Most folks know there is a world class spraying contest going on in the newly revamped Virginia 13 Senate District which has a GOP primary among former Delegate Dick Black, PW Supervisor John Stirrup, and many time state Senate candidate Bob Fitzsimmonds.
There has been a lot of back and forth between Black and his detractors, most recently seen here.
Mr. Black has taken fire for a variety of things, but the title of the post referenced above gets to the heart of the concern about Mr. Black’s candidacy. It is admirable that Mr. Black has such a devoted following. Nonetheless, no matter how ideologically pure he might be the perhaps the question that needs to be discussed is how effective he can be in Richmond. Not a matter of how he will vote, but how effective he can be in representing all the matters concerning his district.
That is the 800 lb elephant in the Va-13 Senate race-but no one is talking about it.
Although the fetus delivery happened several years ago it is till #1 on the list of things that come to mind when Dick Black’s name comes up. As a result, I think part of the discussion in VA-13 needs to focus on how effectively can Mr. Black represent the people in his state senate district. Can he overcome the perception of being more than a little bit out there?
Compare Dick Black to Bob Marshall, delegate from Prince William County since 1991. Marshall is every bit as conservative as Black, but has a very positive reputation in Richmond based on his constituent service and his vigorous intellectual support of the same issues Mr. Black champions. Delegate Marshall is seen as highly conservative, very collegial, and able to work across the aisle as needed. Former Delegate Black is seen in too many quarters as “the guy who sent out the plastic fetuses”
I don’t imagine Dick Black is the only person in Va 13 who will support the pro-life agenda. Bob Fitzsimmonds, for example, staunchly supports these issues. Yet the Black Brigade goes on as if it is a moral failure to send him back to the Holy City.
I have to wonder if it is a practical failure to send a person to Richmond who because of the ways he has chosen to promote his political agenda has already undermined his ability to effectively represent the needs of his constituents.
If I am wrong, then this idea is a moot point.
BUT…if I am not, and Stirrup and Fitzsimmonds are trying to ask this question via understatement and innuendo, then I wish they would step up and ask the question. Because lord knows the Democratic nominee will, and it is better to have a dialogue and air out issues like this in a primary rather than a general election.
It’s not a matter of ideology-it’s a matter of competence, and of getting the 800 lb elephant out of the room and focusing on real issues.
UPDATE: After publishing, I noted a few misspellings…hopefully I caught them all.