January 23, 2015 By Phil Tran
Claims from so-called “mainstream Republicans” searching and pining for “unity” ring hollow to no one’s surprise. Eric Cantor and Cocktail Party Republicans in Virginia have formed the front group Virginia Conservative Network with underlying motivations to defeat Republicans they don’t like under the guise of “uniting the party” and finding a way to “win again”. It is ironic that a front organization designed to promote “unity” would shut out a fellow Republican Congressman and his supporters from the event. It is also ironic that the leader of the effort to help Virginia Republicans to “win again” was a loser to an unknown, underfunded, and now current Congressman Dave Brat. Dave Brat should really be teaching people how to win. Not Eric Cantor, Ray Allen, and their elitist, exclusive Cocktail Party ilk.
I know the Cocktail Party wing of the GOP far too well. They only want the votes, money, and volunteerism of the little people, while behind closed doors, they ridicule their own supporters for not being as cultured, articulate, and educated as they are. They criticize the exclusiveness of the Tea Party while being every bit as exclusive, hateful, and vindictive themselves. Cocktail Party Republicans think they know how to win and that they know everything, but they continually lose and do a disservice to the very people who elected them.
Look at the most recent example with Renee Ellmers (R-NC) torpedoing a pro-life bill in Congress that polls show have bipartisan support among millenials and a significant amount of Democratic support. Question #49 of the Quinnipiac poll showed that a majority of Americans of all ages favor a ban on late-term abortions and nearly 50% of Democrats favor a late term abortion ban as well. Putting a vote on the Congressional record would fracture the Democratic Party in Congress, but leave it to Republicans, not Democrats, to commit and unforced error and continue to disappoint the people who put them in office. Renee Ellmers campaigned on representing the will of the people and, once settled in Congress, revealed her true colors.
You might as well vote Democratic. At least you know where they stand. I would actually encourage everyone to vote Democratic to defeat Renee Ellmers. Perhaps retired pro-life Democratic Congressman Heath Shuler could move into the district, defeat Renee Ellmers, and make a comeback? He was one of the best. Sadly, the best people want nothing to do with the clown show that is Congress.
The establishment Cocktail Party wing of the GOP is only interested in “uniting the party” when it is one of their own (cough, Mitt Romney, cough) who is the nominee. They will destroy the GOP otherwise like insolent children if they are locked out of power, privilege, prestige, and…cocktail parties.
Why else would there be talk of Bill Bolling running for Congress against a sitting Republican incumbent in Dave Brat, who has barely gotten started in his first term? That is not “party unity” and a waste of party resources if these Cocktail Party Republicans say they are trying to expand the map. Oh, it is because Dave Brat had the audacity to give people a choice in a Republican primary and he defeated Cocktail Party darling Eric Cantor, who was next in line to be U.S. House Speaker. It is personal. Got it.
Eric Cantor and his power-hungry, political junkie friends hate term limits imposed by legislation because they believe that “we already have term limits and they are called elections”. They got a taste of their own medicine by…being term limited through an election. Boom.
January 9, 2015 By Phil Tran
It is an end of an era in Loudoun County, VA. Scott York, Chairman of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors will step down after 24 years of serving on the Board of Supervisors and the Planning Commission.
As a Planning Commissioner, Supervisor, and later as a Chairman, York presided, managed, and ushered in an unprecedented era of growth that saw the county go from a rural backwater to the richest county in Virginia and one of the richest in the nation.
Perhaps York’s finest moment was seeing Metro extended into Loudoun County. This was a project York worked on since 1992 and completed in 2012. Loudoun County would finally be connected to Washington, DC via public transit and Loudoun County is ensuring it will not be left behind as a young, knowledge-based, freelancing economy is demanding more transportation options so that they can leverage their time, grow their businesses, and improve their quality of life. Hey, you can work on your computer on the train. You can’t work while you drive.
Unfortunately, the Metro project became unnecessarily controversial as the Loudoun County Republican Committee, a dominant but small local party unrepresentative of mainstream business-friendly Republicans in Loudoun, rallied in fierce opposition against Metro in 2012. Driven by cultural animus against public transportation, extremist right-wing Loudoun Republicans mounted a dirty campaign and threatened retribution against every Republican on the all-Republican Loudoun County Board who voted for Metro.
