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Brink, Whipple for Hope in the 47th House District

Amy Gardner

Del. Bob Brink and Sen. Mary Margaret Whipple have endorsed Patrick Hope in the five-man Democratic primary to replace Al Eisenberg in the 47th House District in Arlington.

The endorsement could make a difference in such a crowded field, particularly in an election likely to be dominated by activist voters who know Brink and Whipple personally. The nod also comes, perhaps not coincidentally, on the heels of former president Bill Clinton's endorsement of Adam Parkhomenko -- an endorsement that caused some Arlington Democrats to grumble privately about Clinton's entrance into a local primary contest.

Brink and Whipple were careful to include a kind word about all five candidates, who face each other in the June 9 primary. (It's worth noting, though, that the lawmakers seem to have struggled to say anything substantive about Parkhomenko.)

"Miles Grant is an articulate and forceful advocate for the environment," they wrote in an open letter this morning. "Alan Howze has a deep understanding of how policy is formulated in Richmond. Adam Parkhomenko is youthful and enthusiastic. Andres Tobar's longstanding efforts to promote an inclusive and progressive community have made Arlington a better place."

But, Brink and Whipple continued: Hope "offers a unique combination of personal, professional and community experience that will make him an effective member of the House of Delegates from Day 1. Patrick has shown leadership, compassion, and commitment on behalf of Arlington's most vulnerable citizens. He is a consensus builder and a creative problem solver. His civic activism is in the finest tradition of 'The Arlington Way.'"

In heavily Democratic Arlington, whoever the nominee is will be favored to win in November.

By Amy Gardner  |  May 15, 2009; 10:28 AM ET
Categories:  Amy Gardner , Election 2009 , General Assembly 2009  
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Yawn, Bob Brink, Mary M. Whipple and Patrick Hope are so boring and uninspiring. To them an effective member of the HoD is someone who shows up and plays nice with the Republicans. This is Arlington we're talking about. Let's elect someone who will shake things up in Richmond.

Posted by: ArlingtonMujer | May 15, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Miles Grant is a lot more than just one of Virginia's strongest environmental advocates. I'm supporting because of all he's done for Arlington Democrats through what we've worked on together with the Arlington Co Dem Com and the Arlington Democrats. That on top of what he's done with groups like Arlington Community Volunteer Network really sets him apart from the other candidates and thats why I've been knocking on doors for him and am encouraging everyone I know to support him as well.

Posted by: briansdevine | May 15, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Miles is more than a forceful advocate for the environment. He is a forceful and articulate advocate for the values that make Arlington the best place to live in the country. Arlington doesn't need a consensus builder. Arlington needs a fierce advocate in Richmond who will promote Arlington's values no matter the majority.

Arlington will elect the candidate who will stand for Arlington principles like environmental progress, marriages rights for ALL Virginians, and the proven ability to organize supporters around political issues. That candidate is Miles.

Posted by: DanielWeir | May 15, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

This endorsement is certainly interesting and should really make all Arlingtonians think about what they want from their Delegate. Personally, I do want an articulate and forceful advocate.

I would suggest that Brink and Whipple's characterizations of the candidates are rather apt - Miles Grant is an articulate and forceful advocate. It is false to limit that characteristic solely to environmental issues. Anyone paying attention knows Miles Grant is an articulate and forceful advocate for Arlington.

That is what we want, isn't it?

Arlingtonians don't want someone who will play nice in Richmond. We don't want the guy who is already part of the system (Howze). We don't want the guy with experience working in the system and only in the system (Hope). While we like the guy who has made Arlington a better place (Tobar), we need something more than that in Richmond. And we certainly need more than a 'youthful' individual.

Brink and Whipple's assessment of the candidates is pretty accurate, but the reasoning behind their endorsement is flawed. They may want a business as usual delegate, but Arlingtonians are tired of that. We can't afford someone who will place nice to the detriment of Arlington values.

