So, tell us again how the liberal Establishment was “electable.”
Tell us again how outspending our opponents 2-1 and 3-1 and 10-1 was going to save the House of Delegates. How money was everything, right (Dominion money, at that)?
Tell us, Pravda. Tell us.
Tell us again how the candidate who didn’t have a message or a compass but had lots of money was going to win. Because moderates always win. They are “electable.”
Let’s put election day 2017 in perspective: the worst loss in Virginia Republican history, authored by Ed Gillespie and the Virginia Republican Establishment. The moderates who were shoved down our throats are directly responsible for this calamity. And they should all be thrown to the trash bin of history because of it. All of them.
Look, we will get told “it’s all Trump’s fault,” or “it’s the burn-it-down crowd.” The DC Republican Establishment that Gillespie comes from were quoted in the Post last week as calling the Republican base “rank scum.” But all of us were all on board the 2017 Titanic, captained by Ed Gillespie, whose campaign didn’t have a message, didn’t have a backbone, and didn’t have a clue.
He thought his problem was lack of money? Nope. All the money in the world wouldn’t have carried that lack of message. $100 million more wouldn’t have helped. Did you see those ads? Egads.
Listen, I rooted for us to do well. I voted for the ticket, I bit my lip about the flaws I saw, but now? Someone has to pay the price. We handed the Establishment the keys to the kingdom, a relatively unified effort from the party, and they had lots of money. The Democrats authored the worst political ad I’ve ever seen last week- it was an unprecedented gift.
We took away EVERY EXCUSE.
And see how they rewarded us? They decimated the Republican party in the Commonwealth. Decimated.
Tell me this: what was the message? What was the overriding idea or issue that FORCED people to go vote for Republicans?
Was it Sanctuary Cities, which we don’t have?
Was it our corrupt, Dominion-owned Republican legislature?
How about that super-productive Republican Congress we have in DC? The one that is full of corruption, infighting, and backbiting?
Guess what: We didn’t have a message or ideas or any coherence. Ed Gillespie ran the same rudderless, meaningless, puke candidacy he did in 2014. The difference was that 2014 was the best Republican year of our lifetimes. 2017 was the worst.
Look, NoVA had Presidential-level turnout among Democrats. They came out because they were told that Ed Gillespie was a racist neo-Nazi. Now, that is a ridiculous charge—Gillespie has many faults, and being a racist isn’t one. But did he fight back? NO.
He didn’t fight back, he didn’t fight their dirty pool, he didn’t fight their crazy. He tried the same ole Bushie playbook. V-neck sweaters in front of a tree with elevator music in the background.
He had no coherent message or compelling reason to be elected governor. And now, I never want to hear the term “Ed Gillespie” associated with Republicans or Virginia ever again. Seriously, stick him in a boat, push him across the Potomac and make Donald Trump build a wall to keep him and Barbara Comstock there. Their time in Virginia is done.
So he lost, and he dragged his ticketmates (Jill and John were much more worthy) and the House of Delegates down with him. We can blame the moderate Establishment entirely for this loss: the Democrats blamed them for Trump no matter what they did, but they also did not get the benefit of the association with him. All the squeeze, all the pain, none of the juice.
Ed Gillespie underperformed Donald Trump across Virginia, and especially in his home of Fairfax. Ed Gillespie managed an anemic 25% in Northern Virginia.
There are now no more Republican delegates in the DC suburbs or exurbs, except Dave LaRock and Bob Thomas (who won retiring Speaker Bill Howell’s seat by 100 votes) and my good friend Del. Mark Cole, part of whose district is in Stafford and Fauquier. Almost solid blue north of the Rappahannock.
This was a burning down of the old Republican guard, a burning down—on the part of the voters—of the old meaningless, corrupt Republican order.
Can we rebuild?
We sure can.
We have had a deep bench for years, but we now have to think in terms different from the consultants of old.
Consultants used to tell us we had to get 45% in Northern Virginia. But that’s not possible.
