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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Campaign 2009 Post Mortem - Big Win for Gun Owners

Election 2009 was a huge victory for Virginia gun owners. In addition to electing VSSA endorsed Bob McDonnell to be our next Governor, Virginia voters also re-elected VSSA endorsed Lt. Governor Bill Bolling and VSSA endorsed Ken Cuccinelli as Attorney General.

While the pundits will debate the significance of this year's election and its impact on national politics, there is one thing that is clear - the big loser yesterday was the gun control crowd. All you have to do is look at the results of those who made gun control an issue in their campaign or who were solid anti-gun votes in the General Assembly.

For instance, Delegate Steve Shannon decided in the last two weeks of the campaign to run an outlandish ad against Senator Cuccinelli that tried to paint Cuccinelli's pro-rights stance as favoring the arming criminals and terrorists. This was clearly a reference to the non-existent "gun show loophole." Senator Cuccinelli's internal polling however showed that Shannon's ads backfired and actually drove up Shannon's own negatives among voters.

Of equal importance, a handful of vehemently anti-gun members of the House of Delegates were defeated yesterday - in Northern Virginia no less.

In House District 32, NRA "F" rated David Poisson was defeated by NRA "AQ" rated Thomas "Tag" Greason.

In House District 34, NRA "F" rated Margaret Vanderhye was defeated by NRA "AQ" rated Barbara Comstock.

Additional races of interest included the defeat of Delegate Danny "Dan" Bowling in House District 3. Delegate Bowling had been a reliable pro-rights vote in the House of Delegates until he pulled a "Creigh Deeds" in 2008 and voted against killing a bill that would have required background checks on private sales at gun shows. It was that vote that cost Delegate Bowling the endorsement of VSSA in 2009. Bowling was defeated by James W. "Will" Morefield who received an "AQ" rating on his NRA questionnaire.

Filling the open seat in the 55th District of retiring Frank Hargrove is John Cox. Cox was rated "AQ" by the NRA (VSSA only rates incumbents based on their voting record). This is a slight improvement as Hargrove always voted against repeal of the ban on carrying concealed in restaurants that serve alcohol.

Also an improvement is the defeat of 23rd District Shannon Valentine who will be replaced by the NRA "AQ" rated T. Scott Garrett.

In a race that will likely go to a recount, VSSA endorsed Ron Villanueva defeated decidedly anti-gun incumbent Bobby Mathieson. Villanueva's margin of victory is a mere 16 votes - showing that every vote is indeed important.

VSSA member Bill Janis cruised to victory over anti-gun James Towey. Janis was endorsed by both VSSA and NRA and is a stalwart supporter of our firearms freedom.

Another reliable vote is Delegate John O'Bannon who also fought off a spirited challenge from Tom Shields. O'Bannon was endorsed by both VSSA and NRA and is one of our true friends in the House of Delegates.

Overall, the House of Delegates should be a few votes stronger in support of our rights when it convenes next January. VSSA would like to thank all of Virginia's gun owners and sportsmen who voted yesterday and who voted Freedom First. It was truly the best election for gun owners since 1993 when George Allen was elected Governor and led to Virginia's "shall issue" concealed carry reform.

There is every reason to believe that should repeal of the "Restaurant Ban" pass the General Assembly again next year, that we will finally see the bill signed into law. VSSA will be working hard to make this a reality. We have a lot to celebrate after last night's election results. VSSA will now turn its attention to the legislative session and as we did last year, we will keep keep gun owners informed using this blog, and using out email alert list. If you are not already subscribed, please take a minute to click the link on the right side of the page and subscribe today. We won't inundate you with email, just information that will be necessary for you to protect your rights.

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