democratic primary. While neither Democratic candidate was a dud (like Leslie Byrne) it was clear that Janet was going to play stronger in the City in November. My husband for one crossed over and voted for Bulova to give Mason a better shot in November. Again, nothing bad about David Bulova, but we just like our chances better with him on the ballot.

Very interesting. We notice much stronger results for Bulova in and around Mason's neighborhood.

This race is a tossup and will probably be the #1 race to watch in Virginia this year for Delegate. We are giving John Mason the leader position on the right, but, as a famous announcer once said:

Let's Get Ready to Ruuuuuuuuuuuummmmmmbbbbbbbblllllllllllleeeeeeeee!!!

UPDATE: Raising Kaine interviews Bulova after his primary win. This is much better than the first interview Bulova did with them. We can see some improvement in him as a candidate.

As far as "pantsgate" goes, Bulova mentions that those were in fact black jeans, and only cost $30. Black Jeans? They sell those anymore? Is Bulova getting his clothes at gothic underground? Or a Nine Inch Nails Concert?

Tip to Bulova: When doing your November mail go with blue jeans. Don't whitewash them or peg them. Don't dress up as a crossing guard. Don't pretend to be a kid.

Bulova has one trump card up his sleeve if he chooses to use it. Has anyone else noticed how much Mason looks like the skeleton in "Tales from the Crypt"?

SECOND UPDATE: An email just pointed out how much David Bulova looks like Ron Howard (aka Opie). Should we call this election "Crypt Skeleton v. Opie"?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Open Thread

Whatever you want to say about the election results tonight. Analysis, rants, whatever.

Read below for our calls as we make them

Projected Winners

Kilgore defeats Fitch 7:14 p.m.
Byrne defeats Baskerville, Petersen, Puckett 7:31 p.m.
McDonnell defeats Baril 7:34 p.m.
Englin defeats Garvey, Lay, Mosqueda, Mandala and Hobson 7:46 p.m.
Bolling defeats Connaughton 7:51 p.m.
Craddock defeats Reese 7:59 p.m.
Golden defeats Finnerfrock 7:59 p.m.
Mason defeats Kaplan 8:00 p.m.
Bulova defeats Oleszek 8:06 p.m.
Orrock defeats Kenney 8:10 p.m.
Toscano defeats Tingley, Collins 8:14 p.m.
Bryant defeats Garber 8:21 p.m.
Parrish defeats Chapman 8:29 p.m.
Howell defeats Boose 8:57 p.m.
Hargrove defeats Clemmons 9:04 p.m.
Wardrup defeats Miles 9:06 p.m.
Purkey defeats Schmidt 9:07 p.m.
May defeats Oprison 9:19 p.m.
Scott defeats Jarvis 9:23 p.m.
Hyland defeats Robinson, Purves 9:29 p.m.
Tyler defeats Councill, Flowers, Nicholson and Goodwyn 9:32 p.m.
McClellan defeats Law 11:44 p.m.
McEachin defeats Miles 11:48 p.m.

74th District

In the closest race of the night, former Delegate Donald McEachin has regained his seat by 48 votes over incumbent Floyd Miles.

This is a safe Democratic seat, so we can now project Don McEachin as the new Delegate.

As a great man once said: "Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss."

The House is now:
46 GOP
26 DEM
26 UND

71st District

We are now ready to project Jennifer McClellan as the winner in the 71st District over Melvin Law.

This is a safe Democratic seat, so we can also project Jennifer as the new Delegate.

The House is now:
46 GOP
25 DEM
27 UND

Lt. Governor- Dem

With all of Richmond City outstanding, the Lt. Governor's race is going to tighten up on the Democratic side between Baskerville and Byrne. However, Byrne's current lead is more than the RAW VOTES of Tim Kaine in Richmond City in 2001. We don't think Baskerville can get a bigger MARGIN then Tim got VOTES. So we feel comfertable with our projection of Leslie Byrne, but do note that it will tighten up here.

Almost Done

We have every race called now except the two coming down to Richmond City, the 71st and 74th. Richmond- where are your numbers!?!

75th District

We can now project that Roslyn Tyler has won the 75th District, defeating Jerry Flowers, Jim Councill, John Nicholson and Deborah Goodwyn.

We won't call this one over for November until we can take a closer look at the GOP nominee. For now, it's still rated Safe DEM, but it's not called over until we get a chance to look at it.

35th District- GOP

We can project that Jim Hyland has defeated Ed Robinson and Arthur Purves to become the GOP nominee against incumbent Steve Shannon.

30th District

We can now call incumbent Ed Scott the winner in the 30th District over Mark Jarvis. Since this is a Safe Republican seat we can call Scott the winner in November as well.

