Friday, February 26, 2010

UPDATED: Griffith makes it official

From the Roanoke Times:
State Del. Morgan Griffith’s campaign for Congress became official this morning when the Salem Republican filed as a candidate for the GOP nomination in the 9th Congressional District.

Griffith said he sent a letter and $500 filing fee this morning that will make him a candidate for the Republican nomination, which will be decided at a May 22 convention. Griffith already had formed a federal campaign committee and has been lining up support from party leaders in the sprawling district.
Update- Here's the statement from the Griffith campaign:

Griffith Statement on Filing of Candidacy
House Majority Leader files statement declaring intention to seek Republican Congressional nomination for Virginia's 9th District
Richmond, Virginia, 26 February 2010:  House Majority Leader H. Morgan Griffith (R-Salem) today issued the following statement regarding his filing of a statement with the 9th District Republican Congressional Committee, indicating his intention to seek the Republican nomination for Congress:
"Earlier today, Michelle Jenkins, Chairman of the 9th District Republican Committee, received a signed statement from me declaring that I will be a candidate for the Republican nomination for Congress from Virginia's 9th District.  She also received from me the candidate filing fee, as required by the Convention Call issued by the Committee.
"The acceptance of this form and fee means that I am qualified to seek the Republican nomination for Congress at the 9th District Republican Convention on May 22 at Fort Chiswell High School in Max Meadows.
"The General Assembly is scheduled to be in session for another two weeks, so my duties as Majority Leader will delay a formal public announcement of my candidacy until after we have adjourned for the year."
House Majority Leader H. Morgan Griffith (R-Salem) represents the Eighth District in the Virginia House of Delegates.  The Eighth District is comprised of the City of Salem and portions of Roanoke County.

Cross-posted @ VA Social Conservative 

The Health Care Summit: Paul Ryan and the GOP steal the stage from Obama

For those who thought today's Health Care Summit at the Blair House would be Obama, Reid, and Pelosi's show you were proven wrong. Today belonged to the GOP proving that we are not the party of "no" but a party with solutions. Specifically Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin took the day in what could be remembered as the day he really and truly became on of the GOP's brightest young stars.

From Erick Erickson at Red State:
Many Republicans thought that after the President overshadowed the GOP at their Baltimore retreat last month, going to Blair House yesterday would just be another PR disaster.
It was anything but.
The GOP won the day so convincingly that even the traditional media had to praise the party for talking issues.
For those who didn't see this portion, which came in the afternoon session, Ryan launched a full on assult on the bill more or less talking about how the bill will greatly increase the deficit which is something the Dems have lied about time and time again. Additionally he hits on the fact that medicare is broke, how this bill will hurt seniors as well as future generations, and quoting a budget chairman who said this bill was a "ponzi scheme that would make Bernie Madoff proud".

In regards to what Ryan had to say there the Weekly Standard had this to say:
Obama didn't even bother questioning Ryan's presentation. He changed the subject to Medicare Advantage. The expression on the president's face as Ryan made his case was absolutely priceless. Simply put, he looked like someone who realizes he's met his match.

Here's Ryan from earlier in the day where he talks about the essential difference in philosophy between the Dems and Republicans as they go about trying to achieve health care reform. 

John McCain also had a great day today really getting into it with Obama. McCain wanted to address issues in regards to the process and what went wrong there but Obama wasn't having it telling him "the election is over".

A.B. Stoddard from The Hill sums up the GOP's preformance pretty well:

“I think we need to start out by acknowledging Republicans brought their ‘A Team.’ They had doctors knowledgeable about the system, they brought substance to the table, and they, I thought, expressed interest in the reform.  I thought in the lecture from Senator John McCain and on the issue of transparency, I thought today the Democrats were pretty much on their knees.”

All in all it was a great day exposure wise for Republicans. Was a lot accomplished? No, not at all. But we have to ask ourselves: Would the GOP have been able to put forth their proposals and let the American people hear them if we hadn't done this? No not at all. If this had been done on the House or Senate floor or in some closed door meeting on Capitol Hill the GOP would not have recived much media coverage at all. It also proved to the American people the the GOP is not just the party of "NO". Sometimes it is good to say no, especially at times like these we need to be saying no on things like spending etc., but in order to regain the trust of the American people we needed to show them our solutions which is what we did today. Today was a step abet a small one, but a step none this less and that is what we needed.

