Elephant Ears

This blog is dedicated to the political happenings in the Valley and Southwest Virginia. As the the name implies, this blog will have posts based on what is heard by this elephant's (GOPer's) ears. It is also a great treat to get while at the county fair or a carnival.

Friday, September 30, 2005

The Debate That Wasn't

Well folks, unfortunately we did not have a debate tonight. You dems didn't get the decisive Lohr butt kicking you had all hoped for. The Valley Family Forum (a division of the Virginia Family Foundation) hosted a debate tonight between Lohr and Fulk, but Fulk was unable to attend due to sickness. My thoughts go out to him for a fast recovery. Even so, it is unfortunate that Fulk's toughest critics, social conservative voters, did not get answers to some very important topics as a result of this absence. It is a shame Fulk wasn't able to answer these tough questions.
Wait til you see the new Lohr ad. Fulk missing this debate plus the new ad will be very bad for Fulk. This may end up being the turning point in the election. Lohr is going after Fulk on the social issues, and Fulk was unable to squash those accusations tonight Lets see what happens from here.

My sources also said that Republitarian was in attendance tonight and they were upset that he did not stand up to say a few words about Fulk; since he seems to never have a problem doing so any other time.

VCDL Endorsements

The Virginia Citizens Defense League has endorsed Bill Bolling in for Lt. Gov. They will not make an endorsement in the AG race and they are still waiting on the Kilgore and Potts surveys before they make an endorsement in the governor's race.
Matt Lohr was also endorsed in the 26th district house race. If Matt can also get the NRA endorsement, that will boost his chances of winning this race.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

NRA Endorsement

Thanks to Too Conservative for pointing out the NRA has endorsed Creigh Deeds in this year's Attorney General race. Many of us had long expected this.
I don't think this will have a major effect since McDonnell also has a high rating. The reason for Deeds getting the endorsement is that McDonnell supported one-gun-a-month back in the day so he has an A- rating, while Deeds has an A (its funny since now Deeds says its a good idea and McDonnell now opposes it).
In fact, it could prove bad since Deeds needs NOVA to win this election, and this will probably hurt his chances there.
The is no question as to who the NRA will endorse in the Governor and Lt. Gov elections. Jerry Kilgore and Bill Bolling are guaranteed to get it.

Next Supreme Court Nominee

Folks, the next supreme court nominee from President Bush had better not get 78 votes on confirmation. We want a strong, PROVEN conservative to sit on the bench.
Mr. President, I have some suggestions:
Janice Rodgers Brown (my personal favorite)
Priscilla Owen
Edith Jones

By the way, thanks for the looks folks. 5000 hits in a month and a half is much more than I ever imagined I would get on this site.
Thanks to all my readers. I appreciate your input.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Will Cantor Move Up?

There has been alot of talk about Congressman Eric Cantor (R-7) not being able to move up any farther in the House leadership than where he is right now (he is currently the deputy majority whip for those who don't know).
This situation we have now should prove whether that is true. With Roy Blunt being elevated to Majority Leader (now that Delay has at least temporarily stepped down), will Cantor now be elevated to Majority Whip, or is he truly a figurehead in the GOP leadership that got his position b/c of his minority status (Cantor is jewish)?
Has anyone heard the status of this?

UPDATE: Apparently Cantor will be (temporarily) taking over as Majority Whip. According to this article, "Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, the deputy whip who will assume many of Blunt's old duties in the leadership shuffle."

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

New TV Ads

Well folks, we now have TV ads from both Matt Lohr and Lowell Fulk.
I am told by my family that Matt Lohr's ads talk about him being a sunday school teacher, local farmer and being opposed to tax increases. I hope to get a copy of that ad soon.
It sounds like a good ad, and should prove to be a good ad for him. It gives him name recognition and does a good job of pointing out his advantages.

Fulk's ad (which is linked in the last post) is both a name recognition and an attack ad.
He first tells how he is a farmer and how he helped save the Hinton poultry plant, then he goes on attack Matt Lohr for his absenteeism on the school board and planning commission, and also how Matt "raised his own pay". It ends with, "Matt Lohr is for more pay for less work".

