Top Cuccinelli advisor: What killed us more than anything was … the shutdown

posted at 7:21 pm on November 7, 2013 by Allahpundit

It’s Chris La Civita, the same guy whose comment Tuesday night about national Republicans abandoning Cooch in early October lit the fuse of the RINO/tea party powderkeg that exploded yesterday. Don’t blame the RNC, he now says. Blame the damned shutdown, which of course was very strongly opposed by the big-money RINOs who’ve been slammed for supposedly having stabbed Cuccinelli in the back.

“It moved the disaster of Obamacare away from our narrative,” he says, in an interview with National Review Online. “It sucked the oxygen out of the room. Instead of talking about Obamacare, we were talking about the shutdown.”

In mid October, LaCivita says, the campaign was startled by how the shutdown affected their momentum. Their internal poll numbers dipped and several of the Virginia attorney general’s donors, especially conservative groups aligned with Cuccinelli, “suddenly became gun-shy.”…

LaCivita, however, doesn’t blame national Republican power brokers for Cuccinelli’s loss. Yes, he says, they spent less in Virginia than they did during the 2009 gubernatorial race, which was easily won by Republican Bob McDonnell. But they did step up, he says, and provided valuable support.

“Wait a sec,” you say. “Didn’t the exit polls in Virginia show that voters there blamed the GOP and Obama nearly equally for the shutdown?” Indeed they did, but La Civita’s not really claiming otherwise. He’s not saying that people turned against Cooch because of it, he’s saying that the campaign was deprived of the chance to spend the entire final month hammering McAuliffe on O-Care. The shutdown was a distraction at a crucial moment. Then again, just because the final exits showed a nearly even split on blame doesn’t mean that that split was even all along. La Civita himself says Cuccinelli’s polling dropped initially because of it, which evidently was enough to convince some righty donors that he was a lost cause. Dig a bit further into the exits and you’ll see that the shutdown hurt Cooch a lot with a not-so-small segment of the electorate: “[McAuliffe] also won the three in 10 Virginia voters who said someone in their household was affected by the partial federal shutdown last month, by a 19-point margin.” Maybe most of those were Democratic households to begin with, but not all were. Some were surely headed by people in the defense industry. How many potential GOP votes switched there?

It could even be that the reason the polls didn’t detect Cuccinelli’s near-win is because anger over the shutdown gradually evaporated after it ended. As the story of the government closing down faded and the story of the O-Care trainwreck emerged, people who were initially sour on the GOP because of the former began to see some merit in the “defund” campaign in hindsight — just not quite enough to bring Cooch all the way back from the hit he took earlier in the month. That’s conjecture, but it’s interesting that a guy as close to Cuccinelli as LaCivita would say something that might feed it. Ah well. Doesn’t really matter. Both wings of the party are convinced that it was the other side that kneecapped Ken. Nothing will change that.

Exit question: Many grassroots conservative groups spent money to try to elect Cuccinelli, but some didn’t — and they’re criticizing the RNC anyway for having spent “only” $3 million. How come?


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The man has to find work somewhere…Karl got to him.

d1carter on November 7, 2013 at 7:23 PM

Collateral damage, then. The long-term dividends of the shutdown become more apparent as more people become angry that Obamacare wasn’t… shut down. And learn that a few Republicans at least tried.

de rigueur on November 7, 2013 at 7:23 PM

Top Cuccinelli advisor: What killed us more than anything was … the shutdown

Thats why the dems shut down 17% of the government. Distraction and blame.
Duh.

Mimzey on November 7, 2013 at 7:25 PM

Where was the campaign BEFORE that?

Not present.

The campaign sucked long before the government shut-down. It was not getting out door-to-door or even holding townhalls… heck no phone-in meetings, either that I’m aware of.

Sorry if the shutdown turned some people sour, but with a low turnout you need the base to turn out and you weren’t contacting the base.

The NRA, they contacted the base of pro-2nd Amendment voters.

The first I got of anything about the Cuccinelli campaign was from the NRA, not the campaign.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 7:26 PM

Top Cuccinelli advisor demonstrates that one of the primary factors in Cuccinelli’s defeat is the cluelessness of top Cuccinelli advisors.

troyriser_gopftw on November 7, 2013 at 7:26 PM

Or you could blame the electorate, which is actually the only blame that makes any sense.

happytobehere on November 7, 2013 at 7:27 PM

Cuccinelli wasn’t even competitive in the polling before the shut down.

portlandon on November 7, 2013 at 7:27 PM

Pathetic. It’s just a constant stream of excuses coming from this sore loser and his supporters. He was a bad candidate, he ran a bad campaign, he lost, the end.

