Elections Nov 7: Clerk of Court, Senate, Delegates…

Thanh -- September 23rd, 2007

There appears to be interest from several hburgnews readers to discuss the upcoming elections. Of particular interest to many is the Clerk of Court race. I must be honest and admit that I am not very familiar with the race, so I am posting here to open up discussion, as an opportunity for me and other readers to learn more. This might be a better place/way to discuss the races instead of within the comments of various other blog posts, so that we don’t take the other discussions off topic.

For those who might not know, the next elections will be on November 7, 2007. If you are not a registered voter and wish to be, you can register yourself through the City Registrar or County Registrar Offices. I don’t know what the deadline is, but if its passed, you should register anyway for the elections next year. We’ll be voting for our next US President then.

The current Clerk of Court is L. Wayne Harper. My understanding is that the clerk of court is responsible for maintaining court records. I’m not exactly sure what our Clerk of Court does specifically but generally Clerks of Court have the duty to swear in witnesses, jurors, and grand jurors, is the custodian of the court’s seal. Review of the Rockingham County Clerk of Court website shows that the Clerk of Court’s office also handles licences, notary public, passport, deeds, and land records. If anyone has more details to add on this topic, please share!

An official list of Rockingham County Clerk of Court candidates can be found here, from Virginia’s State Board of Elections (contact information also listed there). Candidates are:

  • Diane E. Fulk (D),
  • Chaz W. Evans-Haywood (R),
  • George W. “Doc” Arey (I),
  • T. Scott Biller (I),
  • C.M. “Cindy” Fitzwater (I),
  • Mike N. Harvey (I),
  • Brenda C. Huffman (I),
  • Sarah Forrer Jones (I),
  • Barry D. Koogler (I),
  • C.B. “Benny” Neal (I), and
  • Myron L. Rhodes (I).

Other elections and candidate information can be found on this page and I’ve summarized them below –

Virginia Senate candidates –

  • Maxine Hope Roles (D) and
  • Mark Obenshain (R-Incumbent)

House of Delegate candidates –

  • Matthew J. “Matt” Lohr (R-Incumbent) and
  • Carolyn W. Frank (I)

Other elections where only one person is running include positions for Commonwealth Attorney (Garst), and Sheriff (Farley).

To learn more about each of the candidates, I suggest that readers conduct a Google-search on the internet and through the Daily-News Record for more information. I’ve seen websites for many of the candidates, stories in the DNR on how much candidates have spent on their campaign, as well as, opinion pieces in the DNR.

So, what are all of your thoughts?

Why are there so many people running for Clerk of Court? Is it the money? What puts each of the candidates apart from the others? Why is this position even an elected position?

Why haven’t I heard very much about the Senate and House of Delegate elections? Does nobody care about them? Is there a feeling that “we” already know who the winner will be? What are their positions and why should we pay more attention?

Will there be any debates held between the candidates?

236 Responses to “Elections Nov 7: Clerk of Court, Senate, Delegates…”

  1. Ward says:

    Dealing with the public and with employees as a government office is much more exacting and demanding than one would ever imagine, and much more so than private companies must do. Brenda Huffman and Dianne Fulk know this very well. Chaz Evan-Haywood has never had to deal with actually DOING anything other than the usual constiuant service type of thing. Nothing that peoples lives depended on was ever his responsibility. His job for Allen and Goodlatte was to simply listen to people complain and then send them a form letter. He was in charge of making George Allen look responsive to the voters. That’s all. Brenda and Dianne have been doing the real work. Work that they are held accountable for… Christa, you do both of these women a great dis-service when you state that anyone with “half a brain” could do the job.

  2. Benny Neal says:

    Just curious, what makes you such a BRAIN SURGEON?

  3. Benny Neal says:

    Ward, please forgive me.

  4. Ward, I think I already apologized for being so condesending in my original post. I’m not sure what else you want from me.

  5. Ward says:

    “Do I think Myron or Benny or any one of the 11 candidates could do the job? Yes, I do…even with half a brain.”

    I didn’t say it Christa, you did. See, I don’t take the easy and don’t piss anyone off route that you continually choose. I will make a statement. You don’t have the backbone to do so. I understand because you want to vasilate and not lose business/money by being too strong one way or the other by stating your opinion. Well maybe if you don’t have the courage of your convictions, you should just shut the… up.

  6. Emmy says:

    Ward, you obviously don’t know Christa.

  7. Ward says:

    I’m not a brain surgeon. I don’t claim to be. What is your point? And Mr. Neal, I have nothing to forgive you for.

