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Jeff Vanke

During the 6th district debate yesterday evening, candidate Jeff Vanke was looking to convince the crowd that he could beat Bob Goodlatte in the race for U.S. House of Representatives.  After all, it is a simple fact that a good number of people will not vote for a candidate that they know will lose, a trend often referred to as the wasted vote.  To prove his electablity, he presented the audience with poll results that showed Vanke in a virtual even election with Goodlatte.  In this poll, Goodlatte garnered 46% of the vote, Vanke 42%, and Bain 4%.  According to the data, he had about 1,000 random respondents spread across 14 cities and counties in the 6th district.  Sounds promising for Vanke huh?  The problem with the poll however, as Vanke freely admits, is that it is a push poll.

Although I have discussed push polls earlier on this blog, I feel I should refresh your memory.  The primary purpose of push polls are to highlight negative attributes of one candidate either to determine what sort of attacks will be successful against that candidate or to create a strong negative reaction in the minds of voters.  Given their wording, push polls are not a useful tool for determining the outcome of an election as voters are not similarly “pushed” by the generally straightforward nature of the ballot.  For the record, Vanke’s poll reads as follows:

There’s no Democrat in this race, but there is a choice.  Independent Jeff Vanke has drafted a balanced Federal budget, and he’s running for Congress because no one there has done it.  Eighteen-year incumbent Bob Goodlatte has taken more than $1 million in agribusiness political donations, and he has charged each of us over $2000 in extra taxes to pay for agribusiness subsidies.  Independent Jeff Vanke thinks we can do better.

If the election were held today, who would you vote for?  For Independent Jeff Vanke, press 1.  For the incumbent, Republican Bob Goodlatte, press 2.  For Libertarian Stuart Bain, press 3…

Of course if you demean one candidate and elevate another right before you ask for whom a person will vote, obviously the answer will be skewed in favor of the second candidate.  To use a common (and unsubstantiated) example, what if I told you that Barack Obama was not a U.S. citizen?  Would you be more likely to vote for Barack Obama or a Republican candidate?  Obviously the results would favor the Republican to far greater extent than they would if the respondent had not been told of Obama’s supposed nationality.

Now, I hope you don’t think I’m being overly hostile toward Mr. Vanke.  After all, I believe it takes considerable courage to run for office and I applaud Mr. Vanke for being a very active participant in our election process.  He’s also right in one important respect.  I strongly believe that we need a balanced budget and we need one now.  It is horribly unfair for the present generation to saddle future generations with past debt.

So, back to the question of the day, will Vanke get 42% of the vote next week as his poll suggests?  Don’t count on it.  The last time two independent candidates challenged Goodlatte, combined they only captured about 24% of the vote.  Here’s where I’d jokingly make a ridiculous wager against Vanke getting anywhere close to 42% but, given Representative Goodlatte’s efforts to curb internet gambling and my ignorance regarding these laws, I’ll refrain.  Regardless if you live in the 6th district of Virginia, or someplace very far away, I encourage you to learn about the candidates running and make and informed choice.  Yes, voting is a civic duty, but it must be done rationally and clearly.  Otherwise you may be fooled by the next push poll that comes along.

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On Monday, I got a brief email from the local Shenandoah Valley Tea Party.  It told me that the candidates for the 6th district House of Representatives Seat were having a debate.  Being the political animal that I am, I made certain to be free during that time so that I could participate.  Here was my chance to listen to all three candidates for office and ask them about specific issues.  I thought that the notice was written rather strangely.  It read, “At 7:30 PM, Tuesday, the 26th, Stuart Bain, Libertarian candidate for Virginia’s 6th district will be debating his opponents in the Memorial Hall Auditorium at James Madison University.”  Although I know that Representative Goodlatte did not return the Tea Party’s candidate survey, it seemed a bit strange to me that they did not mention the sitting Congressman by name in the debate announcement, but rather used the term “Bain’s opponent”.  Therefore, shortly before the debate, I called Representative Goodlatte’s Harrisonburg office to make certain that he would be attending the event.  Unfortunately, I was informed that he was not going to be there.  Despite this considerable disappointment, I still showed up.

