WaPo: Robert Sarvis Injects The Freshness (And Other Semi-Humorous Headlines)PolicyPolitics

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So here we are — last week of an interminable campaign season that looks to sap our very wills to live.

This week?  The Washington Post kicks off with the headline that could only be born of stale Cheetos and 3am hangovers: Libertarian Sarvis injects freshness into Virginia governor’s race forum.

I kid you not… that’s a headline.

Anyone weary of the campaign same-old, same-old — Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II (R) saying, “I’m the only candidate in the race who won’t need on-the-job training,” or Democrat Terry McAuliffe declaring, “We’ve got sequestration here for the year” — could enjoy these new nuggets Saturday from little-known candidate Robert Sarvis: Quoting Alexander Solzhenitsyn. Advocating an end to the war on drugs. Discussing abortion as a “metaphysical” disagreement. And saying flatly that contracting policies that favor minority-owned businesses violate “the rule of law.”

It was a revelation to even the most dedicated politics-watchers because Sarvis, who has been polling around 10 percent, has been shut out of every debate. He has participated in some forums with McAuliffe and Cuccinelli, but they were small ones that brought out the candidates sequentially, not together. On Saturday, Sarvis was allowed to take the stage with his major-party competition at a forum sponsored by Radio One and 8News, Richmond’s ABC television affiliate.

“He seems genuine, and I like that he doesn’t appear to be backed by big money,” said Felicia Kalber, 43, who came to the event inclined to vote for Sarvis and left convinced that she would. Kalber, who does accounting work, picked up a Sarvis pin and put it on before leaving.

For starters, any candidate bold enough to quote Solzhenitsyn deserves your attention.  That’s just damn cool.

Next, for your borderline racist attack-by-drive-by-media headline of the week, we have this little gem courtesy of the Richmond Times-Dispatch entitled:  E. W. Jackson has history of financial woes

While running a Christian radio station in Boston in the 1980s, a small business Jackson had founded for this purpose accumulated nine state and federal tax liens within 10 years. A personal tax lien also was filed against him.

Jackson’s financial trouble resulted in a personal bankruptcy in 1993. Three years later, his wife also filed for bankruptcy.

In Chesapeake, where the couple has resided since 1998, the city’s treasurer’s office sued Jackson twice for failing to pay taxes in 2012. The Virginia State Corporation Commission shut down one of his nonprofit organizations that same year after it had failed to pay state fees.

Jackson did not want to be interviewed for this story and did not respond to detailed questions in writing. But in a statement submitted by his campaign, he called the tax issues related to his radio broadcasting company “a 10-year battle with the federal government” over unpaid taxes and licensing fees due to the Federal Communications Commission — a fight that he says he ultimately won.

Perhaps next time, the RTD editors should just label their anti-Jackson in kind contributions to the Northam campaign “Black Man Can’t Pay His Bills” and be done with it… because that was a sleazy, underhanded article directed at Jackson and unworthy of the time it took to write.

Of course, up in Loudoun County, no mention of this in the RTD (or anywhere else for that matter):

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Yes, ladies and gentlemen… that’s E.W. Jackson in whiteface.  Draw conclusions as you may.

Meanwhile, the RCP polling average this morning?  McAuliffe by 9.2 points.  Strip away Sarvis, and McAuliffe is very close 50%.  Even if undecideds break 2:1 in favor of presumed challenger Cuccinelli, this race is McAuliffe 53-47 Cuccinelli.  Should it break 1:1, we’re looking at a McAuliffe 55-45 Cuccinelli race.

Add in Sarvis, and should his numbers hold… the likelihood that McAuliffe will break 50% is questionable at this rate, but it could very well be that McAuliffe comes in near 50%, while Cuccinelli comes in somewhere near 40% and Sarvis breaks the plane at 10%, with undecideds hovering at 7% as of Monday morning.