  8. Ward, I’m not terribly confrontational anymore….age or maybe a little wisdom did that to me. You are right, I don’t like to take the route you speak of and try to piss people off. You don’t know me at all but anyone who does know me will tell you I have more backbone than most. I’m not worried about losing business Ward. I work 7 days a week 5 months out of the year to pay off debts that didn’t belong to me and I have done it for 27 long hard years.
    I do have the backbone to post with my name though. It is who I am and I’m damned proud of it. So, if you do not know anything about who I am or know not what you speak of, you can certainly shut the ___ up also. Courage of my convictions?
    LOL you are a hoot, Ward.

  9. Tim says:

    Marissa, I wasn’t endorsing Harvey, all I was doing was passing on the information the I had gathered from my law affiliated friends. They said that his experience in real estate law would be valuable.

    I think I will actually vote for Fulk, not that it is any bodies business, I guess I want to be official.

    This is a dumb race, I wish none of use had to be involved, candidate, or voter.

  10. Ward says:

    Thing is, you do know my wife and boys and I because you’ve done our family pics. I’ve been in your shop recently and we’ve talked about this race. I guess you do enough business with enough different people that you don’t really have time to remember everyone you deal with, that’s understandable. I don’t take any issue with your work ethic or quality, we have sent your portrait of our family to all of our relatives and would use your services again.
    But that being said, you also are playing all over the place on this issue, and that is not the person I have spoken to personally, and I wonder why?

  11. Maybe you need to stop in again Ward and I will give you some reasons why. Then you may have a better understanding of where I come from. Never judge me until you you hear me.

  12. I obviously didn’t proof read my post. I’m getting ready to go shoot soccer pictures all day, so I’m a little rushed. Ward, I talk to so many people in a day, that yes, I can’t remember everyone I talk to. I do however, know I never forget faces and I don’t forget people who do business with me. I will say this before I go…..there are only a few people who know who I will vote for in this election….like anyone cares….. I know all the candidates and no, I would not want to hurt anyones feelings that I am not voting for them and I am not ashamed of who I am voting for in the least. But it’s my business… no one elses. And yes, I have a business and have to be careful what I say. Would you not?? Do you think less of me for using careful discretion?
    And Ward, I piss plenty of people off.lol

  13. David Miller says:

    Christa and Ward

    Thank you all for discussing, I know you got pissed off, but you did it like the grown ups we are are.

  14. finnegan says:


    That comment you just tried to post is an example of the kind of comment that is absolutely NOT ALLOWED on hburgnews. Leave another comment like that, and I’ll block all your IP addresses from the blog.

    Grow up.

  15. Benny Neal says:

    Thank You Finnegan…..

  16. Benny Neal says:

    Dave Briggman, in regards to the candidate/candidate’s wife you keep mentioning.
    I have three questions for you;

    1) Will you state your name (for the record) as the person asking/accusing.

    2) Where are you getting your information from ? (person’s name)

    3) In the alleged conversation you say took place, which candidate’s name or wife’s name was mentioned ?

    If you don’t answer here on this blog, I will ask you when you call the radio station with this question.

  17. Benny, these questions you asked on republitarian.com were stricken as they were non-responsive.

    I’m not the candidate, Benny. That would be YOU.

  18. Benny Neal says:

    The questions above are for you to answer on this blog,
    for everyone to see YOUR response. Thank you for your cooperation.

  19. Amy says:

    I think Beny’s unwillingness to answer tells us all we need to know.

    1)We already know Dave is asking the questions. Actually, where on this thread has Dave asked you about this? It’s a long thread so maybe I missed it.
    2)How is it relevant who told Dave about it?
    3)Wouldn’t it be irresponsible of Dave to name the slandered candidate and perpetuate the rumor you started?

    If you have not done as Dave implies then just say so. It is starting to look like you have the tendency to do very thoughtless things and then try to avoid being responsible for them.

    Dave is right, he isn’t running for election and you are. Your actions tell us what kind of man you are, and what kind of man you want us to elect. I want some one that is responsible and a good leader. Someone that refuses to answer direct questions about their treatment of others shows neither quality. If you have indeed done the things that you won’t discuss,(breaking clean campaign pledge, lying about saying things about Dave, attempting to start rumors about another candidate. etc.) then you should be throughly ashamed and I hope everyone finds out what you really are. If these accusations are false then please answer them and so we can know Dave is the type of man you appear to be.