The House is now:

46 GOP
24 DEM
28 UND

33rd District

Incumbent Joe May has defeated challenger Chris Oprison. We will change the rating for this seat to "Safe Republican" and call Joe May the winner in November.

The House is now:

45 GOP
24 DEM
29 UND

82nd District

Harry Purkey has defeated Virginia Beach Councilman Peter Schmidt to win the GOP nomination. This is a safe Republican seat, so we can now call Purkey the winner for November. The new House projection is:

44 GOP
24 DEM
30 UND

83rd District

As we told you before, Leo Wardrup won re-election big over Delceno Miles. Since we already projected this one it does not change our projection of the House.

55th District

With precincts finally in, we can confirm what we told you months ago. Frank Hargrove crushes Clemmons to win re-election as Delegate. We already projected it, so it does not change the House projection.

90th District

We can now project Algie Howell re-nominated in the 90th District, and we can project him as the winner in November.

The makeup of the House is now:

43 GOP
24 DEM
31 UND

37th Update

We already projected David Bulova as the winner here, update on the results, Bulova has come from behind to win Fairfax City, a key win as he faces the former Mayor of the City without Chap Petersen on the ballot in November.

True Tossups

McEachin-Miles is going down to the wire with Charles City giving Miles a great margin and still having some precincts left to report. McEachin has the lead and is trying to run out the clock

The 75th is coming down to Jerry Flowers or Rosyln Tyler. Jim Councill is third and we don't see him being able to pass both Flowers and Tyler. Right now Flowers leads Tyler by just 11 votes.

50th District

Harry Parrish has defeated Steve Chapman for the 50th District GOP nomination. We already had projected Parrish as a winner here so it won't change the makeup of the House.

23rd District

Lots of precincts coming in here at once! We called this one "Safe Bryant" before the election, and tonight Preston Bryant has won a huge landslide re-election over Robert Garber.

No change in the House count, as we already had called this one.

57th District

We were waiting for parts of Charlottesville to come in, but the lead in Albermarle is enough to call this one. David Toscano defeats Kim Tingley and Rich Collins.

We called this one before election day so it doesn't impact the House standings.

54th District

We called this one a tossup and it was close in almost every precinct, but we can now declare Bobby Orrock has defeated Shaun Kenney.

We can project Delegate Orrock as a winner in November making the House:

43 GOP
23 DEM
32 UND

37th District- Dem

As we told you Bulova would win the County, and Oleszek would win the City. Well the City looks close, and Bulova has won the county by enough we can now project David Bulova as the Democratic nominee for district 37 defeatign Janet Oleszek.

37th- GOP

We can now project former Fairfax Mayor John Mason as winning the GOP nomination for the 37th District over Jim Kaplan.

41st District

We can now project Michael Golden defeating Bill Finnerfrock for the GOP nomination in District 41.

67th District

As we told you earlier, we can now project Chris Craddock as the winner in the 67th district, defeating Gary Reese the incumbent.

Bill Bolling Wins

We can now project Bill Bolling as defeating Sean Connaughton to be the Lt. Governor nominee for the GOP.

The GOP ticket is now complete with Kilgore-Bolling-McDonnell

45th District

Some more precincts are in- even with 100% in Arlington Libby can not catch up. We are calling this one for David Englin defeating Libby Garvey, Jim Lay, Elsie Mosqueda, Laura Mandala and Dick Hobson.

As the nominee we project Englin to be the new Delegate for the 45th District. We have now called:

42 GOP

23 DEM
33 UND

45th- Englin takes lead

We aren't calling it until we see a little more but Englin looks like a winner.

37th- Dems

Bulova leads Oleszek early- but the returns are from Mama Bulova's district. We can't declare this one until we see more than that.

33rd District

Joe May leads early but we are not calling this one yet. Everything reporting is coming from Clarke, Loundon is the key.

Bob McDonnell Wins

Bob McDonnell defeats Steve Baril to become the GOP candidate for Attorney General.

Leslie Byrne Wins

As we told you yesterday the stars were lining up for this one. The Democratic ticket will be Kaine/Byrne/Deeds. We can now project Leslie Byrne as the winner of the Democratic Primary, defeating Viola Baskerville, Phil Puckett and Chap Petersen.

Byrne and McDonnell looking good

Not ready to declare either one yet, but they both have taken the lead and look strong.

45th District

Dick Hobson wins the first precinct reporting, Englin second. All 6 candidates are close, it's a jumble so far. Nothing to declare.


McClellen takes early lead in Henrico- we need to see more in this one. The City of Richmond is the key here.

