Degner Leads Wilt in Fundraising, Spending

Brent Finnegan -- June 8th, 2010

The financial reports for the candidates in the race for 26th district delegate are in, and it’s apparent that the Democratic Party of Virgina (DPVA) is taking this race in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County seriously. Democratic candidate Kai Degner leads his Republican opponent, Tony Wilt, in fundraising and spending.

Tony Wilt and Kai Degner. File photos by Holly Marcus

Tony Wilt and Kai Degner. File photos by Holly Marcus.

According to the records published Monday on VPAP, as of June 4 (when the reporting period ended), Degner had raised $108,794 and spent $93,024. During the same period, Wilt had raised $97,418 and spent $59,428.

Independent candidate Carolyn Frank has previously stated that she is not fundraising, and has requested that any contributions for her campaign be given to charity.

You can drill down into the data on VPAP to see where the money came from. Degner and Wilt’s number one donors were their respective state political parties. The DPVA contributed $31,617 in-kind to Degner’s campaign, while the RPV has made $25,158 in-kind contributions to Wilt’s campaign.

View list of Degner’s donors
View list of Wilt’s donors

Bob Roberts speculates in today’s Daily News-Record:

The effort by the Democratic Party “means they think they have a shot at the race,” said Bob Roberts, political science professor and analyst at James Madison University.

The state party also could be preparing the ground for next year when the 26th District boundary could be changed to give Democrats a better chance to capture the seat, Roberts said.

Redistricting takes place every 10 years following the national census.

According to a message emailed to supporters from the Degner campaign Monday afternoon, the Wilt campaign is “on the ropes.”

On Saturday, [Wilt’s] campaign confirmed our claims:

“Subject: I Need Your Help!!!

They think they have a chance to sneak away with a House of Delegates seat here in the solidly Republican Shenandoah Valley [. . .]

… we have no margin for error… Democrats are determined to take away this seat from our party.”

But in today’s DNR, “Wilt said he is not concerned about trailing in fundraising and remains confident about the final outcome on Election Day.”

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67 Responses to “Degner Leads Wilt in Fundraising, Spending”

  1. Just obtained from the City and County registrar are the following numbers on absentee ballots cast, thus far:

    City: 115 cast in person, <50 received by mail.

    County: 68 cast in person, 43 received by mail.

  2. Looks like Wilt’s people are reading this blog…I just got this in my email:

    Dear Friends,

    As you know, June 15th is not a normal Election Day. A lot of you may be taking hard-earned vacations that day. However, I still need your vote.

    You may know that my Democrat opponent has been making an effort to get college students who do not live in our community to vote absentee for him from their real homes. We can’t stop him from doing that, but we need to be prepared.

    If you are going to be out of town next Tuesday, June 15th, please remember that you have until 5:00 PM this Saturday, June 12th, to vote in person at your Registrar’s Office. If you have already requested an absentee ballot but have not yet returned it, you have until 5:00 PM on Election Day, June 15th, to return it, but you need to put it in the mail right away in order to be 100% sure it arrives in time to be counted (postmarks do not govern).

    We know our opponent and his liberal allies will pull out all the stops to win this election. We have to be prepared to do the same thing. If you are not going to be in town, please remember to vote absentee. The address and phone numbers for the Harrisonburg and Rockingham Registrar’s Offices are listed at the end of this e-mail.

    Thank you again for all of your support and hard work.

    Sincerely,

    Tony Wilt

  3. City Dweller says:

    I’m so sick of the same tired insults that Wilt continues to throw at Degner. Wilt continues to refuse to answer any questions directly from this constituents. I’m ready for the tables to be turned and for the Degner campaign to start bringing attention to this.

    I’ve spoken to a few people who have witnessed Wilt’s campaign handing out absentee ballots at events. I wonder if anyone that already voted, may have reconsidered after this hydrofracking debacle?

  4. David Miller says:

    City Dweller, there is one solution. Go to the Degner office and pickup a walk sheet for your neighborhood. Go talk to your neighbors, tell them to VOTE!

  5. republitarian says:

    How much did you give Kai, David?

    • David Miller says:

      Myron, its public information, go look. While you’re looking, I suggest you donate too.

  6. Dave Briggman says:

    What does that matter, Myron?

  7. republitarian says:

    Doesn’t….just asking?

