September 3, 2009 [LINK / comment]

McDonnell on "family values"

I was really hoping that the 2009 governor's race in Virginia would maintain a dignified tone, focused on current pressing issues. Unfortunately, it appears that Creigh Deeds has taken a page from Jerry Kilgore's (failed) 2005 campaign and gone negative, harping on irrelevant red herrings. To me, it looks like a sign of desperation, and is out of character for the renowned "nice guy" state legislator.

It all started when the Washington Post began running stories about a term paper McDonnell wrote while attending graduate school in 1988, railing against "cohabitators, homosexuals or fornicators." A Post editorial (hat tip to Matthew Poteat for the link) portrayed him as a "Culture Warrior" who yearn for a bygone era of conformity -- the 1950s. The Post editorial criticized him for "sounding at times like an Old Testament prophet." Well, what's wrong with that? In a country that has gone so far astray as modern-day America, we could use a few Jeremiahs or Ezekiels.

Sean Hannity said today that the Washington Post has "literally declared war on Bob McDonnell." Literally? smile

There is no question that McDonnell is a social conservative, and there is no question that he knows the political landscape in Virginia well enough to downplay those issues that used to resonate so deeply in the electorate. That's what good politicians are supposed to do. McDonnell told the Washington Examiner, "[Deeds] must have the most backward-looking campaign in Virginia history." McDonnell is a pragmatist, first and foremost, and he knows that he must appeal to moderate or independent voters.

To me, that term paper is about as relevant to the current campaign as Michelle Obama's infamous undergraduate thesis at Princeton University, which is to say, not very. See Sept. 26, 2008; scroll down.