Webb Campaigns in Hburg

Jeremy Aldrich -- October 27th, 2006

Yesterday, about 400 people packed into Court Square Theater to see Jim Webb and his entourage. Webb, as you surely know, is running against incumbent Senator George Allen for U.S. Senate. The main event at 4:15 was preceded by music from Trent Wagler and the Steel Wheels, who sang songs including one about “Cruel Georgie B.” The first politico to take the stage was local Democratic chair (and unsuccessful House of Delegates candidate) Lowell Fulk, who introduced barely-unsuccessful A.G. candidate and current state Senator Creigh Deeds, who introduced the wildly popular former governor and former (and future?) presidential candidate Mark Warner.

Finally, Jim Webb himself spoke, and he raised the following points: we should get out of Iraq by declaring we have no intention of being there permanently (something he says the Bush administration hasn’t done) and by bringing in regional powers with an interest in Iraq, we should raise revenues not by taxing working Virginians (as Allen’s attack ad says he wants to) but by making sure corporations pay their fair share, and that there should be a balance of power between the legislative and executive branches. He spoke pretty slowly and unenthusiastically, but laid out his ideas very systematically and carefully. One issue he also addressed was the upcoming vote on the marriage amendment in Virginia, which he says is intended to bring out the Republican base in a midyear election. He clarified his personal religious beliefs: “I am a Christian. I believe marriage is between one man and one woman.” He also spoke of the possible unintended consequences if the amendment passes.

Webb and Wampler
Jim Webb greets Charlie Wampler.

After the speeches, there was a brief meet and greet at Calhoun’s. The funniest moment was when a man (NOT the man pictured above) walked up to Webb, apparently thinking he was Warner, and said something to which Webb replied, “I’m Jim Webb.”
“Who?” the man asked, leaning in.
“Jim Webb. I’m Jim Webb.”
“Jim who?”
“Jim Webb.”
The man released his handshake and walked off. After Webb worked the room for a few minutes he walked downstairs and a few minutes later Governor Warner came up. I had brought along a picture of his avatar from his visit to the virtual world Second Life for him to sign. When he saw it, he seemed pretty excited. “My avatar!” he exclaimed. Afterwards a few of his staff members asked us about it and even took our picture with the signed printout.

FOX News truck in Harrisonburg
FOX News truck downtown.

The event drew a lot of media to the area too. Of course, local media was present – the DNR, WHSV, and WSVA. But there were also a few national media outlets, including Carl Cameron from FOX News, who then did a report from Court Square about the Allen campaign’s new attack on some of Webb’s fictional books. FOX News, by the way, has been criticized recently for running Republican attack ads as news without covering opposing viewpoints.
– Gxeremio

3 Responses to “Webb Campaigns in Hburg”

  1. finnegan says:

    Wow. Fair and balanced was in our Court Square?

    I was told you could have heard a pin drop when Webb said “I believe marriage is between a man and a woman.”

    Wish I could have been there. If nothing else, than to heckle Carl Cameron.

  2. Gxeremio says:

    I’m never sure how unbiased I’m supposed to remain on hburgnews, since I do try to make my contributions factual and news-like. But yes, it was very quiet at many points throughout his speech, and especially there. For me and my wife, though, it was very impressive. Here’s a guy who needs the help of a roomful of people who probably feel differently about the issue than he does, but he wasn’t afraid to say how he felt about the spiritual side of the issue even though it won him no applause. It reminds me of when Tim Kaine said he was personally opposed to the death penalty but had a duty as govenror to work within the laws of Virginia. Of course, nuance doesn’t play too well in an age of soundbite politics, and a lot of people don’t understand that you can feel one way about something without trying to force everyone else to live by your rules.

  3. junkpearl says:

    Charlie Wampler shakes Jim Webb’s hand? I see Mr. Wampler everyday. I wonder if he’ll shake my hand.

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