Virginia reporters on key election issues in state
Special panel weighs in on race
- Duration 6:56
- Date Jul 10, 2012
Special panel weighs in on race
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Prince William -- you're Giorgio his family restaurant in Montclair we're joined -- -- special local panel to talk about the issues.
There are important here in this swing county.
Inside a swing state really the commonwealth.
A Virginia will welcome Bob Lewis with the Associated Press.
Julian walker the Virginian pilot David -- -- with The Washington Times.
-- gentlemen thanks for being here this place has a lot of different factors different demographics.
Bob why is this a swing -- Well it's got she -- the first population.
It swings one way and federal elections and this -- another and state and local elections most of the elected officials.
On the state level.
A Republican from here not just a broken but American Republican.
They include Bob Marshall.
Delegate who is.
Among the most outspoken.
Antiabortion and anti gay rights.
Members of the legislature he's a guy reduce the personhood bill in the general assembly this year.
But in federal elections in 2006 Prince -- worked for.
Jim -- And two years later with the whole country.
Having a backlash against bush -- -- -- President Obama.
So you you -- You -- crucible here that I think is is sort of a Bellwether for which way Virginia is gonna go.
Julian a lot of places the economy drives the day.
I'm sure that's the case here what other issues do you think -- are really important.
Well one of the ones in Prince William in this swing county is is immigration where this counting in fact several years ago.
Had a local ordinance which.
Essentially became kind of a model for in the law that Arizona passed in in order to allow local law enforcement to.
Check the immigration status the -- of the lawful presence or lack thereof.
Of -- folks who were stopped in this county detained by law enforcer for one reason or another that became a very hot issue several years ago.
In fact one of their candidates for statewide office next year for lieutenant governor Corey Stewart.
Who's now on the local board of supervisors here in Prince William county he was kind of the architect behind that this -- the spearheaded that effort and so here in Prince William county particularly.
That's an issue that -- -- -- hot button one.
-- -- Absolutely.
Especially in the wake of the attention it immigration has gotten -- the US Supreme Court.
Be -- the -- kind of been under the radar I would say over the past five years since.
The flashpoint of 2007 when the ordinance was the first pass but what course you're running for statewide office.
It definitely will be in play with both sides battling for the Hispanic vote.
It's interesting that there there are a lot of federal workers here.
In this area it's it's -- bit.
Further from Washington DC -- -- her life but there's a lot of commuters and so how does the cutting back on the federal government.
Play with people in this place.
Well if the federal government finally does actually cut back.
But what you've got here are people who.
Hit that there's more private it private industry here -- more private sector.
Going on here than people realize it's not just -- depend.
Mom and it's not as federally dependent as Fairfax County just in the north.
-- -- a better balance here than there is.
I think what you've got here is stronger conservative base.
Elevenths itself -- When you consider the the private sector.
Growth and and employment base here vs the federal -- -- -- -- -- wouldn't count when the Obama campaign though looks at this county Julian.
They probably look to 2000 -- where he carried with 58% of the vote.
What do you think that they're going to be focusing on you mentioned immigration obviously that'll be -- effective it.
How what else other plays do you think they'll make here.
I think you mentioned -- I think the economy is one everybody this is a kitchen table pocketbook election people.
People feel anxious right now they want to feel better they want to feel encouraged that things are getting better and so that's that's the best salesman job that he has to try to accomplish.
So that's one thing another thing that's big in Virginia is energy gas prices at the pump are the thing that you see every day when you -- of -- vehicle.
But beyond that we've gotten down in in Hampton roads we've gotten a big ongoing debate about whether or not we should explore offshore for for oil and natural gas.
In the southwestern part of the state you've got you know that the coal industry which is a big bedrock of this of this state and its economy.
In the central part of the state you've got the the looming debate over whether or not to allow uranium mining has been a thirty year moratorium in Virginia on that.
And so both the economy and I would say energy -- the kind of key kitchen table issues that you'll see play out in this election.
David do you sense that this is kind of developing to be a center point for both ads and time.
For the candidates to spend oh absolutely I mean especially with -- high stakes US senate election between.
-- -- and George Allen already reserving millions of dollars and air time.
And -- you know Washington DC suburbs that you know this is.
This along with the Richmond area in the Hampton roads areas what's known as kind of the urban crescent -- the golden crescent and in Virginia where there just so many voters to be had side by each side.
But yet unemployment is very low here four point 7%.
So I mean obviously the economy -- today but.
Overall people are working here.
Yeah the economy here is is is good.
You have pockets where the economy is massive south side rural Virginia.
Pennsylvania county Henry county.
We've got horrible unemployment southwest Virginia.
Unemployment rate too high double digit.
The message has to be tailored differently in different places and -- -- -- rate is -- I think President Obama has a higher bar to clear.
But I mean.
David just mentioned that people of Virginia are used to an -- war like we're seeing here now already what we were a swing state -- -- -- but we didn't know if it hits.
And so you didn't see all these ads and before that the candidates sort of -- -- is that you know we don't Virginia's nor Republican has for 44 years and now you see a wall to wall advertising.
It's not going to be safe to turn the television on by the time October -- here.
That'll be something to watch Bob Julie and David thank you very much of the time very inching will be -- many --