Archive for September, 2010

Tidbits & politics…from home

Sunday, September 26th, 2010

RANDOLPH COUNTY…..Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito was dynamite last night…..the headline speaker at the Lincoln Day Dinner… job ever…..talked with  enthusiasm for November…..Joe Manchin’s hands would really be full if she had entered the race.

Carolyn Jackson the new County GOP Chair has fired up the troops…..impressive new leadership…..a successful dinner…..opening a headquarters next week…..monthly committee meetings with full attendance…..just the type of commitment needed.

Remembered for years of Republican work…..Al Varner and Dr. R. W. Knotts…..both passed away recently…..Varner could always be counted on…..Capito said Al was the first person she called after entering the congressional race in 2000….Dr. Knotts there in the early years never turned down a request to help.

Outside of top of ticket…..only two races underway in Randolph…..Joan Sharp is making a second run for the House of Delegates…..she almost made it in 2006…..and this looks like a Republican year…..Sharp got lots of cheers.  Newcomer Jeremy Bauserman…..outlined his agenda for service in the State Senate.  He was impressive.

Dinner drew National Committeewoman Donna Gosney [without her Fire Pelosi hat] from Boone County…..joining her was Cheryl Rust from state headquarters…..they are everywhere.  Upshur Delegate Bill Hamilton attended…..wonder if he is thinking about re-districting & a Senate race. 

Todd Gunter a campaign aide to Capito visited with local officials…..he is a comer in GOP politics.

Named Republican of the Year was Mark Scott a former County Chair and active at the State GOP committee level…..he works hard to advance a two party system in WV.

Local Tea Party organizers were on hand…..some are now elected members of the Randolph GOP Committee.

David McKinley running for Congress….. in neighboring 1st district…..must be looking for votes everywhere…..he was represented……a crew delivering Yoder for Supreme Court signs stopped to have dinner with Randolph Republicans.

Absent was Randolph resident and State Senator Clark Barnes…..dinner goers were surprised to find a card at their place saying…..”Let’s Make State Senator Clark Barnes Our Next Governor!”  His wife introduced guests.

Memories of Mary Heineman flowed as Varner & Knotts were remembered…..Mary was my political “den mother”…..she showed me the way.

Political Tidbits

Friday, September 24th, 2010

WHAT A WEEK…..John Raese moves ahead in poll put out by a Democratic leaning NC firm…..was this a ploy to motivate the Democrat base…..if so the opposite happened…..the poll lit a fire of enthusiasm among WV Republicans…..they increased nasty “Media Alerts”…..not to be out done… GOP Senate Committee purchased $1 million in television buys.

Manchin has moved his campaign to the next level…..rumor has it his successful political team from previous elections has taken charge…..that will motivate Democrats …..this cannot be measured in a poll… least not until November 2nd.

Don’t overlook the TV buy includes the Washington, DC media market…..that is how you reach Eastern WV voters…..if you have the money.

After the mention of the “Fire Pelosi” hat Donna Gosney National Committeewoman is wearing to events…..the state GOP headquarters has had dozens of requests.

Not sure when the State Democrats hold their JJ Dinner…..but you can bet it will not be a Joe & John affair.

The Senate campaign feels a lot like the Bush/Gore 2000 race… for national visitors to start arriving…..State Republicans feel an important U. S. Senator is coming to help…..don’t place a bet against Bill Clinton coming to help Manchin.

It has been the enthusiasm of Republicans and the Tea Party…..that made the turnout news in the primary season… is beginning to happen here…..many county GOP organizations did not hold a traditional Lincoln Day Dinners in February…..there are a bunch on tap now.

Insiders say Spike Maynard is on his way to Congress…..the only thing standing in the way is turnout…..Rahall’s 17 terms may not serve him well in today’s anti- establishment environment.