Armin Tamzarian on November 7, 2013 at 7:28 PM

I thought it was Chris Christie’s fault. No?

jake-the-goose on November 7, 2013 at 7:29 PM

Or you could blame the electorate, which is actually the only blame that makes any sense.

happytobehere on November 7, 2013 at 7:27 PM

Only if you bother to run a campaign that contacts the electorate, then you can use that excuse.

He didn’t.

That is the fault of the campaign, its managers and the man running it at the top. Turn out a bit more of the base and you win. That means you actually have to contact the base in the first place.

The man needed to be in a primary.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 7:29 PM

Top Cuccinelli advisor demonstrates that one of the primary factors in Cuccinelli’s defeat is the cluelessness of top Cuccinelli advisors.

troyriser_gopftw on November 7, 2013 at 7:26 PM

And the inability of true conservatives to accept the blame for their actions. Sure, the shutdown may have helped in the long run, but the defunders sacrificed Cuccinelli’s campaign in doing so.

The delicious moment? True conservatives then turn around and blame the establishment for the loss when the true conservative are equally to blame. This is nothing more than rank tribalism.

eva3071 on November 7, 2013 at 7:30 PM

“Instead of talking about Obamacare, we were talking about the shutdown.”

I see – someone held a gun to La Civita’s head and demanded they not attack on the Obamacare disaster. Yeah, that’s the ticket.

whatcat on November 7, 2013 at 7:35 PM

The Tea Party/social conservative base ran a ground game on a shoe-string budget and fell just 56,000 votes of winning the election.

If the RNC threw just a million to the ground game, Cucinnelli would be governor.

But they, including McDonnell, wanted Bolling as their candidate and decided to forfeit this election. Wait for 2017!

Politics at its worst.

And then the RNC wonders why 6-10 million white voters stayed home during the 2012 election.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 7:35 PM

Oh please. If the democrat ‘slimdown’ threw Cuccinelli’s campaign off balance, then it couldn’t have been much of a campaign. So silly.

Pork-Chop on November 7, 2013 at 7:35 PM

So far Ted Cruz’s biggest success in getting another politician elected is McAuliffe. And he probably won’t be the last Democrat who will have Cruz to thank.

Mark1971 on November 7, 2013 at 7:35 PM

So, the Cuccinelli team is resorting to Leftist/RINO talking points?

Great …

ShainS on November 7, 2013 at 7:37 PM

Cuccinelli wasn’t even competitive in the polling before the shut down.
portlandon on November 7, 2013 at 7:27 PM

And the kicker is that he didn’t make the huge jump in the polls until the “shutdown” started.

whatcat on November 7, 2013 at 7:38 PM

The RNC spent %1.5 million to help Christie run up the score in NJ, while Cuch was getting massively outspent on TV. That’s inexcusable.

Jon0815 on November 7, 2013 at 7:38 PM

Alas, the government shutdown probably gave hundreds of thousands of “non-essential” government employees in Northern Virginia some unexpected free time which many may have used to campaign for Terry McCauliffe.

Although I still think the government shutdown was very necessary, especially since we still haven’t seen any progress on the Senate passing a budget.

wren on November 7, 2013 at 7:39 PM

The RNC spent $1.5 million to help Christie run up the score in NJ, while Cuch was getting massively outspent on TV. That’s inexcusable.

Jon0815 on November 7, 2013 at 7:38 PM

True – the GOP should not receive another dollar from any of us – donate only to the candidate(s) of you choice – directly.

jake-the-goose on November 7, 2013 at 7:40 PM

The man has to find work somewhere…Karl got to him.

d1carter on November 7, 2013 at 7:23 PM

Right. Don’t diss the GOP big money if you want to work as as a Krack Konsultant.

Wethal on November 7, 2013 at 7:40 PM

For this to ‘throw’ the election you first have to put forward that there was a viable campaign operation on the ground to start with.

There wasn’t.

From where I sat the Cuccinelli campaign consisted of three ad buys.

In the first two weeks of SEPTEMBER.

Campaign stops? Where? Why didn’t the word get out on those?

In SEPTEMBER when you would try to build some momentum off the ad buys?

Didn’t happen.

What did the candidate do to adjust his message for the shutdown? Like say ‘Look things are screwed up at the federal level and we have got to get things straightened out in Virginia to weather the storm’ Where was that sort of campaign that could distance itself from the federal shenanigans and still put forward a viable campaign message?

Didn’t happen.

The problem wasn’t the shutdown.

It was the damned campaign and lack thereof.

Showing up is half the game.

