Recent Polls

Two polls on Virginia's statewide campaigns were released within the last 48 hours: one, by the Democrat leaning polling firm, Public Policy Polling, and one by SurveyUSA for Roanoke television station WDBJ-TV. It is interesting to note that the PPP poll has received exponential media coverage, lasting well into the second day after it was released. The SurveyUSA/WDBJ poll was released last night but is hardly causing a blip on the Mainstream Media's radar screen. The most likely explanation is that the SurveyUSA/WDBJ poll seems out of whack when compared to other polls. While many have the governor's race in a four to seven point range, in favor of Republican Bob McDonnell, the SurveyUSA/WDBJ poll shows him up by double digits, as it does his running mates Lt. Governor Bill Bolling, running for re-election, and Senator Ken Cuccinelli (R-37, Fairfax), running for attorney general. Still, that's never stopped the notoriously out of proportion Washington Post polls from getting top billing across the state. 

In what has gone practically unmentioned in the frenzy of the tightening of PPP's poll, however, is that it also shows Lt. Governor Bolling and Senator Cuccinelli leading by eight and nine points, respectively. So, we have a Mainstream Media cherry picking news even from the one poll on which it has focused. Not only that, but by its own admission, the PPP poll's "internals" do not show bad news for McDonnell. Among the fndings (see PPP Blog here):

52% of voters say they're very familiar with the thesis and McDonnell actually has a 55-41 {lead} with that group, reflecting the fact that Republicans are more engaged this year and following the campaign more closely. Deeds is up 56-41 with the 29% of voters who claim moderate knowledge of the thesis.

(Does this mean conservative voters are more informed, or just that they don't watch MSNBC?)

In another blog post,PPP's Tom Jensen writes that Democrat candidate Creigh Deeds leads among voters who were undecided a month ago by 35-32 percent, and lists this as an advantage for him. But it's within the margin of error and not enough to close the gap.

Back to SurveyUSA. Here's a link to its methodology and complete statistical breakdown. It survey 1,000 Virginians, 886 of them registered to vote, and filtered its responses to the 631 of them determined to be likely voters this November.

Belated Congrats To TQ

Speaking of Norm Leahy and the folks at Tertium Quids, congrats on their somewhat recent accolade by the Washington Post, which named its blog one of the best political blogs in Virginia. So much for friendship stopping at the Internet's edge . . . it's a worthy selection and one blog we check on regularly. Shamelessy self-promote all you want, guys!

Blog Roll Additions

We always look to add blogs worth reading to our blog roll. There are so many of them now, it's hard to keep up. But when new ones come to our attention, or ones that somehow slipped through the cracks are suddenly remembered, we not only add them, but give them a recommendation. So, we're glad to point out some new additions to our blog roll, that we either recently added, or added a while ago but forgot to mention at the time. One is Political Christian, a fairly new blog, by our friend Larry Miller. He's also got an entire Web site linked to the blog which is a virtual resource center for information and citizen action. Another is VA Social Conservative, from Willie Deutsch, a 20-something, who proves there is a thriving youth social conservative movement in the blogosphere as well as in boots-on-the-ground political activism. 

We also added the Web site of the Virginia Catholic Conference, an organization that often is our only ally in the General Assembly as we fight to preserve innocent, unborn life. Its leadership in keeping state funds from finding their way to the hoax that is embryonic stem cell research is unparalleled. 

The Virginia News Platoon is a fairly new conservative news source and content provider, where Krystle Weeks of Crystal Clear Conservative is the Virginia News Editor. This site keeps you up-to-date on the latest Virginia news as well as what's up at Virginia's leading conservative blogs.

Finally, but certainly not least, we highly recommend Virginia Tomorrow, another fairly new blog, but not by any neophyte or couch potato critic. Virginia Tomorrow is the creation of Dr. Bob Holsworth, one of the most insightful and fair political commentators in Virginia, or the country for that matter. Quoted far and wide on all matters political, he now has this platform to promulgate his points. He is more than willing to speak to any group and supply his observations, including a couple of presentations at Family Foundation functions. I have seen him at several other events, and he remains even keel for every audience, not matter its slant. "Dr. Bob" is one of the good, fair guys. We hope you visit his site, and the others mentioned here, often.

(A Real) Profile In Courage

Part of JFK's rise to prominence was the popularity of his book Profiles In Courage. The former journalist's book was a series of accounts about people throughout history who stood up for principle in the face of political opposition or other difficult obstacles. Ever since, the phrase has been cheapened, with strains of political theater masquerading for what supposedly is courage: In this age of instant and constant media, grandstanding is "courage." When there is true bravery to note, the Mainstream Media ignores it. So we gladly bring this to you: British European Parliament Member Daniel Hannan's evisceration of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown for his complete socialization of Great Britain (under the guise of saving its economy) while, in fact, destroying it and individualism in that country.