  8. BANDIT says:

    kai is the one that is campaigning the best and has the best to offer.
    Wilt is only doing as good as he is because he is a Republican.
    Carolyn is doing nothing and is embarrassing herself and all Independents…If she was passionate about winning, she wouldn’t have her hat in the ring for City Counsel.

    • Emmy says:

      I’m fed up with the whole thing. Seriously considering staying home on the 15th and I ALWAYS vote!

      • David Miller says:

        Emmy, don’t lose hope in the process. This is the vetting season that is alone the largest time to highlight candidates “perspectives”. Regardless of how you vote on the 15th, remember that what we are “putting up with” now is to shield us from “leaders” like McDonnell. Remember that if more people had paid heed to the warning sign that was a thesis, we wouldn’t be laughing stocks now

      • Renee says:

        No matter whether the candidate you support wins or loses, voting is important for several reasons, including because the % separation between results matters and the numbers will be looked at for strategies in the future.

  9. No, Emmy.

    I haven’t been busting my ass and using my time in the Clerk’s Office of the Circuit Court and online for you to sit home on election day.

    If you stay at home, that’s one less vote either Kai or Carolyn gets and that’s not acceptable…

    Now I gave Kai an email list of about 2500 voters here in the 26th District of people more likely to lean left than right…give him a chance to contact those voters to appeal directly to them.

    Carolyn also will have the same list.

    Lets let them make use of the list…then vote your conscience.

    • Emmy says:

      You have worked hard Dave and I appreciate that. I really do.

      I don’t know what I’ll decide in the end, but I’m very frustrated with all three candidates right now.

  10. Candidate Carolyn Frank says:

    I have served this community for over 20 years. I worked night shift for 14 years while being a scout leader, youth club director, Sunday School teacher and soccer mom. My leadership and worked produced an incredible soccer program. I could not begin to describe the level of commitment and work it took. I took a political stance on the golf course, the new high school, and a situation at City Hall that no one else would touch.
    I slept on the floor of the nursing home expecting my father to die. The next day I went to Washington as a representative for the American Cancer Society Celebration on the Hill, where we lobbied for funding for cancer research. I was tired and weary but I fulfilled my commitment.
    I am just as committed as the other candidates. I have attended every function we were invited to except the first one with VAIL. A problem at work kept me from attending. Over the last 10 years I have attended at least 9 Legislative luncheon that the VAIL has hosted.
    Tony did not make the VMRC debate or the WVPT taping yesterday. Kai did not make the VFF or the Linville/Edom Ruritan’s meeting. I have been on the radio, T.V. and in the newspaper.

    Kai has served in public office not quite 18 months. Tony served as the Chamber President and has done a lot of hunting. I know because a slick brochure informed me. I have more name recognition than both of them.

    Just because I did not want to spend a great deal of money on a campaign by sending out fancy mailers with exaggerations, half-truths and border-line lies, or have campaign signs on public right-a-ways or people’s yard, I am not a viable candidate? What does a sign tell you about the person? Can you believe a brochure? I would like to ask the voters how do you choose a candidate? How about looking at their record, service and level of commitment. If you are looking for a fancy mailing and radio ads with other politicians saying I have known him for some time now and he will do,………………, that candidate is, of course, not me. Good luck on making your decision on June 15.
    An ‘Oldtimer” once told me, “if you have a choice, vote for the one who has stood for something and done something, even if you don’t agree a 100%. Watch the guy with the clean record, who speaks little, but makes great promises.
    One other thing I have learned in politics, big donors usually expect something in return.

    • Emmy says:

      I’m not sure where anyone said you should spend a lot of money on brochures or signs. I haven’t seen anyone say that.

      “I have more name recognition than both of them.” I’m not sure what this is supposed to tell us about you except that people know your name.

      Thanks for commenting though. My decision has been made.

    • BANDIT says:

      What about other people who donate their time to do good things for others? Do they go around touting “I have done this and I have done that”? Gee, I have coached baseball for 6 years, coached football for 1 and basketball for 1 year, and plan on coaching a whole lot more in years to come. Does this make one a politician?…NOPE!
      If you are in a “Political race”, should you be ACTIVE for that race or just rely on what you have done in the past to win? Ahhh, I think we know the answer…

    • Brooke says:

      Really, because you were a Sunday School teacher and soccer mom? Really? This is what people are talking about. How is that any different than Tony’s “I hunt” nonsense. Those are great personal qualities – I’m not knocking them at all. I think it’s great that you were and are active in the community. But so are the other candidates. Half the things you mentioned are not what makes you the best candidate for delegate. Talk about stuff that DOES, and what sets you apart, Carolyn.