It almost worked. What looked like a 7-2 or even an 8-1 victory for Metro (Eugene Delgaudio is his own brand of crazy.) ended up being 5-4 victory that drew intense media coverage. A Loudoun citizenry that was anywhere from 54% to 87% in favor of Metro depending on where they lived were befuddled at how an important infrastructure project for the economy was nearly hijacked by extremist right wingers fighting a losing culture war that continues to alienate the Republican Party brand with urbanites and knowledge-based working professionals and entrepreneurs.
It was no surprise that York decided not to run for reelection. The Republican primary electorate is not a reflection of the general electorate in Loudoun. While York consistently won with over 60% of the general electorate, his primary fights have always been brushes with political death.
York’s major life accomplishment is complete. Metro is coming to Loudoun County. It is time to end on a good note and on his own terms.
Here is what I think will happen politically from here to the near future in Loudoun County.
1. Scott York will NOT run for the State Senate seat in the 33rd District currently held by the Democrat Jennifer Wexton. There is guaranteed to be at least two people in that Republican primary.
Ron Meyer, a laughable candidate upon further inspection, has already declared his candidacy. The one-time Congressional candidate turned failed State Senate candidate is one loss away from perennial candidate land. Youth and energy are his mantras, but many are leery of the fact that Ron Meyer has never held a Real, non-political job in his life. (A token non-political client is just window dressing. People look at the totality of your work life and your circle.)
Because of the lack of confidence in Ron Meyer, Stephen Hollingshead might jump into the race and try to claim front-runner status. Hollingshead would be a formidable primary candidate. However, Jennifer Wexton is a likable State Senator representing an increasingly Democratic district. She will be very difficult to unseat.
The only Republican who could theoretically unseat Wexton is Scott York. However, why would Scott York want to do this?
Why would York want to go through another politically life-threatening GOP primary after he has accomplished all he needed to accomplish as Loudoun County Chairman?
Why would York want a demotion? Going from Lee County Chairman to State Senate is an upward move. Going from Loudoun County Chairman to State Senate is a downward move. York would be going from having dual executive and legislative roles as the head honcho of the richest county in Virginia to representing a smaller piece of Loudoun County as one of 40 Senators.
Plus he would have to commute to Richmond. Richmond is not pretty and is a lonely place to be. The first day I saw Richmond as a legislative aide was the day I wanted to come back home.
Scott York would be wise to ride off into the sunset with a cushy private sector job and his state retirement benefits.
2. Look for Democrats to make a serious run at the Loudoun County Chair seat and possibly win it. Scott York was untouchable in general elections because he garnered tons of crossover support from Loudoun Democrats.
I would go out on a limb to say that Scott York was solely responsible for the inept, non-existent Loudoun County Democratic Committee. How are you supposed to build a Democratic Party when a significant chunk of your constituency votes for a Republican County Board Chair?
Scott York’s pro-business policies and public transportation advocacy has single-handedly crippled the Loudoun County Democratic Committee for 20 years.
And extremist, public-transit hating culture warriors of the Loudoun County Republican Committee keep trying to burn York at the stake every four years. This is why Republicans can’t have nice things.
So far, Charlie King has stepped forward to carry the banner for the Loudoun GOP. A member of the extremist, establishment cabal that is the Loudoun County Republican Committee, he is of the china-breaking ideology that will undo every positive thing in Loudoun County in the name of “conservative principles.”
There is no word if a sitting member of the currently all-Republican Loudoun County Board of Supervisors will look to move up to Chair. Suzanne Volpe would cannibalize Charlie King’s support so her candidacy would not make sense. Ken Reid has been described as “oafish” by a politically knowledgable supporter of his. Geary Higgins represents a rural district and would not gain traction in a county that is increasingly suburban. Eugene Delgaudio, as ridiculous as he is, knows he has his own constituents hoodwinked and will continue to hold on to a safe seat he has no business holding as long as Democrats continue to put up equally ridiculous challengers.
The most practical options to challenge Charlie King from the pro-business, pro-public transit wing of the GOP would either be Shawn Williams, Matt Letourneau, or Ralph Buona. Only one of them should run as to avoid cannibalizing each other, but such a candidacy for the GOP nomination for Board Chair against Charlie King would still be challenging for the following reason.
3. Elected Republican leaders who have influence in Loudoun County and can provide valuable support for a challenger against Charlie King are embarrassed by their own base, but are deathly scared of challenging them.
