Virginia House of Delegates 2005 Elections

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

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".


At 2:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You got snookered. There's no way a "loyal democrat" wrote that and allowed you to publish it. If they are a Democrat, then they're anything but loyal. They're stupid and arrogant.

At 2:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

By all accounts, the "coordinated campaign" has been an incompetent mess so far. This fellow hardly has any room to complain (if he's really a Democrat)

At 2:13 PM, Anonymous Freddie said...

Maybe he's looking for votes in Europe? They are very liberal over there.

At 2:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Man it must be a slow news day. Someone would rather go to Europe than hang around Sprawlville, USA? Really? Stop the presses. If Chuck Caputo runs a good campaign he can beat this flake, if not the wackos of the GOP will have another proud member of the House of Delegates while the Democrats kick themselves over a great lost opportunity.

At 2:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think he looks French. Caputo Fries anyone?

At 2:33 PM, Blogger Not Mark Rozell said...

Didn't someone tell me they saw Caputo handing out fliers on primary day? Perhaps with Kathy Smith? Or am I making that up?

At 2:41 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

No, not Caputo himself. We reported that Caputo had people at the polls, I never heard of anyone seeing him. Didn't cross my mind until I saw this email.

At 2:47 PM, Blogger Not Mark Rozell said...

I just found your comment on that too. You never said anyone had actually seen him. I sure didn't.

If there is ever a good time for a candidate to take a vacation, June is the time to do it. Nobody's thinking about November but us hacks. But it sure does speak volumes about his willingness to wage an effective ground game.

At 3:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am the same anonymous who lives in the 67th and on primary day posted that Craddock would win big. He sure did.

I will also now tell you that you over rate Caputo tremendously. I expect he will actually withdraw from the race when he sees the numbers Craddock pulled in since this is not going to be the cakewalk he was promised and expects.

If Caputo stays in, expect Craddock to win with at 55% of the vote. But I am more inclined to think that Craddock already has this seat won on Caputo's eventual departure.

At 4:05 PM, Blogger Depressed Constituent of Sen. Russ Potts said...

I hope this is true. Gee if Caputo needs to "refresh in Europe" when he didn't even have to run a campaign to garner his party's nomination, imagine how much "refreshing" he will need after a month of knocking on doors in the 67th. Craddock is probably already walking the district and he's in Europe. Ha! And if he does win, how often will he need to get "refreshed" in order to vote for higher taxes and more government interference in our lives? He's probably over there doing research as well, trying to find some good socialist examples of how to run Virginia. Amazing...

At 4:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Craddock is a joke. We're all laughing at him.

At 4:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Call him what you want now but your derision will only assure that you call him Delegate Craddock come November 8. I may not like a politician's stands but until you are willing to have an electore vote "yea" or "nay" on you, calling anyone willing to take that risk a joke says more about you than it does him.

At 4:33 PM, Blogger Depressed Constituent of Sen. Russ Potts said...

You may have to laugh as Craddock goes all the way to Richmond in January.

At 4:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 4:33pm: But what if instead of saying "nay" or "yea" the electorate says "HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA"?

At 4:44 PM, Anonymous Delegate-Elect Craddock said...

I'm gonna get them homos. I'm gonna crush them with my bare hands. Hyuck!

At 4:50 PM, Blogger Depressed Constituent of Sen. Russ Potts said...

Meanwhile Caputo will be sterilizing all of the Christians.

At 5:39 PM, Anonymous Caputo said...

I was thinking of feeding them to lions.

At 8:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the anonymous writer who thinks that Craddocks "numbers" show his strength. 66% of an 8% turnout for a REPUBLICAN primary is hardly strong numbers. 2,616 votes of district that represents roughly 70,000 people (that is a rough avg. of state delegates) and in a race in which 50% +1 of turnout is going to be upwards of 10,000 voters, 2,616 votes is meaningless. He going to have a hell of a time getting 8,000 more people to fall into his fire and brimstone campaign. Let's not forget that in 2001, Reese won this seat with only 39% of the vote in a Republican Primary. Out of 70,000 people he was elected to the House of Delegates with 970 votes. I have seen University Student Body Presidents get more votes than that. This seat is fair game.

At 9:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd be careful about throwing around numbers like that. Using your logic this Craddock guy alreay has 25% of the votes he will need to win in November. Leslie Byrne, however, only got 38,000 votes total in her primary and she's a former Congresswoman. She'll need about 990,000 votes to win the general election. (approx. 4.4 million voters in VA *45% turnout divided by 2). That means she could only secure less than 4% of the votes she needs to win. Yikes! Craddock's district is solidly GOP, filled with affluent young churchgoing families. My guess is he fits that district better than any of us realize.