Instead, we need to make the turnout in the 9th, 6th, 5th, and 7th match the turnout in the 8th, 11th, 10th, and 3rd. That’s how we win now, but we have to be bold enough to try.
One more thing.
We are a state party bereft of ideas. We have had none for two decades and Ed Gillespie exposed that. We need to become the party of political innovation again. Of reform. We need to become the party of ideas, and then we need candidates willing to go and convince people of our ideas—not merely look for existing Republicans to turn out.
Trump won because he tried something different. In 2017, we lost because we refused to try anything different, as a party.
It’s time to DO something different. The old ways, the old candidates, the old Establishment is dead. Rest in peace.
Let’s build the new party on new ideas that will carry the next decade.
Honestly, I don’t think the election had anything to do with Ed Gillespie’s message. His traditional conservative message is as old as the hills, and the electorate has heard it already. We’ve had fire-breathing conservative candidates before who don’t deliver the message any better than moderate candidates. The hard truth to accept is that Virginia is solid blue now. Messages and messengers are not our problems.
The only way to win an election in this environment is to find a truly authentic candidate who speaks less about conservative principles and more about problem solving. The electorate craves someone who understands real honest to God true problems, and is willing to confront those lazy, selfish politicians who won’t do what it takes to fix anything. A passionate fighter is needed to take on the ruling class, and that is the only hope we have now.
You know the archetype for this strategy. It isn’t necessary to get bogged down talking him specifically. Just consider how he won.
This article is disgusting. Not because it is wrong. Because it is unfortunately so very accurate.
We tell jokes about how Hillary opponents die from multiple self-inflicted wounds to the head. In the case of the establishment Republicans, however, such suicide is fact, not fiction.
Excellent post. In order to get the conservative candidates we need on the ballot we must first have conventions which the establishment characters on SCC will never allow. So we’re stuck with ‘main stream’, establishment nominees.
Dave Brat won by NOT being like that and others can win the same, conservative, way.
I also was dumbfounded when RPV SCC made that decision last year to have a primary. But we hopefully won’t make the mistake in 2018. However, the fact we did have a primary like the dems gave us warning of the massive Dem turnout. Dems had 47 percent more turnout in their primary than ours. Indeed more money was spent, but I predicted in this blog after that that we had a real problem on our hands. So, in classic mitt romney style, Ed felt he could be “everyman” and ended up not attracting the conservative base to the polls, which hurt all these delegates that lost. Democrats were motivated to vote, republicans were not. It’s that simple!
If Ed would have done ads like 2014 instead of the racist/fear crap ala Trump and Steward things would have been alot different
From the Article “How about that super-productive Republican Congress we have in DC? The one that is full of corruption, infighting, and backbiting?”
It was actually worse than that. They lied to the American people about obamacare repeal and are in the process of lying about tax reform. They have demonstrated the epitome of the unethical and even evil politician. Supposedly, the socialist Democrats are the evil ones – well, unfortunately, the Republicans allowed themselves to become the evil ones. Disgusting.
So now they want to limit my retirement contributions and not allow my property tax deduction.
S-Corp already down everything, now I’ll pay NO THANKS!
I will hold, and I hope Congressman Garrett hears this.
Such a bunch of wimps, controlled by big business, and afraid to do anything.
Yeah, and big business is now controlled by Democrats, but we still get blamed for them.
Whaaaattt? Did somebody finally realize that Mick still hasn’t gotten over that primary loss and take down his latest post. That might of been the quickest disappearing act I have ever seen here.
It was posted before it was finished, It is now back up if you want to take a look.
Not really, I’m not into denial and blame-shifting by one of those partially responsible for the debacle.
Denial and blame shifting are what RPV and the Trumpsters are doing right now, but the numbers don’t lie. Democrats were FIRED UP to vote, and it wasn’t because they just love Ralph Northam.
The GOPe trashed Cuccinelli – and he lost to a corrupt Clintonian. The GOPe has fought Trump tooth and nail – and their candidate, Ed Gillespie lost. As long as the state Republicans don’t get together with the conservatives and Tea Partiers, they will continue to lose.