They didn’t show up and STILL came within 3%.

Now imagine if you had just a run of the mill competent politician running.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 7:42 PM

So far Ted Cruz’s biggest success in getting another politician elected is McAuliffe. And he probably won’t be the last Democrat who will have Cruz to thank.

Mark1971 on November 7, 2013 at 7:35 PM

What do you mean??
I must not understand your reasoning..is it the new “I blame Bush”?

Mimzey on November 7, 2013 at 7:43 PM

“It sucked the oxygen out of the room. Instead of talking about Obamacare, we were talking about the shutdown.”

You handled it with fear. You were suffocating it sounds like. Bad decision. You lost.

Exit question:

Who is the RNC?/ The Governors race for Va. not there quest anymore? Its one of fifty State Governorships. Not important enough?

Bmore on November 7, 2013 at 7:46 PM

The premise is total BS. The northern Virginia folks were never going to vote for Cuccinelli regardless.

MikeinPRCA on November 7, 2013 at 7:46 PM

Apparently not.

Bmore on November 7, 2013 at 7:46 PM

So far Ted Cruz’s biggest success in getting another politician elected is McAuliffe. And he probably won’t be the last Democrat who will have Cruz to thank.

Mark1971 on November 7, 2013 at 7:35 PM

Durrrrrrr

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 7:46 PM

I’m sure, if the GOP knew that Obamacare would open to a glitchy debacle they wouldn’t have done the Shutdown.

Then again, if they did a Shutdown after Obamacare opened with or without the glitches, it would look absolutely advantageous and mixed-messaged if the ladder.

The Nerve on November 7, 2013 at 7:50 PM

His advisor had to say it because if KC had said it, the audience would be asleep before he got halfway through the first sentence.

Kafir on November 7, 2013 at 7:50 PM

Turns out the Cuccinelli blames the Tea Party for their loss, and the establishment tried to prevent the shutdown that Cuccinelli blames. But Cuccinelli had some extreme positions that scared off a lot of women, or at least were easy for McCauliffe to exploit. And I hear he wasn’t the best candidate either. Still, he almost won thanks to Obamacare.

And he didn’t want to build some freeways in NoVA that in this case were probably called for. Govt does need to build freeways.

That’s one thing, freeway building, that’s pretty much stopped in socal in 1970s after the libs made a huge deal out of all the “impacts.” Well, look at socal now, with more people (“immigrants”), the freeways are almost always jammed. The 405 is known as the freeway with the worse traffic in the world, and if you are on a freeway that even goes near the 405, the collateral effects usually cause that freeway to jam up. It’s a nightmare, but they won’t consider what is needed: build more freeways!

anotherJoe on November 7, 2013 at 7:51 PM

they wouldn’t have done the Shutdown.

The Nerve on November 7, 2013 at 7:50 PM

They didn’t shut anything down.

Mimzey on November 7, 2013 at 7:52 PM

Even giving the Cuccinelli adviser his (probably correct) premise that the shutdown hurt them, that’s total nonsense.

While people predicted problems with the Obamacare tec, the exact way it’s unfolded as a political liability whose crest could have wiped out McCauliffe’s 15 point lead wasn’t predicted by anyone.

The proof being that Cuccinelli wasn’t basing his campaign around Obamacare until the political damage started becoming apparent in mid-October.

You might as well blame Obama’s reelection on Hurricane Sandy. The fact that it might be factually true doesn’t make it a less stupid excuse.

HitNRun on November 7, 2013 at 7:53 PM

The Tea Party/social conservative base ran a ground game on a shoe-string budget and fell just 56,000 votes of winning the election.

If the RNC threw just a million to the ground game, Cucinnelli would be governor.

But they, including McDonnell, wanted Bolling as their candidate and decided to forfeit this election. Wait for 2017!

Politics at its worst.

And then the RNC wonders why 6-10 million white voters stayed home during the 2012 election.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 7:35 PM

Now “Just do our job for us” is the new meme.

Even though the RNC, NRSC, & RGA are all supporting Democrats we as conservatives are now supposed to do the their jobs for them.

Because they are just their to make $$$ off lobbying and elections.

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 7:53 PM

Exit question: Many grassroots conservative groups spent money to try to elect Cuccinelli, but some didn’t — and they’re criticizing the RNC anyway for having spent “only” $3 million. How come?

Because they didn’t spend that money on KC. they spent in on down ticket races and their stupid republican autopsy project.

jawkneemusic on November 7, 2013 at 7:55 PM

I’m not buying it …yet .
Why is everyone so eger
Io buy this ” story ” ?