Four scenarios unfold:

(1)  McAuliffe wins with a majority, Sarvis is over 10%.  At this rate, expect a migration to the Libertarian Party in Virginia, which will then enter into convulsions as to what “libertarianism” really means.  Is the LPVA ready for disaffected conservatives, Tea Partiers, and so forth?  This I do not know… but it will be interesting to watch.  Meanwhile, the RPV Advance becomes a far more interesting place being forced to placate both a libertarian right and a disaffected but rejuvenated moderate center.  Should the moderates decide to “take back” the Republican Party of Virginia via State Central Committee, watch out… don’t expect open warfare, but something of a much more Byzantine and conniving skullduggery…

(2)  McAuliffe wins with a majority, Sarvis does not break 10%.  Same as before, only the libertarians stay within the ranks of the RPV making the moderates job a lot harder.  This, frankly, is the most likely scenario… though it is not outside the boundaries of probability that Sarvis will break the 10% threshold.

(3)  McAuliffe wins with a plurality, Sarvis breaks 10%.  Should this happen, expect the exodus to the LPVA to be much more intense.  This scenario would be the worst-case option for the center-right, as the recriminations over who-cost-whom-what would be rather intense (as a coalition would have mathematically ensured victory).

(4)  McAuliffe wins with a plurality, Sarvis does not break 10%.  Same as #2, only much more bitter towards the disaffected libertarians.  Both the moderate and conservative wings will have to be extraordinarily careful in how they treat the liberty movement at this point and all three major factions: (1) the Tea Party, which offers the most danger to the RPV should they leave en masse, (2) the Ron Paul movement, which offers the most benefit to the RPV should they remain in the fold, and (3) disaffected lowercase-l libertarians should either major faction outside or any minor faction inside the liberty movement attempt to drag them along or speak with their voice.

Of course, there’s always (5) Cuccinelli rides in on a T-Rex waving a Virginia flag and smiting all enemies with thunderbolts from his fingertips.

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Pew, pew, pew!  And did we mention the Mace of 1000 Truths?

…but that is highly doubtful at this rate, unless McAuliffe decides to do something disgustingly stupid that rises above Bob McDonnell’s Giftgate on the Scandal-o-meter.  As this has not happened… nor is it likely to happ– LIBERIAN SHIPPING SCANDAL!!! — ahem… nor is it likely to happen in the near future with only a we– GLOBAL CROSSING OMG!!! — um… what the heck, is this like campaign Tourette’s Syndro– RRR POLL SHOWS CUCCINELLI BY 50!!!! — well… you all get the point I’m trying to make here, right?

Enjoy your Monday!

  • S Fisher

    Wow! What an encouraging article…I’m depressed now!

  • midwestconservative

    I saw a T-Rex today, so *fingers crossed*

    • S Fisher

      Well, that makes me feel a little better! :)

  • Wally Erb

    Anyone who was fortunate to watch Saturday’s three-way forum at the Virginia War Memorial ( also streamed) would honestly have to admit that not only did Sarvis hold his own, but added to the dialog in a way that past forums and debates were lacking; depth to the issues that face our contemporary problems. While the majors addressed the issues in a redundant manner, Sarvis also revealed proposals to address the root causes rather than the obvious “band aid-fixes”. (IMO) KC came across as a whiner complaining about lies leveled at him by his opponent, out-spent, and the only one with “plans”. TM was evidently enjoying himself and completely ignored KC’s negativity by refusing to be baited into a confrontation. Sarvis, on the other hand, scored exceptionally well by ignoring both and touching on reasonable solutions that have escaped the the majors message and was well received by the observers. In my estimation, KC’s big gaff was the old (sic), any vote for other than me is a vote for TM. Conversely, in this forum it would appear that Sarvis tapped more of TM soft support rather than from KC. Will Sarvis make the 10 percent return mark? Considering Sarvis is polling near 10 percent and the Purple PAC (CATO co-founder) is injecting $300K in media buys we may just see the emergence of a third party in the Commonwealth.

  • Brad Froman

    A more libertarian Commonwealth and nation is evolving because government has gotten too big and clumsy and more restrictive of personal freedoms. Voters blame both major parties.

    • Mikey D

      When an attempt for a “more libertarian Commonwealth” leads to Gov. McAuliffe we all lose…

    • Evan Murch

      Sarvis isn’t even libertarian: “I’m not into the whole Austrian type, strongly libertarian economics, I like more mainstream economics and would have been happy to go elsewhere.”
      Theres a reason real libertarians like Ron and Rand Paul are behind Cuccinelli.

