The 2013 Elections
Let’s start with the easiest.
New York City
Former Deputy Mayor and Republican Joe Lhota is running for New York City mayor and is losing by a landslide by recent polls. Hopefully this will convince the Leftists to stay home and allow Republicans, Independents, and reasonable Democrats to get out their vote and be heard. Unfortunately it still may not be enough for Rudy’s heir to win. Bill De Blasio is quite openly running as Dinkins redux and will likely be just as successful. He’s a out and out Far Left extremist who wants to fleece New York’s wealthy financial district in order to pay for more social welfare programs. While simultaneously rolling back some of the Rudy Guiliani/ Ray Kelly public safety measures that have kept Law and Order reasonably well in one of the nation’s largest cities. This will lead to four very dreadful years for NYC.
Republican Incumbent Governor Chris Christie is cruising for reelection and is now quite openly suggesting his intention to run in 2016. I expect for him to get 59% of the vote at least. Quinnipac recently released their final poll that had Christie polling over 60%. Democrat State Senator Barbara Bueno is quite apparently a sacrificial lamb and this race has by any measure been over since May. The only real question is how many Republicans get elected to the State Legislature due to Christie’s coattails, and if enough will get elected to flip one or both chambers. If that happens another question for us to consider is this. Will Christie govern as a Conservative like he did early on or will he continue to take the path of least resistance? I suspect the latter for a period of time until sometime after the midterms at which point I expect Christie to attempt a rightward track in order to prep himself for a run for President.
The House of Delegates are controlled by a GOP supermajority and I only expect at most one or two seats gained by the Democrats ( giving them a net seat gain of +1). That being said it’s quite possible that the GOP will hold all of their current seats while gaining one in the South uncontested ( the Democrat incumbent was a blue dog who has retired this cycle while personally popular his party’s increasingly leftward trend isn’t).
The Attorney General‘s race is competitive, but most polls show State Senator Mark Obenshain ( R-Harrisonburg) to be in the lead. Obenshain is a good conservative who’s father Richard Obenshain helped create the Virginia Republican Party from scratch. He has, despite being very conservative ( some could argue more so then Cuccinelli the current AG), acquired the endorsement of former Senator John Warner, a moderate, as well as former Attorney General and Southern Democrat Andy Miller. Miller beat Richard Obenshain in the AG race of 1969. He has endorsed Obenshain because of Herring’s refusal to back the State’s Constitutional Recognition of Traditional Marriage. John Warner lost at Convention to Richard Obenshain in the 1978 United States Senate Election in Virginia. However Richard Obenshain while on Campaign died in a plane crash and Warner was immediately filed as his replacement. Warner won and held that Senate seat until 2008. Warner was succeeded upon his retirement by current Senator Mark Warner, a Democrat, who is up for reelection in 2014.
State Senator Mark Herring (D-Loudoun) is the Democrat nominee for AG he has led in few polls but is currently banking on Terry McAuliffe winning in a landslide ( something I believe will not happen). He has run an extremely negative campaign attacking mostly the current AG Ken Cuccinelli. His negativity has been so high that the Roanoke Times endorsed Obenshain the first Republican to be endorsed since Jerry Kilgore ( running for AG) in 2001.
The Lieutenant Governor’s race isn’t considered competitive. It is unfortunate as Republican E.W. Jackson an African-American Preacher, Harvard Law graduate, and Marine Corp Veteran, has run a positive campaign if somewhat misdirected in the earlier months. He has talked about the issues facing Virginians while his opponent State Senator Ralph Northam ( D-Virginia Beach) has been almost exclusively negative. Northam recently refused to shake Jackson’s hand after their final debate. This is sometimes an acceptable way to express displeasure with your opponent ( for example if your opponent has behaved in an ungentlemanly manner) but Jackson has not given Northam such a reason and is in fact far more within his rights to refuse such a courtesy. Northam has in effect made this an election in which Christians are no longer welcome in public discourse. He most assuredly does not deserve to win, but probably will since many moderate Republicans who could stomach voting for Cuccinelli do not see Jackson as worth it.
The Governor’s race is close or already over depending on which poll you look at. Last week’s Roanoke College and WAPO polls had Terry McAuliffe leading in double digits. The Quinnipac poll of last week had Ken Cuccinelli within 4, while the Emerson College had him within 2, with Hampton College and Rasmussen Reports having him down by 6 and 7 respectively. PPP (D) released a poll that had Cuccinelli down by 7, however PPP is hardly trustworthy no doubt should Cuccinelli win they will release a poll afterwards showing they had accurately predicted such a result. Quinnipac released another poll just today their final one, it had Cuccinelli down by 6. However this is better then the poll two weeks ago that had him down by 8. What is more the model for this poll is different then the one earlier last week. The poll that was Terry +4 had an R+2 sample, while this most recent poll had a D+5 sample with 33% of respondents being Independents, 32% being Democrats and 27% being Republicans. This demographic would be of historic proportions since most off year gubernatorial elections favor the party outside the White House and more often then not it favors the GOP. the 2009 electorate was R+5.
Going back to the PPP poll, while I still don’t trust them an interesting slice of data I found was the favorable and unfavorable. Sarvis who was polling 4% ( the lowest of any poll by a significant margin) had 14/22 favorable/ unfavorable. Terry McAuliffe had a 34/52 favorable to unfavorable. Ken Cuccinelli had a 39/52 favorable/unfavorable. This is the first time T-Mac’s negatives have equaled Ken’s perhaps they will go higher between now and tomorrow. In any other election Terry would be unelectable. It is telling that despite his money advantage ( he is currently outspending Ken 10-1 on ads) that he still has yet to clinch this race. What is more Ken has higher favorable ( 39) then Terry. This confirms what the Quinnipac poll showed last week. That is that 64% of those voting for Terry were doing so as a vote AGAINST Ken. Only 34% voting for Terry were actually voting FOR him. Ken on the other hand had 50% of his voters voting FOR him, while 44% are voting AGAINST. Ken trailing in the polls should help in him turning out his voters, while Terry increasing his lead just recently ( while touting double digit leads from week old polls) might convince some of his base to stay home. Why vote for a guy you don’t like if you think the guy you hate isn’t going to win anyway?
In any event I think this race will be very close and that we will stay up late waiting for the results. If you live in Virginia VOTE. Make sure your conservative friends vote. Once you have voted go back out onto the streets and get more Conservatives to the polls. Every VOTE MATTERS.