Lucano on November 7, 2013 at 7:57 PM

Obamacare opened on Oct 1. For at least a full week, the media was carrying Obama’s storyline that it was an overwhelming demand problem. So, you had about 10 days that the narrative was transitioning and the end of the shutdown, and they want to say that that was the difference in the election? I doubt it. Cooch didn’t even have money to get on the air to actually hammer McAuliffe until the very last literally 3-4 days before the election.

crrr6 on November 7, 2013 at 7:58 PM

I’m tired of the revisionist history concerning the shutdown and launch of Healthcare.gov.

No one knew the website was going to be an unworkable clusterfark of epic proportions.

No one.

It’s bunch of 20/20 hindsight.

RarestRX on November 7, 2013 at 7:59 PM

Because they didn’t spend that money on KC. they spent in on down ticket races and their stupid republican autopsy project.

jawkneemusic on November 7, 2013 at 7:55 PM

Just listen to that RNC director with that ridiculous Star Wars character name. I’m sure he’s not corrupt.

I bet that all the people at the NRSC making $$$ off attacking conservatives is no big deal. Is having the NRSC staffed by former Chuck Schumer staffers a tip-off to anybody?

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 7:59 PM

Now “Just do our job for us” is the new meme.

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 7:53 PM

That’s certainly what’s going around these days, isn’t it.

TrueCons want conservative candidates elected with moderate cash. Make no mistake – the RNC’s funding comes from moderate moneybags through and through.

There wasn’t a single tea-party moneybomb for Ken Cuccinelli, who is and remains a conservative Virginian’s ideal-as-described candidate. If TrueCons want real clout in the party, why aren’t they ponying up their own cash to make it happen?

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:00 PM

So far Ted Cruz’s biggest success in getting another politician elected is McAuliffe. And he probably won’t be the last Democrat who will have Cruz to thank.

Mark1971 on November 7, 2013 at 7:35 PM

Yeah, the shutdown was pretty stupid in hindsight. Now Hillary will have Clinton Inc. cronies in Virginia state government positions in time for 2016. She might even tap Mark Warner as her VP.

Thanks, Ted Cruz!

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:00 PM

Also, it would have helped if Cooch didn’t craw into a corner rather than defend his social record. McAuliffe fricking supports partial-birth abortion – would I have been asking too much for him to remind voters of that?

crrr6 on November 7, 2013 at 8:01 PM

Advisors are like interior decorators: OVERRATED!

SouthernGent on November 7, 2013 at 8:01 PM

The premise is total BS. The northern Virginia folks were never going to vote for Cuccinelli regardless.

MikeinPRCA on November 7, 2013 at 7:46 PM

Bob McDonnell, only four years ago and one year after Obama won the state, won Northern Virginia handily, with the exception of the most liberal precincts. Keep trying, though.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:02 PM

Great exit question Allahpundit..Awesome..:):)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:05 PM

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:00 PM

So, your argument is: “Hey, I know we are stealing from you and not doing our job but you should have been doing our job for us anyway.”

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 8:06 PM

Also, it would have helped if Cooch didn’t craw into a corner rather than defend his social record. McAuliffe fricking supports partial-birth abortion – would I have been asking too much for him to remind voters of that?

crrr6 on November 7, 2013 at 8:01 PM

Kind of hard to do when no one supports you enough to pony up cash. Those with the cash were backing Bill Bolling who would have won.

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:07 PM

Yesterday Team Cooch was blaming RGA and Bobby Jindal..Now the Gov. shutdown??!!???..Who is next under bus??..Dubyah perhaps..:)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:08 PM

So, your argument is: “Hey, I know we are stealing from you and not doing our job but you should have been doing our job for us anyway.”

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 8:06 PM

No, my argument is that it’s disingenuous to bash the party committees, and in the same breath expect them to win your races for you.

Conservatives rightly took credit for putting Scott Brown over the top in 2010. The reason for that was the moneyclusterbomb, which gave Brown all the money he needed to compete in the most expensive media markets. Again, nothing like that happened for Cooch. Why not? It was always about money; McAuliffe had it and Cuccinelli did not.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:10 PM

The advisor needs to get another gig. It’s that simple.

fight like a girl on November 7, 2013 at 8:11 PM

Bob McDonnell, only four years ago and one year after Obama won the state, won Northern Virginia handily, with the exception of the most liberal precincts. Keep trying, though.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:02 PM

Yup, proudly adopting the Tea Party mantle in his campaign and then betraying it as governor.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:12 PM

Kind of hard to do when no one supports you enough to pony up cash. Those with the cash were backing Bill Bolling who would have won.

