Election Results

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This is an off-the-top-of-the-head report based on my observations of tonight's results, meaning, no links or final stats. Here's a very general Post report.

Here is the Post's running results page.

Our two Republican Loudoun supervisors who took the strongest positions on local immigration enforcement, who stuck their necks out the furthest and also took the most heat for it - Lori Waters and Eugene Delgaudio - won.

They are also the supervisors in whose districts Help Save Loudoun PAC had the heaviest coverage with the lit drop project. In Sterling and Ashburn, the citizens spoke.

The rest of the Republican board candidates, if the numbers hold, got their asses handed to them.

Not a great year to have an "R" next to your name.

I think the growth issue and general Republican fatigue were major obstacles for these candidates to overcome.

In the Sheriff's race, Steve Simpson won reelection, which shows the undeniable problem posed when the party departs from its candidates. Greg Ahlemann won the nomination in June, and a powerful segment of the party swiftly went to work for the losing candidate who ran as an independent. Three months after the Convention, the party did run a full page newspaper ad supporting Greg Ahlemann and Lori Waters - the candidates beset by newly "Independent" challengers. It might have been helpful if the party had acted sooner. A united Republican party could have produced a victorious Republican Sheriff.

Patricia Phillips lost the Senate race, apparently by about 5,000 votes - a significant margin. Patricia did not run on the immigration enforcement issue in the general election - the issue which won her the primary. I am going to suggest running to the middle on this issue was not a winning strategy.

I think these two races provided an opportunity for Northern Virginia residents to demonstrate their desire for more local immigration enforcement. There were a number of issues in play, however, with both of these contests. The Sheriff race, in particular, evolved into a rabbit's warren of side issues. Greg Ahlemann truly had a mountain to climb to win this election.

Delegate Bob Marshall and Senator-elect Jill Holtzman Vogel won their races, and these were two of the top immigration enforcement candidates for the next session in Richmond. These are two more huge victories.

I don't have results on any of the other Richmond contests.

It appears the GOP lost the Virginia Senate, which is not a great development. On the other hand, the GOP-controlled Virginia Senate in 2007 managed to kill almost every good immigration-enforcement focused bill that passed the House of Delegates last session. So, it's not entirely evident how the next Senate could necessarily be worse with the Dems controlling.

More to come.

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42 Comments

Sanity said:

I've heard apologists before, but you're ridiculous. Immigration was a non-issue: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/story/2007/11/07/ST2007110700119.html?hpid=topnews

Lori could have come out in favor of illegal immigrants and still won because of the support she got from moderate Dems, and Delgaudio (much as I dislike the guy) sucks up to his constituents daily. Focusing on immigration probably hurt him more than helped.

The "immigration" sheriff candidate finished last, we went from 6 repubs to 5 dems, and the dems are perfectly happy with 8 out of 9. And you're still saying illegal immigration was a key issue? Yeah, right. Anger and hate got crushed.

Cathymac said:

Sanity, Please explain the PWC elections - your theory does not hold. Gerry Connolly in FFX has his arms open and Loudoun's election results put us in a very precarious position. This issue is not dead.

jacob said:

Sanity,

Hate and anger? Can you steer clear of the name calling? You supposition is a red herring to boot. Illegal immigration is a law and order issue, and a corruption issue. Please note the following:
http://washingtontimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071106/NATION/111050098/1001

77% of voters are against illegals getting documentation, does that mean 77% of voters hate? Hardly.

Enjoy your victory. As a member of the stupid party, I can say definitively that your side whipped us this election cycle because of our own hubris. Simpson, who lost the primary, received more support from party rank and file than did Phillips and Stanton. Greg got blindsided by members of his own party. This sort of undisciplined behavior is going to tear the Loudoun Co. Republicans apart, and frankly we deserve it.

In 2002 the electorate chose real Republicans over Democrats who talked like Republicans. In this election the opposite occurred with predictable results.

Sanity said:

As I said before, there's three parties: Dems, Repubs, and RWNB's. The BOS is now 5-3-1, as opposed to 1-5-3. (I'm giving Clem and Tulloch a break.)

