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Former Congressman Tom Perriello

Former Congressman Tom Perriello (D-Albemarle)

It’s game time. We are just days away from another pivotal election, but pundits and reporters are noting a lack of enthusiasm. They’re right, and that’s just plain wrong.

In the past few months, I’ve been doing events with amazing candidates around the state, and I sense that the low energy is finally shifting into deep urgency as progressives and moderates alike shudder at what would happen to our Commonwealth if Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli and his Tea Party friends are handed complete reign over Richmond.

But I still hear some folks asking me “what’s the point?”, often citing a disastrous bill that snuck through the State Senate, effectively shutting down access for many Virginia women to the health care they need. If that is what this Senate gives us, they ask, then why is it worth saving? The answer could not be more clear - without Democratic control of the Virginia Senate, that is the kind of disaster we would see every single day the legislature is in session. That procedural mistake, while horrendous, was just a glimpse of what could happen as our great Commonwealth races to the bottom, with Alabama’s attack on immigrants and the churches that help them, Wisconsin’s attacks on educators and first responders, Mississippi’s attack on women’s health, and North Carolina’s assault on the right to vote.

If you want Virginia to look like some dystopian collage of the worst hits from red states across the nation, then stay home. Or forget all the negativity, tivo the football games and spend the weekend knocking doors. There are close races in every corner of the state, so you are not far from a volunteer center that can put you to work. Click here to find a place near you to help out in key Senate races around the Commonwealth.

Democrats only have a small margin in the Senate, and these races are going to be close, so any time you can give will make a huge difference.

Thanks so much for your support!

Editor’s Note: There’s still time to get involved, right here in Albemarle County! Email ben@albemarledems.org for volunteer opportunities, and don’t forget to vote and remind your friends to vote for our great candidates on Election Day—this Tuesday, November 8th!

Republished with permission from Blue Virginia.

Senator Edd Houck with speaks with an African American constituent

Senator Edd Houck with speaks with a constituent

Sen. Edd Houck, the top target of anti-choice activists, Albemarle’s senior legislator and half of the two-vote firewall in the Senate that keeps extremist legislation from the Republican General Assembly from being enacted into law continues to find himself targeted by false attacks. This time, radical anti-choice activists are spreading a flyer claiming that he supports racial genocide. The Free Lance Star reports:

This particular flier says that Margaret Sanger, an early advocate of birth control whose work led to the founding of Planned Parenthood, was a racist who gave talks to the Ku Klux Klan, and that Planned Parenthood puts abortion clinics in black neighborhoods “not by accident.” The flier says that Houck is supported by Planned Parenthood and that voters in the 17th state Senate district should vote against Houck and “save our children from the abortion industry’s agenda.”

Not surprisingly, local African-American leaders are outraged at the ridiculous attack:

The Rev. Lawrence Davies, a former city mayor, said he was “outraged” when he saw the flier with the headline “Would you support killing African-American babies?”

Davies said he was particularly upset by the flier’s headline. “What is it that they say in here that indicates the person who supports Sen. Houck would be killing African-American babies?” Davies said. He said he’s never heard of a “black genocide agenda” from Planned Parenthood. “I don’t know of any abortion facilities in the black neighborhoods here,” Davies added.

To date, Republican candidate, extremist Bryce Reeves, who proudly received the endorsement of right-wing radical Mike Huckabee,  has not condemned the spurious attacks being run on his behalf. With classless opposition like this, it’s no wonder that the Free Lance Star has endorsed Sen. Houck for reelection. Don’t forget to vote to Sen. Houck and for all of our other candidates in Albemarle County this Tuesday, November 8th!

Senator Houck—pictured here in Richmond meeting with constituents—was noted by the Free Lance Star for his "dogged constituent service" in their endorsement

Senator Edd Houck continues to receive key endorsement after another in his campaign to defeat right-wing extremist Bryce Reeves and serve our district for another term in the Virginia Senate. These include the Virginia Education Association, Virginia Farm Bureau AgPAC, National Federation of Independent Business-Virginia, Virginia Association of Realtors, Virginia Professional Firefighters, the Sierra Club and League of Conservation Voters.

As of yesterday, you can add Fredericksburg’s Free Lance Star to the list:

THE late U.S. senator Robert Byrd, a scholar of his chamber, frequently said that the Senate was like a saucer, into which steaming legislation from the more passionate and “popular” House of Representatives was poured to cool. To keep the temperature at a safe low in the General Assembly, voters next Tuesday should re-elect state Sen. Edd Houck.

Mr. Houck, a 27-year legislative veteran who represents the 17th Senate district, is one half of an imperiled comfort zone for Democrats, who control the body by just a 22-18 margin. His loss, along with that of one other Democratic senator, would give effective Senate control to Republicans, who could win any tie vote with the intervention of Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling in his role as president of the Senate.

Such a scenario, putting the GOP at the helm of both legislative chambers and the governorship, would please many voters. But it should cause trepidation, because this is not the GOP of yore, whose national leaders from Abraham Lincoln (the transcontinental railroad) to Dwight Eisenhower (the interstate highway system) to Richard Nixon (the EPA) saw the beneficent possibilities of an active government. This is the GOP of radical individualism and Tea Party affection, whose Virginia House of Delegates division won’t raise a gas tax unchanged in 25 years to fix today’s roads. It is good to have a partisan counterbalance to that philosophy in state government.

This is not to say, however, that Mr. Houck is a crazed spender, despite Photoshopped tangos with Barack Obama on campaign literature. Some of the most savvy, non-Democratic businessmen in the area (e.g., Joe Wilson and Fitz Johnson, a former county GOP chairman) back his candidacy, as does the National Federation of Independent Business. He has fought the “death tax” that can destroy an inherited family business. That Mr. Houck’s reliable support of public education and of the physically and mentally disabled make him an object of Republican caricature gives the electorate less to disdain about Mr. Houck than to fear about his detractors.

Mr. Houck is also noted for his ability to work with the other side–ask Gov. McDonnell–and for his dogged constituent service–conspicuous in his securing of state funds to move hazardous chemical-hauling rail cars from Fredericksburg’s Mayfield neighborhood. As chairman of the Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council, he has championed government transparency.

Certainly, social conservatives have good reason to want him gone. As chairman of the Senate Education and Health Committee he has buried anti-abortion legislation, earning 100 percent ratings from NARAL and Planned Parenthood. But it is hard to see how many others share that sentiment, apart from government-hating nutzies.

We urge the re-election state Sen. Edd Houck, an ice cube in any hot Tea the GOP House is likely to brew.

In addition to these organizations, over 60 former federal, state and local law enforcement officers—including many sheriffs and prosecutors from his district—have endorsed Sen. Houck’s re-election, as have well over 40 veterans of the United States Armed Forces.

For more information about Sen. Houck, visit his website at SenatorHouck.com, and don’t forget to vote for Sen. Houck and all of our candidates on Election Day, this coming Tuesday: November 8th.