  20. Gxeremio says:

    “Gotcha” politics sucks. Becoming a candidate for clerk of court should not mean your private life is over and that you should be dragged through the mud by people who don’t like you – most of the things you (Dave Briggman) are criticizing about Benny have nothing to do to with his qualifications to oversee an office (a post many of us agree probably doesn’t need to be an elected position anyway). And now, since you’ve set yourself up as Grand Inquisitor, Benny has asked you some counter-questions to see just how holy and dedicated to the truth you are. It really sucks to have the tables turned and be under the spotlight for things you’ve said and done, doesn’t it?

    Benny, for your part, you’re getting too caught up in this race, thinking that it’s worth it to discredit and embarass Dave so you can get a few more votes, or avoid losing a few votes. Is that the kind of person you want to be – “anything to win”?

    Maybe the solution, instead of making sure we find every last skeleton in every last closet of those we disagree with, is to treat each other respectfully and focus on things that matter in the public sphere.

  21. Benny Neal says:

    I answered Dave with straight forward answers at the beginning of this thread. He does not like my answers. That is why I stop going back and forth .. it gets old for everyone.
    See Sept 25 @ 9:05

  22. Amy says:

    Well, Beny, Dave has shown the proof that you did leave a comment about the VFW like he claimed. You had answered, in the comment you directed me to, that you had not done that. When the proof showed up you disapeared. And now you are trying to act like Dave just doesn’t like your answers and is a mean guy for asking.

    Gxeremio, I think I’m going to have to disagree with you to a certain extent (if I understood your comment correctly). Beny has done much of this alleged (and proven) stuff publicly on blogs. This is not his private life Dave is questioning him about. He publicly called another opponent a “scumbag”, he publicly lied about Dave, he has publicly denied doing these things even though there is record of him having done these things. This is about honesty and integrity, which I think you would agree we should expect from all our pubic officials. I’ve seen him lie over at Republitarian and now on Hburgnews. And I’ve seen him get rather nasty with people who dare to call him out on it.

    You are correct about it being a shame that private lives, and I would like to add families to that, get drug up. I hope you apply that to the families that Beny tried to drag into the mud with the rumors he has tried to start.

  23. Benny Neal says:

    Don’t you get it ? Whoever told Dave about the candidate’s wife is the one spreading the unfounded rumor… and Dave is spreading it further. Please let Dave answer for himself.
    Thank you.

  24. Gxeremio says:

    Go to Republitarian and do a search on “Benny” – you will see he has been made fun of since at least March, not only by Dave but also Myron “After I file my paperwork, we will not be talking about this race [on Republitarian]” Rhodes. “Scumbag” was written, I believe, in July, after Dave posted the picture of Benny from Playgirl on his website (and linked to it here), and Benny thought Myron was part of doing that.

    It’s like this whole election debacle is an advertisement for communism – at least you don’t have to deal with this kind of stuff!

  25. Amy says:


    I’ll agree with you depending on how this was done. If the person you told called up Dave and said “Hey guess what candidate X’s wife does.” then I agree with you. You started a rumor and others helped spread it. You just admitted it was an unfounded rumor, so now I want a straight answer. Did you tell it to someone who in turn told Dave? I will be following up on this privately so please answer very directly and clearly.

    However if the person you told called up Dave and said,”You won’t believe what Beny is saying. He is making things up about candidate X’s wife. What a scumbag to try to ruin someone’s family.” If this is what happened, then you you are the one to take all the blame. Dave is just exposing you for what you are.

    So far, when someone has leveled an accusation against you they have been able to provide proof of their claims. I assume Dave is telling the truth about this as well. Why won’t you answer?

  26. Benny Neal says:

    Please let Dave answer the three questions .. then, you will all know what the truth is.

    So far, Dave has proved nothing.

    As for me, see Sept 25 @9:05

  27. Amy says:

    I am very familiar with Republitarian.com. I read several times a day and have followed the comments closely.

    Beny has put himself in the public. He made his playgirl past public. He has commented on public blogs, called names, lied about it, made accusations. Should he get a pass on this stuff? Holding someone accountable is not the same as picking on.

    He said he had no regrets about the picture and didn’t think it was a bad thing. Hell, he was even campaigning with it. He used to post as playgirl politician, and I think he even referenced that title in one of his ads, but I could be mistaken. Are you saying that it is ok for Beny to talk about his seedy past and even use it to campaign, yet for someone else to talk about it is picking on Beny? He brought it into the campaign, not Myron or Dave. It’s fair game as far as I’m concerned.

    I would feel sorry for him if someone else drug it up and he expressed remorse from the beginning, yet people wouldn’t let it drop.

    Beny has done some of the most unbelievable things during this race and I don’t see anything wrong with talking about them and holding him accountable.

