Hurt Defeats Perriello

Chatham lawyer and state senator Robert Hurt defeated incumbent Congressman Tom Perriello in last night’s election, garnering 50.75% of the vote. The freshman Democrat was elected in an upset two years ago, defeating Republican Virgil Goode. Perriello was just one of dozens of incumbents to lose their seats nationwide in an anti-incumbent fervor. Hurt ran the sort of campaign generally associated with a safe incumbent, taking few risks and refusing to participate in debates, a strategy that clearly worked out for him. Perriello’s term runs until January, when Congressman-elect Hurt will be sworn in.

36 Responses to “Hurt Defeats Perriello”


  • I’d like to point out something interesting in this data. Albemarle county had a turnout of about 65% – mostly Democrats voting for Tom Periello. Especially considering how many Hurt signs were up around the County. Valerie L’Herrou has done a really good job as party chair.

    Meanwhile, I am not impressed with the 50% turnout in Charlottesville. Not at all. If Charlottesville had matched the turnout of Albemarle then that would have gone a long way towards closing that very small gap between Periello and Hurt.

  • The Democratic Committee leadership in Charlottesville never seems to get beyond what happens in Charlottesville. There were some incredibly hard working volunteers for Perriello in the city, but turn out was quite disappointing.

  • “It’s hard to compromise with people who are against government solutions,” said Congressman Sam Farr of California, a leader of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. “Republicans pushed for the election of ultra-conservative ideologues who don’t want to cooperate because they don’t think the government should be doing education, fire protection or jails; they want to contract out government jobs to the private sector.”

    Excellent article by the Christian Science Monitor, “Careful what you wish for: What GOP victories would really mean for America”

    I hope Congressman Elect Hurt…

  • I hope that now Congressman-Elect Hurt will speak more specifically about his ideas to reign in spending and cut the deficit. The thing that disturbed me more about this election cycle than most (and it wasn’t only Hurt) was the complete absence of policy ideas from many of the new candidates running. Hurt avoided it, Sharon Angle specifically said we’d learn her views on the wars and the budget after she was elected. I’ll be watching carefully to see if the new Congress actually proposes legislation to address what they have defined as problems.

  • Folks, get over it. Charlottesville and Ablemarle county are not the center of the Universe nor are they the center or representative of the majority of people who live and work in the 5th district. The right man for the 5th was elected this past evening.

  • Serious question for Jogger: How do you know Hurt is the right man? What’s that knowledge based on?

  • As has been seen in the past, there will probably be few real policy changes. Deficits from past Republican leadership have done nothing but grow under Democratic leadership. Everyone says that they will make things better, but it seems as though we are to the point where we will have to wait for the Chinese to force some true fiscal changes.

  • There will be no policy changes. Look for endless congressional investigations and subpoenas from Darrell Issa. The Republicans have made it very clear they are not interested in solving the problems of the American people, but in sabotaging the presidency of Obama. Mitch McConnell made that very clear earlier in the month: http://articles.latimes.com/2010/oct/27/news/la-pn-obama-mcconnell-20101027

  • tomr 1

    Until the Chinese revalue their currency at an appropriate level, and we get serious about debt load, its all toast.

    Dubie: I think the first goal of the Pubs is to put an end to crazy spending that has no rationale in reality. Our projected debt load servicing as a percentage of GDP is darn scary. Really, how long could you live is you spent 50% of your income on credit card debt? And when you add in further entitlement programs to those already at the breaking point then perhaps you are correct…they want to end this.

  • You can start reducing the deficit by doing away with the department of Education and the EPA. Education should be controlled on a state and local level. The EPA wants to put us back 150 years, candles and kerosene lanterns…with their over zealous regulations, threats and intimidation. Within the very near future the EPA will require farmers to get plow permits to till their soil for crops. God help us.

  • Thanks for the answer, Jogger. I disagree but I appreciate the fact that you’ve got some actual things to offer.

  • Our 2009 budget was $3,500B. The EPA has a budget of $10.5B. The DOE has a budget of $46B. Congratulations: you’ve just reduced the annual budget by one percent, or one third as much as is necessary to simply offset inflation.

    Try again.

  • Get rid of the Department of Education? Perhaps the largest funding stream into the states through USED is related to children with disabilities, who are often incredibly expensive to educate. Who would pay for this?

  • Waldo,

    Hate to say it, but it is that type of comment that is killing Obama. It smacks of elitism http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/31/weekinreview/31baker.html?scp=1&sq=obama the elitist&st=cse and is snarky at best.

    When I ask how we are going to pay for all the debt we are taking on and am treated like I would jump on board if I only understood, then I put a little block in the way and say, “Its my money, convince me you have a plan that does not cost more and more down the road.”