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:07 PM

They were doing more than that.

They were supporting McAuliffe including Cantor’s Chief of Staff.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:14 PM

anotherJoe on November 7, 2013 at 7:51 PM

The price expansion for road projects in VA is insane.

There is not an easy to expand freeway system in NoVA because it is radial/circular freeways on top of a radial/mixed grid/isolated grid segment main and secondary road system. Adding the freeways to get to/from DC has also changed all of the traffic in MD, DC and VA to one that is no longer confined to in and out of DC, but radially around the Beltway.

The last Beltway lane expansion took about a decade, and that was done at the same time as a major 495 Interchange rebuild. Both of which were maxed out once finished.

VA near urban areas is a nightmare for road planning… and the sewers usually end up getting redone at the same time because, hey, if you gotta work on the roads you might as well re-do the sewers while you are at it with the ground torn up and everything. That might be your ONLY chance to do it, too.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 8:15 PM

Yup, proudly adopting the Tea Party mantle in his campaign and then betraying it as governor.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:12 PM

You’re being your usual asinine self here, but you ran into my point (completely unintentionally, I’m sure).

Northern Virginia is not locked out to conservative candidates. As you said, McDonnell ran as a small-government conservative (that he tacked to the middle in office is irrelevant). It was however, locked out to Cuccinelli, and the shutdown was a major part of that.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:15 PM

No, my argument is that it’s disingenuous to bash the party committees, and in the same breath expect them to win your races for you.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:10 PM

Uhh no it’s not.

That’s what these people are paid to do. Win elections or at least try.

If anyone else said “Well, my job is kinda hard. Why don’t all of you people who don’t do this for a living do my job cause I suck.” That person would be fired.

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 8:16 PM

They didn’t shut anything down.

Mimzey on November 7, 2013 at 7:52 PM

Well, a lot of federal monuments and national park-closing stories attributed to what took place in Congress perhaps in part by both sides going by the eponymous designation of “The Shutdown”. Happy?

The Nerve on November 7, 2013 at 8:19 PM

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:15 PM

McDonnell was elected with good numbers and then became tied up in a “scandal”..That hurt Cooch some because McDonnell was not able to help him campaign..:)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:20 PM

Northern Virginia is not locked out to conservative candidates. As you said, McDonnell ran as a small-government conservative (that he tacked to the middle in office is irrelevant). It was however, locked out to Cuccinelli, and the shutdown was a major part of that.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:15 PM

Nope, its not locked out at all.

Helps if you actually bother to campaign there.

Or anywhere, come to that.

Campaigning really helps during an election season.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 8:21 PM

Northern Virginia is not locked out to conservative candidates. As you said, McDonnell ran as a small-government conservative (that he tacked to the middle in office is irrelevant). It was however, locked out to Cuccinelli, and the shutdown was a major part of that.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:15 PM

You’ve been eating retard sandwiches for dinner again.

Cuccinelli was down in the polls well before the shutdown because he was being outspent more than 2-1.

Cuccinelli could have won Northern Virginia.

Why?

Because he won it running for Attorney General in 2009.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:21 PM

The man has to find work somewhere…Karl got to him.

d1carter on November 7, 2013 at 7:23 PM

Yep!

He’ll carry Jeb’s bags

workingclass artist on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

You’re being your usual asinine self here, but you ran into my point (completely unintentionally, I’m sure).

Northern Virginia is not locked out to conservative candidates. As you said, McDonnell ran as a small-government conservative (that he tacked to the middle in office is irrelevant). It was however, locked out to Cuccinelli, and the shutdown was a major part of that.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:15 PM

Mark Obenshain probably ran the campaign most similar to McDonnell’s and not surprisingly, it looks like he’ll be the only Republican in VA to win.

GOPRanknFile on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 8:16 PM

Fine, then. Do you want them to be in charge of winning elections, or don’t you? If you do, they get to recruit the candidate they think will win, just like in every election pre-2010 before the Tea Party got into the corrupt-money game.

The RNC does not exist solely to elect Ken Cuccinelli. They are looking down the barrel of a dozen competitive Senate races, several governorships, and the entire House of Representatives next year. Some of the money they didn’t spend today is more than likely going to be spent to pull The Next Great Conservative Hero Candidate’s ass out of the fire.

The RNC doesn’t have an infinite supply of cash to dole out willy-nilly. Overspending in 2009 by Steele screwed us in a lot of close races in 2010. Care for that to happen again to the next Ken Buck?