My question is whether there will be backlash on Fulk for running an attack ad. My guess is it won't. I also question whether his attacks will reasonate with people. My guess again is that it will not.
I believe Lowell Fulk must run negative ads against Lohr if he has any chance of winning. At the same time, I don't think these negatives (or any of the ones Republitarian and others have pointed out) will make people vote in droves against Matt.

I still continue to believe Matt Lohr will win this race, but I still am not sure what the margin will be.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Anything New?

It has been a relatively quiet week in the political world.
I was just wondering if anyone has seen or heard anything.
Lohr is now running TV ads. Has anyone seen Fulk ads yet?
Also, does anyone know if there will be anymore polls in the 26th?
The poll that was just released was from mid-August, so it still is not going to be a real accurate picture of the electorate.
I haven't seen anything interesting going on here in SWVA either (except Hokie football, which is now ranked 3rd in both polls).

UPDATE: Republitarian says Fulk has begun his TV ads as well. He defines them as "Fulk Bombs Lohr". Here is the link to view the ad (its 4.9 MB, so if you don't have a high-speed connection, I apologize).
Its a pretty well balanced ad. It shows you Fulk and him saving the Hinton poultry plant, and also gives you the rundown of Matt's missed meetings.
I guess this answers the question as to whether Fulk will run negative ads.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Political Signs at the Game

Over at Sic Semper Tyrannis, Old Zach has a post about the signs at Gameday over the weekend.
I personally saw a 4x4 Kaine sign and 4x4 Sportsman for Kaine sign. I also saw a 4x8 Bolling and a 4x8 GOP ticket (Kilgore on top and Bolling/McDonnell across the bottom) as well as a few Kilgore (in Hokie colors) rally signs and one Russ Potts rally sign in the front of Gameday.
I also remember a few Gamedays last year had Bush signs at them.

I personally am divided on the issue. I think we should get the message out there, but I heard some people saying it was a stupid thing when they saw them (0ne guy did say "Hokies for Kilgore!" when he saw the Kaine signs).
It also seemed as though the dems got there after the Republicans, so I dunno if they came in defense, or just b/c they were gonna be getting there later anyway.
What are your thoughts folks?
Should there be political signs present at events such as College Gameday?
This may be important info since we should get Miami for Gameday on November 5th, 3 days before the election.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Beat Down

Thats all that needs to be said.
It was abosolutely crazy out there folks.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

The Reports Are Finally In!

Benny Keister has finally released his finance report for the latest period.
He has raised $86,272 ($31,224 in this period) and has $34,129 Cash on Hand.
This compared to Annie B. who has raised $66,903 ($49,244 in this period) and she has $33,845 on Hand.
Folks, Keister is done. There is no way Keister will be able to pull much farther ahead in money to win this one. Annie B is going to win this in a pretty convincing fashion.
Don't forget, Keister outspent his opponent 2 years ago 3-1 and still won by only 51 votes.
This race is Annie B's to lose.
I will also work to find out the results of the poll conducted on behalf of Annie B.

By the way David Young also reported and has $2150 on hand (he raised $26,865 in the last period).
Young is as done as a steak that has been on the grill too long. He has no chance of winning.

NLS anaylsis

NLS has his new analysis of the 26th district race. He seems to think that things are coming apart in Fulk's campaign and that an upset may be less likely if things don't change.
I have always believed that Lohr will win, but I think the "valley dems" are wrong here. I think Fulk's manager is probably doing things right. Besides, how do the valley dems have any room to complain? They haven't won a race in so long, I don't know how they think they know how to win either.
Lohr's campaign strategy has been to win in November, nothing more, nothing less. There have been some hiccups along the way, but they have stayed the course.