He said it to the PM's face at the EU Parliament yesterday (see Hannan's account on his blog here). He spoke the truth despite the prevailing pop cultural popularity of the countering point of view, ignoring potential hazardous consequences — and he didn't do it for the cameras. As The Spectator reports (here), the British networks hardly covered it.

Oh, were we to have a member of Congress, Republican or Democrat, who sees the same diminishing of America, have the courage to stand up to the "messiah" this way!

UPDATE: Facebook And The Governor's Race (McDonnell's Lead Increases)

As we mentioned Friday, it's unusual for conservatives or Republicans to run ahead of the other side in the social marketing/technology aspects of campaigning. So, when the March issue of Richmond Magazine ran a blurb called "Facebook And The Governor's Race" that graphically illustrated Republican Bob McDonnell's commanding lead in Facebook supporters over all three of his potential Democrat opponents (see his blog here), it was a bit of a shock. I guess Terry McAuliffe's tech experience was limited to making money on Global Crossing while it went bankrupt (see Judicial Watch here). As we promised Friday, since there's no link to the RM site for this story, here's a scanned version of the hard copy. The totals were of February 13.


The graphic is entitled, "The Oracle of Facebook: Who's winning the gubernatorial race so far? We asked the online social-networking hub."

More shocking is that even with the Democrat candidates duly warned, McDonnell's lead increased. He now has 2,115 supporters (up from 1,713). T-Mac only inched up from 1,104 to 1,252, while the other Democrats, former Delegate Brian Moran and Senator Creigh Deeds, are neck and neck at 679 (from 585) and 678 (from 629), respectively.


Not Everyone Appreciates Becoming A Star: Opponents Make Clear Opposition To Our Taping Committee Hearings

This, our first-ever guest post, was written by Suzanne Nichols, our General Assembly intern:

Videotaping committees and subcommittees this General Assembly has met with an array of responses. Many representatives have personally thanked us and some even requested we tape their bills. Delegate Kenny Alexander (D-89, Norfolk) was pleased to have made it onto our blog. Others have requested copies of the videos.

Then you have the extreme from the other side. Our first incident occurred when a woman, opposing one of our pro-life bills, told us not to tape her testimony after realizing we were from The Family Foundation. When I told her we were, since it was a public hearing, she said that we had a bad reputation for video taping. Word must travel fast because this was just the second or third time we had taped anything.

One afternoon in Senate Courts of Justice, a clerk asked us if it was "necessary to tape" a particular bill and seemed confused that we were not from the press. I guess it is not necessary, but holding people accountable for their words is worth the ire it raises. In Senate Finance last week, the Capitol Police eyed our camera and then asked Senator John Watkins (R-10, Powhatan) if we were intimidating him to which he replied, "No."

One afternoon, while in the GAB's 6th floor cafeteria, I ran into the woman who had not wanted her testimony on video. After some friendly banter, I reminded her I was the one from The Family Foundation who had recorded her prior testimony. Her demeanor changed instantly. She informed me that she was deeply disturbed and "did not think this information should be getting out there." This presented a fine opportunity to let her know why we have started filming and that we do, indeed, place the videos on our blog.

Our opponents do not want you watching how our bills fare or the nature of the testimony they bring against them. On the other hand, we think you should know the processes and outcomes here in Richmond.

Suzanne Nichols, from Harrisonburg, is a 2008 graduate of Grove City College in Pennsylvania where she received a B.A. in History. During session, she has ably researched and written on a variety of issues. She also, to the consternation of many, taped the telling committee videos you've seen on this blog (see her work at our YouTube page). When she told me the story, I immediately knew we had out first ever guest blog post. — The admin.

Update: Bill Of The Day SJR 303

We're pleased to announce our first Bill Of The Day, SJR 303, patroned by Senator John Watkins (R-10, Powhatan), which designates 2009 as the Year of Astronomy in Virginia in conjunction with the United Nations declaration of the year 2009 as the International Year of Astronomy, now will become law. The House passed it in a block vote a few minutes ago 98-0. Let it be known the power of the Family Foundation and this blog.

Poll: Rate Sarah Palin

Now that the presumptive Republican presidential candidate, U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ), has picked Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to run with him as the GOP's vice presidential candidate, and there's been a full 24 hour news cycle to digest it all, what do you think? Give us your impressions by voting in the poll below. We'd love to have your comments as well — let us know the reasons for your vote. Please post them in the blog's thread (not at polldaddy). The poll closes Friday, September 5, at noon (to give you a chance to size her up at the Republican National Convention. You can only vote once.