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

Campaigning really helps during an election season.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 8:21 PM

+ 100..Very good point..:)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

Some of you are morons. If Cruz had not had his “filibuster”, you would only hear about the abysmal rollout and cancelations in FOX. Cruz and Lee laid out everything that is now going wrong with Obamacare and are already being heralded as the ones who tried to stop it and spare the American people from it’s devastating effects.

fight like a girl on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

I see – someone held a gun to La Civita’s head and demanded they not attack on the Obamacare disaster. Yeah, that’s the ticket.

whatcat

The same Obamacare that the shutdown was about, lol.

Bob McDonnell, only four years ago and one year after Obama won the state, won Northern Virginia handily, with the exception of the most liberal precincts.

RINOKing

So did Ken Cuccinelli. It’s amazing what a guy can do when he doesn’t have to fight the democrat party while being undermined by his own party, isn’t it?

xblade on November 7, 2013 at 8:23 PM

It’s time to stop rewriting history.

The shutdown has nothing to do with the public’s turning sour on the Democrats over O-care.

Ask yourself the following questions.

Did the shutdown cause O-care to crash and burn (no)
Did the shutdown have negative political impact next door in Virginia (yes)

As far as the long run goes the shutdown has nothing to do with the public perception of O-care. There is no long term positive and therein lies the rewrite of history. According to the shutdown supporters back in October you had to defund O-care before the public got hooked on it. You guys were thinking that once it got started the public would love it just like Obama said. It was those of us who understood that the public, already opposed to it, was going to go ballistic when they saw their access go down and their go up. The Kamikaze brigade gets no credit for the unfolding disaster that is O-care. All they did was delay the public perception of the extent of the disaster.

La Civita has nailed it. The shutdown, particularly in Northern Virginia, was the story and sucked the life out of everything else. Politics is an information war and you have to have at minimum a neutral media to get your side of the story out. We don’t have a neutral media. The media, the one where your average voter gets his information, is an arm of the Democratic Party. The Republicans just cannot win an infowar if you fight it on their term so you have to build your strategy around that.

Did Cuccinelli lose because of the shutdown? We can’t say. The AG race is truer reflection of the political balance power in Virginia. In other words, a dead heat. Under those conditions I think it is fair to say the shutdown killed Cuccinelli.

jerryofva on November 7, 2013 at 8:24 PM

Kind of hard to do when no one supports you enough to pony up cash. Those with the cash were backing Bill Bolling who would have won.

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:07 PM

They were doing more than that.

They were supporting McAuliffe including Cantor’s Chief of Staff.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:14 PM

Turns out a lot of Virginians were supporting McAuliffe which is why Cuccinelli lost.

Find a better candidate next time.

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:24 PM

+ 100..Very good point..:)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

Its one of those NSS deals.

Imagine running a campaign that does almost nothing.

And coming within 3% of winning.

Yes, there is something to be said for actually campaigning.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 8:24 PM

The RNC doesn’t have an infinite supply of cash to dole out willy-nilly. Overspending in 2009 by Steele screwed us in a lot of close races in 2010. Care for that to happen again to the next Ken Buck?

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

Yet they gave millions to Christie when he was leading by 22% in the polls.

I guess they wanted him to win by 23%.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:26 PM

Virginia always goes back and forth between democrat and republican governors but the legislature stays republican.

fight like a girl on November 7, 2013 at 8:26 PM

Turns out a lot of Virginians were supporting McAuliffe which is why Cuccinelli lost.

Find a better candidate next time.

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:24 PM

Pretty good showing by a candidate when he’s being outspent 10-1 and being stabbed in the back by his own party.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:27 PM

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 8:24 PM

I hear you..:)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:27 PM

Yet they gave millions to Christie when he was leading by 22% in the polls.

I guess they wanted him to win by 23%.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:26 PM

But “scarce resources” or something.

They are just crooks.

tetriskid on November 7, 2013 at 8:28 PM

So did Ken Cuccinelli. It’s amazing what a guy can do when he doesn’t have to fight the democrat party while being undermined by his own party, isn’t it?

xblade on November 7, 2013 at 8:23 PM

That goes both ways, pal. Your buddy Ken stepped on a lot of toes to get himself nominated, not least of which was royally screwing over Bill Bolling, who had been lieutenant governor for two terms and patiently waited for his own shot at the title. In essence, Cuccinelli threw the first punch.

Sow the wind, reap the whirlwind. TrueCons want to burn the party down to get your guys nominated, and you’re surprised that there are only ashes left when it comes time to fight the Democrats?

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:28 PM

Mark Obenshain probably ran the campaign most similar to McDonnell’s and not surprisingly, it looks like he’ll be the only Republican in VA to win.

