Yesterday in Glen Allen, Republican activists from the Seventh Congressional District (and from farther away, too -- there was a busload from Page County, as well) gathered at the Innsbrook Pavilion for the fifth annual Republican Roundup.
Not a fundraiser -- anyone who attended did so with no fee -- the Roundup is more of a pep rally timed to the homestretch of the election campaign. Yesterday marked 17 days before Virginia's statewide elections on November 3. Two of the top-of-the-ticket candidates were there, former Attorney General Bob McDonnell (who is running for governor) and state Senator Ken Cuccinelli (who is running for attorney general). Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling (who is running for re-election) was unable to attend because of a family commitment.
Seventh District Congressman Eric Cantor, who serves as the House Minority Whip, also attended and spent a lot of time in conversation with his constituents. In addition, there were about two dozen past and current elected officials, including members of the House of Delegates, former Governor Jim Gilmore, and former Lieutenant Governor John Hager. RPV chairman Pat Mullins was also in attendance.
The Roundup offered live music, hot dogs and barbecue, moon bounces for the kids, and a climbing wall, in addition to the politicking.
The Seventh District committee set up a "bloggers' row" with electrical connections and tables available for Virginia bloggers. Crystal Clear Conservative was live blogging there, and so was Bearing Drift. Bearing Drift put up at least two posts on the Roundup, including an exclusive video interview with Representative Cantor. Tom White of Virginia Right and Lynn Mitchell of SWAC Girl were also there, but they don't seem to have posted anything about the Roundup (at least not yet).
As for me, I took the opportunity to videotape the speeches, which from start to finish lasted less than 35 minutes. (No Joe Bidens on that stage, that's for sure!)
First, Seventh District GOP Chairman Linwood Cobb welcomed the crowd. His remarks about respecting the property rights of the owners of the Innsbrook Pavilion (they do not permit firearms on their property) have attracted a flurry of criticism on the YouTube page where I posted the video last night. Judge Cobb's explanation for yourself:
Second, Delegate John O'Bannon delivered a prayer:
Third, a candidate for the House of Delegates in the 69th District, Ernesto Sampson, led the group in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance:
Fourth, Ken Cuccinelli stimulated the crowd with a broom and chants of "Sweep! Sweep! Sweep!," referring to the Republicans' chances of winning all three statewide offices on November 3, a repeat of what happened in 1997, when Jim Gilmore, John Hager, and Mark Earley were elected, respectively, Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney General.
Fifth, Bob McDonnell encouraged the activists to reach out to their friends and neighbors to get them to vote, because political success is determined by who shows up:
Finally, Minority Whip Eric Cantor took the stage. He said, "We have a stellar statewide team" in McDonnell, Bolling, and Cuccinelli. "We're going to win," he said, "because this is a campaign about ideas." Check out the rest:
I have posted more photos from the Roundup on Facebook. They can be seen here, even by non-members of the world's most popular social networking site. (You know who you are!)
Update: SWAC Girl has photographs and an additional, detailed report on the Roundup.
Another Update: My most popular video on YouTube, the speech by Adnan Barqawi at the 2009 Republican Party of Virginia state convention, is about to have its 15,000th view. As of right now (7:28 p.m., October 18) it has had 14,997 views.
Be sure to visit my CafePress store for gifts and novelty items!
Read my blog on Kindle!
Follow my tweets on Twitter!