News and notes from Reston (tm).

Friday, July 13, 2012

Indecision 2012: Will Fairfax County Decide the Presidential Race? And If So, Will Reston Decide Fairfax County?

We're used to electoral maps like this one from the 2010 congressional elections, where Reston was an archipelago of liberalism surrounded by an ocean of Right-Thinking Fairfax County residents. (If you want "health care," move to that big swath of blue across the Potomac in Maryland, pinko!) Back in ought-10, though, we just helped re-elect a gaffe-prone congressman. This year, Forbes believes Fairfax County will decide the next president.

That will make a few densely populated counties in each swing state the main battleground for the fall campaign, and the most important will be Fairfax County in Virginia.

Virginia is one of the states deemed too close to call, and this year it looks poised to be the kingmaker because of the way the other swing states will split. As Helene Cooper put it in the New York Times on May 4, “With Virginia, Mr. Obama can lose Ohio and still win re-election. With Virginia, he can lose Florida and still win re-election.” But without Virginia, Obama looks doomed — as Romney may be if he loses the Old Dominion’s electoral-college votes.

The way the electoral system works, though, it isn’t just a handful of swing states that are likely to decide which candidate wins in November, it’s a handful of counties within those states. In the case of Fairfax County, its 1.1 million residents represent one in seven of all Virginians, and so it bulks very large in the determination of which slate of electors will get the most votes. In 2008, candidate Obama attracted 310,000 votes in Fairfax, which was more than his margin of victory in the state. No other county in the state contributed even a third of that number.
But all is not well in Fairfax County. The folks strapping bombs to dolphins defense industry is running scared ahead of proposed military cuts, and Forbes thinks that could tip the balance in Romney's favor -- or at least reduce the massive 60-39 margin Obama won here in ought-eight enough to tip the state back into the red column:
Studies indicate that Virginia will be hit harder than just about any other state, with 87,000 jobs disappearing in 2013 and 115,000 in 2014. Reporter Patrick O’Conner warned in the Wall Street Journal on July 9 that the prospect of widespread layoffs in the military-industrial complex “could undercut Mr. Obama in battleground states heavily dependent on military spending, particularly Virginia.”

Which brings us back to Fairfax County. Nobody seriously believes that Romney can carry a county that went over 60 percent for Obama the last time around. There are too many government workers and liberals in the county for that to happen. However, with hundreds of thousands of northern Virginians worried about their defense jobs in a second Obama Administration, it is quite possible Obama will receive less votes in the county — maybe enough less so that Romney can accumulate a majority statewide, winning Virginia’s 13 electoral-college votes.

Defense contractors are turning up the heat on the White House by threatening to send out notices to hundreds of thousands of defense workers on election eve warning of potential job losses if budget cuts take effect.
That doesn't sound unethical at all!

Washington Post web-logger Tom Jackman asked local politicians what they thought of all of this, and shockingly, the Republican agreed and the Democrat disagreed. The mind boggles.

Just think -- the reliably D-voting Reston electorate might be the only thing keeping Mitt Romney out of the White House this fall. But if fearmongering by defense contractors this line of reasoning holds true, it may take more than the measly 2-1 margin Obama won in Reston the last time around to cancel out the "real Virginia" rest of the state. Better start lining up those Priuses to drive seniors to the polls!



  1. The legendary former corruptocrat governor of Louisiana, Edwin Edwards, once said that the only way the people of the Pelican State would NOT elect him if he were ever caught in in bed with either a live boy or a dead woman. Of course, if Fast Eddie had ever been elected governor of Penn State, being caught in bed with the dead boy thing would have certainly assured his overwhelming re-election...year after year after year.

    The only way Reston will not vote with less than a 2:1 majority for Obama is if Obama is caught in bed with a live mentally distraught version of Jesse Jackson, Jr. wearing a Carmen Miranda outfit funded by campaign contributions from D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray while smoking crack out of a Marion Barry donated bottle of Pepto-Bismol or found in bed with a dead Supreme Court Justice named Clarence Thomas.

  2. This could be a bad sign for Obama -- literally.

  3. Defense contractors attempting to shape the outcome of a presidential election? Knock me over with a feather!

  4. Small Spender PatriotJuly 13, 2012 at 10:30 PM

    Defense contractors are already prepared for stiff cuts to their revenues in the coming years. With no foreign wars to fight, and continuing cost overruns for weapons systems (more F-22's anyone?) and technology, coupled with escalating personel costs, the DOD must make significant "cuts", of course , that only means a reduction in the rate of current spending increases!

  5. I work for Lockheed Martin, which has an employee fed PAC. The funny thing is that the company indirectly solicits for contributions to the PAC but does not tell the employees where that PAC money goes. My best guess, though, is that it's not going to the candidates of Peace, Love and Understanding.

    Lockheed Martin: We never forget who we're working for. (Namely, the shareholders.)

  6. you are freaking hilarious. im dying laughing. only a true born and bred restonian could appreciate this amazing humor. but in all seriousness, everyone make sure to get out their priuses and go vote for obama! :)

  7. Quit the silly strike outs or just say what you mean.


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