Bottom line is that most of the U.S., and Loudoun County specifically, is fed up with the RWNB philosophy. It's all about governing by fear and feeding your fat cat friends, and not about solving real problems. It's late, but the electorate is figured that out now.

It's not about "impure" republicans, that if they had only drank more Kool-Aid, you wouldn't be in this situation. Greg got crushed not because his "own" party "abandoned" him, but because his one-issue RWNB campaign, focusing on anger, hate, and fear, just doesn't play any more.

The best thing the LCRC could do is blow itself up, and marginalize those who you think of as "good" republicans. As long as they don't, you're toast.

Now, all that being said, if the LCDC gets cocky and starts acting like the LCRC, full of pledges and exclusion, then the same thing will happen to them. But, as long as they focus on governing and not activism, they'll keep on rollin'.

Jonathan said:

Joe,

I would like to see your analysis of the outcome of the Sheriff's race.

Jack said:

That's WAY too funny, Jonathan!! The preview says, "Joe, I would like to see your anal"!!

rana said:

It seems to me the Post is wrong. Strong local measures against illegal immigrants was a winning issue in PWC for the Republicans. But in Loudan the Democrats cleaned up. Probably its not as important of an issue in Loudan county as are county services, slow growth etc. By the way I personally don't like the policies proposed by the local enforcement crowd and I think there are anti-hispanic (legal or illegal) sentiments involved. But it is a winning issue in PWC. Here in comfortable Arlington, it would be a big loser.

ACTivist said:

Sanity?
"But, as long as they focus on governing and not activism, they'll keep on rollin'.

You mean if they START focusing on governing and get away from activism. Remember the last nationals where people wanted a change from the GOP? The Dems made promises and pledges then. What have they done since that time? NOTHING! The only thing they have been good at is bashing republicans (conservative, right-wing or otherwise) and in-fighting. Yeah, you guys got an agenda for governing alright. Hope these "local" issues don't go by the wayside just because a winning candidate didn't use them. Because when it becomes too late to act, it will be just that; TOO LATE! I don't want to suffer lunatics just so that I have a scapegoat. I want to stop lunatics so that they don't have power or control over me.

ACTivist said:

Joe,
I want to just thank you, HSL and those others that have worked so hard in trying to get those issues of concern to the people's notice. I believe people will see down the road that "illegals" are very much "tied in to" the growth, roads and services issues. You have down wonderful things and worked endless waking hours and I commend you. I will be glad to get my neighbor back for small talk and a glass of wine. You did your best and I'm sure that your efforts will prove out to not have been in vain.

Linda B said:

Jonathan, you didn't ask, but I'll give you a few of my thoughts anyway:

(1) Greg had A LOT going against him, including (a) the concerns re: his experience level; (b) Simpson's name recognition; (c) questions surrounding his father; (d) the Post's decision to run the 10-month-past-due piece on the tickets and to ignore info and documentation on more serious issues surrounding his opponent one week before the election; (e) the fact that the support of a lot of "good ole' boys" in the party was thrown to Simpson; and (f) the fact that both of his opponents seemed to be running against him and leaving each other alone for the most part. We had hoped the sentiment for immigration enforcement could overcome all of that but it obviously did not, at least not in the numbers we needed.

(2) The fact that George got only 34% of the vote in races that otherwise went largely Democratic (well, except Lori's and Eugene's ... but even Eugene's was close) tells me that people very much disagree with his statement that it was a mistake to close the Herndon Day Labor Center, and also that they do not want the principles guiding Fairfax law enforcement to creep into Loudoun.

Cathymac said:

Linda B - I agree, "34%" is hardly a battlecry. Let's remember, Simpson is the one that put Ahelmann in the position to lose, if it had been a 2 way race we'd have a different Sheriff elect.

Unfortunately, the big losers in the Loudoun Sheriff's race are the Deputies and staff on the department. Enduring 4 more years of Simpson will be quite a test for them and good deputies will be lost along the way.

G.Stone said:

Let's do a litttle math here sports fans:

As correctly oulined by Linda B it is now a matter of math.