2 of 30 in for McEachin Miles

Miles won one precinct by ONE
McEachin the other by TWO

We have this rated Leans McEachin

It's off to a VERY CLOSE start

Jerry Kilgore wins

First projection of the night:

Jerry Kilgore defeats George Fitch to become the GOP candidate for Governor.

The Polls are Closed!

Sorry we never posted a final update on the Democrats- the final hours flew away, and by now it's time to let the votes speak for themselves. We'll open another thread to discuss results at 7:15 that will be open all night.

GOP Primary Rating Changes

From what you are reporting and what I am hearing around the state...

Old Rating: Toss Up
New Rating: Leans Craddock

Everything is going Craddock's way right now.

Old Rating: Toss Up
New Rating: Leans Scott

Big Madison Turnout gives Scott the edge he needs. He wins by taking either Culpeper or Orange.

Old Rating: Leans May
New Rating: Leans May (Kind of)

The electorate in the 33rd is not as angry as the electorate in the 67th... however... the turnout looks very close to the 2003 numbers. If these are the same voters that voted against Potts by a 2-1 margin May is in trouble. We'll know when the first precinct comes in what is going on here...

Old Rating: Leans Mason
New Rating: Toss Up

Petersen has taken a big vote here, the GOP primary is so small anything can happen.

Old Rating: Toss Up
New Rating: Toss Up

Who knows here.....

Attorney General

Turnout in Hampton Roads is better than Richmond Metro. The biggest turnouts are being pushed by conservative House candidates. Bob McDonnell has got to be considered the favorite in this electorate today.

Story of the Day

The 18 districts where there is a House primary are driving the turnout statewide.

Much higher turnout in areas with a House primary, competitive or not.

Winners from this: Baskerville, Petersen, Byrne, McDonnell, Connaughton
Hurting from this: Bolling, Baril, Puckett

We'll see if anything is close enough to make that kind of difference.

UPDATE: 3 P.M.- We are having trouble setting up the chat. Can anyone else help with this?


Seven and a Half Hours to go!!

This thread is for your midday poll numbers.

Here's what we are hearing, both from your posts and others

* The Richmond area Bolling/Baril numbers are not good in turnout.

* Connaughton and McDonnell seem to be doing better in their areas with turnout

*McDonnell has advantages in other regions as we discussed yesterday so his stronger turnout makes him a solid favorite to win (at least so far)

*Bolling has a slight upperhand in other regions so Lt. Governor may come down to the wire.

* Byrne numbers have fallen off as the day has gone on, while Chap numbers have been rising. Anybody could win right now.

* 45th District turnout is very low.

* Craddock looks like a favorite going into the afternoon, while Kenney still has an even shot to pull the upset.

* The Low turnout may give us a few House surprises tonight.

The Polls Are Open!

When you vote, please post the following:

Name of County or City
Precinct Name or Number
Time you voted
# of Dems Voting
# of GOPers Voting

We're really hoping we can get reports from around the state on here. This is going to be a challenge with many of our readers at polling places... let's see if this works!

UPDATE: 7 A.M. - Light turnout so far in the first hour. Our turnout projections may have been too high which will throw a lot of races out of whack.... developing...

UPDATE: 8:30 A.M.
*Horrible turnout in Libby Garvey's base of Arlington in the 45th....
*Normally GOP leaning 11th Congressional District outvoting solid Dem 8th district so far in Dem Primary (appears to be Byrne turnout)
* Statewide GOP turnout routing Dem turnout.
*Numbers still below where we thought, but not by as much now.

* Baskerville getting good turnout in City of Richmond
* Strong GOP turnout in 67th Craddock-Reese battle.
* Some precincts in Fairfax County without power and voting paper ballots
* Good turnout for Connaughton in Prince William
* Underwhelming turnout for McDonnell in Virginia Beach so far.

Great Campaigns

Congrats to everyone on your campaigns. We are all looking forward to seeing what the voters say tonight.

Remember: Live Coverage, here as soon as the polls close!

Monday, June 13, 2005

A look back at 1997 and 2001

Hope this gets you through Monday and into election day!

GOP Primary 168,671 (1997- Attorney General Only)
DEM Primary 163,957 (2001- Lt. Gov and Attorney General)

What's interesting about the dynamics of this primary is how much the 2005 Republican Primary is similar to the 01 Democratic primary, and how much the 2005 Democratic primary is similar to the 1997 GOP Primary.