Cross-posted @  VA Social Conservative
Cross-posted @ RedState

Thursday, February 25, 2010

More News in the 9th

From Larry Sabato's Center for Politics:
VA-9 (Rick Boucher-D)
Rating Change: Safe D to Likely D

When an incumbent member of Congress who has represented the same district for 28 years draws a challenger who does not even live in the district should he be worried? If the incumbent is Virginia Democrat Rick Boucher then yes. Boucher’s district is coal country, comprised of the entire southwestern tip of Virginia and bordered by West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, and North Carolina. While Boucher voted against the health care bill, his vote for cap-and-trade is already causing him headaches. Adding to his pains, Virginia’s state House Majority Leader, Morgan Griffith, has all but announced he will challenge Boucher. Griffith is a top tier candidate and has been recruited by the NRCC, but he lives in the 6th District instead of the 9th. This could complicate his bid against the entrenched Boucher, although Griffith’s supporters point out that his home is only “feet” from the district’s border and redistricting may render the point moot after this year’s election. While Griffith’s bid would be legal, since congressmen in Virginia only have to live in the state and not in the district they represent, politics is perception and a Republican argument that Boucher is out of touch with his district could be weakened by a messenger who does not even live there. Still, Boucher will be in for one of the tougher fights of his decades-long career as Republicans put another entrenched Democrat on their target list. (emphasis mine)
It's not going to be easy to take down Boucher, but based on the developments of the last few days it looks like the GOP is ready to put up one hell of a fight. Should be fun.

Cross-posted @ RedState

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Bill Stanley's Plan for the 5th District

So as many of you may have heard the race for Chairman of the 5th District Republican Committee is shaping up. The announced candidates thus far are Bill Stanley, Chairman of the Franklin County Republican Committee and Christian Schoenewald, Chairman of the Albemarle County Republican Committee. I threw my support behind Stanley earlier in the year when he announced:

Many of you know Bill Stanley from his unsuccessful bid for RPV Chair last May as well as his work as Chairman of the Franklin County GOP Committee.  As a local unit chair Bill has without a doubt distinguished himself and his committee as one of the best in the state and was named "Unit Chair of the Year" for the 5th District two years running. In Franklin Country, under the leadership of Bill Stanley, the GOP Committee has seen their fundraising and membership increase greatly. I worked on Bill's campaign for RPV Chairman and I can think of no better person to lead the 5th District GOP or RPV for that matter. Youth is something the RPV and GOP as a whole needs desperately. Like Greg, Bill will bring much needed youth to the leadership of the 5th District Committee. Additionally, there is much tension between Republicans in the 5th District at the moment as you may well be very familiar with via the massive amount of news media and blog coverage. The Republicans in the 5th District need an experienced leader with enthusiasm as well as new and innovative ideas who can bring the party back together to work for our common goals. That experienced leader is Bill Stanley.
Here is Bill's plan for victory in the 5th District:

- The 5th District should serve and answer to the Party’s activist and volunteer base.
- The 5th should provide the grassroots organizational structure for each local unit in the 5th necessary to help elect its nominees at every level of government.
- The 5th District should never be conformed to the image of any single candidate, campaign, or elected public official. Candidates, campaigns, and elected public officials come and go, but the Party has a responsibility to endure, reflecting the values and principles of its activist and volunteer base.
- The 5th District should ensure that nomination contests are fair, open and properly conducted, and it should never take sides in party nomination contests (even when incumbents are challenged for the nomination).
- The 5th District should reflect the values and principles of its conservative base, and should never shrink from, apologize for, discount, or diminish their positions on any given issue.
- The 5th District should focus its efforts on training our activists and volunteers at the Unit level, building the structure at every level that will both foster and elect conservative candidates.
- The 5th District should provide an effective, modern (including internet and social networking) structure of communications with the both the activist base and the public.

Raise Money

If elected, I would immediately set in motion significant fund-raising efforts in order to raise at least $250,000.00, to be used by the committee in its efforts to defeat Tom Perriello in 2010, and to strengthen the local units.


Because this year is so critical in returning the congressional seat in the 5th District back to conservative hands, the 5th District committee must agree to meet on a more regular basis than in years past. This committee must be dedicated to the process of victory, and this process will take the best and most dedicated efforts and strengths of all of its unit chairmen and members in order to be achieved. I believe that this requires regular planning sessions, strategy meetings, and a regular and consistent interaction between the units.

