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Coverage of Virginia Governor's Race Heats Up

Take a key presidential swing state and make it the setting for a hotly contested three-way Democratic primary, and what have you got? A recipe for intense interest from political bloggers and journalists from around the country.

As Virginia voters hit the polls today, the Common theme of recent posts on WSJ's Capitol Journal and Jim Newell on The Daily Beast is "no one wants to be the candidate heading into Election Day with downward momentum."

In the primary's final days, the person facing that fate appeared to be Terry McAuliffe. The former chairman of the Democratic National Committee has tried to recapture some momentum with a new TV ad titled "Moon."

The punch line here is: "President Kennedy didn't say we're going to halfway to the moon, he said we're goin' all the way."

What does that mean? Well, it's an answer McAuliffe gave at a recent candidate debate, when he was asked how he could possibly deliver on all the promises he made along the campaign trail. His answer: it can't hurt to dream big.

McAuliffe has never lacked for enthusiasm. And he has needed it in recent days as opponent Creigh Deeds, a rural state senator, has been riding a surge of momentum.

Deeds has faced fire from McAuliffe and from Brian Moran, who is seen as the "progressive" candidate according to CNN and is known for his opposition of the constuction of a new coal plant in southeast Virginia.

Though Moran's campaign budget has been lower than both McAuliffe's and Deeds', it seems that anything can happen in this low-interest election.

(Moran has taken to carrying a tortoise with him in his car. He says he rescued it on the highway, but now feels it's a symbol of his tortoise-hare approach to the race.)

So far, it seems the media is more interested in Virginia's gubernatorial democractic primary than actual voters. Even Wikipedia is following the election trail.

The Washington Times and ABC-13 online predict that only 3 to 5 percent of voters will make their way to the polls. That's 250,000 out of the state's 5 million registered voters, which makes this monumental political race feel like the cake baking contest at the state fair. But I'm guessing that more Virginians cast their ballots for Delores Boerner's homemade German Chocolate Cake than will at polling places today.

-- Bennett Sumner

By Matt Mosk  |  June 9, 2009; 2:47 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , Election 2009  
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Comments

CORRECTION to this Bennett Sumner offering: In fact overall campaign donations (in and beyond Virginia) rank as follows:
1. McAuliffe. 2. Moran 3. Deeds
$6.7M $3.7M 2.9M most recent

AMONG VIRGINIA DONATION TALLIES it's different, keep in mind
75% of Terry's checks have come from out of state:

1. Moran 2. Deeds 3. McAuliffe

$3.4M $2.7M $1.2 M This from WPost as of 6/1

I think that dispersion tells alot. Moran could well prove to have the best GOTV of all, as it's based on relationships and knowledge that goes way back and deep. If Deeds has a GOTV
effort in NOVA, I haven't seen evidence of it other than some robocalls.

Jump ball!

Posted by: VirginiaMom3 | June 9, 2009 4:15 PM | Report abuse

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