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Obama Will Open 20 Offices in Virginia

Tim Craig

Sen. Barack Obama's (D-Ill.) presidential campaign announced today it is opening 20 regional headquarters across Virginia, a potentially unprecedented move by a statewide candidate.

The offices, which are in addition to the 10 regional offices already being operated by the Virginia Democratic Party, will be scattered across the state, including two in Fairfax County and two in Southwest Virginia.

"A lot of these places may have never had a presidential campaign before," state Sen. John S. Edwards (D-Roanoke) said at an event announcing the new headquarters. "It shows (Obama) is investing in the Commonwealth and it is a bottom up, not a top down campaign. This is an intensive grassroots campaign."

The headquarters, which are being partially funded by the Democratic National Committee, will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. everyday until the election, starting Saturday, said Kevin Griffis, an Obama spokesman. He added that paid staff and volunteers will work in the offices to coordinate local efforts on behalf of Obama.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the presumptive Republican nominee for president, is opening regional offices in Fairfax, Fredericksburg, Richmond and Virginia Beach. Del. Christopher B. Saxman (R-Staunton), a co-chair of McCain's Virginia campaign, said Obama's efforts sound like a "tremendous waste of money."

"They could probably be a lot more effective with probably half that many," Saxman said. "It is being done to create this image of momentum and enthusiasm that frankly is just not out there."

But Griffis said Obama has already amassed a list of "tens of thousands" of potential volunteers who will need space from which to work.

The offices will be located in: Blacksburg, Bristol, Castlewood, Charlottesville, Danville, Fairfax City, Fairfax County (Southern), Hampton, Harrisonburg, Lynchburg, Martinsville,
Newport News, Norfolk, Petersburg, Richmond, Roanoke, Virginia Beach, Williamsburg, Winchester and Woodbridge.

By Tim Craig  |  July 16, 2008; 3:10 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama , Election 2008/President , John McCain , Tim Craig  
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Ok, ok, ok. You don't have to post this mess after every article.

Posted by: Susan | July 16, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Yes, please do not post such long and unnecessary replies. The thrust of the article was a discussion of Obama's organizing efforts in Virginia. I'm intrigued, at least. His GOTV operation in February more than did the job -- it will be interesting to see what lessons the campaign has learned from that and other contests.
Sometimes I feel like John McCain might have had the unlucky draw in a primary. Barack has been "the story" for so long that it's hard to change the press coverage. It's not always adoring, but this election is entirely about Barack Obama. McCain can't seem to get any attention no matter WHAT he says.

Posted by: James Hare | July 16, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

its now deleted

Posted by: Anonymous | July 16, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Really? All the McCain camp can do is criticize how Obama allocates his own campaign's resources? Pretty lame, guys. Maybe McCain has given up on Virginia?

Posted by: William J. | July 16, 2008 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Unless they are in NoVa or Virgina Beach, that makes 20 offices that get vandalised.

Posted by: HankTheCat | July 16, 2008 6:27 PM | Report abuse

I'll bet that there was a lot of profanity at McCain Headquarters in Arlington when they heard this.

The false impression of momentum comment sounds like whistling past the graveyard to me.

Now what can the McCain campaign do to make it look like McCain is taking Virginia seriously with only four regional offices. None of which are South of or West of Richmond. With Mark Warner's repuation in Southwest Virginia can they just assume, Mc Cain will win big there?

But, there's probably some other state where McCain is doing this to Obama on that state's chess board.

Posted by: Wow | July 16, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse

This reads like yet another WAPO Obama press release. What's with listing all the addresses? Aren't they on the campaign web site? Is the author auditioning for a job in the new administration? Is WAPO in worse trouble than we know? Just curious.

Posted by: John | July 16, 2008 6:34 PM | Report abuse

This is clearly a sign that Obama is serious about contesting Virginia (or else that he has so much money he doesn't know what to do with it!).

I passed through Southwest VA recently, I would not call it Obama country, but here's the point. If he can reduce the margin he loses this area by, while rolling up his votes in Northern VA, then he wins.

Offices help create centers to organize GOTV operations, and that seems to be one of the interesting thrusts of the Obama campaign, he believes he can increase the percentage of people who vote.

I can't honestly remember when a Democrat actually made this a central point to their campaign. (Bush did it successfully in 2004, using mostly his evangelical base.)

It will be an interesting year to say the least.

Posted by: PatrickInBeijing | July 16, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Hello, Congresswoman Andrea Miller!

Posted by: RN Power | July 16, 2008 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Yep, and seven Obama offices opening across North Carolina, including one here in Asheville at 7 PM this evening. I'm on my way.

Posted by: barbara campbell | July 16, 2008 6:41 PM | Report abuse

I think this mean two things, (1) Obama is, obviously, not only contesting Virginia but very serious about winning it and (2) His VP will not end up being one of the big 3 from Virginia, thus, the need to invest such unprecedented money and man power to his GOTV in the Commonwealth.

Posted by: swalker3 | July 16, 2008 7:22 PM | Report abuse

There goes the neighborhood!

Posted by: Dianne72 | July 16, 2008 9:12 PM | Report abuse

Nice effort, but Virginia voting blue? Come on, I'll have to see that to believe it.

Yeah, NoVa is heavily populated, and the liberalism from MD and DC has started to rub of on them, but they still only make up a very small percentage of the state. Did Obama forget that the Confederacy once had its capital in VA? Plus, he lost to Clinton in PA and WV--the states with "liberal rednecks." But I guess Barack can also count on the large black presence in Richmond and Hampton Roads.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 16, 2008 9:38 PM | Report abuse

Has anyone noticed the picture at the top for Virginia Politics looks like a Benneton advertisement?

Posted by: Dianne72 | July 16, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Virginia will become blue come November -- not by a wide margin, but blue hues nonetheless. Go, Obama! Go!

Posted by: Black and Bitter Like Coffee | July 16, 2008 9:54 PM | Report abuse

What exactly will all the volunteers do between now and election day at these 20 offices?

It's a very commendable effort and we're all very impressed by it. When you see the energy and enthusiasm so many are devoting, it's hard not to be awed by the tremendous outpouring of dedication.

Posted by: Kacoo | July 16, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Now this is the funniest thing I've heard in a looooong time:
Obama's efforts sound like a "tremendous waste of money."

"They could probably be a lot more effective with probably half that many," Saxman said. "It is being done to create this image of momentum and enthusiasm that frankly is just not out there."

head-pounding, side-splitting funny.

Posted by: Bethechange | July 16, 2008 10:54 PM | Report abuse

Senator Obama we Virginian's are with you all the way! Let's take care of business.

Posted by: Harriet | July 17, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Virginia thus far:

Jim Webb > George Allen
Tim Kaine > Jerry Kilgore

Virginia In November 2008

Mark Warner > Jim Gilmore
Barack Obama > John McCain

Virginia will turn blue!

Posted by: David | July 17, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Blacksburg and Roanoke City will be the two bright spots for Obama come November. Luckily these areas always have good turnouts. With popular Mr. Mark on the ballot I think Dems will win this state.

Posted by: Ed | July 17, 2008 10:03 PM | Report abuse

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