I still think you people out there are also underestimating the statewide races. While the turnout was almost the same from 2001 to 2003 in the district, the top race was not there. Even if someone gets a poll call and says they want to vote for Fulk, they will probably be less likely to (if they are a GOPer) because they will start voting for Kilgore and continue down w/ GOPs along the way.
I proposed the question if you folks thought there would be reverse coattails here and you all don't think so.
The only way Fulk can win is if Kaine performs much better than expected in Rockingham/H'Burg.
The Valley almost always votes straight ticket on EVERY SINGLE RACE (all the way down to supervisors). If this race was in SWVA, where people are well known for voting person not party, I would say Fulk would have a very, very good shot.
If Kilgore gets at least 65% in Rockingham, Lohr will win. If he is lower (indicating a Fulk coattail effect), Fulk may have a shot.


We have Gameday this weekend folks!
It is gonna be awesome.
Check out the article here.
We play Georgia Tech Saturday at 3:30 on ABC.
Also watch Gameday at 10:30 on ESPN.
Its gonna be rockin.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

New Potts Ad

Over at Bacon's Rebellion, they have a little writeup on the new TV ad from Russ Potts.
Click Here to view it.
Luckily for us, he isn't attacking us or really saying anything.
This is a huge plus for us.
I was worried he would run ads basically attacking us (even though he still may do so).
Russ, you might turn out to be OK after all (I'm still not voting for ya, but at least your not gonna screw us over anymore than you were already gonna do).
Now if you just run some ads attacking Kaine, that would be great.

New Polls

As you all know, there are a few polls out right now on the Va Governor's race.
Rasmussen Reports has Kilgore leading 43%-40% and Potts with 5%.
Mason-Dixon has Kilgore leading 41%-40% and Potts with 6%.
Washington Post has Kilgore leading 45%-41% and Potts with 5%.
Now SurveyUSA has a poll (thanks to Chad Dotson for pointing this one out) which has Kilgore leading 46%-43% and Potts with 4%.
One interesting thing about the SurveyUSA poll is that it has breakdowns for regions, urban/suburban/rural, as well as demographic results.
If you notice, in the Northeast (NOVA) Kilgore has a 46-41 edge.
Folks, if that number holds, we are smooth sailing to victory. No democrat can win statewide in Virginia if they lose NOVA by 5 points.
Another interesting statistic is that Kilgore is laying the whooping on Kaine for the youngest age bracket 51%-34%.
I am telling you folks, Gen Y is a Republican generation.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Russ Potts at Hob Nob

Here is a letter to the editor from the Winchester-Star on Sept. 13th regarding Potts and the Hob Nob:
Kilgore Country
I’m taking this time to publicly thank the Winchester-Frederick Chamber of Commerce for putting together another great Hob Nob. Attendees had a wonderful opportunity last Friday evening to meet and talk with statewide and local candidates for public office.
The casual atmosphere really lent itself to relaxed, fruitful conversations; and the food was great too. A couple other things stood out to me:
First, was the overwhelming support for former Attorney General, Jerry Kilgore. (He was the only candidate for Governor to attend in person.) Dozens of supporters showed up in orange “Kilgore for Governor” T-shirts. Wherever Jerry went, people wanting to shake his hand and show their support for his campaign mobbed him. Mr. Kilgore was very warming, gracious, and attentive to everyone (I’ve met him on many occasions, even before he was Attorney General. I have always found him to possess the same likable, attentive demeanor.)
Second, A straw poll was taken; in which Jerry Kilgore handily beat both Tim Kaine and Russ Potts. Mr. Potts, who on Thursday told the Chamber he would attend his hometown’s event, was nowhere to be seen. This is a good thing for him, since his lack of support at the event was glaringly obvious. All the candidate’s names were announced, after which each received varying degrees of applause. You could hear a pin drop when Russ Potts’ name was called. Out of the 500 or so in attendance, not one person mustard a clap.
Perhaps he fairs better away from home where folks don’t know about his flip-flops, spiteful rhetoric, and the poor manner in which he treats others.
I am proud to say I’m voting for Jerry Kilgore for Governor and that Winchester-Frederick is Kilgore Country.
-Richard E. Crane
I can probably understand that people in Winchester won't clap publicly for Russ Potts. Even so, I fear he will pull a considerable number of votes in the Winchester-Frederick region.
I will be interested to see if the region is as strongly "Kilgore Country" as some people think it will be.