If Simpson stays home as he had pledged, Greg Ahlemann is the next sheriff. George did not even carry all the Dems based on all of the vote percentages in comparable races . Take Simpsons 38.7 % and give 1/3 to George which is overly generous and he loses. My guess is George ends up with 43 to 47 % Tops. Worst case scenario Ahlemann ends up with 53% in a two way race.

Remember one very important issue, Simpson was shamed into adopting the Ahlemann line on illegals. By the end of the campaign their two positions are very close. Those are Ahlemann voters if Simpson is absent from the race.

This race is the biggest bummer of the whole election.

Sanity said:

Linda B.,

So the fact that Ahlemann (1) promised to restore integrity by ripping up tickets for his buddies, (2) tried to pretend he doesn't have extreme RNWB views as evidenced by his tattoo, and (3) was a one-issue candidate on an issue that had almost no affect on any other Loudoun race, has nothing to do with your analysis?

You guys just don't get it that there are Repubs and there are RWNB's and THEY DON'T VOTE THE SAME WAY. No way does Ahlemann get 2/3 of the Simpson votes. Regular repubs were not voting for Ahlemann, just the RWNB's, because Ahlemann is a classic RWNB. The RWNB backlash continues to grow. Simpson also got a lot of Dem crossover, not because they liked him, necessarily, but because they were voting against Ahlemann. Ahlemann would have gotten no crossover whether Simpson was in the race or not.

Instead of blaming Ahlemann's loss on his father, reasonable republicans, and the Washington Post, you need to admit that he was an unlikely candidate, too extreme for most people, and next time, think about putting forward someone more moderate.

I'm trying to help you guys and you're just denying reality. Well, frankly, that's ok with me. It would scare me if you (I mean the RWNB's) started coming up with reasonable candidates. They might win.

RWN said:

Sanity - if you're logic was true, we would be saying former Senator Ken Cuccinelli today. He's as conservative as they come, and in a year when he's running into the wind, he still is victorious is a testament to his skills as a politician and the voters desire to have a genuine person in office.

Lori Waters. Eugene Delgaudio. Bob Marshall. Tom Rust. Jackson Miller. Jeff Frederick. Ken Cuccinelli. Jill Holtzman Vogel.

All made prominent public statements embracing local immigration enforcement efforts; all won. Delgaudio despite the ties to developers and heavy opposition campaign. House and Senate candidates despite serious money spent to take them down (particularly in Cuccinelli's case).

Lori had the double-benefit of being on the right side of the growth issue and appropriately she smoked her opposition.

With party support, Ahlemann easily would have been our next Sheriff. Without that support and with the "complicating" issues that, totally unnecessarily, brought the inquisitive press and Equality Loudoun-type folks into the picture, he had a very tough road. Why in the world his dad needed to create that controversy about pastors not being sufficiently anti-homosexual is a complete mystery to me. Truly weird PR several months out from an election. With a LOT of money Greg might have been able to overcome everything, but unfortunately he had paltry funds by the final month, just when Simpson mailings were going into full gear.

There was a Republican bloc that, it turns out, was with Steve Simpson from the moment he announced as an independent. Interesting party dynamics, that. It will be interesting to see where this party ends up.

On the plus side, Steve Simpson was forced into taking virtually every single immigration enforcement position Greg Ahlemann espoused. Steve Simpson is now on record as being THE immigration enforcement Sheriff. It's a ton better than we would have gotten from Mike George - believe me. We do need to hold Mr. Simpson to that.

Jack said:

I know I'm going to tick off a lot of my allies here, but for all the complaining about Simpson's running as an independent (and winning) after losing the primary, I seem to recall a lot of people were happy when Lieberman did it.

jacob said:

InSanity,
I give up, what does RNWB stand for? Or RWNB for that matter.

Linda B said:

Sanity, A vote for George would have been a vote against Ahlemann as well, so I'm not sure where you were trying to go with that.

You are right that Greg's opponents and certain activist groups did their best to portray him as the nut job candidate. I know him and he is not. He was the rule-of-law candidate. It is Loudoun's loss that he will not be our new sheriff.

MARJORIE said:

IT'S A SAD DAY IN LOUDOUN COUNTY, SAD THAT STEVE SIMPSON ONCE AGAIN PREVAILED BY HIS FACE AND NOT LEADERSHIP.

