One former Virginia politician is not sure at this point whether his time in the limelight of the commonwealth’s politics has faded. Both parties are speculating about whether this is the return of Richard “Dick” Black, a former member of the House of Delegates who reigned over Loudoun County from 1998 through 2005, when he was ousted by Democrat David Poisson. Black, a far-right conservative, said he is “very seriously considering” a run for state Senate in 2011, potentially in the 33rd Senate District.
Actually, as I was putting this post together, I recalled seeing some small post over there at TC about this and went looking for it. Sure enough, the word’s already made it over there. Loudoun Insider sums up his take on this news with 1 question: “Can any sane Republican really think this is good news?”
One of the commenters on the TC post asks what’s the big deal, highlighting very nicely the point where the general electorate is concerned: Black’s been out of the political eye for about 5 years now. I don’t have the exact figures but I’m guessing there’s been a lot of people move into Loudoun in the last 5 years who have never even heard of Dick Black, let alone have had any dealings with him to form an opinion. I would suggest that simply writing all of those people off as “not sane” (should Black become the Republican nominee and they choose to support Republicans) isn’t a winning approach.
I would also like to point out to those people who are adamantly against Black and who are predicting an election-day disaster should he be the GOP nominee that much the same was said about Ken Cuccinelli during the 2009 elections. He was going to be some kind of social uber-conservative embarrassment that would drive away voters in droves, remember? Check out my writing right here and you’ll see that I was one of those people concerned about that. Didn’t happen, not even close. Dick Black’s got some wince-inducing moments in his history, that’s for certain, and he should be required to answer Loudoun’s Republicans’ questions on whether he’d do it all over again. He’s got a bit higher of a hurdle to jump than other candidates in convincing his fellow Republicans but that’s not the same as saying he’s got no chance. As for those people who remain strenuously opposed to his candidacy, I would suggest they get involved early and remain so in pressing for a candidate they approve of more.
It’s still early in this and, I’ll say again, no decisions have been made. We have far more immediate concerns in supporting our Congressional candidates like Frank Wolf, Keith Fimian, Patrick Murray, and all the rest of Virginia’s GOP candidates. I’m keeping my eyes open, that’s for sure, but we’ve got priorities. Let’s stay focused.