Vanke on the left, Bain on the right

Overall, I thought the debate itself went pretty well.  Both Jeff Vanke and Stuart Bain tackled a number of issues ranging from balancing the federal budget, immigration, and various disagreements they have with Congressman Goodlatte’s positions.  As one of many questions from the audience, I appreciated the opportunity to ask the candidates about their positions regarding the war on terrorism. Before I conclude, I want to thank JMU and acknowledge their efforts in hosting the event.  For more coverage on the specifics of the debate, you can visit both hburgnews and whsv.

As I’ve stated many times in the past, in order for our form of government to survive, we must have an informed electorate.  Toward that end, before you vote on Tuesday I encourage you to visit the websites of all three candidates to learn more about them.  As the debate was supposed to highlight, you can choose between the Republican Goodlatte, the Libertarian Bain, or the Independent Vanke.  You should vote, but you should vote smart.

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Continuing our series on local politics and elections, I saw another sign today that sparked my interest.  While traveling down Port Republic Road in Harrisonburg, I came across an encampment of yard signs fluttering in the breeze.  Several were in support of Coffman for Council, others were for Baxter for school board, but a few were different.  Rather than encouraging citizens to vote for a candidate, it tells folks to vote against Carolyn Frank.

Strangely, as you can see, they do not bear the paid for and authorized tag line that other political signs display.  When I saw more of the signs on Neff Avenue as well, I stopped a local business to learn a bit more.  Although on their shopping center property, the business knew nothing of the signs.  They did not authorize them and did not know who placed them there.  Obviously some person or persons have a very strong dislike of Frank in order to go to such lengths as spending their own money for the signs.

Two questions linger, who and why.  Who made the signs?  Why does their creator find Carolyn Frank so objectionable?  I found this same question and a rather lengthy discussion on a recent article on hburgnews.com.  Apparently, a local developer by the name of Bruce Forbes created them.  Their discussion informs us that Mr. Forbes is someone who tries to buy and control politicians.  He assisted in Frank’s election efforts several years ago and turned against her when she wasn’t loyal to his designs.  Getting back to the signs themselves, although admittedly my knowledge of regarding laws for local elections are a bit shaky, I would expect that, like other political signs, they must bear the “paid for” tag line.  If that is indeed an unmet requirement, then the city should remove them as quickly as possible.

If Carolyn Frank, Bruce Forbes, any of their supporters or detractors, or anyone else who has some knowledge of this subject cares to comment further, I’m sure we would be interested in learning more.

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Besides electing members to the House of Representatives and voting on Constitutional amendments to the Virginia Constitution in a couple of weeks, many cities and counties in Virginia will be holding local elections too.  In Harrisonburg, for example, we will be electing members to the city council and the school board.  What has always confused me about local elections is that political parties, citizens, and even candidates themselves never really take campaigning for these offices too seriously.  Sure, they put up yard signs, send out a single mailer, and might even try to knock on your door once, but that’s about it.  Although I won’t claim I’ve observed them all, I will admit that I’ve never seen a professionally run campaign for a city office here in Harrisonburg.  Where is the fundraising…or the volunteers…or the campaign manager?  Now I know what some candidates will say, that they don’t have the funds to run a full-scale campaign, but I believe it can be done fairly easily.  Unfortunately, tradition is tough to overcome.  For that simple reason, so many people ignore city and county elections and think that they are a joke.

In our last city council elections, we had three Democratic candidates, three Republicans, and two Independents vying for three seats.  Keep in mind that this election took place during the McCain vs. Obama election.  So guess who won?  All three Democrats did.  As far as I could tell, Tracy Evans, who is currently the Chairman of the Harrisonburg GOP, had the best-run campaign, but, with all due respect, it was still insufficient when compared to more traditional ones.  Unfortunately, it is likely that all three Republicans relied on the McCain campaign for support rather than running a separate and independent operation.  Given that the McCain campaign only garnered 41% of the vote in the city, the council candidates were defeated too.  In general, it seems as if city council and school board candidates place their trust in their own renown and fortune to win elections.  If the political winds are favorable, like in 2004, the Republicans will win.  If fortune turns against them, like in 2008, they will be destroyed.  Since the local elections are now tied with the state and national elections rather than being the traditional May event, it is even more important for candidates to set themselves apart from the state and national currents.  On the flip side, given the high negatives of Obama and the Democratic led Congress, if neither the Democrats nor the Republicans run a hard fought campaign, I would expect the Republicans to win at least one, if not both, of the seats on council this year.