Establish a Plan for Victory

Make no mistake, Tom Perriello is no pushover, and his funding and campaign organizational skills caught us off-guard in 2008. I personally met more people from Connecticut and New York at local polling places in my county during the last congressional election than I ever care to meet again. We must expect the same tactics, and we must be prepared. In order to win, we must out-prepare, out-organize, out-work the democrats, and execute a cohesive political strategy to beat our opponent. We are Virginians, we don’t need help from outsiders to determine the future of our region. To quote a famous line in the movie “Rudy”: No one, and I MEAN NO ONE, comes into our backyard and pushes us around. We will not allow this to occur in 2010. Therefore, we must establish a specific plan for victory that utilizes all of our best resources and organizational skills in a manner never before seen in 5th District politics. And, we need to do this now.

Education of the Grassroots Volunteers/Local Candidates

The 5th District Committee owes to each of its units a fundamental obligation to train the membership, future local candidates and grassroots volunteers in order to achieve success at the local ballot box. As chairman, I will ensure that the 5th District establishes an educational and training program for both local candidates and grassroots activists. We must raise a well-trained army of Republican volunteers that not only utilizes each individual’s talents to be used throughout the District, but also we must prepare and equip them with the skills necessary to defeat Tom Perriello at each polling place. If elected, I promise that each unit will have all the necessary resources needed to win. There must not be a polling place within the 5th District that goes unmanned, there will not be a door that has not been knocked on, nor a call not made; we will not fail because of a lack of effort in 2010.

Assist Local Units in Fundraising Efforts

If elected, I will implement programs of joint partnership with the local units to raise funds for the operations of each unit. A well-funded local committee, is a successful committee that fosters the growth of local conservative candidates. The candidate that each unit develops and supports is a potential conservative that will lead us in the future on the state level. We must support the autonomous growth of our party’s future leaders within each unit.

Public Relations/New Media

For too long, our units within the 5th have acted independently, and without a cohesive message. We must be able to come together, as one unit, with one voice, and with the singular goal to defeat the well-funded incumbent Tom Perriello. If elected, I will implement a Public Relations strategy that gets our conservative message out to the constituents and to the media on a constant basis. This will involve a focused effort on traditional media outlets, as well as a complete utilization of new media. We must establish a new method of having each committee in the 5th communicate on a real time basis with other units, in order to create a cohesive and seamless political operation.

Strengthen College Republicans

We have a great resource of colleges throughout the 5th District that must be tapped into. Not only are these members the future of our party, they are an excellent volunteer resource. The Committee needs to foster and grow its relationship to these clubs at every college within the 5th, and we must integrate them fully into 5th District political operations.

New Member Outreach

The 5th District must energetically enact programs and establish objectives to double the membership of each unit in 2010. We need to reach out to the disaffected, the disenfranchised, the youth, ethnic groups, conservative organizations, and the young professionals. The Republican Party is a big tent, and we must continuously strive to bring new and energized activists into our local ranks.

Voter Registration

It is our obligation to register new voters during each election cycle. Last year, I along with other Republican leaders in the 5th and RPV, established a target-specific voter registration drive of those unregistered voters in our District that held hunting, fishing and concealed-carry permits. This is an unregistered group of in excess of 15,000 citizens in our District alone. Although the registration effort was started with little time before the 2009 election, we were able to register a significant number of new voters within our district; the second amendment is an important issue in light of the democrats’ recent efforts to limit our right to bear arms. If elected, I will continue this voter registration drive in the 5th District, and will pledge to have our committee lead the effort in registering 10,000 new conservative voters before the 2010 election.

Create a Level Playing Field in all Elections

It is the responsibility of the 5th district to guarantee a level playing field for all Republican candidates who run in contested primaries. I pledge to you that all candidates who have the courage to run for public office, in both the upcoming congressional election and future elections on the local and state level, will be afforded an equal opportunity to reach voters in the units within the District; that they will be treated with respect, and that we will guarantee that they will have their message heard by all of the members of our community. This is critical for us to provide every voter with a full and complete opportunity to decide for themselves, free from the influence and without the interference of the party apparatus, just who is the best candidate to represent the Republican Party in each and every election, whether it be local, state or national.

UPDATED: What is the NRA's deal?