I remember the one ad for Ed where the old line Republicans came out for him. I also remember that few if any of them came out for Cuccinelli. Apparently, losing isn’t a problem for the establishment as long as they maintain their dignity.
You win a cookie.
Do I get to pick my cookie?
Only if I get to pick the bourbon served with it.
You left out one very important multi-faceted factor, at least in the debacle that was Prince William and Loudoun, namely the local GOP and its candidates/incumbents. If you need volunteers for a circular firing squad, look no further than that group.
At the local party level you have many more interested in plotting and overthrowing one another if and when they take time away from the cocktail circuit. As a result, there is absolutely no GOP ground game as those who would otherwise volunteer or recruit the bodies needed have thrown their hands up in disgust at the years of petty and personal internecine warfare. If you want a hyper-local example look at the Gainesville District in PWC, including the Facebook fiasco, the resulting refusal of some involved to participate, help or share existing data and mailing lists, etc., etc., etc.
That insanity is only rivaled by the insanity on the respective County’s BOCS. Too busy fighting with one another, most (but not all) of our local elected officials did little to nothing to help and one could argue that some actually did more harm than good.
Then look to the bought and paid for delegates who got pole-axed. In some fashion I guess that is the price they eventually had to pay for being the lapdogs of Dominion and the development industry. I have to wonder what Dominion is thinking this morning since some of their most expensive purchases are now unemployed. Instead of focusing on issues of local interests, many were more concerned with protecting Dominion’s profits or the development industry’s profit margin. At the same time, allowing NOVA and Tidewater to get hit with additional “transportation taxes” proctored by an unelected body like NVTA.
Couple that with lazy to non-existent campaign strategies and efforts by those who incorrectly viewed themselves safe, ensuring not only their loss but also helping drag down the top of the ticket as well as neighboring districts.
And one can’t forget the gerrymandering they were responsible for that finally resulted in long expected defeats enabled by little more than their demographic creations.
Need some numbers, take these into account.
PWC GOP Governor totals 2009, 2013, 2017
43993, 42431, 44960
In a word, stagnant
Same goes for Loudoun to a slightly lesser degree over the same period
39996, 40464, 46278
Contrast that with the Dem turnout in PWC
30847, 50441, 71550
an increase of 40,703 votes from ’09 to ’17, +232%
Loudoun is worse
25430, 44369, 69710
an increase of 44,280 votes, +274%
Perhaps burning it all down isn’t such a bad thing.
Did the Republicans lose control of the House of Delegates?
No, I think we still hold 52-48. I am bummed that here in the 10th we lost Randy Minchew, a very good man, to someone I see as an unqualified leftist who masqueraded as a moderate.
I see 50-50 on VPAP, pending canvass and (ugh) recounts.
How does the House even function at 50-50? There’s no tiebreaker, is there?
Corey Stewart — who accurately predicted that Gillespie if nominatd would lose badly and take down many delegates with him – is now predicting that Dems, if they control the house, will embark on leftist kookery that could do them in in 2019. You can say what you want about Corey, but he knows his stuff. County supervisors usually do 😉 (I was one, of course I would say that!)
I am not anti-Corey, anti-Ed, or anti-Trump like others on here, don’t worry. I am keeping an open mind for 2018. Oh, I also voted for you last year here in Leesburg!
Thanks. I dont think I implied anything about your statement. Good to keep an open mind and thanks for voting for me in Leesburg last year!
Oh, no problem. Thanks! And keep up the good work on the Council!
Hopefully it works through negotiations and compromise, at least that is my dream scenario.
Medicaid expansion? (!!)
Yes, it would be the newly elected Lt. Gov.
Lt. Gov. breaks ties in the Senate.
We don’t know yet. At this point it’s a tie but that could turn into a loss of the House after the recounts.
Look on the bright side, now Ed Gillespie is free to run for Tim Kaine’s senate seat!
And if you think the VA GOP is not stupid enough to do that, then think again. I’m sure its already been discussed.
I wish John Adams would consider it.
