For each of the last ten presidential elections,
Virginia reliably delivered its thirteen electoral votes to the Republican candidate. This year the Democratic Party is hoping to mount a serious challenge. Barak Obama chose to officially open his campaign as the presumptive Democratic candidate in Virginia. Voters in the state can expect to receive a lot of attention from both Obama and McCain between now and November. NewHour’s Kwame Holman filed
this video report.
“I’m keeping my mind open. And if you noticed just recently with Barack’s speech the other night, the tone has completely changed in two days. Now, all of a sudden, there seems to be a more strategic reaching out to all types of people, not just to the Democrats.” - Roger Simond, Jr., undecided voter
“Presidential candidates wouldn’t come here. The Republicans didn’t need to, and the Democrats said, “Why bother?” But we’ve been making some changes in Virginia, folks.” - Governor Tim Kaine (Democratic Governor since 2005)
The last Democratic presidential candidate to win Virginia did so as part of his national landslide victory in 1964 - who was it? George W. Bush won Virginia by large margins in 2000 and 2004. Why would Democrats think they have a chance this year? Does your state tend to vote Republican or Democratic? Why is that?
Why did Obama kick off his campaign in Virginia, rather than one of the larger “pivotal” states like Ohio, Pennsylvania or Florida? What demographic, economic or political factors might be helping the Democratic Party in Virginia in the upcoming election? George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry are just a few examples of famous Virginia political figures. If these three founding forefathers were alive today, which current presidential candidate do you think each might support? Why? How is your state different from Virginia, how is it similar?
Transcript: Obama Looks to Turn Virginia into Blue State
In-Depth Coverage: Vote 2008
Rasmussen Polling Reports: Election 2008: Virginia Presidential Election
EIN News: U.S. Politics Today: Virginia Political News