Back to the $1 million TV buy…..The Fix, a Washington Post political column, says the NRSC willingness to put its money where its mouth is puts Senate Democrats in an interesting spot.  The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has a number of endangered incumbents they need to protect in places like Colorado, Wisconsin, California and Nevada – but also can’t afford to ignore a seat like West Virginia where they have a top-tier candidate in a winnable race.

What a TV battle going on in the First Congressional district…..this could be a close one between McKinley and Oliverio….. in that district the establishment [Mollohan]   was ousted in May.

Bob Byrd played his fiddler to enter Congress…..will Joe Manchin’s weekend motorcycle ride do the same for him?

Ballot Lawsuit Coming?

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

The PHILLIPSBILLBOARD.COM Sunday called attention to the single ballot planned for WV’s November election.  It suggested Republicans should be concerned.  At this point   Governor Manchin and Republican John Raese should be concerned.  They should step forward and insist on a separate ballot.  There has been enough controversy about how to replace Senator Byrd.   The Charleston Daily Mail reported a potential lawsuit is possible

Republicans Take Note

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

When George Allen was coach of the Washington Redskins he coined the phrase “the future is now.”  In government the past should not be forgotten but  “the future is now.” David Brooks in today’s NYT offers Republicans a thoughtful view about the future.

Polticial Tidbits…from Charleston & Football Game

Sunday, September 12th, 2010

Political Tidbits…..

Three days in Charleston…a high powered football game in Huntington… evening in Roane County… Bob and Anita Ashley’s home honoring Shelley Moore Capito….offers a lot of Political Tidbits.

Charleston talk….. impact of the Rasmussen poll on the Senate race…..after the results one might think it was the kickoff for Manchin…..he has hit the TV screen…..volunteers were everywhere at the Marshall/WVU Coal Bowl… was the Governor…..with two polls showing Obama could bring him down…..Manchin must develop a strategy to deal with the Obama drag…..but in a close ran Manchin’s personal approval numbers cannot be discounted.

The John Raese campaign already in full gear… a boost of enthusiasm from Rasmussen… is Republican enthusiasm that is being written about nationally…..will it make a difference here…..Charleston talk was Raese is now in the game…..the Raese campaign seems much different than those he ran in the past…..Jim Dornan has been impressive in his handling of the media…..his campaign experience should help in this horse race.

Republicans should be concerned…..and taking action about one ballot… is a special election and should be on a separate ballot…..check the legislation setting up the process to replace Senator Byrd.

To keep you informed…..

on the Governor’s race…..there are plenty of candidates at work…..Brooks McCabe has hired staff…..Senate President Earl Ray Tomblin…..the front runner… on the road…..Treasurer John Perdue had another “official” insert in the newspaper…..House Speaker Rick Thompson was seen at the football game…..and GOP potential Betty Ireland was at the Friends of Coal tailgate.

Senator Clark Barnes is interviewing consultants for a potential race for Governor…..recall he also considered moving to the 1st Congressional district to run for Congress.

Friends of Coal hosted football goers at a festive tent… looked more like a political event…..but don’t most things these days…..expected to be Acting Governor Earl Ray Tomblin was everywhere…..SOS Natalie Tenant worked the crowd…..Shelley Moore Capito was in demand for pictures…..State GOP Chair Stuart was there.

Spike Maynard had a crowd at his tailgate party…..Football talk…..Maynard is on the move in his bid to enter Congress…..his debate with Rahall was a winner…..Republicans are getting active…..coal Democrats are providing the enthusiasm.

Ashley’s party for Shelley…..people came as far away as Morgantown…..Angie Adams lead a group from Wirt County…..Delegate Mitch Carmichael was there along with others from Jackson County…..local Democrats helped make up the Capito supporters…..Republican National Committeewoman Donna Gosney came from Boone County…..wearing her “Fire Pelosi” hat…..Melody Potter…..State GOP Associate Chair drove in from Charleston…..and Cheryl Rust who keeps things moving at State GOP Headquarters was on hand. 

Capito friends in Randolph County hold a fund raiser for her every two years…..last week’s was the largest ever…..nearly 100 attended.

