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It's over here in Virginia.  Virginia Democrats are NOT fielding candidates for the offices of Governor, Lieutenant Governor, or Attorney General.

How do I know??  Read on.

This will make more sense to you if you are familiar with the Virginia Northern Neck or Middle Peninsula.  If not, get a map and follow along.

The Old Redneck lives in Northumberland County, VA, along the Potomac River where it joins the Chesapeake Bay.  Since the 15th of June, the Old Redneck has made the following road trips:

  1.  THREE TRIPS:  Heathsville - Burgess - Kilmarnock - Gloucester - Williamsburg and back.
  1.  TWO TRIPS:  Heathsville - Burgess - Kilmarnock - Gloucester - Williamsburg - Newport News and back.
  1.  THREE TRIPS:  Heathsville - Callao - Warsaw - Tappahannock - Port Royal - Fredericksburg - Thornburg and back.
  1.  ONE TRIP:  Heathsville - Callao - Warsaw - Tappahannock - Port Royal - Fredericksburg - Thornburg - Fredericksburg - Goldvein - Catlett - Manassas and back.
  1.  WEEKLY TRIP:  Heathsville - Burgess - Wicomico Church - Kilmarnock and back.

In all these trips, in all this driving the main roads and back roads and side streets of the Northern Neck and Middle Peninsula and Northern Virginia, the Old Redneck HAS NOT SEEN ONE, NOT ONE, NOT A SINGLE bumper sticker, yard sign, billboard, or any other type of advertising for Deeds, Wagner, or Shannon.  Not one.  Nothing.  Zip.

Meanwhile, on every one of my trips, I have seen dozens of McDonnell bumper stickers, yard signs, and 4X8 signs -- Hunters for McDonnell, Veterans for McDonnell.  In the village of Wicomico Church there is a big 4X8 sign for McDonnell with a number for you to send a text message to sign up for his text updates on your cell phone.

Frequently when the Old Redneck opens the WashPost website, up pops a McDonnell for Governor ad.  Never have seen a Deeds ad.  Ditto for the Raw Story website.  Seems as though the McDonnell campaign has some sort of application on at least the WashPost and Raw Story sites that checks my IP address, recognizes where I am, and pops up an ad for McDonnell.

And what makes this worse is that, for the past six weeks, I have sent emails EVERY OTHER DAY to the Deeds, Wagner, and Shannon campaigns (through their websites) and to the VA Democratic Party pleading for a few bumper stickers, yard signs, anything.  NOT A SINGLE RESPONSE.  ZIP.  NOTHING.

All of which leads the Old Redneck to conclude that the Democrats have withdrawn from the Virginia races for Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney General.

Originally posted to Old Redneck on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 09:18 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I hope you're wrong (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    A Siegel, cville townie, HylasBrook, etbnc

    But I haven't seen much either.

    •  Yeah - one can hardly count VA as a (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Adam B, A Siegel, cville townie

      "safe Democrat" state, even if Obama won the state.

      I've had that problem in pre-Obama campaigns - I call, write, send info on the candidate's website and never hear anything back.

      Means they are disorganized and understaffed.  Why isn't Deeds calling on the Obama volunteers who brought victory for Obama in VA in 2008?

      The land was ours before we were the land's...Robert Frost, The Gift Outright

      by HylasBrook on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 09:26:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  maybe he liked the results of his last matchup (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cville townie, HylasBrook

        with McDonnell so much he wants to repeat that outcome!?

        personally, i thought deeds was the wrong pick in the first place -- i dunno how he won the primary, and i don't know how he is going to win the general either ....

        "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

        by josephk on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 09:36:34 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Yard Signs Don't Vote (8+ / 0-)

    And if they did, they sure can't vote in August.  Wait until after Labor Day.

    •  Wait until Labor Day? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cville townie

      You must be kidding.  By Labor Day, no one will have heard of Deeds, Wagner, or Shannon and the game will be over.

