The Hamlet of Va-11?

The WaPo says Tom Davis will conduct a press conference later this week related to his political plans for 2008.

My question is why have the press conference at all?

Before we answer that, let’s consider the path already taken.

It has been an open secret for many years that Tom Davis wanted to go to the US Senate, and would likely run to succeed John Warner. Then came Iraq, the rise of Mark Warner, the Kilgore spanking, Macaca, and a tough reelection campaign for his wife JMDD…a general decline in GOP fortunes. When John Warner actually announces he will retire, Davis is faced with a convention fight with former Governor Jim Gilmore and then a general election campaign against Mark Warner.

Speculation here, here, here, and elsewhere that faced with all this Davis will run for reelection in Va-11.

Congressman Davis has already said he will not make a definitive announcement of his plans until after the general election.

The WaPo also says that…

while he plans to talk to the media on Thursday about his political future, he has not made a final decision about the race

Then why have the conference?  I don’t understand the timing.

I do not think he will run for the US Senate-the convention vote scotched that idea. I also think Gilmore’s candidacy against Mark Warner will be so bad as to define the GOP base vote for a generation…of course, I have said that before and been called a “mouth breather” by an RK diarist for having the idea that someone other than Gilmore or Davis would be the best GOP candidate in 2008.

But again…the timing?

Why take the limelight away from General Assembly races? Why not just wait until after the 2007 election day as announced previously and state your intentions then?

The Machiavelli in me can find only indirect reasons for having a press conference this week:

a)  It takes the press spotlight away from the JMDD-Chap! race, minimizing publicity and following the turnout depression strategy in that race Davis has been accused of master minding; or
b) There is another candidate of similar ideological stripe who is considering getting into the race for the 2008 GOP nomination, but will do so only if he is certain that Davis will not be a candidate in that race.

To date Davis has always seemed to be in full control of his political plans, whether you agree with them or not. It is not like him to be Hamlet-like, and yet that is just what seems to be happening.

One thing I am confident of is that he runs for something in 2008. If Tom Davis steps down and heads for private industry, fine and good. Vaya Con Dios, mi amigo.

But if he, the incumbent, steps down and Va-11 goes democrat, I doubt he will have the credibility to return for a future run for a seat in either house of the Congress.  For an example of this in action, review the Paul Trible pull in 1988 and what happened to him a year later.

So what is going to happen on Thursday?

“To be, or not to be…that is the question.”


7 thoughts on “The Hamlet of Va-11?

  1. Bwana:
    My only comment is that I will support Tom in whatever he decides. Why now and not until after election…maybe you are right, although, I tend to think it puts the press at bay for the next two weeks and allows him to the freedom to run his wifes re-election campaing without the constant questions and harranging by the idiot media hounds…”Oh, well is all this work taking away from your own Senate campaign? blah, blah , blah!!”
    Tom is both a smart politician/tactician and dedicated public servant. He deserves some consideration and patience.
    Again, why are we (the public/media) concerned with 2008 when we have more important issues facing us here in two weeks in voting for folks who have a bigger impact on our daily living…AGAIN LET”S KEEP OUR EYE ON THE BALL!!!

    Bwana Fan In Vienna

  2. Well, I am interested in 2008 because I have the attention span of a gnat…and there are not enough races going on this year to keep my attention.

    All kidding aside, Davis does deserve patience. But without anyone pushing him Davis chose to say he would announce his intentions after the november 2007 elections. He then turned around and said he will have a press conference two weeks earlier than originally scheduled and in the closing weeks of an election cycle…but that he may not announce his 2008 plans.

    He has kicked open the door for speculation, and it would be rude to decline his invitation.

  3. Bwana,

    If you are bored, we have lots of GOTV work that we need help with. Any chance we can get you to take off work for the next two weeks to help out? How about just a Saturday plus election day?

    Representatively yours,
    Ken Cuccinelli

  4. SenKen-

    It doesn’t appear that I am needed…if you can take time out from your presumably busy schedule to pop an off-topic ping to my post, and in the middle of the day…things must be going pretty easy for you. 😉

  5. Well Bwana my friend, I have known for years that you have the attention span of a gnat, thus the reason for my admonishment to keep our eye on the ball. Take care,

    Bwana Fan In Vienna

  6. BFIV, with the laser like concentration I possess and that is necessitated by chasing the kids around, the attention span of a gnat is all that I need.

    But since Tom Davis kicked all this off, perhaps he is the first you should be admonishing.

  7. Fair enough, on the first sentence and with regard to the second sentence, it’s more fun to “basically” pick on you!!! Have a great day and an even better day tomorrow.

    Bwana Fan In Vienna

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