Where Are They?

David Young and Benny Keister have still not filed their finance reports yet. What are you guys doing?
Here are the reports for
Anne Crockett-Starke: $45,159 Raised, $33,846 Cash On Hand

Ward Armstrong: $285,113 Raised, $172,884 Cash On Hand

I wish I had the other finance reports so I give my 2 cents on these races.
Unless the finance reports are shocking, Annie B will win in November and Ward Armstrong will return for another term.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Total Disconnect From Reality

Over at Brian Patton, they have an analysis of the new Mason-Dixon poll on the Va Governor's race.
The results show that Kilgore is at 41% and Kaine is at 40%.
The previos poll showed Kaine 38% and Kilgore at 37%.
Brian's analysis says: "This poll confirms that not only has Kaine been gaining on Kilgore, but he has absolutely pulled even with him".
I thought the M-D poll is the only reputable poll.
Would someone explain to me the logic in his statement? How does Kaine go from leading to trailing, but be gaining on Kilgore?
I guess when we win on election night we will have actually lost.

Friday, September 16, 2005

9th District Re-Visted

Here are the major expenses by the campaigns from the latest report in the 9th district.
Polling (Done by GOP House Caucus) - $5000
Consulting (Peter Foster) - $3900
Printing - $1437
Campaign Materials - $822
Ad - $150
Other - $3508
Total - $14,817

Campaign Consulting - $13,889
Campaign Supplies (Signs, etc.) - $5681
Research Costs ( done by House Dem Caucus) - $2250
Newspaper Ads - $2776
Radio Ads - $1404
Mailings - $1295
GOTV Coordinator - $2500
GOTV Supplies - $788
Polling - $2000
Staffing - $1560
Other - $15,736
Total - $49,879

Has anyone heard what the results of the Dudley or Ferguson polls were?

Largest Donors in the 26th

In the most recent report, here are some of the top donors ($1000+) to each campaign:
Matt Lohr:
Steve Landes for Delegate - $5000
Friends of Mark Obenshain - $3500
David Lee - $2000
R.R. Donnelley & Sons Co. - $2000
Randall See - $2000
The Printing Express - $2000
Va Auto Dealers - $1500
Ben Cline for Delegate- $1000
Friends of Bill Janis - $1000
Friends of Clay Athey - $1000
Joe Funkhouser - $1000
Heifer Investments - $1000
Hogan for Delegate - $1000
Janis Brown Enterprises - $1000
Rob Bell for Delegate - $1000
Karen Rothery - $1000
James Sipe Jr. - $1000
The Good Fund - $1000
Total - $29,000 from these donors (48% of donations)

Lowell Fulk:
One Virginia PAC - $15,000
Charles Wampler - $2000
Gregory Marrow - $1500
Reg & Diane Foucar-Szocki - $1500
Loren Hershey - $1000
House Democratic Caucus - $1000
Del. James Shuler - $1000
Tim & Ruth Stoltzfus - $1000
Total - $24,000 from these donors (45% of donations)

9th District Fundraising

We now have the reports for the campaigns in the 9th district.
Allen Dudley: $146,295 Raised, $124,473 Cash on Hand
Eric Ferguson: $114,488 Raised, $48,889 Cash on Hand
Folks, I don't think Ferguson will ever be able to overcome the money advantage Dudley commands at this point. He may pull the upset without the money, but I am doubting it very seriously.

I ams till waiting on reports for David Young (R) from the 10th and Benny Keister (D) in the 6th. Once I get those I will update those races as well.
Are there any other races you folks wanna know about?

Fundrace in the 26th

The new finance disclosures are out this morning. Here is what they show:
Lohr: $128,865 Raised ($61,708 in this period), $74,354 Cash on Hand
Fulk: $127,292 Raised ($53,559 in this period), $72,899 Cash on Hand
Keep in mind that Mark Warner had a fundraiser that brought in about 26k for Fulk and George Allen raised about 50k for Lohr.