Notable exceptions are Dick Black, Eugene Delgaudio, and ignorant, belligerent, anti-public transit advocate Dave LaRock who are all of the extremist wing of the GOP that controls the local party apparatus. Bob Marshall, whose district formerly included Loudoun County prior to the last redistricting, is still influential and revered among the base in Loudoun County. Ken Cuccinelli is still a hero to many in the Loudoun GOP. The Virginia Citizens Defense League, a gun group that makes the NRA look like a bunch of liberal hippie peaceniks, flexes hard in Loudoun County Republican politics.
David Ramadan seemed to have mastered the art of throwing red-meat to the knuckle-dragging base while cozying up to the Cocktail Party crowd (the Cocktail Party wing of the GOP is in its own way, just as bad as the extremists).
As for other Republican elected officials with Loudoun influence from the bottom to the top, they are in a quandary. They secretly ridicule and despise their own base, but know they cannot survive a general election without them in an increasingly Democratic Northern Virginia. There are not enough moderates and independents to make up the deficit of losing the base in a general election, provided you can survive the primary challenge in the first place.
These Republican elected officeholders also know they cannot survive a primary challenge if they piss off the cultural sensibilities of their base even as they vote the values of the base. Hey, it is not enough for you to vote for gun rights, you also have to go to their ridiculous open-carry breakfasts on a Sunday morning (when you should actually be in church) and openly pack heat with them.
Elected Republican officeholders on the sane side would very well want to rally behind and publicly endorse a Shawn Williams, Matt Letourneau, or Ralph Buona primary campaign for Loudoun County Board Chair, but are fearful of retribution and strong primary challenges against them in the event of a failed coup.
John Boehner did NOT deserve another term as Speaker of the House. Boehner retaliating against his opponents is obscene and creates the “go along to get along” mentality in Washington that is destroying good governance. This is wrong.
Likewise, the extremists in the Loudoun County Republican Committee are holding the survival of their own cause hostage with their open threats and retaliation against Republicans who do not go along with their anti-public transit lies and cultural animus. This is wrong.
I do not like the Cocktail Party wing of the GOP and I do not like the Tea Party wing that much either. I am a RINO-hunter AND an extremist-hunter. It is time for fundamental change in the GOP.
January 7, 2015 By Phil Tran
It is a long accepted rule in modern day American politics that low turnout and bad weather on Election Day is bad news for Democrats. Republicans know this. Even Democrats know this. For a very long time I was a Democrat working on campaigns and on the Hill and Democrats have long admired and envied the dedication and enthusiasm of the Republican base in non-Presidential elections.
The special election for the 34th District seat in the Virginia House of Delegates was on Tuesday, January 6, 2015. Turnout was anticipated to be and was indeed low. There was also a freak snowstorm.
All this should spell doom for the Democrat Kathleen Murphy against the Republican Craig Parisot in a toss-up district, correct?
Except it didn’t. Kathleen Murphy defeated Craig Parisot 51% – 48%. What was even more telling was that Murphy only lost to Parisot by 3 votes in Loudoun County, which was expected to carry the day for Parisot.
Are Democrats poised to make significant gains in Virginia in 2015 after capturing all statewide offices in 2013? Set aside the Obama for America machine and the DPVA infrastructure is weak outside of Arlington, Alexandria, and Fairfax which is why the Democratic takeover of Virginia did not happen sooner despite having the numbers. Does that fact that Kathleen Murphy came within 3 votes of capturing Loudoun County with an almost nonexistent Loudoun County Democratic Committee mean that the demographic tidal wave has swept Virginia in such a way as to mitigate the DPVA’s ineptitude outside of the big 3 jurisdictions? If low turnout and bad weather hurts Democrats as both parties would agree, does Kathleen Murphy’s victory in a toss-up district bode well for Democrats in the 2015 general election where turnout is expected to be higher?
Provided that they address issues concerning their weak party infrastructure, look for Democrats to pick up 3 seats in the House of Delegates and 1 seat in the State Senate in Northern Virginia this year. Also, look for an end to one party rule of the Republicans on the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors.
December 28, 2014 By Phil Tran
I am not much of a film guy and it has been many years since I have viewed a new release. However, Kim Jong-Un’s terrorist threats made me curious and I decided to watch “The Interview”.
This film reminds me of the highly acclaimed 1964 dark comedy “Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb” directed by Stanley Kubrick and starring two legendary actors in Peter Sellers and George C. Scott. Albeit “The Interview”, reflecting the continual decline of quality dialogue in the arts and America’s declining literacy rates, uses a much lower and coarser vocabulary. “The Interview” is the type of film one chooses to view at 1:00am while drunk. It requires very little mental faculties to enjoy.