Lower Turnout- Highly Driven Voters- 2005 Democratic Primary

In 1997 the Republicans only had the Attorney General's race on their ticket. There was also no one single issue that caught voters attention. As such the nomination was decided by turnout that the candidates themselves could generate. Regional voting was critical. Mark Earley's highly targeted campaign to party activists gave him pockets of conservative support statewide. He routed Ken Stolle in their shared base of Hampton Roads, and won. Jerry Kilgore streaked to second place by pulling decent numbers in Richmond where none of the candidates were from, and by pulling amazing numbers out of Southwest Virginia (like 96% in Scott County). Gil Davis never quite became a factor outside of Northern Virginia.

This years Democratic primary is very similar. Leslie Byrne is like Mark Earley, in that she will rout her regional opponent (Chap Petersen) in their shared base of Northern Virginia. Outside of Northern Virginia she is running a very targeted campaign to liberal activists likely to vote. Either Viola Baskerville or Phil Puckett could be competitive with Byrne by pulling large numbers from their base (African Americans for Viola or rural voters for Phil). Chap Petersen seems to be running a campaign like Ken Stolle, very much like a general election campaign. We'll have to see if that works better in a Democratic primary then it did for Stolle in 1997.

7 House Districts have Democratic Primaries. Here's who benefits on the statewide ticket:

37th: No benefit to any candidate. This is Petersen's home district and an area Leslie Byrne has represented for over a decade. The voters who are voting are coming out for Chap vs. Leslie, so Bulova-Oleszek will have very little statewide impact.

45th: Marian Van Landingham's open seat.Liberal enclaves inside the beltway. Large turnout benefits Leslie Byrne.

57th: Charlottesville turnout will benefit all the candidates except Phil Puckett. Byrne will win some of the strong liberal voters, Petersen some of the conservative Democrats and Viola will take her share. Overall, a wash, no major impact on the statewide race.

71st: Baskerville's open seat. Extra turnout benefits Baskerville most, but most Baskerville people would have been voting anyway. So the biggest shift may go to Leslie Byrne with her late endorsement from the Richmond Crusade for voters.

74th: This is the McEachin-Miles race. Extra turnout here will benefit Viola Baskerville the most. Leslie Byrne gets the next best benefit, again with her Crusade endorsement, and close ties to McEachin.

75th: Councill's open seat. Biggest benefit with large turnout here is Leslie Byrne who has the most important local endorsement (Louise Lucas). Second biggest benefit here is to Phil Puckett who will win some of the more conservative voters brought out by Councill Jr. and Flowers.

90th: Algie Howell's seat. Turnout here will be sparse, so not a big benefit to anyone. Should there be a larger turnout the biggest benefit is to Viola Baskerville, with the second largest benefit to Chap Petersen who has spent a lot of time in Hampton Roads.

Each race impacting the others- statewide issues- 2005 Republican Primary

In 2001 Tim Kaine and Donald McEachin were the only major candidates from Richmond. The voters Tim pushed to the polls for himself voted overwhelmingly for McEachin for AG, and the voters Don pushed the polls from the Richmond area voted overwhelmingly for Tim. In the Attorney General's race, John Edwards and Whitt Clement pushed a large vote from western Virginia that Kaine won over. Jerrauld Jones pushed a large African American turnout in Hampton Roads, which McEachin won over for Attorney General. In short, both Tim and Donald used other people's turnout to take their primaries.

The 2005 Republican primary is the same situation on a larger scale, with all 3 statewide primaries going on. Here's what each campaign is hoping for:


Jerry Kilgore: A large turnout. Kilgore needs more votes for himself then what voted in total for the Democratic primary. Anyone who pushes turnout downballot helps him.

George Fitch: 20%.

Lt. Governor

The Richmond area will likely outvote Northern Virginia in this primary. Advantage: Bill Bolling. Sean Connaughton needs Hampton Roads and Southwest. McDonnell's turnout in Hampton Roads will be conservative (Bolling), but with a lot of military (Connaughton). If Connaughton's campaign has worked on keeping the issue differences out of voters minds here he could pull off Hampton Roads, but if we had to guess Bolling is the favorite here. In the great southwest Connaughton is counting on a strategic vote to help Kilgore. Bolling is counting on southwest Republicans to be as conservative as they have been in the past. Advantage to Bolling here again, but Connaughton's argument is plausible. Bolling has to be the favorite here, but a Connaughton upset is far from out of the question.

Attorney General

Bob McDonnell should win Hampton Roads by a large margin. The Richmond area will be very interesting. Steve Baril should do best here, but Bolling's voters may not be the same as Baril's. In addition McDonnell has Jim Gilmore from Henrico County. Baril must win the Richmond area big to have any chance. In Northern Virginia Connaughton will be moving moderate Republicans to the polls. That should benefit Baril, except again McDonnell has set himself up well with an endorsement from Tom Davis, who is basically the brains behind the Connaughton campaign. Going into Southwest Baril may be in trouble, and it only gets worse there. Southwest voters are strongly conservative, and McDonnell has the key endorsements (Terry Kilgore) there as well. It's hard to see Baril winning on primary night without taking one of these regions by a very strong margin to offset Hampton Roads.