    Bit of snark to follow. I wish you would all stop “making fun of” Myron about not discussing the race.

  28. Amy says:

    I saw your 9:05 answer and Dave already showed that you lied when you answered the question about the VFW. I don’t find that comment to be a satisfactory answer considering half of it has already been proven false and you have been proven a liar.

    Do you still maintain that you didn’t make the other statement?

    It is also very telling that you tried to dodge the question about the VFW before lying about it.

  29. Benny’s been proven to be a liar — even Mike Schikman on WSVA said as much on Friday afternoon, not by name, but by reference to what he has said.

  30. Benny Neal says:

    Now Dave, you know that’s not what MIke said. Do you really want Mike ticked off at you?

    Now, back to the issue you are avoiding. Please answer my 3 questions. The burden of proof is on you as the accuser.
    Thank you.

  31. Amy says:

    In other words. You did it, but can Dave prove it?

    If you didn’t do it please say so and then I will join you in asking Dave for proof.

    I feel like I’m trying to reason with a three year old. You are a candidate. Your honesty and integrity have been called into question, and you won’t give a straight answer to clear things up. Doesn’t make you look good at all.

  32. Amy, do you post on Republitarian also? Or just hburg news? Just curious.

  33. Gxeremio says:

    “Beny has put himself in the public. He made his playgirl past public. He has commented on public blogs, called names, lied about it, made accusations. Should he get a pass on this stuff? Holding someone accountable is not the same as picking on.”

    I don’t think I’ve ever said he was “picked on,” as that implies someone more powerful harassing someone less powerful. I did say he was made fun of, which is absolutely the case. Holding someone accountable, I don’t mind, if 1) it’s your right or duty to hold them accountable and 2) holding them accountable has some positive effect. Not sure either of these are the case with Dave and Benny.

    “He said he had no regrets about the picture and didn’t think it was a bad thing. Hell, he was even campaigning with it. He used to post as playgirl politician, and I think he even referenced that title in one of his ads, but I could be mistaken. Are you saying that it is ok for Beny to talk about his seedy past and even use it to campaign, yet for someone else to talk about it is picking on Beny? He brought it into the campaign, not Myron or Dave. It’s fair game as far as I’m concerned.”

    Again, not “picking on,” but yes, I do think it’s inappropriate to post an unedited picture from Playgirl just to humiliate a candidate when the photo’s existance has not been kept a secret. It’s somewhat hard to take the stance that being part of a nude photo shoot is wrong if you then go and distribute the pictures, isn’t it? But that’s not what I was talking about earlier, anyway. I was giving some background to the “scumbag” comment that you found out of line – it was Benny’s response to Dave’s posting of that photo.

    “Bit of snark to follow. I wish you would all stop “making fun of” Myron about not discussing the race.”

    Why? Myron has promised to do a few things after he is elected (electronic records, $50k to charity, etc.), and a few things before the election takes place (not use his blog as a campaign headquarters and not pay for advertising). He hasn’t kept his word on his pre-election promises, so why should we believe his post-election promises?

  34. Amy says:

    I mostly just read at Republitarian.

    Gxeremio, I’m sorry for putting words in your mouth. You are correct that you didn’t say picking on and only said making fun of. Still doesn’t change how I feel about the questions that have been brought up. Benny has said things and later tried to deny those things though they are easily proven. He is being held accountable for his actions.

    As far as the scumbag comment, yes, I also believe it was in response to Dave posting the picture. I fail to see why Dave’s actions would qualify Myron as a scumbag. Either way, doesn’t make for a clean campaign. Also Benny tried to lie about it later on Republitarian and called someone a punk because they caught him in the lie. Funny thing about that is, someone at Republitarian tried to protect Benny be deleting some of that thread and even shutting it down.

    When Benny says things on a blog and someone brings it up yall seem to think he is unfairly being made fun. If you don’t think Benny should be accountable for what he writes why would you have a different standard for Myron?

    I think you have sufficiently shown that Myron has said one thing and not followed through. If he denies doing it, I will have the same opinion of him that I have of Benny. If he fesses up, admits he has not followed through with his original plans, and offers an explanation about what changed his mind then I don’t have a big problem with what has happened. Perhaps you find this as hypocritical as I find your position, but let me say this. If Myron were to try to lie about making that statement to begin with as Benny has done regarding his statements I will change who I plan on voting for.

    I can tolerate someone changing their mind or admitting they did wrong. I cannot tolerate outright liars.

  35. Marissa says:

    If you haven’t caught Mr. Rhodes in numerous instances of “stretching the truth” for sensationalism sake to hook a reader, you need to get youself a new pair of glasses or smarten up. You have no intention of supporting “Beny” no matter what he says.