While I do not smoke or drink, and I appreciate great achievements in art, we all need mindless entertainment every now and then. There is a time and a place for the thoughtful, soulful sounds of Stevie Wonder and there is a time and a place for the simple, crunk energy of Lil’ Jon and the Eastside Boyz. I enjoy the works of both artists at the appropriate time and place just like how I can find entertainment in both “Dr. Strangelove” and “The Interview”.
That said, if Kim Jong-Un really wanted to nuke the world because he was offended by his portrayal in “The Interview”, in the wise words of the famous NFL coach Dennis Green, Kim Jong-Un is who we thought he is. Anyone who is offended by how he is portrayed in a film whose target audience is high and drunk dudes between the ages of 18-35 is a petty fraud. Come to think of it, that is how “The Interview” exactly portrays Kim Jong-Un – as a petty fraud. I think the film hit Kim Jong-Un a little too close to home like an LGM-30 Minuteman-III intercontinental ballistic missile.
“Dr. Strangelove” it is not, but I consider it the patriotic duty of every American to see “The Interview”. It is facetious, flag-waving fun. Spoiler Alert: The good guys win.
December 24, 2014 By Phil Tran
(Pardon the political context in a time when we should refrain from politics, but I use my lengthy political consulting career to make a few non-political points.)
Recently, a buddy of mine remarked, “Phil, how many people can say they got a Member of Congress to go to church and brunch with them like you did?” I said, “I don’t care that she is a Member of Congress. I just wanted to spend quality time with a friend in faith and fellowship. If you think I stand in awe and reverence of a title or office, you don’t know me at all. Heck, I was the only person that did not even want her to run for higher office.”
When I was an ambitious 20-year old, I would be confused about why some folks did not run for office or higher office when they could easily win because the spouse was not on board. Now in my 30s, I know better. Take away the 24/7 Hollywood-like atmosphere and cable news media circus (that has done more to poison politics and warp the priorities of the star-struck youth more than anything else in the modern era…it has turned politics into sports for nerds) and being an elected official is a job.
Like other jobs, it is a job that can suck. It has ridiculous hours and demands. You might want to have a home cooked meal with friends and family on a Saturday night, but if the local senior center has an event, guess where you need to be? The stress is almost unbearable for those with geographically large districts. Sometimes, a husband just wants to chill with his wife and vice-versa, hence the case with spouses vetoing a political career. I understand now and that is perfectly alright.
I was at a family dinner somewhere in Maryland recently and someone tried to facetiously jump the line at the serving table by saying, “[elected official] in the house!” The spouse said, “that ain’t going to work around here. Get in line like everybody else!”
There are five takeaways.
1. Sometimes I wish my friends (all of them female…see #2) ran for dog catcher so they could know who really cares about them and who just wants to rub elbows with the Washington elite and brag about their involvement on the campaign on the Cocktail Party circuit to advance their careers and boost their egos.
Some of my friends are associated with the Washington elite. I don’t hold that against them, but I never fit in comfortably with the stuffy, aristocratic Washington-centric suburbs west of DC. I am a down home, blue collar Baltimore guy myself. The point is that I have been in the room with you-name-it celebrity but at the end of the day, the photo I want to place on my shelf is the photo with my friend, not whats-his-name celebrity.
Similar to how big time college football players find out who their real friends are after their careers end (I have some first-hand experience with this), politicians will find out who their real friends are when they are just starting out as a “nobody” in politics or when they are no longer viable.
As for me, I would build a website for my friend’s dog catcher campaign better and with more enthusiasm than I would for a viable “celebrity” Presidential candidate who is a stranger to me. A photo op with a friend of mine will always be more prized than a photo op with some political “celebrity” who commands $5000 for VIP access at a fundraiser. A real friend doesn’t care about your fame, fortune, and trappings thereof. A real friend is reliable, dependable, and likes you for being you.
When the lights are turned out and the party is over, I will still be there.
2. When I was younger and up to this point (Way past my expiration date…Thank you Maryland for believing in me after my unexpected nuclear fallout in Virginia politics on Christmas Eve 2013…Virginia’s loss is Maryland’s gain), working in politics was fun. I can’t turn down a “Vote for Mom” campaign or the occasional “Vote for my Crazy Sister” campaign.
