Virginia House of Delegates 2005 Elections

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

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.


At 8:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting perspective. When you say "We must win these competitive elections in November to be able to keep our end of the bargain" are you encouraging voters to support Democrats running against fiscally conservative Republicans?

At 8:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder if Not Jim Gilmore is really a Delegate.

I am not sure a delegate would say "I was part of the gang of 17 that saved the state from last years budget stalemate." - "Saved the state?" - none of these people have ever used that term before. "Saved the state" sounds like something an outsider/observer would use. A little too egotistical to use in print even for elected officials.

This is "nitpicking" to be sure. The further we go along the harder I am finding it to trust anonymous blogs. In politics there are too many agendas, games and dirty-tricks. Trust is hard to come by in politics and putting trust anonymous political blogs is something I can't do any longer.

I am evaluating all anonymous bloggers, guest contributors and commentators in the following manner:

1. I do not know who is speaking, regardless of who they say they are.

2. I do not care who they are - speculating on identities can bias my opinion of what is written.

3. Evaluate what is written on its own merits. Is it logical, interesting, thought-provoking, boring, etc?

And now I will post anonymously as that is how it usually works here.

At 9:08 AM, Anonymous not preston bryant said...

here we go again. let's see...the federal government shortchanges us on the gas tax we pay to them. So we subsidize roads in Mass, Ct, and SD and you want a gas tax INCREASE? if we got just to 95%, that would be 1.6 billion over 6 years. Momma always said to get money from the people who owe you money. Imagine the money at 100%.

We build roads to accomodate the flight of young families who escape to better schools in suburbs and exurbs knowing that they will now be commuting 2-3 hours more EACH day. wouldn't better transportation/education/land use policy be to improve the cities and inner suburbs so that families will stay and therefore reduce the demand on construction of new schools, new roads, new water and gas lines? i hear they don't come cheaply - local property taxes + state general funds = ???

if the gas tax is raised where will the money go? since there is NO guarantee that it will actually go to roads (think lottery), you can bet the farm that the money will go to continue to pay for SOQs (a.k.a ATMs for VEA) and Medicaid(a.k.a Mexican wealth transfer - we pay for their pregnancies and they ship their money back home BUT at least they work)

pro versus anti virginia is labeling, divisive and not productive. perhaps not jim gilmore should not repeat the same mistake that the former governor made by presuming that he was/is always right. there are better ways to chart the future of virginia than taxing the citizens more and doing the same old same old.

whatever happened to tax reform? how are you going to sell this again? The senate is up for re-election in 2 years and they are already looking to run for cover. your group voted for a 1.5 billion dollar tax increase. the senate tried for 4 billion. the 17 got away with because they brokered "the deal" so they were the triangulators. Chicken Little and the Boy Who Cried Wolf come to mind. People believed you all once because it was sold as the saving grace to the commonwealth. gas tax increases at 2.50 a gallon is not only politically stupid, with higher efficiency cars and conservation looming at the next economic downturn - it IS stupid.

But what the heck, Big Business needs more of my money and are willing to pay for it with campaign "support".

Surplus? We don't need no stinking surplus - VAMOS!

At 11:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with anon 8:44 that NJG is probably not a Delegate. Very few of the 17 actually think this way, let alone verbalize it (even anonymously). Only one of them was this pompous in public, and he lost his primary (although if NJG is him, that would explain the arrogant tone).

Most of the 17 genuinely (albeit wrongly) thought that they were helping avoid a collapse of state govt. Many of them were newbies (Oder, Scott, Reese, Fralin), unaccustomed to legislative brinksmanship, and signed on because they were grasping for a way out of the stalemate. Many feel duped after the surplus reports came out and would likely not sign onto such an agreement again.

The hope that the 17 will stay together is wrongheaded because they broke up as soon as the final vote on the tax increases expired. Unlike the Gang of Five, there (thankfully) is no Gang of Seventeen.

At 12:14 PM, Anonymous Rural Not Stupid said...

The gang of 17 is real, and especially now that they know that all the huffing puffing about taking them out in primaries just doesn't work the way VCAP wishes it would, they are stronger than ever. I have the utmost respect for those members of the 17. They are all statemen in my mind.