12 House Districts have Republican Primaries. Here's who benefits on the statewide ticket:

24th: Preston Bryant's big win may give a boost to moderates Connaughton and Baril.

30th: Any large turnout from conservative Culpeper and Madison will help Bill Bolling and Bob McDonnell.

33rd: In Western Loundon Joe May's turnout will be a help to Sean Connaughton. I don't see either candidate for Attorney General getting a huge boost here, but a slight one to McDonnell.

35th: Not many voters will be pushed out here that were not already going to vote in the GOP primary. Should there be a wave here, benefit to Connaughton, but we don't see that happening.
37th: John Mason will be trying to pull Fairfax City voters into the Republican primary. If he is successful, big benefit to Sean Connaughton. Wide open on who it helps for Attorney General.

41st: Michael Golden has an upperhand here, and his voters are very conservative. That may cancel out the homefield advantage for Connaughton and leave the additional turnout here as a wash. Wide open on who it helps for Attorney General.

50th: Harry Parrish's vote is also Connaughton's, so they will play tag team here. This may benefit Baril, but more likely won't be a big impact in the Attorney General's race.

54th: Kenney v. Orrock is getting a lot of attention. Overlapping and adjoining Bill Bolling's Senate district, a large turnout here is a big plus for Bolling. Could also be helpful to Baril, but again it's more likely that it won't have a big impact on the Attorney General's race.

55th: Frank Hargrove being contested and helping bring out Bolling's base in Hanover is a big help to Bolling. Can McDonnell come into the other side of Richmond from Baril and steal this conservative turnout?

67th: Gary Reese is targeting Democrats to cross over in the 67th. If he succeeds they will vote almost 100% for Connaughton.

82nd and 83rd: The two Virginia Beach primaries are both going to have turnout pushed by McConnell. Anything they add on top of that will benefit Bob. Their turnout could help show a trend in the Bolling-Connaughton race, this is exactly the kind of area Connaughton must win in order to take the primary.

All in all, with the statewide tax issue getting voters attention and the larger number of highly contested primaries, Republicans should have much higher turnout. We'll guess 350,000 for the GOP and 200,000 for the Democrats.

Please don't forget to come here tomorrow as soon as you vote with your precinct turnout numbers!!!

67th District Update

We said we wouldn't put all the late back and forth of every campaign on here. But this email we got yesterday is too good to pass up. It's on the 67th, which the Washington Post covered this morning.

Dear NLS,

Yesterday I saw House of Delegates tags in front of me on Rt. 50. When I pulled up next to the vehicle I saw Delegate Gary Reese driving and Joe Underwood (Campaign manager) in the passenger seat. They had the windows down and were rocking the car back and forth at the light while singing "DON'T LET THE SUN GO DOWN ON ME" by Elton John! The part I heard them sing was

"Too late.... to save myself from falling..... I took a chance...... and changed your way of life....
But you misread my meaning when I met you..... close the door and left me blind by the light.... ooohhh
Don't the sun go down on me...... Although I search myself it's always someone else I see..... but losing is like the sun going down on me.."

The light turned green and I went on. Very sad.


Taxing Teacher

I'm sure this was satire, but I couldn't get the image out of my head.... hopefully it's stuck in yours also.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

2 More Days!

And the polls will be closed!

As you can see, we've avoided some of the charges/countercharges of the last weekend. Everything gets crazy at this point in the campaign, and most "new material" that comes out now is not even worth talking about.

The winner of the primary chat contest is the 35th District Republican Primary. 318 comments so far. With the way the candidates are trashing each other it has given Steve Shannon 318 reasons to be the favorite going into November.

Please don't forget about our special election day coverage. Write the following down when you vote, and please post it here ASAP.

County or City
Precinct Name Or Number
Time You Voted
Number of Democrats voting
Number of Republicans voting

We understand many of you posting will be working the polls for a candidate, so please call in the numbers to someone who can post for you. Please!!

On Election Night, we will set up a chat room somewhere for those of you who will be home watching the results. We will keep you up to date in there on what we are seeing/thinking, and we can hear from you on what you are seeing/thinking. As we can call each race we'll move it on as a main post here.

Our goal is 100% accuracy once we have called a race, and a little analysis on why the result came out as it did. Also, at the end of the night we are hoping to have been ahead of the main media outlets in making our calls.

