While all eyes were on Barack Obama, David Souter, and Arlen Specter these last couple of weeks, it is important to remember that there are some important elections taking place in 2009. And while most of the big decisions will be sorted out in November (good news: The VA Gov. candidate is up in the polls!) -- Virginia Republicans will select a nominee for the important position of Attorney General in a few short weeks.
My heart is with conservative state senator Ken Cuccinelli and I join RedState.com in endorsing this leader for the Commonwealth of Virginia. With the Virginia Republicans still rebuilding, I believe that Ken will fill the void the leadership void created when Senator George Allen lost in 2006
Virginia is, of course, unique, and as such, Virginia Republicans will select the AG nominee -- not with a primary election -- but at a state convention to take place on May 29-30 in Richmond (they will also elect a Chairman). Winning a convention requires turning out supporters willing to sit through hours and hours of official “business” before getting to vote -- and Ken Cuccinelli -- who is known for his ability to organize grassroots conservatives – appears especially well positioned to win this type of contest.
Despite being arguably the most conservative state senator in the Commonwealth, Cuccinelli is also the last remaining Republican state senator in liberal northern Virginia. This, of course, has everything to do with his to organize and turn out conservatives on election day. In this regard, he is a double-threat: A candidate conservative enough to win “downstate” voters, but who also has a proven track record of winning in liberal Northern Virginia. Even his likely Democratic opponent views Cuccinelli as his likely General Election opponent – and has already started attacking him.
Cuccinelli’s GOP opponents include John Brownlee and Dave Foster. Predictably, all three candidates are running as “the conservative” in the race, but it’s worth noting their positions on what has become a key litmus test, the John Warner vs. Jim Miller Primary. Brownlee and Foster, of course, both backed liberal Senator Warner, while Cuccinelli (Cooch! as he is often called), supported the conservative Miller. That may mean little to folks around the nation, but for Virginia insiders, where one stands on that race pretty much summs it all up.
One of the reasons Cuccinelli has earned conservative support is that he is the only candidate for Attorney General with a proven record. His record includes:
- Leading the fight to defeat the Sales Tax Referendum in Northern Virginia
- Helping lead the fight in Northern Virginia to win the marriage amendment.
- Successfully passed legislation that requires all contractors doing business with the Commonwealth of Virginia to check the legal status of all employees and hire only legal residents. This law also provides - for the first time - that those contractors who cheat by hiring illegal aliens can now be terminated as state contractors (SB 517, 2008).
The Attorney General race is important for several reasons – but among them is the fact that AG’s often go on to serve as Governor. This is especially true in the Commonwealth of Virginia, where Governors cannot succeed themselves.
I’ll be keeping a close eye on this one, and reporting back to you.