In case you haven’t figured it out by now, I love the ladies! The vast majority of my friends in politics are female and yes, I have been told many times that I have “The World’s Most Beautiful Client Roster.” Take that as a compliment, ladies.
I had a great time, but the older you get, the younger they get. I am a recovering political junkie who is almost reformed and have long said to myself that I am not going to be 40 and be emotionally invested in a candidate who is 30. I’ll fight for Maryland, the motherland, and will keep building quality websites for elected officials and candidates of all ages which is what I do best in politics. However, I quit national politics in 2010, lost any nostalgia I had for my Capitol Hill days long gone, made all the friends I could possibly want in politics, and found it is high time to do something for myself. No, this is not an announcement of my own candidacy for office! Heavens, no.
3. This one is a bit controversial. The older I get and the more I become part of the “elders”, the less inclined I am to call an elected official by the title and more by just the first name. I know there is protocol in certain contexts that should be followed, but if an elected official is offended by you calling them by their first name instead of their title, it speaks more about their delusions of grandeur than your irreverence.
4. You decide alone who is a valued and worthy friend in your life. Don’t let the opinions of 125,000 nameless and faceless voters or fans affect your feelings toward your friend, whether positively or negatively – especially positively, because if your opinion of a friend elevates because she got 125,000 strangers to vote for her, you are a fair weather friend and a hanger-on.
I have had working relationships with Governors and U.S. Representatives who I would never invite to dinner at the house. On the other hand, one of my favorites in the whole wide world did not win her primary for the Maryland House of Delegates.
The positive or negative opinions of strangers will never affect the unconditional dedication I have for a friend. Upon further inspection, someone already walked this earth preaching and living this example and He called on us to do the same.
5. In the end, we are all the same when we meet Our Maker. There will be no distinction between Presidents and peasants (Galatians 3:28). Titles will be completely irrelevant. There will just be the Name above all names. These are the biggest questions He will pose. Did you believe? Did this belief transform your life and manifest itself in you through love?
Believe. Love recklessly. Keep it real.
Merry Christmas. <><
December 8, 2014 By Phil Tran
Apparently the field is clear for John Whitbeck to be the next chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia. Virginia Republicans are hailing the clearing of the field of candidates as a sign of unity and praising Whitbeck for his “unifying efforts” as 10th Congressional District Republican Party of Virginia Chair.
As a public service, Virginia Republicans should be aware that Whitbeck’s “unifying efforts” as a party activist and 10th Congressional District RPV Chair are self-serving at best and sleazy at worst.
In Whitbeck’s day job as a divorce lawyer, he went out of his way and above and beyond to financially and emotionally wreak the life of a woman on the other side of the courtroom in a divorce case several years ago. That woman happened to be the best friend of one of the current Loudoun County Supervisors who, like Whitbeck, is also a Republican. War on women, indeed.
This is a known secret in Loudoun County that undermined Whitbeck’s failed run for Delegate in 2011. One of the strategists for a primary opponent against Whitbeck in 2011 encouraged a whisper campaign highlighting this fact and stated, “I don’t trust a guy who makes a living off of broken homes.” This known fact among the political class in Loudoun County has since been swept under the rug to further Whitbeck’s political ambitions and to create a veneer of peace in an otherwise uncomfortable and awkward situation with the aforementioned Republican Supervisor after Whitbeck became 10th District RPV Chair.
One only needs to check out Whitbeck’s lists of endorsements for his failed bid for the House of Delegates and failed bid for the State Senate to notice that Whitbeck could never unite the entire Loudoun County Board of Supervisors behind him because of his sleazy actions as a divorce lawyer against a Republican Supervisor’s best friend. Someone was noticeably absent.
The only reason why Whitbeck was able to unite the entire Loudoun County Board of Supervisors *once* behind his campaign for 10th District RPV Chair (which has Loudoun County at the epicenter) was because his crucial 9th endorsement on a board of 9 Supervisors quietly acquiesced in order to avoid political retribution from Whitbeck, his cronies, and his slobbering, rabid supporters after it became clear that Whitbeck was going to win convincingly at the convention. Whitbeck needed that 9th endorsement only to prevent the questions and the whisper campaign of 2011 from resurfacing. This Republican Loudoun Supervisor, who is admired as a conservative hero by the grassroots despite never seeking the limelight, and Whitbeck, who thirsts for the limelight, are not friends.