BUT WHAT MAKES IT SADDER IS THAT THOSE LOUDOUN RESIDENTS WHO COULD HAVE VOTED CHOOSE NOT TO. TO THOSE PEOPLE I SAY, SHAME ON YOU. YOU COULD HAVE MADE A DIFFERENCE TO THE WELL BEING OF LOUDOUN COUNTY.

AND CATHYMAC:

YOU ARE SO VERY CORRECT IN YOUR STATEMENT OF THE PERSONEL OF THE SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT. NOT ONLY A TEST OF ENDURANCE FOR THE DEPUTY'S AND STAFF, BUT FOR THE CITIZENS OF THE COUNTY.

Linda B said:

Jack, Did Lieberman sign a pledge saying he would support the winner? Did he stand up and concede via acclamation that he had lost the nomination and would therefore support the winner? Did he turn around the next day and break his word?

(Maybe he did do all those things, I honestly don't remember. If he did, then shame on him.)

Anyway, the election is over. It is time to move past this. Though Joe is right, we do need to hold Simpson to the promises he made to get elected.

Robin said:

"Hate and anger? Can you steer clear of the name calling? "

Are you kidding me? For quite some time on this blog Democrats have been vilified in vile terms and now you say steer clear? That's like the neighborhood bully running home to mommy after the shy kid learns self-defense.

jacob said:

Robin,
1. I usually am able to wrangle a semi civil conversation with InSanity
2. You are another story.
3. many of the local libs usually come out guns blazing calling the locals bigots, racists etc. and then cry liek little girls when you throw it back at them
4. mind your own business
5. so blow it you ear, you twit

Jack said:

Linda:

Politician. Moving lips. 'Nuff said.

kevin said:

Jacob:

Name-caller!
(heh heh)

Ladies and gentlemen,

If you note, I do not call people names, and when I have seen it here or elsewhere I state it is wrong.

Jonathan said:

Linda B,

Thanks for the analysis.

Joe,

Are you now trying to distance yourself for all the anti-gay bashing on your blog?

"Why in the world his dad needed to create that controversy about pastors not being sufficiently anti-homosexual is a complete mystery to me."

Har!

Jack,

Sometimes I wonder...

jacob said:

Kevin,
you wound me sir ;-)

jacob said:

Jonathon,
"Are you now trying to distance yourself for all the anti-gay bashing on your blog?"
What anti-gay bashing?

Greg Ahlemann said:

Thank you to HSL for all the support during this campaign. It was truly a "grass roots" effort as my campaign did not have the money to do many things. More importantly, I believe I had many challenges to try to overcome. I've never seen a sheriff candidate make the front page of the post over an issue that was reported in January. Unfortunately, people read print as fact. The Post reporter was given information showing Simpson lied about about ticket fixing but refused to print it. I guess I should be honored that Larouche, the Post and other liberal media spent much focus on me. Whether people agreed with me or not, I refused to lie as was done by other candidates. When I resigned to run for office, I made a promise to God to give him the glory, win or lose. I would not change anything I did, said or ran on. Unfortunately, many deputies have contacted me and are deeply saddened as the motto among the rank and file was "anyone but Simpson". This will not contribute to a better dept.

Politics is ugly. There are many good people but alot who are not. I refused to compromise or make any inner party deals to further my election chances. I spoke out against what I believed was wrong and dealt with the consequences. I do not believe the ends justify the means. I stand by my faith in God as more important than winning the election.

I'm sorry for my former co-workers. I'm sorry for the residents of Loudoun on the immigration issue. I assure you the problem will be signicifantly worse 4 years from now, ICE agreement or not, under the current administration. There is no WILL to do anything about it. As most know, I've never worried about being politically correct. I don't have the time or the stomache for those who worry about that. This is one reason I have great respect for Patricia Phillips. Like myself, she never changed her message according to her audience. I find that incredibly admirable. Whether or not candidates like her can get elected, I don't know. However, I respect her for standing for her beliefs. I missed that in many candidates, who wavered depending on political winds. Thanks again to HSL for stepping up while others throw up their hands and say "it can't be done."