City council and school board races are important for two reasons:  1. Some of these leaders go on to higher office.  2. Because of their relatively small constituency, they are supposed to be the easiest to contact and be closest to the people.   Do I want a conservative city?  Certainly, just like I want a conservative state and a conservative country.  When it is all said and done, elections rise and fall based upon candidates and their campaigns.  Given the low turnout and interest in these races, even a modest campaign can easily swing a couple hundred votes which can mean the difference between a loss and a win.  So candidates, if you are serious about winning, ask the loyal base for our money, ask for our time, and ask for our vote.  It’s that simple.  And get a decent campaign going for crying out loud.  Now I’ll freely admit that I could be wrong about Harrisonburg local elections, given that I’ve never really been fully engaged in one, but from what I’ve observed, as well as the fact that I’ve never been asked to really help out either, I truly doubt it.  State and national elections are very important, yes, but we cannot continue to allow local elections to simmer unwatched on a back burner.  They are real campaigns for real offices and must be treated as such.  In closing, I’m well aware that some liberals read this blog, and if they take this message to heart and conservatives do not, don’t blame me.  If Republicans continue to insist on running a joke of a campaign, then, like in 2008, Harrisonburg will soon receive a Democratic punch line.  I doubt many of us find that prospect a laughing matter.

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Growing up, I always enjoyed the Rockingham County Fair.  What kid wouldn’t enjoy the rides, the attractions, the food, the animals…and the politics?  Ok, so maybe not every teenager cares about our government, but as you already know, I was a bit different.  Anyway, each year the Harrisonburg and Rockingham County Republican Parties operate a booth at the fair to bring a little bit of the political world to the average citizens of the community.  Every year I volunteered here once I became involved.  More than anything else, I enjoyed standing behind that table handing out information to folks who stopped by, mingling with fellow conservatives.  It was not a high-pressure sales job, but rather a chance to share a bit of our ideals, to shed light on this neglected facet of our society.

Although I didn’t have much time to offer, I still gave about an hour this past week to continue my ritual.  Below are a few photographs of the event.  They are pretty self-explanatory.  The last few are of the cow-kissing contest in which several public figures competed to raise money for the American Cancer Society.  Hosting the event was Virginia Agriculture Commissioner Matt Lohr.  In all, there were five people competing, including newly minted Delegate Tony Wilt (R-26) and Daily News Record Writer and author of the Bowser Bucket List, Heather Bowser.  Thanks to these people who donated their time to such a worthy cause.

Maybe you can join us next year.

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Yesterday, while at the polls in Keister, I met two ladies in matching red shirts.  Unlike most polls workers, they were not from the 26th, but drove down from Shenandoah County to volunteer for the cause.  Their clothing marked them as members of a relatively new political organization, the Friends for Freedom.  After speaking with the duo for a little while, I asked if they would send me a bit more information about their group.  To follow is their mission statement:

We are an independent group of conservatives who believe in limited government, free market capitalism, a strong defense, secure borders, personal and fiscal responsibility, the sanctity of life, and the individual freedoms as espoused by our Founding Fathers in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

Our mission is to communicate and coordinate with like-minded members of our community to identify, encourage, and support political candidates who will uphold these principles. We aim to educate, motivate, and activate our community to foster civic participation, fundamental to the democratic process. We aspire to be guided in these efforts by standards of honesty, integrity and Godly wisdom.

Given our related stances, I’m excited to learn about this association.  We certainly need more conservative citizens to get actively involved in the process.  Until enough voters cry “Hold, enough!” the government will continue to expand, our rights will continue to erode, and our cultural values shall crumble.

The next meeting of the Friends of Freedom will be taking place in Shenandoah County on July 8th.  I don’t know if I can make this particular gathering, but, like I always do, I encourage each and everyone of you to find a group like this one in your community and make a difference.

For liberty with responsibility!

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Well the dust has settled here in the 26th district.  With all precincts reporting in, the winner is…Tony Wilt.  Although the official count is not available yet, according to the Virginia State Board of Elections, Wilt captured 65.82% of the vote while Democratic Harrisonburg Mayor Kai Degner won 29.89% and Independent Carolyn Frank had 4.14%.  Voter turnout was rather high in this special election as over 24% of registered voters showed up to cast their ballots.  As has been the trend in recent elections, the Democratic candidate won Harrisonburg, although narrowly, by fifty votes.  In Rockingham County, Republican voters came out in force giving the Republican candidate an enormous 81.66%!

