Monday, June 16, 2008

#2 of 6 DPVA State Convention Hampton VA

These come from the DPVA Steering committee meeting, 7 PM Friday night. We'd expected a quiet time filled with reports from campaigns and lots of logistical details from party officials. There were, maybe, 100- 150 people in the relatively small room. Boy, were we wrong.

New VA State Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw ("the Hammer" of the 35th, as DPVA chair Dickie Cranwell called him) Dickie, and Levar. Senator Saslaw noted that the Repubs are doing everything they can this year to help us out, including throwing over John Hagar for Jeff Edwards. Be ready for the mean, the nasty, and the vicious.

Congressman Bobby Scott, from VA's 3rd Congressional District. He was warm, funny, just delightful. He made the point that we can't be complacent, and that we know how to turn VA blue for Obama... register, register and register new voters.

Jim Webb was the big surprise, even to the folks running the meeting. He was not on the agenda; he spoke for about 10 minutes, discussed the projects he's most intensively involved in, and then took questions from the floor. I've only seen him speak in large venues, where he can come off as somewhat stern and formal. His intensity comes across just as much here in a smaller room with just 100 or so people, but his warmth and sense of humor does as well. He touched on his GI Bill for Iraq vets, as well as energy security issues. He mentioned that he got a degree in engineering when he was in the military.. didn't want it, but figures that it's time to use it!

Linda Wyatt, who has taken over as chair of the 6th district following the untimely death of David Layman. Linda has done a terrific job, pulling together the district to supervise caucuses, the district wide convention, and now representing the district on the DPVA Steering committee. She rocks; it seems to help that, in her previous life, she was a first grade teacher.

The overall theme from most of the campaign folks and elected officials who spoke was a caution against complacency. We can't take anything for granted, forget the polls, forget the commentators, keep you head down and do what you know you have to do.

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