John Whitbeck, a “unifying force” for the RPV? He can’t even unify his own home county on his own merits and the reason why he can’t is damning to his character, judgment, and life choices.
Also, there are these gems.
November 14, 2014 By Phil Tran
““[Speaker Bill] Howell will beat [Susan] Stimpson like a rented mule,” said Ray Allen, a Republican consultant and Cantor loyalist who has tangled with the conservative coalition.”
Can you imagine if a Democrat said that? Republicans would spend a million dollars to make it known from every rooftop that Ray Allen is waging a “War on Women”, a war on mothers, a war against everything tangentially related to women that they can twist and stretch the statement to cover, and a war against “rented mules”, who possess the same diligence and decency as “paid-in-full” mules.
Ray Allen has used crony capitalism to secure no-bid contracts for direct mail with the Republican Party of Virginia for the longest time, thus hurting small businesses (which the RPV purports to support). Ray Allen, as Eric Cantor’s campaign manager, ran that campaign into the ground and snatched landslide defeat from the jaws of landslide victory all while earning a healthy payday.
Ray Allen has spent his entire life being a tone-deaf political hack in bed with Washington and Richmond insiders and has no idea how the rest of us work to earn a living. His “small business” sure ain’t like our small businesses. A candy store it is not. It is high time that Ray Allen finds a “real job.”
I supported Bill Howell for his leadership on the landmark transportation bill in 2013 (something Susan Stimpson is staunchly against). My conservative critics (who all support Stimpson) call me a Democrat straight up and skip over the RINO label. I am proud of the fact that no one has ever called me a RINO, they just call me a Democrat.
However, I am also a pro-life feminist fan of Sarah Palin whom Mitt Romney Republicans like Ray Allen have been trying to excommunicate for years. If Bill Howell wants to associate with Ray Allen or even go so far as to hire him to manage all or aspects of his campaign, I sure hope Susan Stimpson beats him like a… I just hope Susan Stimpson earns more votes than Bill Howell.
All politics is personal and politics sure makes strange bedfellows. Vote Susan Stimpson for Delegate.
October 26, 2014 By Phil Tran
October 24, 2014 By Phil Tran
Kim Kardashian has no talent and became famous in an amateur film that depicts her getting screwed. Corry Bliss is a nationally known Republican political operative who is famous for getting his candidates…screwed.
Ever since Corry Bliss became a consultant and a campaign manager for Republican candidates, he has always found a way to lose.
Thelma Drake for Congress 2008 (Virginia) – Lost to Glenn Nye. Bliss’ understudy here, Seamus Owens, lost with Jay O’Brien for State Senate 2007, Marianne Horinko for State Senate 2009, and Miller Baker for State Senate 2011.
Kerry Bolognese for Delegate 2009 (Virginia) – Lost to Dave Marsden in the general election in 2009, the same year Republicans trounced Democrats across the board. Bliss’ understudy Justin Shaffer would go on to work for Kerry Bolognese’s losing effort in the 2010 special election for the same seat against Eileen Filler-Corn. This understudy would follow Bliss to Vermont…
Brian Dubie for Governor 2010 (Vermont) – “Corry Bliss took a candidate that was up 20 points and turned him into a loser by election day,” said Bradford Broyles, a Republican activist from Mendon, a town in the central part of the state, near Killington. “We’re still repairing the damage to the Republican party.”
John Stirrup for State Senate 2011 (Virginia) – I am just going to quote myself here. See below.
Bliss’ understudy here, Ryan Terrill, would follow Bliss the rest of the way, but not without losing races of his own including Laura Neuman for Anne Arundel County Executive 2014 (took a Maryland statewide favorite and “rising star” and ran the campaign into the ground, thus forcing his mid-campaign ouster) and Joe Leibham for Congress (lost the primary).
Linda McMahon for U.S. Senate 2012 (Connecticut) – Bliss tried to deceptively link McMahon to Obama in a year Obama won by a landslide. McMahon still lost.
Joe May for Delegate 2013 (Virginia) – Bliss tarnished the image of a Virginia gentleman and lost in a primary to far-right extremist anti-public transportation bully Dave LaRock. Virginia is much worse because of this.
Karen Handel for U.S. Senate 2014 (Georgia) – Handel was an afterthought and finished 3rd in the primary.