When you consider current history, all in all, Degner fared a little better than other challengers, such as 2009 House of Delegates Democratic candidate, Gene Hart, and in 2007 when Independent Carolyn Frank launched her first attempt.  Then again, the last time this area faced an open seat back in 2005, Matt Lohr won with 53.48% compared to Lowell Fulk’s 46.11%.

So, my earlier adage held true.  Whoever wins the Republican primary will win the general election.  Even though the Democrats can win the city, the conservative County voters easily overwhelm whatever advantage the Harrisonburg electorate gives.  Therefore, barring some major surprise, I expect that Tony Wilt will represent the voters of the 26th in the House of Delegates for as long as he chooses to hold that position.  I hope that he will be the strong-willed constitutional conservative leader that the citizens of the Shenandoah Valley deserve.  As for the other candidates, I assume that Kai Degner will continue to serve as our Mayor, at least until the city council elections, but I wouldn’t be shocked if he makes another try for higher office in the near future.  And as for Carolyn Frank…well I really don’t know what she was thinking.  According to the local paper, she didn’t raise any campaign money in the most recent cycle and I don’t know if she had any sort of coordinated campaign.  A humiliating defeat such as the one she just suffered will certainly dampen any of her political prospects.

Congratulations to Mr. Wilt.  Please make us proud.

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About a week ago when I went in a local mechanic to get my car inspected, I noticed that their office contained a handful of yard signs for our Republican nominee for Delegate, Tony Wilt.  As I’m always looking for an opportunity (or excuse depending on your point of view) to discuss politics, I made a comment to the woman working behind the counter about the race.  I asked her if she was planning on voting for Tony.  Her response was that she wasn’t planning on voting at all.  She stated that she only votes in “important races” like the one for President.  Although such a viewpoint is common, it still makes little sense to me for several reasons.

Sure, the President is a lot more powerful position than a Senator, Delegate, or a Mayor, but which of these leaders are more likely to know who you are and know which issues are important to you?  Think about it.  Take me for example.  In my years of political involvement, I’ve met a lot of Delegates, a handful of State Senators, a few Representatives, and even a U.S. Senator or two…but never a President.  How about with voting?  Time to roll out the numbers.  In the 2008 election, there were approximately 131,000,000 votes cast for President.  In 2009, there were 15,510 votes cast for Delegate in the 26th district.  Tell me, a vote in which election carries more value?  When is your vote more important?  When it is 1 out of 15 thousand or 1 out of 131 million?  Then again, as we don’t elect the President through the popular vote, but rather through the Electoral College, depending on whether or not you live in a battleground state, your vote likely carries even less weight.

The bottom line is the following.  Although it may seem glamorous to only cast your vote when it is time to elect the “leader of the free world” (I hate that term by the way), in all truthfulness, such a vote is a mere drop in the vast ocean of ballots.  If you really want to make your vote and your voice count, take the time to vote in smaller state and local elections.  The turnout is lower and you might actually be able to make a personal connection with the candidates.  So, fellow citizens of the 26th, I urge you to become informed in the nine days we have left and then get out to the polls on June 15.

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At the 6th district meeting this weekend, delegates selected long-time political activist Trixie Averill of Roanoke as our new Republican Chairwoman.  As stated earlier, having worked with/for Trixie in the 2006 election cycle, I can personally attest to her commitment and dedication to our cause.  I want to congratulate Mrs. Averill for her victory and I’m sure all of us are expecting many good things from her time in office.

If anyone has any pictures of the event that they would care to share, please let me know.

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Early in my inbox this morning (and I do mean early), I received an email from our conservative friends in Botetourt County.  In it, Delegate Marshall (R-13) offers his opinion about the race for the 6th District Chairman.   To follow are his comments:

Can you take four to five minutes from your busy day to think about a decision that will have effects on you, your family and Virginia for years to come?

I am talking about the Sixth District Republican Convention race where you and other fellow conservatives will set a course for our Virginia Republican Party.

The decision is yours to make, not mine, although I do have a preference for the Sixth District.

I would just like to first share with you the benefit of my experience of my more than 32 years in Republican politics, 19 years as an elected official, and 6 years as a Congressional staff aide.

