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.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Blogs and the Primaries

One of the most interesting aspects to the GOP primaries this year has been the involvement of the blogs. From what I have seen, most all blog endorsements have been made in favor of the three challengers: Blackburn, Smith and Sayre.

The race in the 24th probably has the most blog interaction; with an entire contingent "carrying the water" for Sayre on their own blogs as well as crossposting and contributing to Bloggers for Sayre. We have even seen some latercomers come in defense of Hanger, but most label them at least somewhat hostile toward some GOPs.

The big question right now in Republican circles is whether blogs are truly relevant on our side of the political spectrum. The dems can make the arguement that they are effective in their party, since many attribute Jim Webb's nomination and subsequent election to his blogger friends. They also can take credit if Donald McEachin defeats Senator Benny Lambert and/or if Henry Light defeats Del. Johnny Jonnoau. They were also instumental in keeping the death penalty ads and "macaca" in the limelight during the 2005 and 2006 statewide campaigns.

Conversely, the GOP blogs almost all supported Sean Connaughton in 2005 and he was unable to secure the party's nomination. A good number of blogs also supported the ousting of several GOP delegates in 2005, with only one succeeding (and Craddock was defeated in the general election). Furthermore, the GOP blogs have been unable (or ineffective at) turning the tide of the death penalty ads in 2005's gubentorial election and the "macaca" incident in the Senate race of 2006; which both resulted in Republican defeats.

If none of the challengers are able to achieve electoral success this around, what does that say about the GOP blogs' effectiveness? If however, one or all the challengers win, I think alot of their success will be credited to the blogs (especially Sayre).

On a different front, what will come of the SWAC bloggers? While Spank the Donkey has been around for awhile, most of the others almost seem as if they were created to devote themselves toward Scott Sayre's election. If he is defeated tomorrow, will they stay in the blogsophere? If so, will they be as active as they are now?

I think tomorrow's election results will show whether the blogs are a truly effective force in changing public opinion, or at the very least swaying the GOP faithful in elections. This could almost be considered a "watershed election" for the Republican blogosphere.

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