I just want to give a very huge "thank you" to Joe and all the volunteers who worked so hard for Eugene..

Thanks to all your efforts Eugene not only won a district that elected Jim Webb, Tim Kaine, Leslie Byrne, Creigh Deeds and Mark Herring twice, he won every precinct, which he did not do last time. He even won West's home precinct by more votes than he won it last time.

You, your hard work and your dedication made Eugene's victory possible, despite the fact he was facing a tougher opponent in climate that could not have been much worse.

Thank you! You guys are amazing.

David said:

Greg, I admire your willingness to stand up for what you believe, regardless of the consequences.

I think, for the most part, people took an "if it ain't broke" approach to the Sheriff race, and the third or so of the electorate that is independent didn't see a compelling enough reason to fire Simpson.

As for Phillips, unfortunately she does change her message according to the audience; we've documented that. The whopper that she told about John Andrews the day before the primary was a perfect example. She attacked him for allegedly leading the school board to adopt a policy on theatrical presentations that was too permissive, and even implied that Equality Loudoun had endorsed him because of it. The truth is that we did *not* support that policy, and she told the Washington Post that she was "very pleased" with it. She can't have it both ways and be remotely credible. The voters saw through it, and I don't think the immigration issue had anything to do with it. That would not have helped her.

As Jack said: Politician, lips moving. I don't think that's true of all of them, but in this case it is.

Sanity said:

Right-Wing Nut-Ball.

You guys are incorrigible. You got whupped, but that doesn't seem to be engendering the right kind of self-reflection that will make the next election easier for you.

Northern Virginia is becoming reasonable. Democrats here are moderate Republicans in California. The NoVA Republican party will certainly survive, but to continue to flourish, it needs to become reasonable.

Most of you are not reasonable. You have extreme right-wing views that are far out of the new, NoVA mainstream. Some of your views (and I'm thinking of, say, Jack's views on gun proliferation) are like me advocating "retroactive abortion rights up to the age of 18" or "nationalizing all property".

Obviously, those two ideas are ludicrous and should be summarily dismissed. Many of your ideas are also being summarily dismissed by the voters.

Don't confuse election of candidates that happen to share pale versions of your views with the voters' endorsement of those views. Voters (in the aggregate) vote the entire package. I don't agree with 100% of Burk's or Burton's or Kurtz's views, but prefer them as "packages" over their opponents.

Greg's main problem was that he threw his entire lot behind a single issue that simply didn't resonate with the voters as well he had hoped. He gambled, he lost.

Lesson: Don't put up candidates, especially non-incumbents, that focus practically their entire campaign on a single extreme right-wing issue. They'll likely lose. I certainly don't advocate the Democrats doing that either. If they do, they'll lose too.

ACTivist said:

Sanity?
Yeh, we need your advice.
Greg's "single" issue (illegal aliens) as well as integrity, honesty, gangs, were all "stick-your-neck-out" topics to those of a single focus-growth. The sheriff's dept IS broke and growth doesn't enter into law. Simpson hasn't done anything with the illegal issue and over-crowding, multi-family homes, gangs, trash, lewd behavior and a non-community involvement attitude comes from that LEGAL side. The supervisors may be the enactment side but the sheriff's dept. is the ENFORCEMENT side and they are not doing that. Nor does it seem now that they will get started.
Single minded people voted on single issues. So did you when you said you didn't like the complete package but you found that package better than the opponents. You looked at issues YOU were interested in.
It's easy to pick on congestion and developement. These 2 things are DIRECTLY involved with immigration and illegal aliens. And there are many legit immigrants helping the illegals. Greg had the right platform.

ACTivist said:

David,
"I think, for the most part, people took an "if it ain't broke" approach to the Sheriff race, and the third or so of the electorate that is independent didn't see a compelling enough reason to fire Simpson."

That is the problem-you DON'T think. Your tirade about Greg's tattoo and the deal with the meeting at the church where you went on and on about Greg promoting his candidacy had little to do with anything. Why anyone listens to you is beyond me but when they do, not unlike the Washington Post, good people suffer from it. I don't need to see your "fatherly" wisdom or arrogance. They are both the same to me.