At 1:06 PM, Blogger Not Mark Rozell said...

NLS, you have been had again. This message came straight out of the Paul Jost skunkworks.

At 1:35 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

I have not been had. I can see where this was emailed from, and can confirm 100% that it is a Delegate, just as NBM is.

At 1:55 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

First anon, my question was the same when I read the column last night. I will email NJG and ask him to come on here and answer that.

At 2:03 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

I'm deleting the last two anonymous comments. I let people guess who NLS was in another thread and didn't delete any, but I'm not going to let anyone ruin every thread with that discussion.

At 2:46 PM, Anonymous Not Gilmore said...

I heard from NLS that there were some questions here for me!

1) Yes I am real. I was hoping you would all pick that up by my quote of something said on one of our conference calls last year.

2) To the first anonymous comment. I am not encouraging voters to support Democrats in general. I have endorsed Kilgore/Bolling and McDonnell. However, I am pointing out that if there are 14 solid votes left of us, that we are powerless if the Dems joining us only have 35. The House will be controlled by the GOP, the exact margin will determine leverage.

3) To the second anonymous- I didn't say I "saved the state". I said I saved it from a stalemate. We can all agree hopefully that without us 19 a budget wasn't going to happen.

4) To Not Preston- Many of us knew the state finances would improve, although the pace is much better then anyone could have wished for. If we had done nothing the surplus could have been used to do what we did last year. But now that we have both, we keep our investments from last year and we have a strong start to next years transportation solution.

5) Finally to Rural- Thank you very very much.

At 3:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In my opinion, we will see a lot in Fairfax this year. Will Reese endorse Craddock? Dillard endorse Golden? Will Tom Rust campaign for Golden, Craddock or Hyland? How about Vince Callahan? That will tell us a lot.

At 3:24 PM, Anonymous not anonymous said...

not sure what to think anymore because I neither know who I am nor who any of you are. the source of information, even innuendo is important in evaluating it, and thus all of this discussion is thrown into doubt by the cowards who don't use their own names.

how about that for hypocrisy? I thought I would join the ever growing crowd.

At 3:34 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

I'm thinking about changing the site so you at least have to have a blogger name to post. What would everyone think about that? The discussions would go way down.

At 3:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In Fairfax, I doubt Dillard would turn on Marsden who is a former aide. I think this will test republican strength and whether the county will ever go republican again. Reese endorsing Craddock is a bit more likely I suppose.

At 4:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blogger ID is a bad idea. It could discourage insiders from giving inside info.

At 4:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dillard has already encouraged people to support Marsden--if not in an official way, in public speeches.

At 5:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dillard supporting Marsden is a great example of what NJG just told us. They know they have to keep the same numbers on the Pro-Tax side. If less are nominated by the GOP, then they have to be picked up by the Democrats.

Very interesting. It makes this election a lot closer and more interesting.

At 5:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about Dave Albo? What Republicans AREN'T supporting him?

At 5:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

not gilmore:

I am the first anon, and you still haven't answered my question. Allow me to rephrase so as to minimize your ability to evade:

Are you encouraging voters to support Democrats running against fiscally conservative Republicans in house races where the success of the Republican would reduce the number of pro-tax votes?

At 5:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And when you say "We must win these competitive elections in November to be able to keep our end of the bargain." does the "we" include Caputo, Marsden, P. Miller, etc.?

At 6:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not Jim Gilmore,

What do you think made the most difference in these primary elections last week (re-electing almost all of your gant). Was it the money from Leadership for Virginia, the grassroots support from firefighters, VEA, Virginia21, etc. Or the weak challengers you guys had. What made it work.

- Curious Political Guy

At 6:58 PM, Anonymous not gilmore said...

First anonymous- I support the Republican ticket in my district. I have contributed to keeping a Republican majority in the House. I endorse only Republicans.

The question voters must ask themselves is if extremist Republicans are going to use low turnout primaries to change the political composition of the House, do they want to readjust the overall numbers to maintain balance.

All while maintaining a large Republican majority of course.

I do not endorse Caputo, Marsden, P. Miller or any other specific Democrat.