  • Pingback: Purple PAC to Sarvis’ rescue? | Bearing Drift

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  • Ryan Gleason

    Can we save the post mordems for after the election? I’ve been really disappointed with alot of the commentary from BD the last few weeks.

  • midwestconservative

    There is about as much chance of Ken Cuccinelli riding in on that T-Rex he’s got stowed away as Robert Sarvis breaking 10%.

  • Evan Murch

    The fact is we won’t know until its over. These polls assume everyone taking them are actually going to get out and vote. I should like to think that there are more people fired up about Cuccinelli than McAwful. I could be wrong. But articles like these should prod us to more action. . . make sure EVERYONE you know gets out and votes for CuJO! . . . and pray for God’s mercy.

    • David Eggleston

      The problem is people are fired up about the Cooch, just not in his favor.

  • Alex70

    Dear Mr. Kenney,

    I confess that I am mystified as to why you accuse the RTD of racism for reporting Bishop E. W. Jackson’s long history of financial problems. It seems to me that any candidates’ pattern of problematic finances—regardless of his race–should be thoroughly vetted by journalists.

    Bishop Jackson apparently had the opportunity to refute the claims made in the story, but he chose not to do so.

    The fact that Bishop Jackson has been sued by a municipality several times in recent years for not paying taxes might—it seems to me—reflect on his ability to serve in our state’s second highest office.

    Please explain your accusation more clearly.

    Best wishes,
    Alex Leidholdt
    Harrisonburg

    • David Eggleston

      The race card’s all he’s got left to play.

      • Alex70

        Dear Mr. Kenney

        I respectfully request that as you work on retracting your accusation that racism motivated the RTD’s recent story on Bishop Jackson’s financial woes that you also please consider retracting your earlier outlandish allegation that Texas pro-choice advocates attempted to smear feces and spill urine in the Lone Star statehouse. As I mentioned to you at the time that charge seemed highly improbable.

        Please see Mr. Kenney’s accusation:

        1) http://bearingdrift.com/2013/07/13/pro-life-victory-in-texas-senate-votes-19-11-on-third-reading/#comment-960825225

        And the Texas Tribune’s refutation:

        2) http://www.texastribune.org/2013/08/26/dps-documents-show-no-proof-excrements/

        I hope that in the future you will cease this sort of irresponsible provocation. You and misters Schoeneman and Leahy are very knowledgeable about Virginia politics. There’s no need for you to so behave so irresponsibly.

        Best wishes,
        Alex Leidholdt
        Harrisonburg

    • mattattack911

      Agreed. The white face smear on that sign is obviously racist and appalling, but reporting on financial troubles is not racist at all, unless the implication is that the press is only doing so because he’s African American. That’s a tough sell in my opinion.

  • Carey Campbell

    Very amusing post, Shaun. Thanks. It has been an amazing year. Full of surprises for Virginia’s Independent Green Party. We were pleased that our Independent Green Party candidate in the House of Delegates 100th District John W. Smith Jr. received the endorsement at Virginia Right!
    John W. Smith Jr.

    As was has been the case for years, the Independent Green Party petition gathering team were happy to help collect the signatures to get Mr. Sarvis on the ballot early this year.

    Indy Greens on the ballot for House of Delegates across the state:

    Col. Jim Leslie (USMC) looks to do well in his one on one race in Annandale

    Terry Modlgin in Arlington – running campaign – and the Marine Corps Marathon.

    And our retired U.S. Air Force officer Gail for Rail

    Mary Scott Martin is winning applause in Martinsville

    Barbara T. Hall in Marion has great We The People signs

    Thank you.

  • Hope

    There are thousands of volunteers out there making calls, going door to door and reaching out to anyone they can in order to help Cuccinelli win this difficult race. You all have done NOTHING but constantly undermine him on this blog. You read polls. You complain and you whine. Cuccinelli has stuck his neck out and his reputation out on the line to try to win this race while being HAMMERED for months by McAullife, the media, and with lying commercials paid for by Planned Parenthood, Labor Unions, Environmentalists, Bloomberg. This type of public scourging is what is required in today’s America to run for office as a Conservative Republican. Are any of you whiners willing to pay the price? Cuccinelli is. He is fighting…and you are whining. With friends like you, who do you think is going to be willing to step up to the plate and be the next whipping boy? Pathetic.