John Adams does appear to be a real conservative but where he works says otherwise. The establishment is firmly and deeply established in Maguire-Woods.
Isn’t that the RPV conference room?
Tim Kaine was the biggest winner last nite. 2018 came earlier than expected. Please, don’t get mad at the messenger.
Yes they are that stupid.
Now Is time for the Dems in our GA to push a minimum wage increase. If Republicans are smart they will go along.
Disclaimer I build homes 4 employees and my lowest is at $15.00. Don’t shoot the messenger.
If you look at the Democrats – who are their party elders? Probably, McAuliffe, Kaine, M. Warner, Northam, Herring, Wilder, Fairfax. They all have their differences, Wilder and Northam had a minor tuff, but in the end they stand pretty united and they win elections.
Who do we have? McDonnell, Cuccinnelli, Gillespie, Gilmore, J. Warner, Allen. They remind me of that large family at church with the kids always fighting, and their eithet tainted, retired, or have lost statewide in their most recent attempts.
Somehow the Democrats act like elephants who follow the elephant in front of them while were actually the donkeys who love to fight.
I totally agree that the key is turnout in conservative districts.
Trouble is, urban Republicans have always run the party, and they fight on the Democrat’s turf, and try to use the Democrat’s tactics, because they’re basically in the same place and have a lot of the same ideas and background.
Figure out how to get working people in rural counties to the polls, it’s that simple. Most work, and they work hard, and most don’t have the flexibility that an urban professional has to just say they’ll be an hour late to work because they are voting, many don’t even really understand the primary process and other ideas in politics. RPV also doesn’t even focus on getting them out to the polls even though they are a natural match for the party.
There are PILES of votes in rural counties. I agree with this article. Take a lesson from Democrats who have abandoned rural areas in favor of the cities, stop fighting to sway Democrats into voting for the GOP and focus instead of getting people who agree with you to the polls. Convince them that if they take the time to show up they can WIN.
It’s not accident that the Democrat-lite candidates keep getting their ass handed to them, and the “too conservative nobody will ever vote for them” candidates keep getting a lot closer. It’s the “too conservative” message that urban Republicans cringe at that is the message that actually resonates with conservatives and gets them to the polls. You’ll never convince Democrats to vote Democrat-lite, they want the actual Democrat.
Trump won because he ran against Hillary and Republicans held their nose to vote for him. With no Hillary on the ballot to force Republicans to the polls, we are seeing the real result of Trumpian style politics.
What is a good style of politics to replicate? The Bushes left us amidst major electoral defeats, and Reagan had a telegenic style that very few people possess.
Well, I personally have never believed that replicating an a–hole is exactly the best way to win friends and influence people, so maybe let’s start off by not trying to replicate Trump anymore.
Second, we need to stop worrying so much about style and start worrying more about substance. We don’t articulate a clear message of why people should vote for us anymore. All we do is demonize the other side, which does the same thing right back to us. When that happens we never get any crossover votes, the squishy independents get disgusted and stay home, and there are simply more registered Democrats than Republicans in just about every state in the country.
That is a recipe for losing every time.
That’s it. We need a clear, conservative, message that lets the electorate know why we think Virginia, and America, will prosper with conservative leadership.
actually, no one cares what you think. You self absorbed view that the electorate needs to know what you think is presumptuous and self righteous. The electorate is smarter than you think and can think for themselves
Actually, no one cares what anonymous trolls like you think. If you want to take personal shots at people, have the guts to use your real name.
why, TBE wants it this way and promotes anonymous posting. If TBE wanted something else, then they would change their system. They get way more traffic with stage names than real names
I don’t make the rules, I just play the game
The globalist first Bushes have revealed the problem with the current Republican establishment. They trashed Trump because of his “America First” agenda.
I always knew the Bushes were the GOP elite establishment. (Read my lips, no new taxes – oops, I lied. We need TARP to save the economy.) Big government guys all the way.
Note to GOP establishment. Americans like being Americans, and they don’t appreciate being denigrated for it.
How about we try running conservatives? Just a thought.