We DO want an articulate and forceful advocate FOR Arlington. The advocate is Miles Grant.

Posted by: tiffanyjoslyn | May 15, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

What Arlingtonians want is someone who will work tirelessly and effectively to change the Richmond status quo policies that do not reflect our values. The only person who will do this is Miles Grant.

He stands not just for the environment and against monopolizing coal companies, but he believes in civil liberties for all Virginians and in a strong community that fosters civic activism.

I am supporting Miles Grant because he is the smartest, most sincere and engaged candidate and the only one who will represent Arlington well in Richmond.

Posted by: claremcintyre | May 15, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Sen. Whipple and Del. Brink are two of Arlington's most respected and beloved leaders. Although the field has many talented candidates, Patrick Hope has proven that he is the best person for the job.

Posted by: jg3000 | May 15, 2009 11:51 AM | Report abuse

I have great respect for Delegate Brink and Senator Whipple, but I strongly believe Miles Grant will be the most forceful advocate for Arlington values in Richmond. Miles has been Chair of the Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment (ACE) and Chair of the Arlington Community Role Models (CRM). As Chair of ACE, Miles convinced the board to send Governor Kaine a letter opposing the widening of I-66. As Chair of CRM he helped hundreds of young Arlintonians in helping their community. His work for the National Wild Life Federation has made him an expert and advocate on clean energy and climate action issues. Finally, Miles's campaign has engaged dozens of volunteers in door-door canvassing, calling, and listening to the concerns of voters.

We should elect a real progressive not just another can't we all get along candidate. Whatever happens in this race Miles, will be doing all he can to help the Democrats retake 51 seats in the house of Delegates.

Posted by: KipMalinosky | May 15, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Not really a surprising development. For reasons beyond my ken, Patrick seems to be the 'establishment' Democratic candidate. I'm sure he's a fine person but he hasn't radiated a lot of warmth in the events I've seen him at, such as the ACDC debate. For all his talk of consensus building I can't see Patrick being an engaging networker in Richmond.

Miles Grant's got that skill - it's how he won me over when looking at the race. Strong ideas cogently communicated. It's shortsighted of MMW and Bob Brink to view him as just an environmental candidate. Ask the other candidates to speak cogently on the Dillon Rule and see what happens. Miles Grant will be a superb delegate who'll fight for progressive values. We need more of that in Richmond.

Posted by: Distantantennas | May 15, 2009 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Miles Grant is a strong, passionate voice for progressive values and new ideas that is sorely needed in Virginia. He will bring a new fresh voice to Richmond and Arlingtonians and all residents of Northern Virginia can count on Miles to improve their lives and communities in the years to come in the areas of environmental action, transportation improvements and civil liberties and solving problems and addressing concerns through community engagement.

Posted by: mkonj | May 15, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

The only thing these establishment endorsements will accomplish is to fire up Miles Grant's strong grassroots and netroots network of supporters. Personally, I want the candidate who won't take dirty Dominion dollars (, the one who really fight for the environment and human rights, the one who is THE true progressive in this race. That, of course, would be Miles Grant, establishment endorsements of Patrick Hope to the contrary.

P.S. To see exactly what you'll get if you vote for Miles on June 9, please click here ( Thanks.

Posted by: lowkell | May 15, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

The Obama campaign taught us that politics is not a service where we dip in now and again to pull levers or ask mandarins for favors, it's organizing an enduring movement to knit communities together in positive action and empowerment.

Endorsements don't knock on doors or make real phone calls. Miles Grant has at least a dozen volunteers knocking on doors, making real calls, and generally talking to people in the 47th district at any given time. And yes, disclosure, I'm one of those volunteers.

With all due respect, I've yet to see the other campaigns offer anything more than robocalls, yard signs which don't vote, or the respective candidate alone knocking on doors.

The choice seems rather obvious to me, but don't take my word for it, see who comes to your door or calls.

Posted by: leftspace | May 15, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

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