News has now come out that the NRA has endorsed Rep. Rick Boucher for his bid for re-election today.

From the Roanoke Times:

The National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund has endorsed Rick Boucher in his re-election bid, according to Boucher’s campaign office.

The endorsement comes with an A+ rating based on Boucher’s voting record on the Second Amendment.

“I am pleased to again have the endorsement of the NRA. Throughout my service in Congress, I have strongly supported gun owners’ rights and have worked closely with the NRA and sportsmen in Southwest Virginia to ensure that those rights are protected,” Boucher said.
I find this a complete and utter injustice to the NRA's typical endorsement procedures. The GOP nominee has not been decided and will not be decided until the 9th District GOP Convention on May 22.

If you recall there was much controversy surrouding the NRA endorsement last fall in the 8th House of Delegates district which also surrounded someone involved in the 9th race- Delegate Morgan Griffith. If you missed this catch up hereherehere, and here

My understanding is that standard procedure for the NRA Institute for Legislative Action/NRA Political Victory Fund endorsement is after the nominees have been set for both the GOP and Dems that a questionaire is then sent to both candidates, they fill it out, send it back, its graded and they make their endorsement. They do make endorsements in primaries at times, like last year when Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli was endorsed leading up to the GOP State Convention. I get that this is a big race but why change your typical procedure now? And why endorse Boucher when he is mostly likely getting ready to recieve a challange from someone who has also consistantly recieved an A+ rating from the group.

An A+ is described by the NRA as:

A legislator with not only an excellent voting record on all critical NRA issues, but who has also made a vigorous effort to promote and defend the Second Amendment.
I also understand the NRA likes Boucher, but it seems kind of messed up to me that you turn your back completely on someone who you spent $5,231  on in independent expenditures on to ensure he was re-elected to the House of Delegates less than six months ago and in addition have contributed a total of $24,200 to get him elected since 1996.

If the NRA was to endorse Boucher in August or September I would have said oh well. But something really smells funny about this endorsement given the fact that it was given in February as well as the fact that Boucher is about to be challanged by somone who has also recieved an A+ rating from the NRA in the past and the NRA state association has had things like this to say about him:
Delegate Griffith is reliable friend of gun owners in the Virginia General Assembly. As a member of the House Militia, Police, and Public Safety Committee, he is one of the "go-to" legislators when we need to kill a bad bill and when a good bill needs to be moved out of committee.
UPDATE- Response from Griffith camp:
Griffith issued a response this afternoon, congratulating Boucher on the endorsement but questioning his commitment to Democratic leadership that has received much lower NRA ratings.

“The NRA has endorsed Congressman Boucher based on specific votes he has taken in Washington on issues of importance to sportsmen and gun owners,” Griffith said. “There is, however, one vote taken at the beginning of each Congress that the group does not compute into its ratings. And on that vote, for Speaker of the House, he has been placing in a position of power Nancy Pelosi, who clearly does not have a commitment to protecting the Second Amendment rights of Americans.

“I commit to the voters of the 9th District, I will never vote for a Speaker of the House who does not share my strong support for the Second Amendment.”

Griffith also touted the consistent “A” rating he’s received from the NRA during his tenure in the House of Delegates.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

House Majority Leader Del. Morgan Griffith forms campaign committee

From the Roanoke Times:

State Del. Morgan Griffith of Salem has taken a formal step toward becoming a Republican candidate for the congressional seat held by U.S. Rep. Rick Boucher, D-Abingdon, forming a campaign committee and releasing a statement of support from Republican state legislators in the 9th Congressional District.

Griffith said this afternoon that he has not made a final decision to get in the race, but acknowledged that "clearly, I'm on the edge of a decision."

Statements of support for Griffith's candidacy were issued in a press release with the heading, "Morgan Griffith for Congress." Griffith also said he has taken the steps to form the committee. But he said he wants to speak with more unit chairman in the 9th District before fully committing to running for the seat.

Here's the press release:

9th District Legislators Declare Support for Griffith for Congress

Griffith wins early backing from General Assembly members representing Southwest

Richmond, Virginia, 23 February 2010: House Majority Leader H. Morgan Griffith (R-Salem) received strong support to make the race for Congress today, as members of the General Assembly representing the 9th Congressional District in the Virginia General Assembly threw their support behind his possible candidacy.

