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The Battle for Virginia

This is interesting: Bill Turque and Anne E. Kornblut report that the Old Dominion has become a major battleground for Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama in the Democratic Party's select-a-nominee process.

Clinton, they say, will concentrate on Northern Virginia's outer suburbs and the economically depressed southwest section of the state. That section, which has significant unemployment, is largely contained within the "Fighting 9th" congressional district and in years past has often been rigorously Democratic.

Another interesting thing is that this article has attracted a different set of Readers Who Comment (RWC) than the ones who predictably jump in on almost all national political stories. This suggests (I have no data to support this contention) that Virginians are paying an unusual amount of attention to a primary election. That fact that Clinton and Obama are essentially tied for the lead in the national nomination race obviously heightens the interest.

Our RWC spend most of the comment string either leading cheers for the candidate of their choice or attacking the other, and often mentioning race. Issues are almost invisible in this string.

Virginia's primary next Tuesday is one-third of the so-called "Potomac Primary," since Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia will vote on the same day.

theduke89, one of the first to file, said that Clinton's plan to concentrate on Northern Virginia suburbs and Southwest Virginia means "...There's that race thing rearing its ugly head again. Clinton's going to exploit discontent among white working class voters and use it against a black candidate? I thought only Republicans did that."

But LAGCII said, "Hillary will NOT carry the commonwealth... And it's not a race thing as some would have you believe... Remember "Virginians" voted for the nation's first African-American this century for Governor in 1989 the Honorable Doug Wilder, a Democrat... "

milou1 wrote, "When I think of the two democratic candidates several adjectives come to mind: for the first candidate...sordid...duplicitous...inflexible. For the second candidate...solid transparency...integrity...flexibility. I think the voters of Virginia will know which candidate to vote for. Thank you."

NikkiP200 said, "...I live in Northern VA, I'm black and I am definitely middle class. You are wrong, Obama is not the candidate for black middle and upper class. I will not be voting for Obama. It takes more than being black like me to get my vote and it is insulting that people keep saying black people will vote for Obama just because he's black..."

And treetopflyer responded, "...While I respect your decision to vote against Obama, I have to disagree with it. It calls to mind what another black man said 25 years ago in the movie Officer and a Gentleman... I hear Lou Gossett as the tough drill sergeant lecturing Richard Gere as the recruit: "It's about CHARACTER!" That's what Obama has, and Hillary hasn't..."

maq1 wrote, "... Some would argue its Hillary's turn, but the Presidency is not a hereditary title, so its no one's turn. Its time to pick the best person for the country. We need a person like Obama now more than ever..."

But CommonSense12 said, "...The candidate I am vigorously supporting is Hillary Rodham Clinton... I feel she is most prepared, most experienced, has the best plans with good specifics... and is ready to bring in the best experienced team (in my opinion) with her..."

dsrobins predicted that "...Hillary will appeal... in the hills and back woods of rural Virginia, but she will lose bigtime to Obama in northern Virginia where those who still work for the government know the deep sewage depths to which America's government has sunk during the past two administrations. Obama will set his victory upon firm stone and concrete foundations when Virginia, Maryland and the District vote."

Rose4 said, "I have been shocked and dismayed by the negative coverage Senator Clinton has received from various commentators. She is well-qualified, calm, decisive, and prepared--everything Senator Obama is not. I can only conclude there is an enormous level of unconscious sexism that needs to be exposed. Many of us women, particularly of a certain age, see it clearly. We must end it now!"

But ahashburn, quoting Rose 4's assertion that Clinton is well-qualified, asked, "Based upon what? What elective office did she hold before the Senate? Being Mrs. Bill Clinton does not automatically qualify one to be president."

DeborahShapseMD said, "I don't know where the Post gets these idiots. Clinton should win the VA primary hands down - and by at least 300 thousand votes."

Maddogg asked "Apart from gender why would anyone vote for Clinton. If she were to be elected we'd return to investigations of the Clinton's from day one. It would be a rerun of Lewinsky, Filegate, and Whitewater and nothing would get accomplished."

Just in case we had forgotten about one issue that is high in all the polls, BlueDogDemocrat said, "I am black and live in the District of Columbia. I am not voting for either Obama or Clinton, because they both support giving amnesty and citizenship to illegal aliens. Illegal immigration is the most important issue to me, I live in this madness daily..."

And we'll close with lorddunsmore, who wrote in support of the desire of every political journalist, saying, "I hope it goes to a brokered convention, then the American people can really see how "democratic" the Dems really are, contray to their own PR."

All comments on the Virginia story are here.

By Doug Feaver  |  February 7, 2008; 9:45 AM ET
Categories:  Presidential Politics  
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Posted by: xktyuap9zd | February 14, 2008 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Records of these two candidates should be scrutinized in order to make an informed decision. Sooo tired of Clinton spin and the notion that Obama has no platform. We live in the info age, go to his website to find his position, but for those who want to become educated here are a few facts.

Senator Clinton, who has served only one full term (6yrs.), and another year campaigning, has managed to author and pass into law, (20) twenty pieces of legislation in her first six years.
These bills can be found on the website of the Library of Congress (, but to save you trouble, I'll post them here for you.
1. Establish the Kate Mullany National Historic Site.
2. Support the goals and ideals of Better Hearing and Speech Month.
3. Recognize the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
4. Name courthouse after Thurgood Marshall.
5. Name courthouse after James L. Watson.
6. Name post office after Jonn A. O'Shea.
7. Designate Aug. 7, 2003, as National Purple Heart Recognition Day.
8. Support the goals and ideals of National Purple Heart Recognition Day.
9. Honor the life and legacy of Alexander Hamilton on the bicentennial of his death.
10. Congratulate the Syracuse Univ. Orange Men's Lacrosse Team on winning the championship.
11. Congratulate the Le Moyne College Dolphins Men's Lacrosse Team on winning the championship.
12. Establish the 225th Anniversary of the American Revolution Commemorative Program.
13. Name post office after Sergeant Riayan A. Tejeda.
14. Honor Shirley Chisholm for her service to the nation and express condolences on her death.
15. Honor John J. Downing, Brian Fahey, and Harry Ford, firefighters who lost their lives on duty. Only five of Clinton's bills are, more substantive. 16. Extend period of unemployment assistance to victims of 9/11.
17. Pay for city projects in response to 9/11
18. Assist landmine victims in other countries.
19. Assist family caregivers in accessing affordable respite care.
20. Designate part of the National Forest System in Puerto Rico as protected in the wilderness preservation system.

There you have it, the fact's straight from the Senate Record.

Now, I would post those of Obama's, but the list is too substantive, so I'll mainly categorize.
During the first (8) eight years of his elected service he sponsored over 820 bills. He introduced
233 regarding healthcare reform,
125 on poverty and public assistance,
112 crime fighting bills,
97 economic bills,
60 human rights and anti-discrimination bills,
21 ethics reform bills,
15 gun control,
6 veterans affairs and many others.

His first year in the U.S. Senate, he authored 152 bills and co-sponsored another 427. These inculded
**the Coburn-Obama Government Transparency Act of 2006 (became law),
**The Lugar-Obama Nuclear Non-proliferation and Conventional Weapons Threat Reduction Act, (became law),
**The Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act, passed the Senate,
**The 2007 Government Ethics Bill, (became law),
**The Protection Against Excessive Executive Compensation Bill, (In committee), and many more.

In all since entering the U.S. Senate, Senator Obama has written 890 bills and co-sponsored another 1096. An impressive record, for someone who supposedly has no record according to the spin meisters and mindless twits.

Posted by: Chris Wadlington | February 11, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

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