    Unlike Reagan or Clinton, both of whom I voted for, Obama has not done so. NOw the fed is trying to buy debt to curb interest rates but they simply do not get one little thing: Those with the bucks to spend and solve your sideblog issue #2 do not have faith. They are sitting on their money, and will continue to do so until Obama shows he can do more than spend and make life tough for big biz. They know the way to avoid getting high taxes on income, its called sitting on the cash and not increasing the margins.

    But if you want a couple starting points from me for reduction:

    1. The ABC is monopoly that gives the worst service I have ever encountered, buries small business under paperwork and would fail in 1 year if they had to actually compete. The only thing the ABC workers would be doing is dusting the doorknobs under their current MO.

    2. Government pay and benefits far outstrip the equivalent positions in the private sector. (The Week, NYtimes) Someone has to pay for that. Those salary and benefits need to be in line with those that pay taxes to those who are PAID by taxes. I was talking with a government employee the other day who is a very hard working, diligent person, an asset to his job and get 12 weeks of paid vacation. Me, I skipped vacation this year to pay tuition. Wonder why I am a bit irked?

    3. Government employees should get the same days off that the rest of the world gets. Take 1000 sub 500K, 1000 sub 20M and 1000 sub 100M income biz, average their “holidays” and give the same to the government worker. Feds received 10 paid days off. That is half of a working month. I took 4 and did not get paid for them.

    Every little bit counts. Then, when the economy is doing well, keep up the same ways. As the private sector gets better, they will be forced to compete for employees and have to increase the benefits. THEN, and only THEN, should the government workers get more…

    Okay, off the high horse and on to Jennifer Egans “Good Squad.” That commie rag New York review of books said I would like it.

  • Who would pay for this?

    Well, FT, the disabled kids would have to get all bootstrappy and work in factories doing the menial labor that illegals used to do, once we seal off the borders of the fatherland to prevent terrist anchor babies from waging a war on christmas. I mean, obviously.

    And once everything, everywhere is completely deregulated, I really see no institutional reason why the disabled could not work a good 60-70 hours a week, say in a malathion production plant or some such. I mean, they should at least help with the cost of their “special needs”, or should I say “special interests”, amirite?

    But see, the problem with the disabled is they dont *want* to work. They’re lazy. They’d rather just suck off the government teet, cashing in on that sweet sweet DOE money thus bankrupting Real America™. Then this whole nation will be sold to the socialistical, communist, fascist chinese – who, if experience has taught me anything, will immediately force me to get an abortion, have a stoned gay wedding officiated by a witch, and ban the return of the McRib sandwich.

    This election has been quite exhausting. Im just glad its over. Im sure the sane part is just around the corner.

  • danpri, I would have *liked* to see Obama’s first two years in office more closely resemble FDR’s. Public-works projects, spending on infrastructure, direct job creation, etc. Well, they didn’t, and I’ll grant that if the 2010 elections were a referendum on public spending then the verdict is apparently clear that deficit reduction is what the American public wants.

    I just wish we could have gotten something more like what just happened in the UK, namely a fiscally conservative “revolution” that isn’t inextricably wedded to a politics of social conservatism, hostility to environmentalism (or to basic science, for that matter), and a definition of “real America” that excludes about half of their compatriots. I’ll be interested to see whether the Republican majority in the House faces the reality that the Senate the president are not going to let any seriously reactionary legislation through, or whether they waste a lot of time in sponsoring base-pleasing legislation involving the usual God/gays/guns triad.

  • Now that Hurt has won, I will expect him to choose local offices that will make it easy for people to protest in front of. And if he doesn’t then I will expect the same people that complained about Perriello’s office to be out and complaining about the location of Hurt’s offices. :P

  • David: Sadly, he choose to spend the money on product consumption instead of product investment. Kept looking at Lincoln instead of Roosevelt, although both needed wars to solidify their legacies…

  • danpri, elistism? Based on what? The inclusion of facts? Waldo’s point (if I may) is that completely cutting the entire Department of Education and the Environmental Protection Agency would comprise an insufficient amount to significantly affect the overall budget. To do what the Republicans who were just (re)-elected claim they want to do they need to offer much, much larger cuts in spending. Literally orders of magnitude higher.

    That’s not elitism, it’s simply asking for ideas relevant to the discussion we’re told we’re having. Namely, cutting spending, balancing the budget and reducing the deficit.

    Obama can’t do much about the ABC laws in Virginia.

  • Chris,

    You either did not read the entire message and link, or you still do not get it. And it is the “not getting the point” that is killing the dems currently. I included many facts. Speak to those. Not another person post. Read the NYtimes link. If it does not hit home you better read it a few more itmes…

    I never spoke about the DOE, or EPA. Not once. Yet you attack me on this…

    I spoke to ideas relevant to my positions. You spoke to someone else’s post.