David said:

"Your tirade about Greg's tattoo.."

What "tirade" would that be? The one in which I invited him to our blog to explain what the tattoo actually is and what it means to him?

I don't know why anyone listens to me, either - maybe you should ask them. If you have a better explanation for the outcome of the Sheriff race, let's hear it. The guy I supported didn't win either, by the way.

According to the person doing exit polls on the issues that brought people out to vote, immigration was very low on the list.

jacob said:

InSanity,
Unfettered access to firearms is a right that is protected in the second amendment. Restrictions on the ownership of firearms based upon residency is a very recent development, and is currently being challenged in the DC court.

Abortion in the 75th trimester is murder. As is abortion in the 2nd trimester second. Your comparison is ludicrous. Would you like to try again?

BTW, thank you for the explanation of RWNB, coming form an AACPL I will take it as a compliment.

G.Stone said:

Sanity :
Were you here for this past election or in a coma ?

All :Where in the hell did we get this guy and why are we talking to him ?

Greg A: It was late on election night and we did not get a chance to say good bye to the both of you. I know you are glad it is over. It is a lot of work and you are to be commended for your efforts. We all know ( well everyone except Sanity ) why we lost this race. I say we because all of us at HSL felt such a part of your campaign. It started out as a common cause and grew to be something much bigger. You did the right thing, you can sleep well for a very long time.
You are a patriot, friend and a good man.

G.Stone said:

David:

Let's stop playing games on the tattoo. You know as well as I do just keeping the issue alive is all that you were looking to do. You latched on to the tattoo and kept in the ink as along as possible. You went as far as too ask the other candidates ( read chance to put a negative spin )as too their opinions on his tattoo.

Lets ask this question- What does their opinion of Gregs Tattoo have to do with how they would or would not run the Sheriff's dept ? It does not, but as we all know that was not the point. The point of the tattoo was to negatively effect the Ahlemann campaign. If simply raising the issue of the tattoo and asking questions as too its possible meaning, the seeds of doubt were placed. Mission accomplished.
So please save us the, I was asking a question speech.

Now, I know we are supposed to play nice. Greg A. was a heck of a lot nicer to you than I might have been. My response to you on the question of my tattoo might have been, none of your buisness or pound sand.

Stop looking for reasons to be offended.

David said:

Wow, Greg S. Why do you want to give me so much power?

First of all, I did not "raise the issue" of the tattoo. I didn't know about it until someone left a comment on our blog, and then I also saw it on Leesburg Today, etc. Some pertinent facts you may wish to keep in mind:

*Greg approached us at the 4th of July parade to show us his tattoo.
*Greg contacted us about the comment on our blog coming up on Google.
*Greg called a press conference to talk about his tattoo, a press conference that was advertised on this blog.

I would really like to know, how do you think I could have treated Greg more fairly than I did? It's not as if I could have kept other people from talking about it. When people (quite a few of them, btw) asked me if the rumors were true, I told them about Greg showing it to us, and what he said. When he complained about the comment on our blog and pointed out that it was coming up on Google, I invited him to do an interview. Sure, I asked the other candidates about it - it was an issue in the campaign by that point, like it or not. Greg dealt with that in the best way that he could, and he gained my respect. You, I gather, would have not done the same.

Again, the voters obviously didn't see a good enough reason to replace Simpson, and immigration was just not a major issue driving them to the polls. I understand that you're disappointed in the outcome, but gee, so am I. Stop looking in the wrong places for someone to blame.

Jack said:

Stone, I doubt any of the half-dozen readers over whom David has any influence were going to vote for Ahlemann anyway.

ACTivist said:

jacob,
It is unfair of you and others to give us these initials/acronyms without explanation. What is AACPL?
And Brian, is it considered "fair-play" to namecall using code? I would think that the thought would be the same as the act.

G.Stone said:

David:
My statements spoke more to your intent, not the scope of your influence. I would agree that a spokeman for the Pink Lobby had little or no effect on the outcome. I was speaking to motive, thats all.

Had it been me, I simply would have ignored you. That in and of itself would have put your motivations as well as content in context.

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