Judge Brent Benjamin was working the boxes at the Marshall/WVU game… he running for something?   Senator Mike Oliverio joined the Morgantown game crowd…..Monongalia county is important in his congressional race.   

There is so much more…..maybe next time.

Obama’s Economic Mess

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

Most of us wonder what the economic plan of President Obama is.  Two recent stories  in The Washington Post confirms what we all expected – there is no plan or if there is it changes every day. 

This theme is captured by Michael Gerson on September lst.  That same day Christina Romer, President’s Obama’s number one economic advisor gave a farewell luncheon speech at the National Press Club.  It was her last day on the job.  Read what Dan Milbank has written.  After this it will be clearer why our economy is in such a mess.

Political Tidbits

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

Labor Day…..the traditional start of political campaigns…..came early…..candidates have been going full blast for months…..early bird gets the worm?

Even county Republican organizations are opening headquarters earlier than usual…..remember these are not normal times…..State GOP headquarters…..with new management, just over a month… likely preparing an early battle plan.

Gubernatorial succession is back in the news… became a topic at the just ended Business Summit…..three potential Democrat candidates…..Senate President Tomblin…..House Speaker Thompson…..Senate Judiciary Chairman Jeff Kessler…..Senate Minority Leader Mike Hall shared the platform.

House Speaker Thompson says nothing will be accomplished in the 2011 legislative session…..if succession is not settled before then… a leader of the House he should not let that happen…..except he wants to shorten the time Senate President Tomblin serves as Acting Governor.

Minority Leader Hall stole the show….his solution to governor succession was to just keep the current governor a couple more years…..if Democrats don’t stop worrying about gubernatorial succession…..they may find themselves with a Republican U. S. Senator.

It appears every serving Senator wants to be Governor…..add Senator Brooks McCabe (D-Kanawha)…..who announced at the Business Summit…..sources have told the billboard…..Senator Clark Barnes (R-Randolph) is taking a look.  Senator Walt Helmick (D-Pocahontas) previously expressed interest to friends.

Republican Mark Sorsaia…..continues to travel the state… he explores a campaign for Governor…..what will Mike Teets do is still a question.

The only candidates this fall who should not be concerned…..are those without an opponent.

Governor Manchin is taking no chances…..he stepped up his campaign for U. S. Senate…..Republican  Raese now has professional help.

Gallup Finds Times Changing

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

Earlier I wrote about these not being normal times.  Our “moving vacation”, as I like to call it, has ended.  Today I spent catching up on my political newsletters.  I found an item on POLITICO from a Gallup weekly tracking report.  It reports an historic midterm advantage for Republicans.

Only in recent years have West Virginians voted for Republicans when it comes to national races.  If somehow those seeking to enter the United States Congress in November can turn their race into a national one the Gallup outlook may be meaningful here.


BIGGEST GOP MIDTERM ADVANTAGE SINCE 1942 —, “GOP Takes Unprecedented 10-Point Lead on Generic Ballot: Republicans also maintain wide gap in enthusiasm about voting,” by Frank Newport: “Republicans lead by 51% to 41% among registered voters in Gallup weekly tracking of 2010 congressional voting preferences. The 10-percentage-point lead is the GOP’s largest so far this year and is its largest in Gallup’s history of tracking the midterm generic ballot for Congress. These results are based on aggregated data from registered voters surveyed Aug. 23-29 … The Republican leads of 6, 7, and 10 points this month are all higher than any previous midterm Republican advantage in Gallup’s history of tracking the generic ballot, which dates to 1942. … Republicans’ presumed turnout advantage, combined with their current 10-point registered-voter lead, suggests the potential for a major ‘wave’ election in which the Republicans gain a large number of seats from the Democrats and in the process take back control of the House. One cautionary note: Democrats moved ahead in Gallup’s generic ballot for several weeks earlier this summer, showing that change is possible between now and Election Day.”