Pat Roberts for U.S. Senate 2014 (Kansas) – To be determined, but this is a very negative campaign that is alienating a lot of people.
In just about every instance, Bliss employed his trademark dark, deceptive, and deathly negative campaign tactics. A Pat Roberts win, if Bliss can attain it, will not repair the smoldering wreckage Bliss has left behind for the candidates and the country to fix.
Likewise, to illustrate the incestuousness of the campaign world – that is every bit as incestuous as the Cocktail Party establishment crowd Inside the Beltway, everywhere Bliss goes, he takes his whole crew with him. Chris LaCivita is always the general consultant. Vince Harris is always the web designer and digital director. Ray Allen’s Creative Direct is always the direct mail firm (this is the same Ray Allen who is responsible for Eric Cantor’s demise as his campaign manager). Add an unimpressive crew of permanent underlings properly schooled in Bliss’ negative campaigns and negative personal demeanor like Ryan Terrill and Patrick Lee (who has a losing record of his own in Virginia – Will Nance for State Senate 2009, Samantha Rucker for School Board 2010, Pat Herrity for Congress 2010, Cory Stewart for Lieutenant Governor 2013) and you have an F Troop cast of characters who can’t hit a stationary target at point blank. It is a losing tradition.
In their defense, if Republicans are stupid enough to hire Corry Bliss and give him a six-figure salary and a blank check for staff, these hanger-on consultants stand to make an easy $10,000+ every year simply by sticking up for a victimizer known for his fierce loyalties to his peers. It is nice work if you can sell your soul for it.
July 14, 2014 By Big Gipper
Mitt Romney’s quixotic 2012 Presidential campaign was dead on arrival when he insinuated that 47% of Americans will never vote Republican because they enjoy paying no taxes and living on the dole, as if poor people have no goals in life. Such insensitive, out of touch statements apparently come naturally from one born into power and privilege like Mitt Romney. Now we have this doozy from one of Mitt’s very own endorsers Ed Gillespie.
Ed Gillespie said that “a minimum wage job…is where you learn the social aspects of work – it is where you play on the work softball team and go out for a beer after work.”
What alternate universe is Ed Gillespie living in? I do not know of a Congressional Softball League team consisting of 7-11 workers who hit up the Ugly Mug to get hammered after a weeknight game.
Ed Gillespie was not born into power and privilege, but he stopped keeping it real when he hit the big time. To understand Ed Gillespie’s comments is to understand his career history. His grandfather is one of us. His father is one of us. Ed himself is NOT one of us.
Ed “paid his way through college” by being a U.S. Senate parking lot attendant. He and the country club, Cocktail Party wing of the GOP in Washington, DC and Virginia think this is the definition of “starting from the bottom”. Let’s be real folks. Being a U.S. Senate parking lot attendant is NOT the same thing as being a parking lot attendant at PMI in Northeast DC in the hood.
Ed Gillespie’s alternate universe is the exclusive, elitist world of Washington politics, where liberal arts graduates brag about securing minimum wage or unpaid jobs “on the Hill”, pretend they are celebrities, attempt to photobomb C-SPAN, join their office’s beer league softball team, hit up all the “networking happy hours” to get throwed, and chase a “good time” after hours. You should hear about the sex scandals involving Capitol Hill staffers from both parties alike. If hard-working, taxpaying Americans knew what an incestuous, immature fraternity Capitol Hill is, it would destroy their awe and wonder about Capitol Hill and enrage them to vote everyone out and replace them with nobody.
In the name of networking, career advancement, and just straight up arrested development, low level Capitol Hill staffers are bleeding money, partying it up, spending more than a day’s paycheck on alcohol, and living in the red in one of America’s most expensive cities. Meanwhile, the rest of us are closing up shop at one minimum wage job, not so we can hang out with our co-workers at Tortilla Coast, but so we can make it in time to our second minimum wage job.
I don’t deny that Ed has done well for himself. He went from being a U.S. Senate parking lot attendant, to U.S. House staffer, to Presidential advisor, to RNC Chairman, to lobbyist, to “small business owner” working in…politics. Therein lies the problem. Ed Gillespie has never known a job outside of politics. His “minumum wage job” is nothing like our minimum wage job and that distorts his reality.
Americans are sick of career politicians pretending to know the struggles of hardworking, taxpaying Americans. Despite Ed’s overarching attempts to paint himself as a little guy who made it, he is looking more and more like Mitt Romney everyday. We know how badly that ended.