I wrote this post on my personal blog about Virginia 4th Congressional District Candidate Elliott Fausz, but a similar point can be made for other grassroots candidates fighting uphill battles against well financed Republican opponents. Jack Trammel in the 7th, for instance.
Anyway, my OP is below.
Elliott Fausz, the Democratic candidate for Virginia's 4th District of U.S. Congress, was at the July meeting of the Suffolk Democratic Committee, and he said that he'd be a supporter of education initiatives, immigration reform, and the minimum wage. Then he took some questions.
A good portion of the questions, including one from me, were about his campaign. Elliott and his campaign manager Chika Anyadike, emphasized the need for a grass roots effort on the part of Democrats to get the word out. Someone asked how he's going to get enough money to combat Randy Forbes. Again, they answered "Grassroots effort." Someone asked what he was going to do if he doesn't get all that money. It reminded me of the scene from Armageddon where Stamper asks Truman, "What's your contingency plan?"
TRUMAN: Contingency plan?
STAMPER: Your backup plan. You gotta have some sort of back up plan, right?
TRUMAN: No. We don’t have a backup plan. This is it.
Folks -- We are the plan. I say this especially to Democrats who live in Virginia's 4th Congressional District but also to Democrats anywhere. There is no pot of money that Elliott Fausz can tap into to make up for anything less than a surprisingly enthusiastic grassroots movement. There will be no financial match to the heavy corporate funding that Randy Forbes will receive. There will be no comparable spending of air time to counter Randy Forbes's misleading attacks. Randy Forbes has the support of the wealthiest corporations in Virginia. Defense contractors have already given Forbes well over $100,000.00 for this election cycle alone. Fifteen thousand already from Huntington Ingalls ( And since corporations are people, how many people at Huntington Ingalls are happy to have the corporation they are a part of supporting Randy Forbes? A lot, I'm sure, but I bet not nearly all of them. Probably not most. ).
Virginia's fourth is a gerrymandered district that connects the rural and once rural regions between Richmond and Norfolk, and includes much of South Hampton roads which is heavily dependent on military contracts. But even those not in Virginia's 4th are effected by our politics. As the leader of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, Randy Forbes has been one of the most outspoken critics of one of the most important principles of the U.S. Constitution, which is the separation of church and state. Forbes has been a proponent of military spending and he says jobs depend on it, but opposes government spending on green initiatives, education, and infrastructure because government needs to get out of the way in order to create jobs. Forbes supports Jesus in federal government, tax cuts for the wealthy, unchecked military spending, and not much else.
In Armageddon, Truman eventually says to Stamper, "We're a little short on time. Will you help us?"
We're a little short on time, folks. Will you help? Whatever you can contribute to his campaign (or to the Suffolk Democratic Committee) will be a huge benefit. But I don't expect Fausz to raise even half as much as Forbes. Money will help, but canvassing and talking to your friends and neighbors will help more. Remind them that every year is an election year in Virginia and every election is important.
Elliott Grayson Fausz is a real leader and a true grassroots candidate who will support education, infrastructure, the minimum wage, and our military members without pandering to the huge military and financial firms that spend obscene amounts of money on Randy Forbes.
We are the plan. Elliott Fausz for U.S. Congress, Virginia's 4th Congressional District. fausz4congress.com