    As others have said before me, if this is how you treat somone who comes to a blog to respond to “why do you deserve/want the job”, I can see why all the others would stay away, far away. Put your typin’ finger away “Beny” Amy doesn’t want to read it anyway :)

  36. Emmy says:

    This who thing is making ill. I went into this not having a clue who I was going to vote for. Normal party stuff doesn’t apply here and there are a number of qualified candidates. I’m with Christa, most people of average intelligence can be trained to do this job. Over the past few months it has become very clear who I won’t be voting for. I actually told one candidate that I wouldn’t vote for them, and at the time, it was a joke…now its the truth. Some things that have happened in the past few days just really get under my skin. Others just haven’t been smart. Benny, you are a nice guy, but you would have done much better if you had just kept your mouth shut through most of this. Blogs are a great tool and could have been used very well in this election, but the other candidates have been smart to stay away.

    Now, I assume most will say who cares! But you know what, these people should care. I represent one vote and in this election, every single one will count.

  37. Emmy says:

    That should say “making me ill”

  38. Amy says:

    You’re right Marissa. Beny has completely lost my vote. At this point I can’t think of anything he could say to change my mind about him.

    Emmy’s right. In this election every vote will count.

  39. republitarian says:

    For Pete’s sake…..

    Can you guys stop now?

  40. King Richard says:

    Can’t we all just get along?

  41. The burden is on me, Benny, to state my name “for the record”?

    And that is what Mike said, Benny, you just don’t want to believe it.

  42. King Richard says:

    Why is everybody giving Benny & Myron such a hard time when briggman keeps getting involved? Briggman keeps antagonizing Benny while at the same time coaching Myron.
    People should remember that when Briggman was running for office, he was the one that said ‘DIGNITY IS OVER-RATED’.

  43. I said “Digital is over-rated”? When was that DICK?

  44. Emmy says:

    Seriously Dave, do you have to do that every time?

    What grade are we in?

  45. Lowell Fulk says:

    You know? This Sunday in church was a good one. Our Minister has to be one of the best in this Valley.
    His messages always go to the heart of every issue of which he speaks. Dianne and I attend the eleven o’clock service on Sunday and would love to have you sit beside us. I must admit that Dianne attends much more regularly that do I. But I am trying to be a better person and attend on a more dependable fashion.

  46. Lackawanna says:

    Emmy, why is it OK to let people attack Briggman and Myron on this blog, but should they choose to defend themselves, they get attacked?

    What’s extremely interesting to me is that none of you people, who can best be described as of a liberal bent, care that Briggman has asked legitimate questions about whether a candidate (albeit the longest of longshots) has made legally defamatory statements not only about a fellow candidate and his wife, but also of someone who has just asked him tough questions that, time after time, Neal is unable or unwilling to answer.

    I certainly wouldn’t want someone like Benny Neal, Mr. “Clean Campaign” or Mr. “Playgirl Politician” in charge of maintaining any government office — especially one that pays $124k/year.

  47. Emmy says:

    Did I ever say it was OK? I believe I indicated that I’m not sure why Dave has to make a rude comment about Richards name every single time he posts. Dave has every right to ask his questions…but he just never lets up and its really getting old. If you don’t like Benny, don’t vote for him, its really pretty simple.

  48. They just took down the whole thread about Benny over at Republitarian. That was predictable.

  49. Dave Briggman says:

    No we didn’t Christa. It’s actually at the top of the blog.

  50. Emmy says:

    Well it wasn’t, then it was, and now it isn’t. I’m getting nauseous.

Reader Tweets

Latest Flickr photos in the hburgnews Flickr pool
Announcements & Press Releases
  • Friendly City Grand Opening Set for July 9

    Friendly City Food Co-Op, Harrisonburg’s consumer-owned grocery, invites the community to come see its new destination for natural, organic and locally-produced products at the store’s grand opening 11 a.m.-5 p.m. July 9 at 150 East Wolfe Street.

  • Friendly City Becomes Member of National Cooperative Grocers Association

    HARRISONBURG, VA — Friendly City Food Co-op, slated to open this month in Harrisonburg, Va., has become the newest member of the National Cooperative Grocers Association (NCGA), a business services cooperative serving 120 consumer-owned food co-ops nationwide.

  • Harrisonburg Recognized as a Bike Friendly Community

    May 2: Harrisonburg was honored when the League of American Bicyclists announced the latest round of Bicycle Friendly Community (BFC) designations over the weekend to kick off May as National Bike Month.