Clearly, the most successful American politician of the last part of the 20th Century was President Ronald Reagan.  He called himself a conservative, and did not apologize.  He ran as a Republican.  He said he was 100% pro life because it was a moral issue.  He opposed high taxes because he thought it weakened American families.  He called the Soviet Union the Evil Empire because it was.  He would not compromise any moral principle for political gain.  He won the presidency twice after serving as Governor of California.

In 1975 Ronald Reagan criticized the spending policies of Republican President Gerald Ford for adopting the deficit spending and debt increasing habits of the Democratic controlled Congress.  Sad to say, the current crop of debt-loving liberal Democrats in Congress can point to the debt increases approved by congressional Republicans who voted to grow the debt on our children when George Bush was president.  Unfortunately, the record shows the Democrat critics are correct!

If we depart from our own principles “just a little bit,” we are not in a good position to criticize Democrats when they do it with gusto.

By voting for Danny Goad for Sixth Republican Chair on May 22 at 10:00AM in Lynchberg at the Towns Alumni Center, Liberty University, we can bring back that successful Reagan formula of combining conservative social and economic principles to win elections.

Danny Goad, father of six, is a Mechanical Engineer with an MBA.  Danny has been involved in conservative Republican efforts and elections for 18 years.  He has been vice-chairman or chairman of three local Republican units.  If ever our nation needed principled individuals willing to lead it is now.  Danny Goad is a committed conservative and is willing to serve as Sixth District Republican Chair.

Ronald Reagan did not win victories in Virginia and across America by himself.  He had the support of a Republican Political Party structure, people like you and me, who were largely conservative.

We, you and I together, can do that again for Virginia with a vote for conservative Republican Danny Goad on May 22.

Thank you for all you do to preserve our Republic and our Liberties.  If you have any questions, call me on my cell phone at 703-853-4213.
Hopefully,

Bob Marshall

Delegate Bob Marshall, R – 13th District of Virginia

P.S.  I have included excerpts from Ronald Reagan’s 1975 and 1977 speeches to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) with a few comments of my own so you can see for yourself how Ronald Reagan combined practical experience with conservative principles to revive and rebuild a conservative Republican Party.

Ronald Reagan 1975 Speech to CPAC — Excerpts

“Since our last meeting we have been through a disastrous election.  (November, 1974) It is easy for us to be discouraged, as pundits hail that election as a repudiation of our philosophy and even as a mandate of some kind or other. But the significance of the election was not registered by those who voted, but by those who stayed home. If there was anything like a mandate it will be found among almost two-thirds of the citizens who refused to participate.

Bitter as it is to accept the results of the November election, we should have reason for some optimism. For many years now we have preached “the gospel,” in opposition to the philosophy of so-called liberalism which was, in truth, a call to collectivism.

Now, it is possible we have been persuasive to a greater degree than we had ever realized. Few, if any, Democratic party candidates in the last election ran as liberals. Listening to them I had the eerie feeling we were hearing reruns of Goldwater speeches. I even thought I heard a few of my own.  …

But let’s not be so naive as to think we are witnessing a mass conversion to the principles of conservatism. Once sworn into office, the victors reverted to type. In their view, apparently, the ends justified the means. … Can we live with ourselves if we, as a nation, betray our friends and ignore our pledged word? …

Americans are hungry to feel once again a sense of mission and greatness.

I don’t know about you, but I am impatient with those Republicans who after the last election rushed into print saying, “We must broaden the base of our party”–when what they meant was to fuzz up and blur even more the differences between ourselves and our opponents.

It was a feeling that there was not a sufficient difference now between the parties that kept a majority of the voters away from the polls. When have we ever advocated a closed-door policy? Who has ever been barred from participating?

Our people look for a cause to believe in. Is it a third party we need, or is it a new and revitalized second party, raising a banner of no pale pastels, but bold colors which make it unmistakably clear where we stand on all of the issues troubling the people? Let us show that we stand for fiscal integrity and sound money and above all for an end to deficit spending, with ultimate retirement of the national debt. …

Let us explore ways to ward off socialism, not by increasing government’s coercive power, but by increasing participation by the people in the ownership of our industrial machine. …

In his first address to Congress, the president asked Congress to join him in an all-out effort to balance the budget. I think all of us wish that he had re-issued that speech instead of this year’s budget message.

