Astute readers of this blog have surely noticed I take a deeper interest in national and international politics than local and state politics. However, once a year or so I find it necessary to participate in my republic’s “evolution” - at a state and local level - by exercising the voting franchise citizenship affords me.
When these times roll around, I operate not unlike the disinterested apolitical couch potatoes I so often denigrate on this blog as “clueless independents” – that is, I wake up from the nap, lick off my cheeto-stained fingertips, and divert my attention from whatever meaningless diversion has caught my attention lately, to research just what the hell the local politicians have in store for me this time.
The difference between me and “clueless independents” is I operate from a long developed ideological framework, which is described around these parts as “contrarian.” You see, I live in Fairfax County, in northern Virginia, an official suburb of the District of Columbia. You could hardly get more “blue” – unless you moved to the Soviet Socialist Republic of Maryland, the People’s Republic of DC itself, Hollyweird, or the Upper West Side.
Actually, my essentially “libertarian” ideology comes down to the following: all politicians are by definition venal, but at least the (R) variety usually (though not always – see ‘Bush’) has enough sense to keep gub’ment on a leash and pick up after it. But I live in an area filled with people who actually believe ‘Bush’ goes with ‘conservative.’ I know, it must be something in the water. So, my annual rite usually goes something like this:
* Find out who the most conservatives candidates are in the GOP primaries. Vote for them – usually in vain.
* Vote (R) over (D) in the general – generally in vain.
* Vote ‘No!’ on the latest spending and borrowing initiatives – can’t remember the last time one of those didn’t pass.
The reason I engage in this annual rite of futility could be because I’m old enough to have attended an elementary school that had Benjamin Franklin quotes, instead of Che Guevara quotes, hanging on the wall.
There are no state and local elections this year for me to look into. This is an even numbered year – and Virginia has an unusual odd numbered year bi-annual cycle in such matters. This reminds me to plug one of my favorite federal reform ideas – put the entire House of Representatives on an odd numbered year bi-annual cycle – that way, if the country ever loses its mind over an Empty Suit Presidential candidate again, the subsequent wreckage inflicted upon the republic might be mitigated.
But there are US Congressional primaries to consider. I know because of what happened on Presidential primary day – March 6, 2012 – ‘Super Tuesday’
Virginia was blessed with a candidate registration debacle in that one, resulting in only two names on the ballot – Romney and Paul. I walked into the polling place, had a brief conversation with the poll watchers – the place was otherwise empty at that time – and declined to vote at all. I told the poll watchers that if either of those guys won, I wanted it to be with the smallest possible turn out. I did learn from the poll watchers congressional primaries were scheduled for mid-June, so I put mid-May into my mental calendar to look into who is running against whom.
According to the county gub’ment site, this is what will be on the menu June 12th. Click the screen snap to embiggen.
Last time around my congressional district was VA-11, represented by “Jihad” Gerry Connolly – two term
So, what do we have on the (R) side of things this time around? The Republican primary has two contestants – one Chris S. Perkins, and some guy named Ken L. Vaughn. Neither one is ringing a bell. Better check out the official sites.
It’s immediately obvious Perkins is campaigning as a retired Army Colonel. Smart politics – you can’t swing a dead cat around here without hitting a dozen of those. The issues page looks like it was written by some GOP Establishment nancy-pants, however.
Now over to the Vaughn site. Looking at the picture, I get the sense I’ve met that guy before. Let’s do a little more research. Yeah, that’s right, he was the one I was so simpatico with at the 2009 Code Red Senate Rally. He was running a pretty decent TEA Party oriented blog at the time, as I recall. No wonder his campaign site presents a far more professional looking user experience. Plus his issues page is a much, much, stronger statement for the Conservative Ascendancy. That’s my guy.
Wait! I’ve been redistricted! Research leading me to Vaughn’s Facebook page (it’s how I confirmed the TEA Party linkage) alerted me to the possibility. Why the hell wasn’t the impact of redistricting top of page 1 on the county gub’ment site? Because it’s the county gub’ment site … that’s why. So, let’s start over.
I am now lorded over (again) by one James T. Moran – eleven term Democrat from VA-8. “Gentleman Jim Maroon” – my nickname for him – looks like a Boston alderman, drinks like a Kennedy, and has a long history of testy exchanges with his ‘constituents.’ He was my congressman in the nineties (first house) and seems to have stalked me back to house number two after all these years.
No GOP primary in the new district … but look at this - “Gentleman Jim” has a primary challenge. It’s coming from one Bruce Shuttleworth – who bills himself as the ‘Progressive Warrior.’ Hmmmmmm.
And look at this from Shuttleworth’s site …
I might have to act against principle – I am 100% opposed to so-called “open” primaries in principle – and have a little fun with this contest between Lefty and Leftier. But I better be careful – any guy running around calling himself the ‘Progressive Warrior’ might actually be a more electable candidate than “Gentleman Jim” in these parts.
It’s a little easier to determine if the GOP Senate primary applies to me as a voter …. Virginia is Virginia is Virginia and Senators of course represent the entire state. But the choice is more difficult for me … I have a natural sympathy for the GOP Establishment candidate, even though he is being challenged by a TEA Party activist (which also brings auto-sympathy).
My sympathy for the Establishment candidate – George Allen – is connected to one of the major themes of this blog … namely the role the corrupt and biased MSM plays in the republic’s electoral politics. Senator Allen (I think that title is held in perpetuity) lost his 2006 race largely due the local media (specifically the Washington Post) having a hissy fit over a nonsense word. The Post coordinated a character assassination over the mere utterance of the word ‘macaca’. The Post, in true Leftist fashion, reinvented the use of language for ideological purposes, changed the meaning of the word to be absolutely synonymous with a certain *N* word, and single-handedly sunk Allen’s candidacy. Allen returning to the seat one election cycle later would be a welcome sign of a retreat by the plague of Political Correctness.
His lifetime American Conservative Union rating is not too bad either … 92.6. That’s an A- only 4/10 of a point away from a true A where I was schooled. That makes me comfortable getting behind ‘ol George (again). Not that it seems he needs my help according to the pollsters.
It may be that the most exciting thing that could happen to me on June 12 is running into Project Veritas operatives. Maybe, maybe not … Virginia is among the states requiring voter ID, but allowing non-photo ID. I usually just show my driver’s license, just like at the ABC store, to be an over-achiever.