GOPRanknFile on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

And the only one the RNC threw some money to at the end.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:28 PM

And the only one the RNC threw some money to at the end.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:28 PM

Because he was the only one, based on the polls, who seemed to have had a shot at winning. I wonder why?

GOPRanknFile on November 7, 2013 at 8:30 PM

That goes both ways, pal. Your buddy Ken stepped on a lot of toes to get himself nominated, not least of which was royally screwing over Bill Bolling, who had been lieutenant governor for two terms and patiently waited for his own shot at the title. In essence, Cuccinelli threw the first punch.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:28 PM

How did he screw over Bolling?

The backroom deal for Bolling to run for two terms as Lt. Governor was between himself and McDonnell.

Political cronyism.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:30 PM

I hear you..:)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:27 PM

If he actually bothered to run a campaign you can speculate about what the shutdown would do to it.

Unfortunately there is a cart/horse order agreement problem with people arguing about the shutdown. One needs a campaign, first, in order for it to be impacted by something.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 8:31 PM

The RNC does not exist solely to elect Ken Cuccinelli.

RINOKing

Funny how that “winning is all that matters” meme comes and goes, lol. BTW folks, did I miss something? Were there 30 or so other more important governor’s races that were being voted on on Tuesday that required the RNC’s attention?

Sadly, I have to admit, you are right on this point. The only thing the RNC was solely concerned about leading up to Tuesday was making sure Cuccinelli didn’t win.

xblade on November 7, 2013 at 8:31 PM

Because he was the only one, based on the polls, who seemed to have had a shot at winning. I wonder why?

GOPRanknFile on November 7, 2013 at 8:30 PM

Because Obenshain wasn’t being out spent in his election by Herring.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:31 PM

Fine, then. Do you want them to be in charge of winning elections, or don’t you?
KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:22 PM

Sure. Face it though, when they are out to lunch, its Dutch. RNC leaves the tip. They will be having TEA with lunch. Only question the waitress has is, “Sweet or Unsweet.?”

Bmore on November 7, 2013 at 8:31 PM

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 8:24 PM

Plus didn’t Cooch have a major staff shakeup late in race??..:)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:33 PM

Because Obenshain wasn’t being out spent in his election by Herring.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:31 PM

No. It’s because he ran a smart campaign. It was easy to paint Cuccinelli and Jackson as extremists, but not so much with Obenshain. You don’t think the RNC would have spent more money on Cuccinelli if he was doing better in the polls earlier on? Of course they would have, but he wasn’t.

GOPRanknFile on November 7, 2013 at 8:34 PM

Top Cuccinelli advisor: What killed us more than anything was … the shutdown

Now we know why he really lost. His advisor is a RINO.

bgibbs1000 on November 7, 2013 at 8:34 PM

Blame the damned shutdown, which of course was very strongly opposed by the big-money RINOs who’ve been slammed for supposedly having stabbed Cuccinelli in the back.

Please address your thank you card to Cruz & Co. Mr. Cuccinelli.

ncconservative on November 7, 2013 at 8:34 PM

Sow the wind, reap the whirlwind. TrueCons want to burn the party down to get your guys nominated, and you’re surprised that there are only ashes left when it comes time to fight the Democrats?

KingGold

So basically you’re a purist, and a hypocrite. Guess what? We already knew, lol.

xblade on November 7, 2013 at 8:34 PM

Sure. Face it though, when they are out to lunch, its Dutch. RNC leaves the tip. They will be having TEA with lunch. Only question the waitress has is, “Sweet or Unsweet.?”

Bmore on November 7, 2013 at 8:31 PM

I’m assuming you’re going somewhere with this analogy, but my point is true notwithstanding. A direct infusion of conservative money would not only have saved Cuccinelli but proven that conservatives wield real power in the party.

As it stands, tea-party folks look like whiny slacktivists who want Mommy RNC and Daddy RGA to pay their way until they hit 40.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:35 PM

Turns out a lot of Virginians were supporting McAuliffe which is why Cuccinelli lost.

Find a better candidate next time.

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:24 PM

Pretty good showing by a candidate when he’s being outspent 10-1 and being stabbed in the back by his own party.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:27 PM

We’re in it to win it. Ken wouldn’t have been outspent if he raised some money. He didn’t, because he was a lousy candidate who ran a lousy campaign.

Terry McAuliffe could have been easily beaten with his unfavorables, background, and the most obvious fact that this guy is Terry McAuliffe.

Terry is the King of Sleaze. This was an easy win in an off-year election if only we would have had Bill Bolling at the top and a sane person at #2.