    Your telling me the president of the USA cannot put pressure on a state re: ABC? Saying this only asserts your naivete. I suggest you read the Robert Caros 4 part bio on LBJ regarding the prez ability to assert his power.

    And when you say ‘inclusion of facts” you only reinforce the elitist problem. This type of talk is part of the problem, not part of the solution.

    Pretty much every part of your post is the reason that Obama just watched the greatest 1st term House slide in history. Only Truman and Clinton came close. But not really. Obama beat them pretty good on this.

    You just dont get it. I put up multiple ideas of issues, you addressed none of them. Not one.

    Talk to me about my post, or roll on brother. Time for me to go to bed, got to be at work at 4AM.

    Done with this thread.

  • Great post Belmont Yo.

  • I suspect that the Baptist lobbyists would be glad to change their tune when Obama called them to tell them to privatize the ABC stores. The ABC stores are a source of revenue for the state right now. Clearly privatizing them would make all sorts of sense in terms of stabilizing the state government because we wouldn’t have to pay those useless workers who are actually turning a profit for us right now…

  • Hate to say it, but it is that type of comment that is killing Obama. It smacks of elitism http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/31/weekinreview/31baker.html?scp=1&sq=obama the elitist&st=cse and is snarky at best.

    If you think that a dry recitation of the facts is “elitist,” I can’t help you.

    But if you want a couple starting points from me for reduction:
    1. The ABC is monopoly that gives the worst service I have ever encountered, buries small business under paperwork and would fail in 1 year if they had to actually compete. The only thing the ABC workers would be doing is dusting the doorknobs under their current MO.

    The ABC is profitable for the state. You’re proposing something that would do the exact opposite of the thing that you want to accomplish.

    2. Government pay and benefits far outstrip the equivalent positions in the private sector. (The Week, NYtimes)

    You’re conflating federal government pay and state government pay. (I work for the state government, and I make about 30% less than I’d make in the private sector. But I’m totally OK with that, because I think my work is valuable, and I value the stability of working for the state.) But I know very little about federal wages, and can’t speak to them.

    I was talking with a government employee the other day who is a very hard working, diligent person, an asset to his job and get 12 weeks of paid vacation. Me, I skipped vacation this year to pay tuition. Wonder why I am a bit irked?

    I simply cannot believe that there is a government employee who is annually awarded 12 weeks—60 days, I assume—of paid vacation. I don’t doubt that he told you this, but lacking any sort of documentation, I just don’t believe that it’s true.

    3. Government employees should get the same days off that the rest of the world gets. Take 1000 sub 500K, 1000 sub 20M and 1000 sub 100M income biz, average their “holidays” and give the same to the government worker. Feds received 10 paid days off. That is half of a working month. I took 4 and did not get paid for them.

    Again, you’re conflating federal and state government. I work for the state, and I get ten paid days off. That’s the same as I’ve received from private employers (and given, as a private employer) in all of my full-time positions. (When you say “the rest of the world,” I assume you mean “the rest the U.S.” Much of the rest of the developed world receives substantially more paid vacation than Americans do.) Two weeks of paid vacation is standard in the full-time-employment world.

    And, no, the president has zero ability to affect what the state does with the ABC. Seriously, none. Both in a legal sense and in a practical sense. Believe me, Bob McDonnell and the Republican majority in the House of Delegates really doesn’t care what the president thinks, and may simply do the opposite of whatever he wants, just to stick it to him. Would you care if the governor asked you, real nice-like, to stop selling soda?

    On the broader topic, I’m totally down with finding ways for the government to save money. But I recognize that these sorts of methods of saving money don’t add up to much. That doesn’t mean that they’re not worthwhile, but the stuff that’s been promised by conservative Republicans is just crazy. We’re not going to reduce the federal budget by 50%, 30%, 20%, or even 10%. It’s not going to happen, with the sole exception of getting out of Iraq and Afghanistan. (Note that’s not actually included in the federal budget, but it’s instead been paid for by a series of one-off authorizations. Which is ridiculous.) This is where your taxes go, and here’s a simplified version. We spend $900B on the military. We spend $2,100M on mandatory entitlement programs—that is, money that’s been paid in that has to be paid out again or you’ve got yourself a revolution. A shameful $251B in interest on the national debt. None of that can be touched, either because it’s financially sound to do so (entitlement programs) or because it’s political impossible (defense). That leaves us with $520B in discretionary spending, which is the only part that we can even play with. We’ve just taken 83% of the budget off of the table. Discretionary spending is at a fifty-year low, as a percentage of the budget—under Obama’s budget, it’s down to 15% of the budget, after he froze that spending. (In 1978, it peaked at 25%.) So, what comes under that discretionary spending? The Treasury ($12.5B), the courts ($6.3B), Health and Human Services ($70B), transportation ($69B), Agriculture ($21B), the SBA ($0.7B). Pretty important stuff, generally. Not the sort of stuff you can just up and get rid of.