      Focus on the job, and what you plan to do, and how you plan to vote once in Richmond. Talk about that.

      And for sure, don’t waste time throwing defensive hissy fits on news forums.

      “Name recognition” doesn’t even enter into it. That’s about like including “liking people” as a reason why you’re running for Delegate. Holds about as much weight.

      You don’t need to “spend a great deal of money on a campaign by sending out fancy mailers with exaggerations, half-truths and border-line lies, or have campaign signs on public right-a-ways or people’s yard(s)”

      But you do need to make sure people know how much you want this job, specifically why, and specifics for how you plan to represent the people of this district. I don’t feel like people have gotten that, even with everything you just wrote!

    • Renee says:

      Hi Carolyn. I have lived in Harrisonburg for 10 years now – 6 since graduating from JMU, and other than what I’ve read here on Hburgnews, I have barely heard your name and would not know how you would vote on many key issues (not that that’s your fault, but you can’t assume people just know you). What about all of the young people that are not aware of your 20 years of service or your voting record? It would have been good for you to be more visible in this election if you wanted your positions on issues to be known.

      I really appreciate you participating in our interviews and commenting here on the blog. However, I have to agree that when I looked at the fundraising numbers, it gave me the impression you had “given up” and didn’t expect to do well in the election against the 2 major party candidates.

  11. republitarian says:

    “I have more name recognition than both of them.”

    That’s probably her way of saying she didn’t feel the need to advertise herself….since she has a track record in this town.

  12. BANDIT says:

    Thanks for translating republitarian. I do find it interesting that you are her biggest cheerleader letting us know what she means or intends to say … plus throw in a few maybes in for good measure.

    If she is in this race, she should be IN this race. This should be like a job interview – sell yourself, tell the voters what you will do for us now that will benefit the 26th district – why are you running and what will you do once you’re in Richmond. Just because people know your name doesn’t always mean that it is a good thing … you have to give people a reason to vote for you now.

    Truth is … this district will be judged in Richmond by who we send to represent us … I for one would like to be thought of as an educated, articulate, groomed go getter. I’ll leave it at that.

  13. republitarian says:

    Brooke, I don’t think I’ve ever seen you write something in such poor taste.

    Anyone who saw the thread saw that people were challenging her level of commitment. Everyone in this town knows all that she has done and what she has stood for. As for what she will do as delegate….I think she’s made that perfectly clear. She won’t pass legislation that does not treat everyone equally under the law, be conservative in the spending of taxpayer funds, and advocate for the needs of our area. If you went to debates you would know that.

    As for liberal democrat Emmy finally making up her mind…puuuuuleeze…….

    • Emmy says:

      And again…as if anyone would question who you are voting for either Myron. Why do you feel the need to talk about what I’m doing in every other post?

      Assumptions are great though. It has nothing to do with who I will vote for. It has to do with whether or not I will go to the polls at all.

      Brooke’s comments were not in poor taste at all. They’re spot on.

      • Lindsay says:

        “And for sure, don’t waste time throwing defensive hissy fits on news forums.” Poor taste, Brooke and Emmy.

        Thank you Carolyn for commenting. It is my desire that you and other public servants and/or candidates for office would be made to feel a welcome part of online discussions, and that those who have contrasting views would communicate respectfully.

        • Brooke says:

          I don’t have a problem with Carolyn coming here and commenting. She’s more than welcome to. I would encourage it. However, it was the content and tone of her post that had me reacting the way I did. If she’d responded in a manner that focused on the campaign and issues and not all the other stuff that, while certainly laudable, doesn’t factor into why people should or shouldn’t vote for her, I wouldn’t have had an issue.

        • Emmy says:

          ““And for sure, don’t waste time throwing defensive hissy fits on news forums.” Poor taste, Brooke and Emmy.”

          Um excuse me? I didn’t say that.

  14. David Miller says:

    Carolyn, would you have run your campaign in this exact manner had you been successful in receiving the Republican nomination?

  15. If she had won the Republican nomination the GOP would, necessarily, have poured dollars into her campaign, either directly, or in-kind.

  16. republitarian says:

    If Carolyn would have received the republican nomination she could have spent a lot less than Tony because most people know her already. She may have sent out on mailer, but I can assure you they would not have contained what these two gentlemen have put on theirs. There would have been no paid campaign managers, or monies paid to political consultants.