It looks like the money will stay close throughout the campaign season here.
Another factor could be that there are no other close elections in the valley so alot of Republicans and Dems will be pouring their money into this race instead of their own.
It hasn't happened yet but it may occur closer to election time.

I will have updates on other races once both candidates file their reports.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

New Poll

A New Rasmussen poll is due out tomorrow on the Virginia Governor'r race.
Any predictions?
Don't forget, I am sure they will exclude Potts.
My guess is
Kilgore -48%
Kaine - 41%
Other - 4%
Let's see how close I come.

Possible Appointment Tonight?

No one has said anything about this as far as I can tell, but I wonder if Bush's address tonight will be to appoint a new supreme court justice to replace O'Connor?
Don't forget folks, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals sets in New Orleans. Guess who sits on that court?
Edith Jones, Edith Clement, and Priscilla Owen.
Thats right folks, all the women being considered (except Janice Rodgers Brown who is my personal choice) are from this circuit.
Hopefully Bush will do it, as long as he doesn't appoint Jones.
Has anyone seen anything else on this?

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

The Kaine Campaign

I just checked the visitors to the site, and I see that Kaine2005 has viewed my blog a few times.
Thanks guys, I hope you like what you see.

6th District Update

I have learned that the member of Annie B's campaign that made the derogatory posts about SWVA on a blog (NLS had some postings on it about a week ago) is no longer with the campaign. She is back in Texas.
Good call on whoever's part it was to dismiss her. I think it sounds like she must have been an idiot so she probably shouldn't be working on a campaign anyway.
Now we wait to see the new fundraising reports at the end of the week.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Lohr Loses It All?

Republitarian seems to think Fulk will win Harrisonburg and the county.
Interesting assessment but I have the opposite view. I think Lohr wins the county and the city.
I have some new info as well.
I have heard differing stories on Lohr's poll. One source says that Matt Lohr was leading by 7-8 points, the exact opposite of the Fulk poll. My other source says Lohr found out the exact same thing as Fulk (Lohr down 7-8 points).
I am just wondering if anyone else has heard this (the Lohr lead, NLS and others have claimed Fulk is ahead).

Matt Lohr and Kilgore

Did anyone else notice that the picture of Jerry Kilgore in this Washington Post article about the new poll was taken with Matt Lohr?
Just wondering.
By the way, Hokies are #4 folks!
Go Hokies (both the alums and the football team)!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Scandal Brewing in the 9th?

NLS has a story from the Roanoke Times on Allen Dudley and his tenants in a trailer park he owns. Supposedly, he is renting to illegal aliens in his trailer park. This is very interesting since Kilgore and the GOP is pushing illigal immigration as an election issue (which Dudley is opposed to as well).
I doubt this will actually become a major issue, if for no other reason I don't know how they would expect Dudley to know. Fair Housing does not require asking if someone is a legal alien, so if a landlord does this, it could result in suits accusing them of discrimination against hispanics. It would be a very bad idea to do this, especially if the people trying to get housing have children. It would open a pandora's box of problems, especially since this is not high income housing ($400/month).
I don't think this will end up becoming a major issue, and I still believe Dudley will keep his seat.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Polling in the 26th

Word on the street is that Fulk has done a poll and it shows him up 7-8 points. My source is very reliable so I assume they have heard this truthfully.
Does anyone else know anything about this?
Also, if this is true, why hasn't Fulk released it? After all, a Democrat leading in the valley should want to brag about leading, right Republitarian?

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Kaine "Volunteers" for Potts?

I apologize for not blogging about Buena Vista sooner, but I was just wondering if anyone else thought it was interesting that when Russ Potts gave his speech, the Kaine people clapped for him (the out-of-state Kaine people I might add).
I think it proves that the Kaine campaign honestly believes Potts hurts Kilgore not Kaine.
As I have said before, Potts hurts us until he starts getting above 10% of the vote statewide.
Any thoughts?

