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First Click -- Virginia

Rosalind Helderman

Thursday, Sept. 24, 2009
Good morning Virginia! Here's what's happening in politics across the Commonwealth today.

For the fourth year in a row, has ranked Virginia the best place in the country to do business. It's good news for the state, coming on the heels of word that the unemployment rate has dipped and the Commonwealth now has the lowest rate of people out of work of any large state.

It's also good news for Democratic candidates for office, who have used the Forbes accolade as proof that Democratic leadership has been good for the state's economy and the candidates took little time to crow.

Not persuaded: The Fairfax Chamber of Commerce, which Wednesday endorsed Republican Bob McDonnell for governor. The chamber says they believe McDonnell would be more likely to spark private sector growth. The Chamber slammed Deeds for not putting forward a specific funding proposal for transportation.

Deeds did pen an op-ed in the Washington Post Wednesday on transportation, in which the Democrat said in writing that he would sign a tax increase for road improvements. Republicans were not impressed.

McDonnell has a morning press conference to announce another organizational endorsement. And an afternoon rally with public safety officers. Deeds and McDonnell both take part in a forum sponsored by the Greater Norfolk Corporation. Deeds also speaks to the Greater Hampton Roads Black Chamber of Commerce.

The "thank you for making us laugh" award for Wednesday goes to Democratic LG candidate Jody Wagner, for this rather amusing video charging that Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling has been absent on the job. Celebrity voices have been impersonated. (h/t Jerry's Subs and Pizza.) Bolling rejects the allegation.

Honorable mention goes to this poster emailed from the Republican Party of Virginia, featuring the least flattering photo of any candidate we've yet seen on the trail this year.

Just like in South Carolina, U.S. Rep. Joe "You Lie!" Wilson looks like he'll be raising money for both parties in Virginia. A day after Republican House Speaker Bill Howell got Wilson to email a fundraising appeal to conservatives for his PAC, Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) invoked Wilson's name to ask for dollars for Democrats.

Will former Gov. Doug Wilder break his tradition of saving his endorsement until the last minute and put out a statement of support in the governor's race today? It's hard to know--Wilder says a statement of some kind will come before the week is over. Maybe today.

By Rosalind Helderman  |  September 24, 2009; 7:08 AM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , 2009 Lieutenant Governor's Race , Bill Bolling , Creigh Deeds , Election 2009 , First Click , Jody Wagner , Robert F. McDonnell , Rosalind Helderman , Timothy M. Kaine  
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Next: Updated: FOP Endorses McDonnell, GOP Ticket


I would think the Republican legislature that has actually set the pro-business policy, not the Democrat Governor who wanted higher taxes and greater union influence, would get the majority of the credit for the Forbes ranking.

Posted by: OldVirginian | September 24, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Also not persuaded that Democrats are the reason Forbes ranked Virginia tops -- Forbes magazine publisher Steve Forbes who has campaigned and raised money for the GOP ticket here in Virginia.

Posted by: JTR555 | September 24, 2009 9:54 PM | Report abuse

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