Curious Political Guy- All of those groups helped from the campaign aspect of getting our message out. The difference in our wins versus our one loss was the electorate. In safe GOP districts Dems and Indies crossed over in big numbers that you can see to support the incumbents. It was like a general election there, and the voters responded with who should represent them. In our one loss the crossover either wasn't there, or was there for mister Craddock in order for the Democrats to win in November.

I happen to think Democrats crossing over to pick a weak GOP nominee is as disgusting as Republicans attempting to oust their own in primaries.

At 7:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not in favor of requiring blogger accounts.

Can you limit comments to other (where one inputs a name, any ol' name) and blogger (if one chooses to open an account)?

Of course, if you go with my suggestion, anyone could still be anonymous, just anonymous with a "name". So, maybe that doesn't solve the problem.

I do know that the posts will go Waaaaay down if people have to register with blogger to participate.

At 7:51 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

I'm deleting the last comment. Again, choose another thread or another blog if you want to guess who NJG is.

7:00 anonymous- You are right.

Thank You to NJG for taking the time to respond to questions.

At 8:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not Jim Gilmore is definitely not a delegate. In his remarks of 658pm he wrote:

"In our one loss the (Democratic) crossover either wasn't there, or was there for mister Craddock in order for the Democrats to win in November."

Everyone in the real world knows there was no Dem. crossover vote for Craddock - even the real Jim Gilmore and Howell's guys eliminated that possibility in their minds almost two weeks ago.

I believe this is a fake post. Plus the only person/people who spell the word "mister" as was done in this "Gilmores" last comment is the people/person who write this blog. Everyone else in the world, including Delegates who write/sign a million letters know to use "Mr."

At 8:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

last anon- can you point us to a post where NLS used "mister"? Or is this the same poster who lied claiming to have IP addresses?

At 9:51 PM, Anonymous not preston bryant said...

Not jim gilmore is a delegate. As a delegate myself, I know exactly who he is. at least he admitted the tax increase was unnecessary. He is a true gentleman and an asset to va government. i do hope that the unity he is working for to raise more revenue for transportation will not come from an ill-conceived increase in the gas tax. he should follow the speaker and adopt more free market solutions to our transportation needs/wants. just because most of his Gang returned, many have told me that they will not go through it again. some are running for congress others know that they were wrong and feel "duped".

At 11:22 PM, Blogger johnny law said...

What are you people Delegates to, the General Assembly of anonymous idiots that like to pretend they're actually important folks?

This entire site is a sham.

-Not an Anonymous Coward

ps. I went to high school with Ben Tribbet. I sincerely doubt he could string enough sentences together to form an actual coherent paragraph, let alone an entire site.

At 11:24 PM, Blogger Shaun Kenney said...

NPB, I certainly hope that is the case.

At 8:39 AM, Blogger Not Mark Rozell said...

I'm still not buying the whole NJG post. Each and every one of the pro-tax delegates has spent his time trying to convince his GOP colleagues that this was a one-time coalition with the Democrats. To my knowledge, none of them have expressed a desire to make this an ongoing coalition. Besides, none of them wants to get smacked by the Speaker like Preston Bryant and Chris Jones.

At 8:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

NJG says "I happen to think Democrats crossing over to pick a weak GOP nominee is as disgusting as Republicans attempting to oust their own in primaries."

Nice support of democracy there bsuter. I voted for Craddock. It was the first time in 22 years of voting in GOP primaries in several states that I voted to oust the incumbent in a primary. If you area Delegate, the seat does NOT belong to you. You are not entitled to it. The party is not entitled to it. The RINO wing of the GOP is NOT entitled to it. It belongs to me and every one else who chooses to vote in the system that YOU established and/or swore to support.

And to say that extremists take "advantage" of "low turnout primaries..." to push their agenda, well, they wouldn't be low turnout events if you did more to turn our your voters because they bought into your RINO meaage.

Nothing irks me more than politicians who have contempt for the people who justly, fairly and democratically disagree with them. If this is really a Delegate and this is really how he feels, he should be ashamed of himself and deserves the vote of no one, especially from those for whom he shows so much contempt. At least the "extremists" show their about you, Sir? Show your face if you really feel this way and have any respect for the voter.