More info on the chat later tonight or tomorrow morning. Please post this on your blogs and send it to your friends so we have more data coming in during the day on turnout around Virginia.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

9 p.m.

57 Hours Until the Polls Open!!!
70 Hours Until the Polls Close!!!

What are you seeing now?

Please don't forget about our special election day coverage. Write the following down when you vote, and please post it here ASAP.

County or City
Precinct Name Or Number
Time You Voted
Number of Democrats voting
Number of Republicans voting

We understand many of you posting will be working the polls for a candidate, so please call in the numbers to someone who can post for you. Please!!

On Election Night, we will set up a chat room somewhere for those of you who will be home watching the results. We will keep you up to date in there on what we are seeing/thinking, and we can hear from you on what you are seeing/thinking. As we can call each race we'll move it on as a main post here.

Our goal is 100% accuracy once we have called a race, and a little analysis on why the result came out as it did. Also, at the end of the night we are hoping to have been ahead of the main media outlets in making our calls.

More info on the chat tomorrow. Please post this on your blogs and send it to your friends so we have more data coming in during the day on turnout around Virginia.

Friday, June 10, 2005

100 Hours

Until the Polls Close.

67th and 54th

John Behan over at Commonwealth Conservative agrees with the top two potential upsets we listed. Just in case we were wrong, wanted to make sure the egg was spread out over multiple faces! :)

4 Days Away, GOP

Congratulations to everyone involved in this years primary. It's almost over!

Here's a review card of the action on Tuesday


Twelve Republican primaries for the House of Delegates on Tuesday fall into 3 categories. "Anti-Tax challenger" vs. "Pro-Tax incumbent" are 6 of the 12. "Pro-Tax challenger" vs. "Anti-Tax incumbent" are 3 of the 12. Picking nominees in competitive central Fairfax County are the other 3 of 12.

"Anti Tax challenger vs. Pro-Tax incumbent"

In order of chance of incumbent defeat:

#1- 67th, incumbent Gary Reese, challenger Chris Craddock.
Rating: Toss Up.

#2- 54th, incumbent Bobby Orrock, challenger Shaun Kenney.
Rating: Toss Up.

#3- 30th, incumbent Ed Scott, challenger Mark Jarvis.
Rating: Toss Up.

#4- 33rd, incumbent Joe May, challenger Chris Oprison.
Rating: Leans May.

#5- 24th, incumbent Preston Bryant, challenger Robert Garber.
Rating: Safe Bryant.

#6- 50th, incumbent Harry Parrish, challenger Steve Chapman.
Rating: Safe Parrish.

Key Notes: We have projected Bryant and Parrish as winners June 14th and in November. The winners in 54th and 30th will be projected winners in November on primary night. If May wins in the 33rd, he will also be projected a winner. Only the 67th, and possibly the 33rd (with Oprison) will be on the competitive board after Tuesday.

"Anti Tax incumbent vs. Pro-Tax challenger"

In order of chance of incumbent defeat:

#1 82nd, incumbent Bob Purkey, challenger Peter Schmidt.
Rating: Leans Purkey.

#2 83rd, incumbent Leo Wardrup, challenger Delceno Miles.
Rating: Safe Wardrup.

#3 55th, incumbent Frank Hargrove, challenger Rod Clemmons.
Rating: Safe Hargrove.

Key Notes: All 3 primary winners in this group will win in November. We have already projected Wardrup and Hargrove as winners.

"Competitive Fairfax"

In order of importance to the General Election

#1 37th, John Mason, Jim Kaplan. Outlook: Leans Mason.
General Election: Toss Up.

#2 41st, Michael Golden, Bill Finnerfrock. Outlook: Likely Golden.
General Election: Toss Up.

#3 35th, Ed Robinson, Jim Hyland, Arthur Purves. Outlook: Toss Up. General Election: Leans Democratic.

Key Notes: The most at stake is in the 37th where a Kaplan upset makes the Republicans an underdog in November to the winner of the Democratic primary. Golden or Finnerfrock are both about even vs. Democratic nominee David Marsden and the winner in the 35th will begin as an underdog to incumbent Steve Shannon after their messy primary.

4 Days Away, DEM

Here's a review card of the action on Tuesday


Seven Democratic primaries for the House of Delegates on Tuesday fall into 3 categories. "Challenged Incumbents" are 2 of the 7. "Heads Up Open Seats" are 2 of the 7. Finally wide open "Multi Candidate Open Seats" are the other 3.