      You must be one of those "operatives" who lives for "focus groups" and ignores the old boys standing around the country store every morning.

      In Northumberland County, the first "tea party" in April drew 65 people.  The last one -- July 4 -- drew 250.  What do you guess they'll draw on Labor Day?

    •  This Is Different (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cville townie

      Everyone had heard of Obama by last summer so he didn't need signs.

      Most people in Virginia knew who Mark Warner was by then too.

      I don't think Creigh Deeds has anything like that kind of name recognition in most of Virginia. I imagine there will be people who might be persuaded that McDonnell is the guy to support if all they see is McDonnell signs.  

      The part of the state where the diarist lives is generally hostile territory for most Democrats so the GOP would have more signs anyway, but this is still distrubing news. And how on earth are the Dems being out-signed in Arlington of all places?

      Stuck Between Stations : Thoughts from a bottomless pool of useless information.

      by Answer Guy on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 10:33:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  a little early to give up (3+ / 0-)

    there is plenty of time for Virginia Democrats to turn this one around.

    •  "Turn it around"? (1+ / 0-)

      It's too early for therre to be anything to "turn around." Boy, for a second there, I thought i was reading another one of those hundreds of "Obama just lost the election" diaries we saw here last year. Or that maybe UpstateDoom has a doppleganger. Oh woe! Woe! We are always doomed! Republicans always do everything right and Democrats always do everything  wrong, which is why we will NEVER win the presidency or take control of congress again. Oh woe!

      Rob Portman: He sent your job to China.

      by anastasia p on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 09:48:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Doesn't Virginia have a tradition of (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    voting for whichever gubernatorial candidate is in the opposing party of the President? Sort of a way to balance things out.  IIRC, Robb and Wilder won when Reagan or Bush Sr. was President; Allen Jr. and Gilmore won when Clinton was President; Marc Warner and Kaine won when Bush Jr. was President.  If McDonnell wins this year, it wouldn't be a shocking upset.

    Barack Obama in the Oval Office. There's a black man who knows his place.

    by Greasy Grant on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 09:30:57 AM PDT

  •  NC Governor's race (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Randall Sherman, cville townie, etbnc

    I was in North Carolina in Aug-Sep-Oct before the election.  There was a HUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE sign in Greenville, NC for McCrory (R).  I did not see a single sign, or anything for Bev Perdue (D).  Sure, she ran ads, but there was nothing on the streets.

    Perdue ended up winning.

    Basically, the key to winning a statewide race is to make a few trips to where you know you are going to lose, anyway, and ramp up efforts in the areas that will win you the race.
    For example, in PA (my home state), to win a PA statewide race as a democrat you do your stuff in Philadelphia and Allegheny (Pittsburgh) counties, then you ramp up efforts in Bucks, Montgomery, Delaware, and Chester counties as the five county Philadelphia tri-state area commands more than a third of the PA electorate.
    On a side you visit Lackwanna, Erie, Lehigh and a couple other big ones, but you rarely ever spend time in the other 60 some PA counties.

  •  Feeling your pain (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ScienceMom, cville townie, etbnc

    I went to the Deeds website to order a bumpersticker ($2) but when I got to the checkout screen I found out that the USPS first class postage for the one sticker was $4.72.  I think I see the problem.

  •  Stategy (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I have worked on numerous Democratic political campaigns throughout Virginia, including a statewide race. Usually the Dems only target Northern Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and to some extent the Roanoke area. I live near Winchester and its extremely difficult getting candidates and materials out this way. The Fairfax and Loudoun Dems use their clout and get much of the campaign resources diverted to them.

  •  Campaigns and volunteers hate signs (2+ / 0-)

    I remember this from the recent election and primary seasons. The people actually working on getting their person elected despise yard signs with a passion. They don't vote, are unlikely to change the minds of anyone who does vote, are money sinks, and answering requests for them takes away time from doing actual useful stuff.

    That they aren't even responding to requests is clearly not a good sign though (so to speak).