“Morgan has been a strong voice for Southwest in Richmond, and the values of the people of Southwest would be better represented if he were their voice in Washington,” declared Delegate Charles W. “Bill” Carrico (R-Grayson). Carrico was the Republican nominee against incumbent Congressman Frederick C. “Rick” Boucher (D-VA09) in the 2006 election.

“Morgan is the best candidate to represent our values in Washington,” said Delegate Terry G. Kilgore (R-Scott). “He’ll make a great nominee and he’ll be a great congressman. He will bring common sense to Washington.”

“I’ve lived in Southwest Virginia all my life, and my father and I have fought for the values of the people of Southwest,” noted Senator William C. Wampler Jr. (R-Bristol). “I know that Morgan is the best opportunity for the 9th District to have a voice that reflects their values in Washington.”

“Southwest needs Morgan in Congress,” said Delegate Anne B. Crockett-Stark (R-Wythe). “He’s been looking out for the people of our region in the House of Delegates, and he’s demonstrated time and again his effectiveness as a strong leader and effective representative for Southwest Virginia.”

“Morgan and I both represent parts of the 9th Congressional District, and we work closely together on a host of issues that are vital to Southwest,” remarked Delegate Charles D. Poindexter (R-Franklin). “Morgan has been able to make a real difference in Richmond, and when he goes to Washington the people of Southwest will have a representative that will vote their interests on the key issues of jobs, energy, and government spending.”

“Coal is the lifeblood of Southwest, and Morgan Griffith will stand up for coal and against the job-killing cap-and-trade scheme that would cripple our industry,” noted Delegate James W. “Will” Morefield (R-Tazewell).

“Morgan understands how essential Virginia Tech and Radford Universities are to job creation, research and the economic viability of Southwest Virginia,” noted Delegate David A. Nutter (R-Montgomery).

“Virginia is the best state to do business because we work to keep taxes low, and Morgan has been a consistent opponent of higher taxes,” said Senator Ralph K. Smith (R-Botetourt). “He has been a fighter for conservative principles.”

House Majority Leader H. Morgan Griffith (R-Salem) represents the Eighth District in the Virginia House of Delegates. The Eighth District is comprised of the City of Salem and portions of Roanoke County.

Friday, February 12, 2010

New Young Cons Video: The Problem

Nice shout outs to Marco Rubio, Allen West, and Michelle Malkin. Also like the Regan between verses.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Rubio continues to rise while Charlie Crist is still hanging with Obama

As you can see FL Gov. Charlie Crist (to the right of the Naval Officer) is still hanging out with President Obama. Obama meanwhile bowed to the Mayor of Tampa, Pam Iorio. 

This all occurred last Thursday when Obama made another campaign stop in Florida. 

Then yesterday


Former state House Speaker Marco Rubio has now jumped to a 12-point lead over Governor Charlie Crist in Florida’s Republican Primary race for the U.S. Senate.
A new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of likely GOP Primary voters in the state finds Rubio leading Crist 49% to 37%. Three percent (3%) prefer another candidate, and 11% are undecided.

The new numbers mark a stunning turnaround. Crist was the strong favorite when he first announced for the Senate seat, and Rubio was viewed as a long-shot challenger.
But Crist’s support fell from 53% in August to 49% in OctoberBy December, the two men were tied at 43% apiece.

In Florida's Senate general election contest, Crist and Rubio both hold a double-digit lead over their likely Democratic opponent, Congressman Kendrick Meek, in the latest Rasmussen Reports polling of likely voters in the state.

Above is the latest graph of the polls from the Senate Conservatives Fund

Just a reminder to you all that haven't heard. As we try to finish Crist off the Senate Conservatives Fund is holding a moneybomb for Marco next Wednesday February 10, which happens to be the one year anniversary of the day Crist appeared with Obama in Florida to promote the stimulus. Click here to pledge to donate. This primary is truly the battle for the heart and soul of our party not VA-5 as some of you may think. Charlie Crist is a moderate and that has been proven time and time again. We must defeat Charlie Crist. And all that aside the GOP needs new, diverse, well educated, well spoken, and younger leadership with new ideas if we are going to beat the Dems and get off this socialist track. It would be a crying shame if Marco Rubio wasn't given the opportunity to be a leader for the GOP in the US Senate.

And for all of you who are going to CPAC Marco will be giving the keynote address! See ya there!

PS Marco Rubio for US Senate