"Challenged Incumbents"

In order of chance of incumbent defeat

#1- 74th, incumbent Floyd Miles, challenger Don McEachin.
Outlook: Leans McEachin

#2- 90th, incumbent Algie Howell, challenger Keela Boose
Outlook: Likely Howell

Key Notes: Everything favors McEachin here, there will need to be a major surge for Miles on election day for him to hold his seat. Howell should win big, but his "droopy drawers" bill could make this interesting. Both the 74th and 90th will go to the winner of these primaries.

"Heads Up Open Seats"

In order of importance to the General Election

#1- 37th, David Bulova, Janet Oleszek. Outlook: Toss Up

#2- 71st, Jennifer McClellan, Marvin Law. Outlook: Toss Up

Key Notes: Winner in 71st is elected. 37th could go either way by up to 30 points. It's wide open.

"Multi Candidate Open Seats"

In order of margin separating the candidates

#1- 75th, Jerry Flowers, Jim Councill, Roslyn Tyler, John Nicholson, Deborah Goodwyn.
Outlook: Toss Up

#2- 45th, David Englin, Libby Garvey, Jim Lay, Dick Hobson, Elsie Mosqueda, Laura Mandala.
Outlook: Toss Up

#3- 57th, David Toscano, Kim Tingley, Rich Collins
Outlook: Safe Toscano

Key Notes: Winner is elected in 45th and 57th. For now, also in the 75th, although a really divided primary could make us reconsider that.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Election Day in 5 Days!

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As Not Paul Goldman pointed out last week- most voters have already decided what they are doing. Most campaigns have a winner assuming their voters show up. But that won't stop anyone from the last minute attacks... scheduled to start today! Keep us up to date on what you are getting.

82nd District Update

Outlook: Leans Purkey

This might be the most interesting primary of the year, with anti-tax GOP incumbent Bob Purkey being challenged by Virginia Beach Councilman Peter Schmidt in a primary. Schmidt's issue?

Schmidt, however, accuses Purkey and other anti-tax legislators of ignoring local funding needs for roads, schools and law enforcement while pursuing a hard-line position on taxes. Instead of helping cities provide these services, Schmidt said, state legislators have added to the burden by imposing new requirements without funding.

“Virginia has a long and proud tradition of being governed from the middle, and right now the House of Delegates is very polarized to the right,” Schmidt said. “I believe some of their policies, particularly on their approach toward responsibly funding core services, is totally wrongheaded.”

Kind of VCAP in reverse. Purkey is the favorite here, but with a popular Councilman taking him on anything can happen. A Schmidt upset, especially if coupled with no VCAP victories could send shock waves through the Virginia GOP.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

37th District Update

Very interesting blog article at Raising Kaine with the Democratic candidates responding to our critique of them earlier this week. Big props for their graphic. Lowell, is there any way we can steal it?

Since Bulova says our analysis is wrong (surprise, surprise) we wanted to back it up a little more. Sorry Mr. Bulova but you brought this on yourself!

A friend emails us the following tidbits from Bulova's mail campaign.

NLS, you won't believe how horrible the David Bulova mail has been. The pictures which are all over the mail as the worst ones I have ever seen of a candidate. Here are the lowlights:

#1- "Preserving Our environment"- the picture is of David and two kids... I assume his kids. They are out near a stream. The kids look great, and like they are having a fun time out playing in the mud or whatever kids do. David the "outdoorsman" is in a $100 dress shirt and $100 slacks. He looks like he is a lawyer getting ready to sue the kids who look happy.

#2- "David in Classroom"- The first pic on this one is decent all the kids are raising their hands and David is at the board pointing to a map. The kids are about preschool age, 4 or 5. The bad picture is the second one. David is sitting with the kids in this one, on a preschool chair that is ready to snap, and they are all looking in the same direction with their hands up (wanting the teacher to call on them). He looks like a fool.

#3-"Safer Neighborhoods"- This one is the worst of all, and the picture the Republicans will use in every comparison piece until November. This one is David as a crossing guard, with one of those orange vests on, pretending to direct kids across the street. It is so fake, and he looks like a total fool.

Well Mr. Bulova, now you know what we know, and why no one should be skeptical of our analysis. You could still win the primary, and maybe even the general, but your campaign does not have momentum or traction from everything we hear. All we know is Oleszek has momentum. Whether that is momentum that takes her from 20% to 30% or if it is momentum that takes her from 45% to 55%, we'll find out on June 14th.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

74th District

Seat Outlook: Safe Democratic
Primary Outlook: Leans McEachin

We've discussed before why we have former Delegate Don McEachin as the favorite in this primary over current Delegate Floyd Miles. Nothing has changed to adjust that.
Here's an update:

McEachin and Miles have both raised good money for the primary (70-80 thousand). In a confusing move Miles still has over $40,000 in his bank account as of June 1st. Perhaps they were waiting to make payments until the next report, or keep some expenses secret, but it strikes us as odd to have that kind of cash on hand right before a primary.