    "Don't believe it when they tell me there ain't no cure - the rich stay healthy, the sick stay poor." - God Pt. 2

    by Purplepeople on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 09:42:50 AM PDT

  •  In Arlington and no signs (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    A Siegel, cville townie

    for Deeds although I see plenty for McDonnell.  Signs do not vote but they do offer a chance to open the conversation with neighbors.  For those on the fence voters... and there are many in conservative VA ....the perception that a candidate is well supported could very well make a difference.  

    Reinstitute the Fairness Doctrine

    by ScienceMom on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 09:43:53 AM PDT

  •  Well I've seen some ... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cville townie

    all of them signs left over from the primary that weren't cleaned up.  (And, there are still Signer signs up ...)

  •  You thought of maybe volunteering? (2+ / 0-)

    Just sayin'.... ;)

    •  I do (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      henry porter

      All the time, for every Democratic event in a six-county area; phone canvassing; door-to-door canvassing; the works.

      •  I wouldn't have it any other way :) (0+ / 0-)

        It's really frustrating when the managers don't listen to the foot soldiers.  You'd think a scouting report might be worth something.  I agree with your assessment.  During the last election cycle, I was quite pleased to see a lot of PROMINENTLY displayed Obama signage in Rappahanock County.  That's when I knew we could win VA.

        This silence is a bit disconcerting.  I don't think they can bank on Deeds' name recognition alone.  That would be suicide.

        I also disagree with those who think signage doesn't matter.  Of course it does... not to change minds, but to let folks know they are not alone.  Or to let the opposition know there is competition.

  •  this just tweeted (3+ / 0-)

    By NotLarrySabato:

    I'm hearing 25,000 Creigh Deeds for Governor Bumper Stickers are being thrown out because THEY FORGOT AN AUTHORIZATION LINE.

  •  They will promise us the moon (0+ / 0-)

    and in Wise County we get a moonscape.

    And 3rd world health care.

    There will only be change when those unaffected are as outraged as those who are.

    by quidam56 on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 10:06:56 AM PDT

  •  GOTV (0+ / 0-)

    That's the bottom line in Virginia and New Jersey. If McDonnell or Christie were in the same mould as Charlie Crist, fair enough. Corzine's the incumbent, so it's more difficult for him. But Deeds needs to pick it up, he needs to run a perect campiagn. Deeds was trailing by a fair margin during the Dem primary yet eventually won comfortably. No matter what, at best, this is gonna be tight race. Like I said, Deeds has to pick it up.

    Everything the Man of Steele touches turns to Kryptonite.

    by PorridgeGun on Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 10:07:47 AM PDT

  •  Focus on GOTV (0+ / 0-)

    This is a standard complaint in campaigns.  I've worked on numerous campaigns and can't tell you how many times I've heard that the campaign is screwed up because the other side has more yard signs.  

    Frankly, most organizers wish yard signs didn't exist.  They take time and energy away from valuable voter contact efforts.  

    In Virginia, the focus should be on turning out Obama voters who may not vote this time.  In particular, I think that voters under 30 and African-American voters would be good communities to reach out to.  

    Instead of asking for signs, why not offer to volunteer?  

  •  Democrat's Surrender (0+ / 0-)

    I am in Southwest VA, the very tip and I have not seen signs for either McDonnell or Deeds which is saying something because these people kept their signs in their yards long after the Presidential campaign was over.  Deeds and McDonnell had been airing ad's on television but now both sides have stopped.  Maybe they are both suffering from a shortness of money, who knows.  I do know that even though Deeds has been to Southwest VA during the primaries he hasn't returned to my knowledge since then (and I mean coming past Abingdon).  It does seem that the other day I had read that Deeds had turned down an opportunity to come to Southwest Virginia when the President was going to show up and I thought it was strange that Obama didn’t even mention him.  It would be interesting to see if money was the cause of all their woes or if something else was going on behind the scenes.  

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