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Gibbs calls Deeds underdog, praises Kaine

Anita Kumar

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs told reporters at a gaggle this morning that Democrat Creigh Deeds was always the underdog in the race against Republican Bob McDonnell for Virginia governor.

He mentioned a fact that we are well aware of here in Virginia: Since 1977, no party that has won the White House has gone on to capture Virginia's governorship the next year.

"Given that sort of history, Creigh Deeds was always the underdog,'' Gibbs said.

If you were wondering what the Virginia and New Jersey losses mean for outgoing Gov. Tim Kaine, chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Gibbs's comments should help clarify.

"The President is enormously grateful for the leadership that Governor Kaine has and will continue to provide at the DNC,'' he said. "I think if you look at the record, again, of the president in these special elections involving members of Congress, the results are very positive for the DNC."

Kaine earlier called the Democratic win in a special election for Congress in New York the "most consequential race of the night'' after the Republican dropped out and left a conservative to run as a third-party candidate.

By Anita Kumar  |  November 4, 2009; 12:10 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , Anita Kumar , Creigh Deeds , Election 2009 , Robert F. McDonnell , Timothy M. Kaine  
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Next: Obama calls McDonnell

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