  17. City Dweller says:

    She may not be paying you, but it appears that the Republitarian is Carolyn’s campaign manager. The thing that bothers me about the almost complete lack of a campaign is that as a voter, I feel that I deserve the best effort from each candidate to let me know at least what their “signature” issues will be that they fight for. Putting a post on a blog doesn’t seem sufficient.

    All of the qualities listed above are very nice, but they still don’t tell me where she stands on political issues. You can do what’s “best” for the people, but “best” can be very widely interpreted. Kai has been criticized for being a “community organizer” but he has focused his campaign almost completely on political issues and not necessarily the things he does in his off time that he feels will benefit our community. From what I understand, Tony is very active in his church and I’m sure does a lot of good as well.

    I am not questioning Carolyn’s intentions or all of the good that she has done for the community, but this is one of the oddest campaigns on a state level I have ever witnessed. I think people are having trouble connecting the dots here between where this becomes a race for a delegate seat and stops being a competition of who knows the most people.

    What about us poor folks who have to make our decisions based on the political race itself and not the community organization we belong to?

  18. Brooke says:

    Sorry, but I stand by my comment. I feel her manner of posting was overly defensive, and I still feel like it felt like she was throwing a tantrum instead of truly explaining her position as a candidate. She managed to get a sideways swipe at her opponents while she was at it.

    I’ll tell her the same thing I’d tell any of the other candidates. Don’t tell me why not to vote for the other guy. Tell me why you’d be better for the job. And no, it doesn’t involve listing your extra curricular activities in the community. Those are icing on the cake and what makes me glad you live in my city. It’s what makes you a great human being, which is only part of the equation. They are not why I’m going to vote (or not vote) for you.

  19. Elections: they seem to bring out the worst in people. It was true when my friend ran for class president in 5th grade, and nothing has really changed.

    Thank the sweet lord baby Jesus that this is a compressed election cycle. I can’t imagine six whole months of this (well, bickering in the comments, anyway).

  20. Emmy says:

    “You said Brooke’s comments were “spot on.” You fully endorsed that statement.”

    It wasn’t in poor taste, it was the truth.

  21. Mike Schikman @ WSVA has just advised me that Kai has declined to appear on the station Monday afternoon with Tony Wilt and Carolyn Frank. Mike has attempted numerous times to get Kai to appear…Kai has chosen direct voter contact instead, according to Mike.

  22. City Dweller says:

    I understand that choice. It’s the day before the election. Those who are going to vote know who they will be voting for or if they will be voting at all. It makes a lot more sense to be out reminding your base to come to the polls the next day.

  23. BANDIT says:

    Yeah CD, it would have been better if Schikman had done this show a week or so ago. The WSVA listener-ship at that time of day is way down from in the morning and the show is very short.

    Kai is smart, it is apparent that he does not follow the pack … or advisers with big pockets. As for the other candidate, it falls into her campaign strategy … it’s free and she is talking to people she “knows”.

  24. Brooke says:

    This would concern me more if it was earlier in the campaign. The day before the election? Not so much.

    Not that I think it’s a *bad* idea (so I’m not dissing Tony and Carolyn for doing the show), but I understand Kai wanting to put his energy elsewhere that close to election day.

  25. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    We at hburgnews have been trying to organize a candidate debate since before I shot the candidate interviews. Kai and Carolyn signed on right away and offered multiple possible times, while Tony’s campaign has ignored multiple phone calls and emails and has not followed through on face-to-face commitments to discuss the issue and reach a decision on his participation.

    Since it was going to be recorded and have little or no live audience, we offered to do it during any time slot, day or evening, over a period of about a week.

  26. Well, it was probably good that Mr. Wilt declined your invitations, Jeremy, as I would absolutely hate to see your emotional outburst if one or both remaining candidates asked him about his financial interests in hydrofracking.

    • Dave, what’s the point of potshots like that? It detracts from the issue.

      Jeremy tried several times to organize a debate, and we were all willing to bend our schedules around Wilt’s. Unfortunate that Wilt could not just come out and say “No, we don’t want to do it.”

      Jeremy took an unpopular position (in this forum, anyway) just as he did with Rosetta Stone buying the old police building. I commend him for standing up and speaking out for what he believes.

  27. I should have put a little smiley face after my quip. My apologies for any coffee that may have been spilled as a result of my previous statement. ;-)

  28. Joe says:

    Why does Kai dodging a debate?

    • Lowell Fulk says:

      Well hello STruth, er, I mean Joe.