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:35 PM

Funny. You would think the party of R would embrace Fiscal Conservatism better than they have. No matter. TEA is frugal by nature. We still expect you to be stuck with that tip.

Bmore on November 7, 2013 at 8:35 PM

Plus didn’t Cooch have a major staff shakeup late in race??..:)

Dire Straits on November 7, 2013 at 8:33 PM

How would one know that?

I mean two weeks out the NRA started lighting a fire under butts in NoVA and did a better job campaigning for Delegate candidates and the Cuccinelli than their own campaigns had done up to that point.

At times it felt almost as if the State party had told everyone to run a stealth campaign and lose big.

Then the NRA showed up, lit fires, networked people, got phone-in meetings going… it was an otherworldly experience.

The moment the NRA forms a political party, I’m joining: they understand local, retail politics better than the Republicans do.

ajacksonian on November 7, 2013 at 8:36 PM

It was easy to paint Cuccinelli and Jackson as extremists, but not so much with Obenshain. You don’t think the RNC would have spent more money on Cuccinelli if he was doing better in the polls earlier on? Of course they would have, but he wasn’t.

GOPRanknFile on November 7, 2013 at 8:34 PM

Obenshain has the same “extremist” views as Cuccinelli.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:37 PM

Funny. You would think the party of R would embrace Fiscal Conservatism better than they have. No matter. TEA is frugal by nature. We still expect you to be stuck with that tip.

Bmore on November 7, 2013 at 8:35 PM

Frugal. Frugal.

There are a lot of ways to describe True Conservatives sitting on their fat asses and expecting the party committees to foot the bill and pull their lackluster candidates over the finish line, but “frugal” is not one of them.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:37 PM

You don’t think the RNC would have spent more money on Cuccinelli if he was doing better in the polls earlier on? Of course they would have, but he wasn’t.

GOPRanknFile

Umm, Cuccinelli was leading in the polls early own, lol. Oops.

xblade on November 7, 2013 at 8:38 PM

own = on.

xblade on November 7, 2013 at 8:39 PM

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:37 PM

Perception/Reality. You’ll have the Unsweet then?

Bmore on November 7, 2013 at 8:39 PM

We’re in it to win it. Ken wouldn’t have been outspent if he raised some money. He didn’t, because he was a lousy candidate who ran a lousy campaign.

Terry is the King of Sleaze. This was an easy win in an off-year election if only we would have had Bill Bolling at the top and a sane person at #2.

Punchenko on November 7, 2013 at 8:35 PM

Ken was being back-stabbed by the party “elite” that wanted Bolling to be in control.

Hurray for Tammany Hall!

Bolling could have endorsed Cuccinelli as well instead of being a cry-baby.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:39 PM

Sow the wind, reap the whirlwind.

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:28 PM

…so when mods do the same thing to cons, cons shouldn’t suck it up and vote for the nominee anyway. Check. This seems like a functional party.

alwaysfiredup on November 7, 2013 at 8:40 PM

Obenshain has the same “extremist” views as Cuccinelli.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:37 PM

Having the same views is one thing. McDonnell has the same views as Cuccinelli, but both Obenshain and McDonnell were harder to paint as “extremists” because neither one had much of a history making controversial comments like Cuccinelli and Jackson do. The worst they had on McDonnell was some thesis paper.

GOPRanknFile on November 7, 2013 at 8:41 PM

Bolling could have endorsed Cuccinelli as well instead of being a cry-baby.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:39 PM

Cuccinelli could have beaten Bolling in a primary, which would also have weeded out the unfit-for-high-office E.W. Jackson. Jackson’s a strong conservative but an abysmal politician.

However, like Christie, Cooch didn’t want to take any political risk, so he ensured that only his supporters would decide who got the slot. Not so much “cry-baby” but “craven coward.”

KingGold on November 7, 2013 at 8:43 PM

Umm, Cuccinelli was leading in the polls early own, lol. Oops.

xblade on November 7, 2013 at 8:38 PM

Lol I’m talking about when voters actually start paying attention. Obenshain consistently polled ahead of Cuccinelli and Jackson once voters started tuning in.

GOPRanknFile on November 7, 2013 at 8:43 PM

…so when mods do the same thing to cons, cons shouldn’t suck it up and vote for the nominee anyway. Check. This seems like a functional party.

alwaysfiredup on November 7, 2013 at 8:40 PM

Very dysfunctional.

When Northam (D) takes the Lt. Governor’s post, his state senate seat will be up for a special election.

The Republican candidate supported Northam.

And people wonder why politics turns people off.

sentinelrules on November 7, 2013 at 8:43 PM

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