This news from the report should get everyone blogging. New State Democratic Chairman Dick Cranwell gave McEachin $1,000 to defeat the incumbent Democrat Miles. This is a very different position from the Democratic Caucus which won't even give McEachin the voter file. We discussed before the politics involved in that- but could the election of Cranwell mean the end of Lindsey Reynolds career as Executive Director? She blocked the party voter file from going to Cranwell's guy. This could get ugly fast!

42nd District Update

Outlook: Leans Republican

New fundraising figures from the 42nd District. Looks like Greg Werkheiser woke Dave Albo up.

Money Raised this period (April 1-June 1)

Werk: $45, 626
Albo: $142,941

Spent this period

Werk: $30,906 (32% of money raised this period saved, 68% spent)
Albo: $5,167 (96% of money raised this period saved, 4% spent)

Now Albo has the lead overall in fundraising again:

Total Raised for campaign

Werk: $198,003
Albo: $230,215

But with Werkheiser spending a lot more money now, the cash on hand is no longer as close.

Werk: $102,452
Albo: $175,396

Before I bash Werkheiser, let me say his number raised is very impressive for a challenger. Even the $45,000 raised this period is very solid, and something to be very proud of.

But his spending is outrageous. If I were a Werkheiser donor I would tell him no more checks until he got his act together. You can not defeat an incumbent by blowing this kind of money in April and May.

On the other side with Albo's report the exact opposite is going on. I can not remember seeing someone raise that kind of money in two months and only spending $5,000 to do it. Usually the minimum is 10% just to raise it.

With Werkheiser using a great local issue in the Fort Belvoir moves, I was considering this race as a possible "Tossup". This report puts an end to that for the time being. It takes a great campaign to defeat an incumbent and we will need to see Werkheiser showing some money management skills before we make a change to the rating. For now, this is a "Leans Republican."


A quick look to November. We'll be back to primaries later today. :)

58th District

Outlook: Likely Republican

Incumbent Rob Bell is strongly favored here in suburban Albermarle County (and stretching into Greene, Fluvanna and Orange). He has a opponent in local school board member Steve Koleszar. This is a strong GOP district, that was once represented by George Allen.

I'm not calling this race over yet for two reasons. One, Albermarle is looking like Northern Virginia in the way it is moving the opposite direction of the rest of Virginia. So the margin here is not as large as in the past for the GOP. That having been said, most of the precincts which have already crossed "red to blue" are stuffed in the 58th District with Charlotesville City, where we have already projected David Toscano as the winner.

As a local elected official we are giving Koleszar a chance. But if he can't put together a great organization in this GOP leaning district we'll call it quick for Bell.

64th District

Outlook: Likely Democratic

The 64th is almost identical to the 58th across the state in Presidential elections (giving Bush about a 15 point margin). But the difference at the state level, where the 58th went for Mark Earley and the 64th going for Mark Warner by over 10 points shows where the "swing voters" are. Democrats have the perfect incumbent for this district in and around Williamsburg with incumbent William Barlow. Troy Lapetina the Republican challenger is back for a rematch (he lost by 14 points in 2003). He's a good challenger, but Barlow is the perfect fit for this district. This district will be host to an amazing open seat when Barlow retires.

67th District

Old Outlook: Safe Republican
New Outlook: Likely Republican

Big recruiting victory for the Democrats here as Chuck Caputo has entered the race in the 67th. Yes, we changed this to a Safe Republican last week as our sources told us the two Democrats who could make this a race (Caputo and Kathy Smith) has opted out. Here's what is going on:

a) Democrats expect Chris Craddock to win the primary. That made Caputo change his mind.
We have this race as a tossup, but all the buzz in Fairfax County is that Craddock is going to defeat Gary Reese.

b) Caputo as a former school board member/NOVA Community College Board member is very tied into the education community. Democrats are betting that Caputo entering this race will limit the education crossover for Reese, making Craddock stronger (which is better for Caputo).

c) Expect Caputo to drop out if Reese wins on June 14th.

We're calling it "Likely Republican" for now, if it is Craddock v. Caputo we'll call it a "Leans Republican".

91st District

Outlook: Safe Republican

This is a Republican area but not a knockout. A weak incumbent here, Tom Gear kept us from calling this race. However, with the Democrats failing to seriously challenge, we will call this race for Tom Gear. IF the Democrats ever make a serious campaign to take back the house, this will be a good district to watch.