      Tell me? Why does Kai dodging a debate?

      You’re English is getting better, keep working on it.

      What debate does Kai dodging?

  29. Joe says:

    according to Dave in a few post above:

    Mike Schikman @ WSVA has just advised me that Kai has declined to appear on the station Monday afternoon with Tony Wilt and Carolyn Frank. Mike has attempted numerous times to get Kai to appear…Kai has chosen direct voter contact instead, according to Mike.

    • Brooke says:

      Hmmm…why are you so concerned about Kai “dodging” debates, but somehow don’t seem to have the same questions and qualms for why Tony “dodged” the debates proposed by Jeremy and hburgnews? That seems to be a bit of a double standard, “Joe.”

      I do think if you’re going to put Kai on the spot over “dodged” debates, you need to be fair and put Tony on the spot as well.

      Personally, I think with this short of a campaign time each candidate is going to look at all their debate options and offers and spend time on the ones that they think will help them most.

      For whatever reason Kai didn’t feel the WSVA debate was the best use of the remaining campaign time he had left, and likewise Tony didn’t feel that joining in on a debate hosted by hburgnews was the best use of his remaining campaign time.

      All things considered, I don’t think either was “dodging” anything, necessarily. And I don’t think that those decisions should really be held against them – particularly in the short time frame they had for their campaigns.

  30. Joe says:

    do you honestly not see the difference between hburgnews and WSVA?

    I think this blog is great, but it’s not quite the same as WSVA…at least yet.

  31. Anthony says:

    Wow kids, aren’t we passionate about this. Wasn’t it Tom Cruise, or maybe Cuba Gooding Jr., who in Jerry Maguire popularized the following phrase… “SHOW ME THE MONEY”.

    I like to follow the money trail, it often times provides a voice about the candidate that isn’t necessarily able to resonate on the campaign trail. The links above that show the donors for Degner and Wilt provide some interesting details. A quick look around both candidates list of donors shows that Kai Degner has a large number of donors from other parts of the state. It also shows that Degner has a much longer list of donors than does Tony Wilt (almost 250 for Degner compared to almost 100 for Wilt). While both candidates have raised a similar amount of money, Wilt’s donations have come almost exclusively from in and around Rockingham county. Both candidates seem to have around the same number of local contributors, even though Wilt’s donor list is roughly less than half what Degner has amassed.

    So what is one to conclude from this money trail? What I find remarkable is that the bulk of Degner’s support seems to be coming from those who don’t even live in the district he’s trying to get elected in. The contrasts don’t stop there. Kai Degner looks all the part of the slick seasoned politician (youth, charisma, comfortable in front of the camera) almost as if you’re going to get “the wink and the gun” as he passes by you on the street. Wilt on the other hand, looks the part of the “local boy who done good” (whether he’s local or not, I don’t claim to know). His list of donors is ripe with local small business owners. I even hear on this board that he’s a hunter (not that is matters), or does it? This is the 26th district after all.

    Also of note, which I’ve gleaned from this board, and other sources, is the fact that the “part timers”, or the “sandbaggers”, or shall we just call them college students, get to play a large part in this process. Now I’m not sure about you, but I have a hard time swallowing that fact that a large group of part time residents, who for the most part are still suckling from Mommy and Daddy’s pursestrings are becoming an increasing force in who leads Rockingham county into the future. I remember when I was in college, most of the students were more worried about tonights homework assignment on situational ethics, who was going to win the next football game, or more importantly, where their next beer was going to come from than they were the direction the county was going politically. Mr. Degner seems to have tapped into this treasure at the end of the rainbow and seems to have figured out how to lead it to the polls to drink, umm, I mean, vote in his favor.

    So where is this trail going to lead? Will it be “Show Me the Money” Kai or will it be “Good Old Boy” Tony that the voters of Rockingham county will choose to represent them? Will the “sandbaggers” from outside the district be allowed to use their donations and outside influence to buy this election or will this election be decided by those who actually live here and have a voice here, 12 months out of the year?

    • lowell fulk says:

      Nice attempt to spin the fact that Mr. Degner is receiving many more donations from real people while Mr. Wilt enjoys the support of special interests.

      • lowell fulk says:

        “Good Old Boy” Tony???
        Did you really just write that?!

        Thank you.

        • lowell fulk says:

          I think perhaps I hold Mr. Wilt in much higher regard than do you Mr. Anthony.

