Monday, March 31, 2008

The Times They Are a Changin'

"I belong to no organized political party. I am a Democrat," said Will Rogers. But, according to articles in the News Leader and the News Virginian, central valley Democrats are are happy and unified group and able to pull off a well-attended event and support a year-round headquarters. They even attracted a couple of big time speakers.
Leslie Byrne, is seeking the Democratic nod to return to Congress from Virginia's District 11. Among many topics, Byrne noted that Bush's exploding federal debt is compromising the U.S. position in trade talks with China, which holds big chunks of that debt. Playing off the "are you better off today" theme of earlier presidential campaigns, she also recalled that when Bush took office there was a budget surplus, milk was $1.89 a gallon and gas $1.49.
Brian Moran, who is expected to announce for Governor later this year, also attended with his wife and young children. Perhaps that is why he focused on education -  pre-K, K-12, and higher ed on his remarks. Moran drew laughter when he said scientific research had shown the value of pre-K, and "we are the party that believes in science."
According to reports, there was a undercurrent of buzz about the upcoming local caucuses and the contest between Sam Rasoul and Drew Richardson. Rasoul was out of the state attending a wedding, but had several staffers present chatting with the crowd. Richardson attended and talked with a number of folks. But, it was all smiles with none of the barbs found on the blogs. Very importantly, people talked more about their pride in being a Democrat and about the great food than about anything that divides them.
Just a couple weeks ago Augusta Democrats attracted Senator Creigh Deeds to a breakfast fundraiser. Deeds has already announced his run for Governor.
Pecking around the valley, it seems the Democrats are gathering coarse cracked corn while the squabbling Republicans are fighting over a shrinking bag of laying mash. The times they are a changin'.

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