At 9:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How many Dems in the district showed up for their primary?

I never said that it was a shoe in for a dem. When was the last time that district a a solid choice for a local elected delegate?

At 10:17 PM, Anonymous RD said...

Apx. 626 Dems voted (plus a few absentees) in the 67th district.

About 2000 less people than voting for Craddock. I'd say he's well on his way with 2000 more names than his opponent to work with (perhaps 1500 when you subtract crossovers).

At 10:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't forget that plenty of dems voted for Craddock because he's a joke.

At 10:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Folks, let's be realistic. Hope is fine but not that many D's voted for Craddock. If only 626 dems voted in the D primary I find it hard to believe that even half that amount voted in the Republican primary and for Craddock. I assume Reese was turning out D's for himself too. That means Craddock still got over 2,000 votes plus he'll get some of Reese's voters. The guy may be whacky but the odds are he's going to be elected. That district was drawn for a Republican - lilly white, wealthy even for NOVA. A D can win it but I'm not sure the party should spend too much money there. Albo's district is actually more friendly to Democrats and Albo's kinda goofy too.

At 11:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's like the Tampa Bay Bucs around here. Paper champs... Look the GOP doesn't even like this guy. His own party called him an extremist. This is going to be a fun race. If your not worried about then don't worry about it. That is a not a R or D district it's a moderate/right of center seat. Craddock is far right. This is why we play the game

At 6:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Caputo's got a good shot. Craddock is well to the right of this district - which is Republican, but not far right. Nice middle class NOVA Republicans are not exactly impressed by statements proclaiming that Jesus turned out the vote for him.

Craddock's got his job cut out for him.

At 9:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can Craddock be beaten? Sure. Is it going to be really tough with a candidate who just got into the race and is now on an extended vacation? Oh yeah. Add to that fact that the district is populated by young families with a household income well in excess of 100K and was drawn for right winger Roger McClure and this becomes REALLY tough. Should we spend resources there on behalf of a democrat candidate who hasn't yet even shown up or spend them on MORE realistic chances? That's the question. And if the Republicans hated him so much how come he crushed a long-time incumbent 2-1? Hate to say it but Craddock has a whale of an organization and has struck a chord with people in that small area. Nothing to be depressed or defeatist about. It's just a fact.

At 9:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

10:42PM anon:

Ummm, guess what? The Dems that voted in the Republican primary wouldn't register as part of your dem turnout number. they'd count as Republican turnout.

And I know for a fact that there was a concerted Democratic effort to help Craddock win.

At 9:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

9:47am Republican:

No one is fooled.

At 10:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK...which of you actually live in the 67th. I do. I am no "right-wing nut job" like some of you would think. In fact, I am gay and see the inside of a church when I visit family at Christmas or Easter. But I know the people where I live. Two T's, taxes and traffic, are all that matter in the 67th. All other issues will pale.

No one seems to even care about attempting to solve the traffic issue with even small traffic signal changes. Since the D's run VDOT, they get the blame for this be it just or not. The same is true with taxes. Fairfax County's (also D run) perpetual tax machine only drives home Kaine's feelings that we may not be taxed enough.

Kook or not, Craddock is in a prime position to nail Caputo and Dems on these issues that really matter. Sometimes you have to shake things up to get them working again. Live with the frustration of Route 50, Rt. 28 and Rt 66 everyday and with every increasing taxes and you will understand why Craddock is a highly appealing candidate in this particular area in this particular year.

At 10:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You guys are dreaming. I lived in the 67th for ten years and only left last year. I'm not saying Craddock is a shoe-in, but he's certainly not "wacky" or "a joke" as some of you claim (maybe if he ran in Arlington he would be).

The numbers in the 67th are in fact this:

Reese did win the primary in 2001 by gaining 39% of the republican vote, but 61% voted against him. That 61% was almost evenly split between two conservate "wacko's" as I'm sure some of you would call them. Reese's opponents in the primary albeit older than Craddock held basically the same political views as he.

In the general election that year Reese won by a landslide. I believe it was 60-40. Not much for Democrats in those numbers...

So far what we've seen is Craddock was able to galvanize the Republican primary vote (with about the same turnout as Reese's 2001 primary mind-you) and Reese in fact garnered less of the vote than he did in the 2001 primary. This should tell you that Craddock in fact has the Party voters there on his side. As for Party officials coming out against him, I'd like to see some quotes. Other than Reese himself and his campaign staff, I'm unaware of any.

