Southside Central tries to "rank" the current Republican challengers to Tom Perriello by giving them all 0% chance at being the actual nominee. He gives Rob Hurt at 99% chance. He obviously hasn't been watching the grassroots movement sweeping the nation of Americans upset at the status quo in Washington. This movement isn't just anti-Democrat, it's anti-big government.
To assume that Hurt has the nomination locked up ignores history. Back in 1996 when Goode was first running as a Democrat the Republicans recruited then Delegate Frank Ruff to run. And guess what? He lost at the convention. The 5th District may be conservative, but it's also independent and has a mind of its own.
I also disagree with his emphasis on Southside. Sure, it would be nice to run a campaign that focuses only on Southside, run up the margins, and swamp Perriello in the end. But Perriello is the incumbent now and will have a significant advantage next time around. I don't think the NRCC will do all the fundraising for the challenger to Perriello, not even for Hurt. They are looking at races around the country and will prioritize. Sure, they may be making promises to Hurt right now but they are just the sweet seducing songs of sirens.
Tommy Boy may very well still win if the GOP nominee focuses only on Southside Virginia. First, that leaves Perriello unchallenged in the Charlottesville area and he'll be able to run up an even higher margin in the area as the Republican base feels ignored and neglected. Second, any candidate who thinks they can just rest on their state legislature laurels will be missing out parts of Southside. Any candidate, including Rob Hurt, will have to work to introduce himself to Bedford, to Appomattox, to Halifax, to Charlotte, to Lunenburg, and so forth. Third, the people of the counties he already represents or represented have no where near the same attachment to him, a minor State Senator who has rarely faced strong challengers, as they did to Virgil Goode. And guess what, Goode lost.
What we need is a conservative candidate with vim and vigor. Having waited to long to annouce, I'm starting to question Hurt's vim and vigor. I only have two candidates right now that have impressed me. Bradley Rees may not have political experience but he has vim and vigor. And Ken Boyd seems to have strong conservative credentials and a proven track record of taking on the liberals in the lion's den of Albemarle County. I'll have to keep my eye on the others.
With vim and vigor Perriello will be challenged everywhere, including and especially Charlottesville. With vim and vigor all of Southside will be excited and energized about the election. Republicans will have a reason to come out and vote for SOMEONE, not just a fear that they have to come out and vote AGAINST someone. I have a lot of problems with how Bush managed the country like a big spending liberal, but one thing I can say in his defense was he knew how to campaign. He got conservatives fired up. McCain didn't and we lost Virginia for the first time since 1964. Let that be a lesson to us all.