Competing efforts launched to draft Democrats for Virginia Senate run
The chairman of the Montgomery County, Va. Democratic committee has launched an Internet effort to convince former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine (D) to run for the Senate seat that will become open with U.S. Sen. Jim Webb's retirement in 2012.
Steve Cochran said he hopes www.draftkaine.com and an accompanying Facebook page will demonstrate to the national Democratic Committee Chairman that he has support among grassroots party members in the state and help persuade him to jump into the race.
Cochran's effort is one of a number of online efforts designed to rustle up a Democratic candidate who could defeat former Sen. George Allen, assuming Allen survives his own Republican primary campaign.
Kaine had said repeatedly that he was not interested in running for the seat. But those comments came before Webb's announcement earlier this week that will not run run for reelection. Many Democrats hope the former governor will change his mind and decide to run, particularly if encouraged by President Obama, with whom he is close.
Activists have also started an Internet effort to convince former Rep. Tom Perriello (D) to seek the seat.
Steve Cochran, chairman of the county committee, said he hopes to get several hundred people on board a facebook page to convince Kaine to run before Democrats gather in Richmond Feb. 200 for their annual Jefferson-Jackson Dinner. He said he supports Perriello and would like to see him run if Kaine decides not to seek the seat. But he said he believes Kaine, whom he has known since he was mayor of Richmond, has the best chance of helping Democrats hang on to the Senate seat in the key battleground state.
"I feel like Tim is not only a very high quality person, but he did an outstanding job as governor," Cochran said. "He has name recognition statewide, and he's the best person to raise the money."
Rosalind S. Helderman
| February 11, 2011; 12:10 PM ET
Categories: George F. Allen, Robert F. McDonnell, Rosalind Helderman, Tom Perriello
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