    So let’s say that half of the programs that come under discretionary spending can be cut a lot—say, 20%—without creating a negative feedback loop. (That is, you could cut the SBA, but that actually results is the private sector losing significantly more money than you cut out of the program, since they actually create wealth. Ditto for Agriculture.) So we’ve just cut 20% of 50% of 15%, or 1.5% of the budget. Which is, again, less than inflation.

    My point is this: The big talk from Republicans about slashing the cost of government is bullshit. They’re not going to do it. They’re going to do the same thing that they always do, which is cut taxes for the rich, increase spending just like Democrats, and leave the mess for the next Democratic congress to deal with. That’s the difference between Democratic and Republican politicians: Democrats spend a bunch but tax enough to pay for it, while Republicans spend a bunch but don’t bother to figure out how to pay for it.

    So be excited about cutting the price of government, but you can’t regard numbers as an elitist detail. Republican politicians would love for you to think that numbers are just crazy liberal talk but, in my world, that’s the most important part of budgeting.

  • @danpri – I read it. I don’t buy it. I responded to your post in which you called out Waldo for an elitist sounding comment. His comment was basically an assertion of fact and I was baffled as to how that could be considered elitist.

    I did engage with your first enumerated point. If Obama were to put pressure on a state to change its ABC laws Republicans would decry him for trampling states’ rights. (They do so now, but they’d also do so in that case.)

    I didn’t engage with the other points you enumerated because in the absence of some sort of evidence they’re anecdotal (which doesn’t mean I don’t believe them) and there’s really no effective way for me to engage with them without doing significant research which I don’t have time for this evening.

    you wrote: “And when you say ‘inclusion of facts” you only reinforce the elitist problem. This type of talk is part of the problem, not part of the solution.”

    I’m again astonished that looking to facts and expecting people to use them as a basis for conversation and policy is elitist. If so, we’re fucked.

    As Paul Begala said at one point (it’s the only thing I remember him saying) – “You’re entitled to your own opinion, you’re not entitled to your own facts.”

  • Danpri-
    What worries me is that one day, China just might do that; it is much more likely than our government getting serious about reducing debt.

  • I think I should clarify that it was Pat Moynihan who said it first and Begala, among others, quoted him. Just simply remember it from when Begala used it in debate coverage at one point.

  • Facts ARE elitist, didn’t you read Palin’s Facebook page?

  • @Jogger, perhaps you missed the fact that this is CVILLE news dot com. Its a website about news local to Charlottesville and Albemarle County, read and written by local people. That’s the whole point. This is entirely the appropriate place for discussion of politics vis Charlottesville/Albemarle.

  • That’s right, Jack! Just like the cartographers of old who centered and often expanded their country on maps or globes, Charlottesvillians are allowed to see the town as the center of the universe.

  • Anyone who doesn’t work to reduce military spending isn’t being serious. Just getting out of the afgan war would be better than most anything already proposed

  • Wonder if the president could detour his 10 trip to SE Asia by first stopping off in little old center of the universe Charlottesville, Virginia to commiserate with all the Perriello supporters. His first trip here this past week didn’t quite do what it was suppose to do. Periello won the first time because of his name and his fathers great reputation for the tremedous amount of good he did for many, many people.

  • Jogger, Tom Perriello won the first time by winning the entire Fifth District. Are you saying that folks in Greene, Campbell, Bedford, Cumberland, Appomattox, Prince Edward, Charlotte, Lunenberg, Franklin, Henry, Pittsylvania, Halifax, Mecklenberg, and Brunswick Counties somehow all knew of Vito Perriello and the great work he did in Albemarle County?

    And if so, are you conceding that in fact Charlottesville and Albemarle County truly ARE the center of the world?

  • The only place that Hurt won this time that Perriello won last time was Fluvanna. What lost it for Perriello this time was places like Albemarle that gave him a massive 63% of the vote in ’08 but that dropped to 57% in ’10.

    I read yesterday that the average locale dropped about 2% per locale over Perriello margins in ’08.
    The 5th is a republican district but who knows what resdistricting will bring.

    Perriello did get shout out in the Obama press conference- so that was nice.

  • Its regrettable that President Obama came to divide the district but then I suspect that this had little to do with getting Perrillo reelected. When you concentrate on the area that is the most unlike the rest of the district and on the geographic extremity, its clear that this is more about preparing the ground for the 2012 presidential race. President Obama’s only chance is to hold on the university towns that will tend to be his only places of support outside of major urban areas.

  • @CivisVallus – Obama came to divide the district? Given that the voting for our congressional representative in the last two elections was split almost 50%-50% it seems the district is plenty divided all on its own.

  • Thanks for your visit Obama. Perillorio, please send a check for 50K to have someone come to Alaska and sell ice to eskimos….

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