What side can be taken in a debate over whether the deficit should be $52 billion or $70 billion or $80 billion preferred by the profligate Congress?

Inflation has one cause and one cause only: government spending more than government takes in. And the cure to inflation is a balanced budget. We know, of course, that after 40 years of social tinkering and Keynesian experimentation that we can’t do this all at once, but it can be achieved. Balancing the budget is like protecting your virtue: you have to learn to say “no.” …

A political party cannot be all things to all people. It must represent certain fundamental beliefs which must not be compromised to political expediency, or simply to swell its numbers.

I do not believe I have proposed anything that is contrary to what has been considered Republican principle. It is at the same time the very basis of conservatism. It is time to reassert that principle and raise it to full view.  And if there are those who cannot subscribe to these principles, then let them go their way.”

Ronald Reagan 1977 speech to CPAC–Excerpts

The percent of Americans now calling themselves “conservative” vs. “liberal” was higher at the end of 2009 than in 1976 when Reagan was addressing CPAC below.  A recent Gallup survey found the following breakdown:  conservatives 40%; liberal 21% and moderate 36%.  Additional Gallup breakdowns show that 71% of Republicans, 35% of independents and 21% of democrats call themselves “conservative.”

Reagan recognized that there were varieties of conservative, which he identified as social and economic.   No Republican president since Reagan has been able or been willing to replicate the Reagan union of social, economic and defense of foreign affairs conservatives.  Reagan said:

“Despite what some in the press may say, we who are proud to call ourselves “conservative” are not a minority of a minority party; we are part of the great majority of Americans of both major parties and of most of the independents as well.  A Harris poll released September 7, 1975 showed 18 percent identifying themselves as liberal and 31 percent as conservative, with 41 percent as middle of the road; a few months later, on January 5, 1976, by a 43-19 plurality, those polled by Harris said they would “prefer to see the country move in a more conservative direction than a liberal one.”

You know, as I do, that most commentators make a distinction between they call “social” conservatism and “economic” conservatism. The so-called social issues—law and order, abortion, busing, quota systems—are usually associated with blue-collar, ethnic and religious groups themselves traditionally associated with the Democratic Party. The economic issues—inflation, deficit spending and big government—are usually associated with Republican Party members and independents who concentrate their attention on economic matters.

… In short, isn’t it possible to combine the two major segments of contemporary American conservatism into one politically effective whole?  I believe the answer is: Yes … This will mean compromise.  But not a compromise of basic principle.” …

“And let me say so there can be no mistakes as to what I mean: The New Republican Party I envision will not be, and cannot, be one limited to the country club-big business image that, for reasons both fair and unfair, it is burdened with today. The New Republican Party I am speaking about is going to have room for the man and the woman in the factories, for the farmer, for the cop on the beat and the millions of Americans who may never have thought of joining our party before, but whose interests coincide with those represented by principled Republicanism. If we are to attract more working men and women of this country, we will do so not by simply “making room” for them, but by making certain they have a say in what goes on in the party. The Democratic Party turned its back on the majority of social conservatives during the 1960s. The New Republican Party of the late ’70s and ’80s must welcome them, seek them out, enlist them, not only as rank-and-file members but as leaders and as candidates.” …

My friends, the time has come to start acting to bring about the great conservative majority party we know is waiting to be created.

And just to set the record straight, let me say this about our friends who are now Republicans but who do not identify themselves as conservatives: I want the record to show that I do not view the new revitalized Republican Party as one based on a principle of exclusion. After all, you do not get to be a majority party by searching for groups you won’t associate or work with. If we truly believe in our principles, we should sit down and talk.

Talk with anyone, anywhere, at any time if it means talking about the principles for the Republican Party. Conservatism is not a narrow ideology, nor is it the exclusive property of conservative activists.”

Although unfortunately I still haven’t spoken with Mr. Goad, Delegate Marshall offers many strong words of praise, going so far as to compare him to President Reagan.  Given his stances, I do hope to meet Mr. Goad sooner or later.   On a related note, it is interesting to see as more and more of my Facebook friends line up on one side of the aisle or the other.   With the election a mere three days away, the camps are clearly forming.

In retrospect, I wish I were attending the convention down in Lynchburg this Saturday.  Nevertheless, I expect that both of the candidates, Danny Goad and Trixie Averill, will serve the Republicans of the 6th district well.  It should be exciting to see who wins!

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