"After losing Virginia's governorship for the first time in eight years, some Democrats are trying to console themselves that Virginia is at its core a "red" state. This ignores not only that they won back-to-back governorships but also that Democrats defeated a sitting senator in 2006, took control of the state Senate in 2007 and won an open Republican Senate seat and three House seats in 2008 while carrying Virginia's electoral college votes for the first time since 1964. " Ed Gillespie
" Some Democrats?" I suppose Ed Gillespie means people like me (see my previous post on the election) No. I am not a Democrat. I am one of those independent libertarian conservatives that Ed's party no longer attracts very much.
His assertions about past Democratic victories in Virginia ring hollow to me. As I wrote previously Gillespie's party nominated unattractive candidates for governor several times. That is how they lost those elections. Jim Webb did defeat the egregious George (Macaca) Allen to win a senate seat, but even in that uneven contest Webb, a genuine war hero and former Republican only won by a few thousand votes. Mark Warner, a quintessential Virginia gentleman easily triumphed over former governor Jim Gilmore for the US senate seat left open when John Warner retired. What a surprise! Gilmore is the man who hand picked Mark Earley to be the Republican nominee for governor in the election in which Mark Warner became governor. Gilmore tried a number of jobs after leaving the governor's mansion in Richmond. None of them worked out very well and Mark Warner finished him off in the senatorial election. RIP.
It has been continuously asserted by Republican "strategists" that demographic change in Northern Virginia has changed the balance in Virginia politics forever and that as a result the real contest in Virginia politics is for this new and exciting factor (that is, the Yankee Northern Virginia vote)
Strangely enough, the graphic posted above and provided by the Washington Post indicates that the vote in Northern Virginia this year was exactly the same in political distribution as was the vote in 1997, twelve years ago.
Why is that? That is an easy question to answer. Self selection takes place in the way new residents distribute themselves in the Washington metropoitan area. This happens when people move into the area and later as well when they decide where it is that they are more comfortable.
We "commonwealths" are not everyone's choice of neighbors. pl