Thoughts on the RPV Luncheon

The snowfall in the Valley today cut my day at Belle Grove short–not short enough for me to catch the RPV Luncheon live, but enough for me to review the tape. Special kudos to the RPV New Media Committee for making this possible. New media has penetrated every aspect of the Advance moreso than any year (although I’ll note that many of the Commonwealth’s finest twitterers and bloggers have been a bit quiet today–though some of them may be fleeing back home to beat the snow). Here’s the feed for your purusal–I’ll note that a good chunk of the video is a a review of some of Tim Murtaugh’s greatest hits and other gootage from the campaign, so you may want to fast forward to catch the speeches from each of our statewide victors.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

My thoughts below the fold

–Bob Goodlatte gave the invocation. The event has been held in Bath County, part of his district, in three of the last five years. He got a fairly warm reception, but he continues to be on the most underrated members of our delegation (And why not, when the Minority Whip is from the Commonwealth), so its nice to see him get some limelight. Goodlatte is likely a shoe-in to chair Judiciary if we take back the House in 2010.

–NOVA is back in a big big way. Incoming Delegate Jim LeMunyon gave the pledge of allegiance, and most of the individual plaudits that went out where to NOVA people–indeed, Glen Caroline, LCRC Chair, won Chairman of the Year, and Fairfax won best unit. Even though Bob McDonnell thanked many, MANY people, NOVA was first up for recognition. There won’t be a big statewide fight until 2012–and even that may be preempted if Allen jumps in for a rematch against Webb–so it’s too early to tell just what NOVA’s strength is, but I suspect there will be at least one Northern Virginia leader on the statewide ticket in 2013.

–Also back in a big way–RPV itself. Mullins himself noted RPV’s turnaround, Tim Murtaugh’s efforts on behalf of the campaign were highlighted, and Northern Virginia field rep (and I mean that in a broad way–his territory stretches all the way to Shenandoah County) Frank Puelo, one of the hardest working men in Virginia politics, was personally singled out by Bob McDonnell. The Advance itself took in over $160k–and Pat Mullins was sure to note that when he rode into town RPV was barely able to pay the bills.

–Highlighted during the lunch–the infamous Dirty Deeds video, which was taken down from YouTube (presumably over copyright issues). Though it was only up for a short time, the video and the meme went a long way in framing Deeds as a desperate candidate sticking to divisive issues and devoid of positive ideas for Virginia.

–Ken Cuccinelli got a warm welcome–particularly from Augusta County, who he singled out. Though Augusta County’s grassroots activists are still split over local intraparty squabbles, the unit continues to be a powerhouse and was a key reason that the 6th went big for Ken Cuccinelli at the 2009 Convention despite it ostensibly being John Brownlee’s stomping grounds. Ken’s speech was mostly a thank you, and he yielded the spotlight in favor of a private session later in the day with activists discussing the reasons for our big wins this year.

–Bill Bolling spoke next and got an equally warm welcome. It’s too early to start any speculation on early jockeying for 2013, but one thing is clear: Bill Bolling is NOT going to let anyone forget that he made an amazing sacrifice by sparing the party a fight by not running in 2009.

–One critique for Bolling–be careful quoting “The Candidate.” It is a beautiful film about politics, but not beautiful in the way that Mr. Smith Goes to Washington is. Rather, it takes a scathing satirical look at the devolution of politics into soundbites, spin, and personality–years before the advent of the 24 hour news cycle and bloggers. It’s a cautionary tale for idealistic people running for office–and maybe not the sort of film we want to reference right now.

–The final speech was from the big guy: Governor-elect Bob McDonnell. McDonnell’s speech was again long on thank yous, but he also spent some time analyzing the reasons behind the team’s victory. He unveiled a new code word for the principles that he ran on: results oriented conservatism, or ROC. Will this catch on as a big new catchphrase? Doubtful, but McDonnell laid out perhaps the most eloquent explanation of his view of conservatism and how we can win again in 2010.”Conservatives can win elections in competitive states if they stay true to their principles while addressing the concerns that everyday….voters care about,” McDonnell said.

–McDonnell made clear, to this crowd, that he was going to be a pro-life, pro-Second Amendment, pro-family, pro-property rights governor–but he noted that while we should never forget these principles, we should also never forget that citizens need results

–McDonnell also provided a bit of the bold policy agenda he will pusure as governor by highlighting what he hopes people will remember when he leaves office in 2014. Consider this his pre-inaugural address:

  • Balanced budgets that respect taxpayers and prioritize economic development
  • Education reform via charter schools
  • True privatization, consolidation, and reform
  • A transportation plan that gets things done
  • Privatized liquor stores and open rest stops

–McDonnell reached out for people to help. Might we see those massive email lists switch over to the Opportunity Virginia PAC to serve as an Organizing for America-esque pressure group?

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  1. December 7, 2009 at 5:45 pm

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