Open Thread on the 26th

Since I have been at VT for about 3 weeks now, I am not up to speed on our favorite 26th district race.
So everyone, give your 2 cents.
Did anyone goto the picnic Tuesday?
Has there been anymore debates?
Has Ms. Berkshire made anymore calls to Candid Comment?

CR Blog

I just want to let everyone know about the Virginia College Republican's Blog.
Check it out, they have some interesting posts on the Katrina situation.
Also, a few of the bloggers are Hokies, so it must be good.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Race in the 9th

To round out my analysis of HOD races before the Sept. 15th filing deadline, lets take a look at the 9th district. Allen Dudley (R) is being challenged by Eric Ferguson (D).
The district makeup is simple, Franklin County runs the district. In 2003, over 70% of the votes hailed from Franklin. Floyd and Pittsylvania are heavily Republican, but don't command much power in the district, so their affect is minimal (they just save the GOPer if Franklin is weak).
Franklin County is Republican, but not as strongly as some counties in SW Va. Dudley did get 55% of the vote in 2003, so unless there are overriding concerns that I am not aware of, he should perform about the same as last time (Dudley is from Rocky Mount so Franklin is his home area). Dudley should have the demographic advantage here.
Dudley also has a money advantage, so far. Dudley has a 2-1 advantage ($94k-47k) in cash on hand. Dudley was outspent in 2003 $96k-73k and still won with 58% of the vote so money should not be a problem for him either.
I think Dudley is safe in this seat. Unless he makes a big screw up in the next few months, he should be fine. One note though, Republicans are not targeting this race, they believe it is safe. If Dudley is weaker than we think, Ferguson will have an advantage from that standpoint.

Monday, September 05, 2005

6th District Update

Not Larry Sabato has a story about Annie B.'s staffer making some comments about Southwestern Virginians on a blog. NLS seems to think since this staffer was hired by Speaker Howell, this could have effects everywhere and not just in the 6th.
Unfortunately, he doesn't have many details. I will be interested in seeing more info about this. I am hard pressed to believe this will have an effect in the 6th, let alone the state as a whole, but perhaps it is worse than it sounds.
One thing I would like to know is who said it. One of Annie B.'s campaign managers is from Texas, so I can't believe she said anything bad about southwest Va; and the other was Kevin Triplett's manager, so he has been here and knows how the people are.
One more thing about this race, I have heard that the PACs are bailing on Keister. They think he is going to lose already. The Sept. 15th report should give us an idea of whether that is true or not.
I have said it before, if Annie B can stay close in money, she will win this seat.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

NC State Game

Any predictions on our game against NC State?
Dont' forget, check out ESPN2 at 7:15 for our game.
Its gonna be a good one.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Katrina's Aftermath

In light of recent comments on this blog and the news media, I just want to know what the government should have done better with regard to this disaster?
Yes, there are lots of national guard troops in Iraq. Yes Bush was at his ranch when the storm hit. But what do you folks want done?
This is the first time that I can remember that a city of this size was completely evacuated. 80-90% of the city is underwater. Most people are not even in the city right now.
I realize it has not been a perfect relief effort, but what else could have been done?
I am sure FEMA would love to have a new director with knowledge levels as high as some of you all have.

Maybe we can prevent this from happening again.

Thursday, September 01, 2005


In the upoming elections, everyone is looking at statewide races and HOD races and trying to figure out what effects they will have on each other.
The conventional wisdom seems to be that the statewide ticket will drive turnout and tip HOD races toward a district's political leanings. But what if it works the opposite way?
The best example of this is in the 26th district. Regardless of whether you think Lohr or Fulk will win, everyone should agree Fulk will get at least 45%, which is much higher than what Kaine will perceivably get. Could house candidates drive up votes for the statewide ticket? I am doubting this happens, but I want to know what you folks think.
Will the statwide tickets drive turnout up, or will the house candidates?


I apologize for not having my email posted, I didn't think about it. It is now part of my blogger profile.
Feel free to email tips or questions to me anytime. Also, if you would like me to do a post about something in particular, please let me know about that as well.