          • Anthony says:

            Lowell, I see that you hold the small business owner in such esteem, so high in fact that you insinuate that they are not even “real people”. Sorry Lowell, but it’s the small business owner that puts people to work in this town. You want to read something amusing, just go to Degner’s website and you can see how he boasts of creating some 100 Rosetta Stone jobs during his term. Perhaps we should cue the violins and get out the wine and cheese, because poor little Rosetta Stone could never have done what it did if not for Kai Degner.

            And Yes Lowell, I did write that. Does Mr. Wilt or does Mr. Wilt not look like he could fit in with the local hunting folk. The same cannot be said of Mr. Degner. Whether this matters is irrelevant, what is relevant is that in many instances politics is more than just about the issues. When your playing politics in Peoria, act like your a Peorian. There’s no better embarrassing example than this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQYdg3LYqJE

            And for your last point Lowell, perhaps you do hold Mr. Wilt in much higher regard than I do, perhaps you don’t. I however, did not vote for Mr. Wilt, do not have a real vested interest in this election, and whether or not he wins or loses makes very little difference to me (by the way, he won).

          • Anne Lorimer says:

            Mr. Anthony finds the 100-some Rosetta Stone jobs laughable, and construes them as a favor to Rosetta Stone, rather than to the town itself. How does he imagine losing those jobs would be neutral or beneficial to the town’s economy? And hence to its employment rate overall (even if we exclude Rosetta Stone’s ex-employees)? If Mr. Anthony has a viable plan to meet all of Harrisonburg’s employment needs without benefitting professionals he associates with wine and cheese, I for one would be delighted. But such a plan ought not to be kept secret.

          • Speaking for myself, I don’t find 100 Rosetta Stone jobs laughable, but I have seen some confusing numbers in recent news reports…are there 100 more employees than January 2009 at Rosetta Stone in Harrisonburg, or not (and are they an average salary of $50k or higher)? As I asked at the city council meeting which approved the land sale: who from the city is checking on it to make sure Rosetta Stone upholds their part of the deal?

          • Anthony says:

            Ann, Wow, you’re either very confused or you didn’t read my comment correctly regarding Rosetta Stone. Nowhere did I insinuate that the Rosetta Stone jobs were laughable nor did I construe them as a favor to Rosetta Stone. On the contrary, I am in perfect agreement that the deal was a favor to the town itself. What I do find laughable is Mr. Degner’s claim that he created 100 Rosetta Stone jobs. Rosetta Stone created (or will create) those jobs, they wanted a nice price for the downtown building and got it. So what, it’s a small price to pay to keep a local, thriving, growing company from heading out of town. Any simple minded mayor could have figured that one out. I can’t say this loud enough… It is small business that creates jobs, not politicians! The wine and cheese comment was an attempt to poke fun at Degner’s ludicrous claim of creating those jobs.

          • Lowell Fulk says:

            My goodness Mark Anthony, but aren’t you quite the wine and cheese priss. Did you notice, the election is done?
            I do hope Delegate Elect Wilt is man enough to see through you for who you are.
            I did, a number of years ago…

          • Anthony says:

            And that would be what Mr. Lowell? The election is never over Lowell, that’s the sad fact about politics.

    • The House of Delegates and State Senate provide little, if any, direct impact on the future of Rockingham County, or the City of Harrisonburg.

      Lowell’s right…you seem to have overlooked who has gotten a broader base of support from individuals, as opposed to interest groups.

      That would be Kai who has that broad base of support.

      • Anthony says:

        Dave, I haven’t overlooked them, I accurately stated that Mr. Degner has an overwhelming surplus of donors when compared to Mr. Wilt. The issue I have is that many times, actually, the majority of the time, these donors, or shall we call them “real people” as you prefer, are coming from out of town.

        I find it overtly offensive that yourself and Dave seem to want to slander small business by calling them “special interest” not “real people”. This is the lifeblood of the town guys, even the forum we post on is considered a small business, I’m sure that they would have an issue with being considered not a real person, and simply a special interest.

        But you know what is most interesting to me about this election? It happened during the time that the “sandbaggers” were all home on summer break. And let me tell you, once the student is home, that last thing he/she cares about is mailing in some absentee ballot for a district that he doesn’t ever consider his home. Isn’t it a shame for Mr. Degner that he was not able to tap this bubbling fountain of free votes. Perhaps he can do one of his famous Summits on this topic. I’m sure the community would be interested in discussing this with him.

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