Phil Kellam for Congress

Alternately I considered titling this post "A Shot Across Their Bow".

Here is the text of a message I sent via e-mail to the Virginia Beach Democratic Committee.
I am writing to enquire as to whether Phil Kellam is considering running again for the House seat presently occupied by Thelma Drake.

First, let me state that I am not registered (at least not yet) as a Democrat, I am registered as an independent. However, as an independent I have tended to vote for Democratic candidates recently. As an example I have voted for both Phil Kellam and David Ashe in the past couple elections for the House. I also voted for Senator Webb even though I wasn't particularly pleased with him, but I strongly wanted to run George Allen out of office. To display why I have remained an independent instead of just becoming a Democrat, I fully intend to cast my vote for Senator Warner in his next election, if he chooses to run, no matter who he runs against because I have been pleased with his service to our state and nation.

Anyway, why am I enquiring about whether or not Phil is going to run again? Because I want to run Thelma Drake out of office. I am willing to support any "reasonable" candidate that has a chance to do so. I think Phil Kellam, should he decide to run again, probably stands the best chance of success. Sure he made some mistakes last time, however possibly he has learned some lessons and can run a more polished campaign this time around.

I can imagine that David Ashe might be itching to run again, and while I certainly would vote for him, I do not think he has the universal appeal necessary to carry an election from the now incumbent Thelma. If he couldn't carry the election against her after the Republicans were disgraced by Schrock, I can not imagine voters will now find him any more appealing.

If Phil Kellam is not going to run again, I am considering registering as a Democrat and seeking to run against Thelma myself. I might not have the "universal appeal" necessary to carry the election but I am not completely without some strong points that could help me to become a serious contender. What I absolutely do not want to see is where the Democrats give up (like they did against Schrock a few years ago) and not field any candidate at all.

If Phil will agree to run again, I have no desire to run against him. I would encourage him to do so and I might even be willing (if I can convince my wife) to contribute a modest amount to his election campaign. I am certain my wife will not allow me to contribute much, but I would love contribute the extremely modest amount I might be able to get her to agree to.
I sent this e-mail to a man who goes by the first name Brent who evidently is chairperson of the Virginia Beach Dems Candidate Recruitment Committee. Now I can not give you Brent's last name because when I went back to the Virginia Beach Democratic Committee's website to get it, the "contact us" tab had for some reason had suddenly disappeared.

Perhaps the Virginia Beach Dems do not care to see an infusion of fresh moderate blood into their party apparatus? My own e-mail motivated them to remove the avenue for offers from citizens at large to run? Perhaps the removal was nothing more then a coincidence (this is probably the explanation) however I am left to wonder if it was nothing more then an attempt to slam the door to the Democratic Party in my face!

Now please note that I am not being unreasonable in my overtures to the Virginia Beach Dems. I have pointed out to them that if they agree to field a candidate like Phil Kellam, I am willing to support him. However, I am fearful that the Virginia Beach Dems are infested with ultra left wing extremists that will not agree to allow a genuinely moderate candidate to run. Well if they are not interested in "allowing" even "encouraging" my candidate (that would be Phil Kellam) to run once again, I am probably not interested in supporting their candidate. If they are as serious as I am about unseating Thelma Drake, they will field a moderate Democrat, not a left wing extremist. MUST the candidate be Phil Kellam? No. Perhaps someone even better then Phil Kellam can be found, however it is my appraisal that it will be extremely difficult to discover such a candidate. However I am going to put whoever they select, other then Phil Kellam, to a litmus test. Can such a candidate win the endorsement of the Blue Dog Democrat Coalition? If the answer is yes, I probably can support such a candidate. If the answer is no, I am going to consider running as an independent (unless I can get Phil Kellam to do this) with an attempt to win the endorsement of the Blue Dogs myself with the promise that if I win their endorsement I will caucus with them even if I win election as an independent (much like independent Joe Lieberman continues to caucus with the Democrats in the Senate).

So I am firing a shot across the Virginia Beach Democratic Committee's bow. They either field a candidate that is acceptable to me or I am willing, if necessary, to run myself. If they are genuine in their desire to unseat Thelma Drake, they should be willing to accept my compromise. If they insist on an ultra "progressive" candidate, I am going to try to siphon off enough votes from them to win the election myself (although I would prefer to convince Phil Kellam to be my candidate). Even if I can not win enough support to win, I bet I can win enough support to thwart them.

I want to run Thelma out of office. However I want to replace Republican conservative extremist Thelma with a moderate, not replace her with some extremist "progressive" candidate.


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