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Campaigns and Elections
Margaret "Margi" Vanderhye, a graduate of the Political Leaders Program Class of 2006 and the Candidate Training Program Class of 2005, is the subject of an article in the Great Falls Connection newspaper, February 21 edition. The articleâ€”"Vanderhye Promises Real Solutions"â€”includes a profile of Margi and details about her plans to run against Delegate Vince Callahan in the 34th House District this year.
"In the midst of the breakdown on
negotiations in transportation legislation, I came to the conclusion
that I wanted to be a part of the solutions in Richmond," she said. Vanderhye
will be challenging long-standing Republican incumbent Del. Vincent
Callahan (R-34), should he choose to seek re-election. Callahan has
served as delegate of Virginia's 34th district for 39 years, and is
chair of the House of Delegates Appropriations committee. Callahan has
not yet confirmed whether he will pursue re-election. "I will announce my decision in March like I always do," said Callahan.
Vanderhye said that she believes the residents of the 34th district are ready for change. "The district and the voters have changed, but the representative has not," she said.
Mark Bergman, Communications Director for the Democratic Party of Virginia, and Shaun Kenney, Communications Director for the Republican Party of Virginia, joined Coy Barefoot yesterday on "Charlottesvilleâ€”Right Now" to share their parties' perspective on some of the current issues facing Virginia and the General Assembly. Bergman and Kenney will be regular Monday guests on the program, beginning this week.
Nelson County Supervisor Connie Brennan, a graduate of the Political Leaders Program Class of 2005, has declared her intentions to run against incumbent Watkins Abbitt in the 59th House District this year. The election will be held November 6, when all 140 Senate and House seats in the General Assembly will be up for grabs.
The 59th is a sprawling, largely rural district that includes "much of southern Albemarle County, nearly half of Fluvanna, plus the counties of Buckingham, Nelson, Appomattox, Cumberland, and a portion of Prince Edward."
"I am running," Connie told political reporter Bob Gibson of the Charlottesville Daily Progress in an article published today.
Krysta Jones, a graduate of the Political Leaders Program Class of 2006, was the subject of an article by the Associated Press yesterday regarding a new group she founded last year, the Virginia Leadership Institute. The group was created to help more African Americans run for office in the Commonwealth.
From 1970 to 2001, the number of black officeholders in Virginia
increased from 52 to 246, or about 64 per decade, according to the
Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, a D.C. nonprofit that
tracks black lawmakers nationwide. It's a slow but steady increase reflected across the South...Mrs. Jones' group will start a six-month candidate-certification
program. Enrollees will be assigned to help with a real-life campaign
and will be paired with a mentor among Virginia's black lawmakers, she
said. Mrs. Jones, who lobbies for the American College of
Obstetricians and Gynecologists, has a special interest in black
elected officials: She hopes to become one. "There are so many qualified African-Americans out there," she
said. "They just maybe don't have the confidence or know where to
This Just In: The folks at Campaigns and Elections magazine recently announced that their weekly Campaign Insider newsletterâ€”which heretofore came with a hefty $200-a-year subscription feeâ€”will now be free. Simply visit their website to sign up, and they'll be happy to drop it in the email to you each week.
Two interesting news items recently on the campaigns:
Millions Spent on Negative Political Ads
WASHINGTON - So far this campaign, the political parties have exposed
voters to nearly $160 million in ads attacking congressional
candidates. How much spent painting a positive image? About $17
million. The message ingrained in such a disparity in numbers: Don't vote for a candidate; vote against the opponent.
Pols Raise Level of TV Campaign Ads
NEW YORK - Through mid-October, the number of television campaign commercials
was up 31 percent compared to the same period four years ago, a report
released Thursday found.Nielsen
Monitor-Plus counted 942,900 political ads running between August 1 and
Oct. 15. That doesn't even take into account the last week before the
Nov. 7 election, when advertising is at its heaviest.
Today the Sorensen Institute celebrates the continued success of our graduates at the polls.
Christopher Hilbert (Candidate Training Program Class of 2004) won re-election to the Richmond City Council from District 3 (unopposed).
Corey Stewart (Candidate Training Program Class of 2003) was elected Chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors (This was a special election to fill a seat recently vacated by Sorensen Fellow Sean Connaughton, Political Leaders Program Class of Fall 1995, who was appointed by President Bush to serve as head of the U.S. Maritime Administration).
Evette L. Wilson (Candidate Training Program Class of 2002) was re-elected to the Richmond School Board from District 9 (unopposed).
We also want to congratulate and thank those Sorensen graduates who demonstrated great leadership by stepping forward to get involvedâ€”men and women who care very deeply about the Commonwealth and will surely find other ways in the future to serve the communities they love.
Jacqueline Jackson (Political Leaders Program Class of 2002) was an incumbent candidate for the Richmond City Council from District 8.
Jerry Miller (Candidate Training Program Class of 2004) was a candidate for the Richmond School Board from District 4.
Gail Parker (Candidate Training Program Class of 2003) was an Independent candidate for U.S. Senate here in Virginia.
Barbara Pryor (Political Leaders Program Class of Spring 1994, the first Sorensen class) was an Independent candidate for U.S. Congress in the 6th District.
Jeanette Rishell (Candidate Training Program Class of 2006) was the Democratic candidate in a special election in the 50th District of the Virginia House of Delegates (a seat that was held for 24 years by Harry Parrish until he passed away in March).
Al Weed (Candidate Training Program Class of 2003) was the Democratic candidate for U.S. Congress in the 5th District.
Daily Progress Political Reporter Bob Gibson was Coy Barefoot's guest yesterday on "Charlottesville--Right Now." They discussed the Senate race here in Virginia, the proposed marriage amendment, and the 5th District congressional race between Virgil Goode and Al Weed.
Bedford County's Lewis Medlin, a graduate of the Candidate Training Program Class of 2006, is the subject of an article in today's Roanoke Times. Reporter Jay Conley writes:
With this year's general election only a few days away, a political
newcomer is already looking to next year's fall election for the 19th
District House of Delegates seat.
The district covers the city of Bedford, part of Bedford County and much of Botetourt County.
Lewis Medlin Jr. lives in Bedford County, where he runs a family
business in Montvale that manufactures metal brackets used in
Medlin, 56, is seeking the Democratic Party nomination for the
November 2007 election, and could be a challenger to Lacey Putney, a
longtime independent who has served in the House of Delegates since
Medlin is interested in the state delegate position because delegates only meet for a few months each year.
"I'm needed here to keep this thing going with my father," he said of the family business. "I can't go full time" into politics.
But he's serious enough about running to have taken a three-day-long
candidate training program earlier this year at the Sorensen Institute
for Political Leadership at the University of Virginia.
"It helps you focus in on what actually you're trying to accomplish," Medlin said.