September 19, 2009

CHANGE YOU CAN REJECT:

Virginia Moves Back to the Right (Fred Barnes, 9/19/09, WSJ)

A Republican victory here would signal that Mr. Obama may now be a liability for other Democrats running for office—or at least a neutral force incapable of transferring his support. For example, a Survey USA poll from earlier this month found that 13% of Obama voters from last year plan to vote for Mr. McDonnell this year.

Only one other state, New Jersey, has a governor's race this year. A Republican, Chris Christie, is leading there too. But he is running against incumbent Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine, whose tenure and the state's record of corruption are the overriding issues.

Virginia has no incumbent and a more wide-open race. National issues are playing a bigger role here in part because the state borders Washington, D.C. Mr. McDonnell has pressed Mr. Deeds on card check legislation in Congress (which would allow unions to organize a company without holding a secret ballot election), the cap-and-trade energy tax that has passed the House, and other White House priorities. Mr. Deeds has hit back by saying that Mr. McDonnell echoes the economic ideas of George W. Bush.

A recent editorial in the Culpeper, Va., Star-Exponent captured the effect Mr. Obama could have on the race: "If this election were held a year ago, McDonnell wouldn't stand a chance. By party affiliation alone, Deeds would have surfed the 'change' tsunami straight into the governor's mansion. Funny how McDonnell could very well do the same now that public opinion has cooled toward Obama."


Posted by Orrin Judd at September 19, 2009 6:56 AM
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