A ray of hope inside the beltway

Barbara Comstock is an ace Republican political consultant. I met her, thanks to my daughter, at a dinner for Mitt Romney for whom Comstock served as a consultant and for whom my daughter’s employer did polling.
Breaking away from my image, at least, of the political consultant, Comstock decided to run for “low office” this year, namely the Virginia House of Delegates. The seat in question is in Fairfax County, including the wealthy Washington, DC suburb of McLean. The Republicans had held the seat basically forever until 2007, when Democrat Margaret Vanderhye snatched it.
On Tuesday, Comstock defeated Margaret Vanderhye by about 500 votes. I understand that the seat encompasses some neighborhoods inside Washington DC’s beltway. I’ve also read that these neighborhoods will become the only ones inside the beltway to be represented by a Republican, at least in Virginia. I’d be surprised if there were any such neighborhoods in Maryland either.
We congratuate Barbara Comstock.
Given the closeness of her election, we also wonder whether the White House’s decision essentially to throw Democratic gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds under the bus played a role. Turnout in the Democratic areas of Northern Virginia reportedly was quite low. It seems likely that the criticism of Deeds’ candidacy by the White House, and its effective concession that he was a no-hoper, helped depress turnout. It’s unclear whether this changed the result in Comstock’s race, but I think we can say that Obama did Vanderhye no favors.
In the 1980 election, if I recall correctly, Jimmy Carter conceded before the polls had closed in California. It was thought that this depressed Democratic turnout which, in turn, may have cost the Dems at least one congressional seat.
Carter was a narcissist who could not have cared less about the outcome of some local race . This may be another in the growing number of ways Obama resembles the old peanut farmer.

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