At 9:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

NLS the people who post here can slam you all they want. I like the site. You take the time to give us something every day (or most days)..the NMR and NRR have not posted anything since Friday.

At 10:21 AM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...


At 11:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find the following interesting of NJG's post.

First apparently all but one of the Dems in the Assmebly are "Pro-Virginia" and the majority of Republicans are "anti-Virginia". Sounds to me like this delegate ought to consider switching parties.

Also, if "unraveling of all we worked so hard for" is keeping government spending in check and reducing the tax burden (traditional Republican stances) I'm all for it. After all, the "hard work" NJG speaks of was the largest tax increase in the history of the state, and proven to be un-needed. That kind of hard work Virginia does not need.

Anon yesterday is right. This is definitely Gary Reese. After all he is still a delegate until January. His consideration of choosing "Not Ken Cuccinelli" as a blog name (noted in another blog thread), perceived knowledge of the 67th outcome, general arrogant attitude, and use of the term "extremist Republicans" all prove this to me beyond a shadow of a doubt.

At 11:40 AM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

I said before I don't want this to become a debate on who this is... but seriously, would Gary Reese say "Chris Craddock's victory over Gary Reese was not a major blow"

At 12:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

RINOS suck. Every Republican legislator should vote as a straight ticket for lower taxes, less abortion, more gays in jail, and more money for Dave Albo's law firm. If they don't do so, they should be thrown off a cliff.

At 12:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said "less abotion". That's the Democrats' aim. In the Republican party, we want to make abortion illegal.

At 12:57 PM, Anonymous Not a Wussy, Pansy Delegate Like Some Others Are said...

1. The simple solution to a "stalemate" was to do what amounted to a "continuing resolution" that would have funded the state at the same level as the previous fiscal year. There was no need to raise taxes. Such a plan was in the works when the "Gang of 17" broke ranks.

2. The whip count by NJG is flat-out wrong for one big reason. Those members of the "Gang of 17" who have since come out and said that had they known the true state of the Commonwealth's finances and tax receipts, they would never have supported the tax increases. (Don't forget, Marky Mark kept the improving financial picture under wraps until he got his massive tax increase through the legislature.)

3. Whether or not members of the "Gang of 17" survived a primary, most incumbents don't want to have to run in a primary and then try to reunite the party again for the November election if they don't have to go through all that. The threat of a primary, especially if more credible challengers were to emerge in some of these districts, would no doubt change some of their voting patters.

As Sean Connery said in The Untouchables,"Here endeth the lesson...."

At 1:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last legislator:

You're definitely not wussy. That's why you stayed anonymous.

At 1:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We could solve our transportation crisis for the next 30 years by doubling every state tax for ONE YEAR. How about it guys?

At 1:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ha ha ha. That would destroy the state.

At 1:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why don't we just direct state revenue towards Dave Albo's lawfirm? That's his plan to fix the roads.

At 2:57 PM, Anonymous Sheila Riley said...

8:59 AM Anonymous -- Bravo!

You summed up my feelings here...

"Nice support of democracy there buster... If you are a Delegate, the seat does NOT belong to you. You are not entitled to it. The party is not entitled to it...It belongs to me and every one else who chooses to vote in the system that YOU swore to support."

"Nothing irks me more than politicians who have contempt for the people who justly, fairly and democratically disagree with them...deserves the vote of no one, especially those for whom he shows so much contempt."

"At least the "extremists" show their about you, Sir? Show your face if you really feel this way and have any respect for the voter."

I'm proud to be a Republican, and I'm proud to stand up for what I believe in. I don't hide behind silly screen names or anonymously post disrespectful comments about people.

I've supported the Republican party and it's candidates when I felt they were right, and I have fought them when I felt they were wrong. No party or person should ever receive a blanket, blind endorsement; those who do so are whom I consider the "extremists".

Until NJG, and all the rest of the NOT (sane) bunch are willing to use their own name, no one (sane) will believe what they claim.

Not Larry Sabato:
I have enjoyed your website, I respect the amount of work you have put into it, and of course you get to make any dang crazy rules you want! We know that you are also too smart to not understand that its a stretch for us to accept identity 'verification' of anonymous posters by someone posting anonymously!
You crack me up :-)


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