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Connolly Makes It Official

Amy Gardner

Gerald E. Connolly, chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, formally announced his candidacy for Congress yesterday.

Connolly is seeking the Democratic nomination in the 11th Congressional District. He faces three opponents: former congresswoman and state senator Leslie L. Byrne, community activist Douglas J. Denneny and physical therapist Lori P. Alexander.

Connolly spoke to about 200 people at the Oakton library in central Fairfax County yesterday afternoon. He drew the support of every Democrat on the 10-member Board of Supervisors but one -- John W. Foust, the newly minted Dranesville District supervisor, who has said he will remain neutral in the race. At Connolly's side were the board's vice chairwoman, Sharon S. Bulova (D-Braddock), Penelope A. Gross (D-Mason), Catherine M. Hudgins (D-Hunter Mill), Gerald W. Hyland (D-Mount Vernon), Linda Q. Smyth (D-Providence) and Jeff C. McKay (D-Lee).

Connolly then moved onto Occoquan Town Hall in Prince William County, where he spoke in the evening to about 30 people and was also flanked by a bevy of local Democrats, including Occoquan Mayor Earnie Porta and Prince William County supervisors John D. Jenkins (D-Neabsco) and Frank J. Principi (D-Woodbridge).

Connolly talked about bringing to Congress the same "ethos" that has imbued his leadership in Fairfax County, where he took credit for the jurisdiction's ranking as one of the best-managed communities in the nation. He also talked about the economy, the federal workforce, health care, the environment, education and the Iraq war. He emphasized his experience working for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

"You see we have a lot of work to do in the next Congress," he said. "I am the only candidate who brings both extensive local government management and foreign policy experience to this race. I bring a passion for progressive values, and an ethic of getting things done."

By Amy Gardner  |  February 15, 2008; 8:27 AM ET
Categories:  Amy Gardner  
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People want results. People will vote Connolly to get things done.

Posted by: Run Gerry Run | February 15, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Where is he getting things done? I live in Fairfax and I haven't seen it. The streets aren't safer and the services have declined. Gerry clean up your own county before you go national!

Posted by: fact checker | February 15, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Connolly knows how to win elections. He has beat every republican he has ever run against.

That is clear record, fact checker.

Posted by: Connolly Wins Elections | February 16, 2008 9:24 AM | Report abuse

People will vote Connolly to get things done? That's barely more meaningful than an Obama speech.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 19, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Winning elections is a record? I don't vote for people to win elections, I vote for them to actually do something. It hardly ever happens though.

Posted by: Leaving Fairfax County | February 19, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Gerry Connolly has shown real leadership in his role as Fairfax County Board Chairman.

He is a proven environmental leader who championed the "Cool Counties" initiative and energy conservation measures to combat global warming.

Connolly is a strong supporter of providing necessary funding to maintain the quality of Fairfax County's world-class schools. He stood up to the Bush administration to demand full funding for the No Child Left Behand program.

Connolly is the leader of a county that gets national recognition for good management and has received multiple awards for many of the innovative programs he advocates.

Under Connolly's leadership, Fairfax County has continued to prosper and provide its citizens with quality services.

Connolly is a proven vote-getter because he backs his words up with positive actions. He gets things done. He will make a great congressman from the 11th District.

Posted by: Objective View | February 20, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

it would be nice if someone would do something other than cut and paste campaign talking points and then call themselves "objective". first, how about defending the "cool counties" initiative in light of the ice storm that disenfranchised most of northern virginia

Posted by: uck | February 20, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

I don't even live in the 11th, so I won't have the pleasure of voting against Connolly. He reminds me of a little rooster who crows in the morning and claims he makes the sun come up.

Posted by: striker | February 20, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Andy Hurst officially endorsed Gerry Connolly for congress.

Watch out, the Leslie "Ben Tribbet" Byrne blogger will start attacking Andy.

Posted by: More Connolly Endorsements | February 21, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

nobody cares

Posted by: Anonymous | February 22, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I don't live in the eleventh district but I do reside in Fairfax County, and I have been very impressed with Gerry Connolly's leadership, his energy, and his commitment to the job he holds. I believe that he is uniquely qualified to serve in the House of Representatives, and am sorry that I am unable to cast a vote on his behalf.

Posted by: A Fan | February 22, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

I've worked for the Fairfax County government for over 30 years and seen Board members come and go; some were excellent leaders and some were inept. I've had the opportunity to observe Gerry close up. It's my assessment that he's a true leader with the right stuff for US Congress. If he does get elected to the 11th District, there will be a lot of folks in Fairfax County government that miss him, especially his sense of humor.

Posted by: woody | February 23, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

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