Also, the 67th is in Ken Cuccinelli's Senate district for the most part (aside from the Loudoun portion) and is made up mostly of the Sully District. The Loudoun portion is also some of the most conservative territory in the district. Ken (another wacky politician in the minds of some of you I'm sure) has consistently slaughtered the opposition in this district. It is a stronghold for him.

Bottom line, this district is solidly Republican/Conservative. Caputo will have to make some good arguments to beat Craddock (not that he can't).

Finally despite most of the comments in opposition to Craddock claiming that his failing will be that he is a "joke" or "wacky" the truth is his issue positions float very well in this district. The biggest chance Caputo has is to make hay of Craddock's inexperience and youth. Of course that strategy is no guarantee either. Craddock has great examples in how to win campaigns here (Cuccinelli, O'Brien, and Hugo). If he takes advice from them, Caputo will have his work cut out for him.

At 11:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You moved out... and you are not the only one. Demographics change. I love it. 24/16 Senate split, 60/38 House Split, Attorney General,54/45 Presidential vote in '04, 53/45 Presidential vote in '00, and yet in '01 the top two state offices Democrat. This is why we play this game people. This is what makes politics fun. Talk all you want about the district, the fact is unless you are managing craddock's or caputo's race right now you don't know what the district looks like, you just know those around you and they don't represent the whole district. You know Taxes and Traffic are the issues for all of NOVA and yet a majority of the people in this county will vote for a Democrat this year. I know its tough to understand, but this is an election, not an appointment by a party. The people of the 67th will have a choice and until the end of Oct. we will not know what that district looks like.

At 12:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 11:29 you make a great case for Anon 10:22. His point is exactly what you are saying. No-one and I can't say that loud enough can say Craddock should be considered a joke. It all comes down to who is most organized, who has the grass roots behind him beating the bushes and making sure their people get out to vote. Demographics don't change overnight. I'm sure there is still a large conservative contingent in the 67th.

As you highlight, the 2001 governor/lt. gov. race is a perfect example. Warner ran a great campaign and Early did not. early did not shore up his base and it hurt him tremendously. Kilgore on the other hand did, and as a result was the highest total vote getter state-wide.

At 3:08 PM, Anonymous Not James Carville said...

Dear Caputo Campaign:

For the most part, in the 67th (let's face it, in most of Western Fairfax), the further to the right you are, the higher the likelihood that you'll be elected. That's IF you let Republicans define the issues for you. Here's how to beat Craddock:

* Emphasize his inexperience (not his youth necessarily).

A candidate can be young and well-versed in the political process. Craddock's not. Drive the point home that, if elected, he will be an utterly ineffective politician. Now, keep in mind that most of the right-wing 67th couldn't care less. But at least it will force Craddock to have to account for his inexperience. It will also allow you to contrast his comparative wealth of experience with his.

* Make a mockery of his 'no taxes ever' position

No new taxes ever? Really? Force Craddock to admit that everybody likes roads, buses, and Metro, but that somebody has to pay for it. He can't have it both ways.

* Point out that you represent traditional values too.

You won't make much hay calling him out, for example, as someone who would love to blur the line between church and state in the 67th. Rather, you must defuse his perceived advantage among "traditional values" voters by letting people know that your values are their values. You're a longtime member of the community who has stood for (insert good ideas here) AND you can work to represent these values and get meaningful legislation passed.

If you can execute those three items, you'll be on your way to a solid strategy and maybe to Richmond. It is the 67th, though, so don't hold your breath that common sense will win the day.

Not James Carville

At 3:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe NJC has espoused the only way that Caputo can possibly win. However, it remains to be seen whether Caputo can really make a case that 1. He does support traditional values. and 2. That Craddock's position on "no increased taxes" can legitimately be described as "no taxes at all". Both of these elements have served the conservatives very well in the past there.

In the end it will probably come down to how each person comes across to the voters. Does Craddock come across inexperienced and without ideas? Does Caputo come across believable and not arrogant as many dems tend to? These impressions will probably in the end rule the day.

At 4:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where's Not Larry Sabato? I'm going to have to go over to NMR's blog for uneven politics. :)

At 5:05 PM, Blogger Not Mark Rozell said...

Okay, I guess I'm going to have to get a post going on the 67th. There's a lot of interest and NLS seems to be visiting Caputo over in Europe.

At 6:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Craddock is who they will elect in the 67th, thank god I'm in the sane part of Fairfax County. Affluence doesn;t necessarily mean republican votes either. McLean is fairly democratic and it is one of the wealthiest areas in the county.

At 10:23 AM, Blogger George Hincapie said...

Caputo is going to lose. That is that.

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