For some reason I have found myself on a PR firm’s distribution list for press materials vis-a-vis the upcoming Texas Tribune Festival, which based on the lineup is going to be rolling out some of the most preening, self-satisfied mediocrities the national political scene has to offer for three days of blah-blah-blah in Austin later in the month.
Most are Democrats, ranging from Hillary Clinton and Beto O’Rourke to Anthony Fauci and faux-Republican Liz Cheney.
Yet Also on the list of participants are a couple of those who still count as Republicans, such as Ted Cruz (who at least has the excuse that as a Texas senator he’s in the neighborhood) and our own Glenn Youngkin.
Not a good look for Virginia’s governor, heading off to a left-leaning gabfest in the one Texas city where that odd man (O’Rourke) will actually win a majority this November on his wage to a disastrous statewide gubernatorial defeat.
Jetting off to Austin to confab with the chattering class only fuels the suspicion that, like an Arlington police chief of many years ago that some may remember, Virginia’s newish governor never met the glare of a TV camera’s lights that he didn’t primp for.
The gubbernator better be careful: If he can’t deliver a Republican state Senate (and hold the slim Republican majority in the House of Delegates) next year, his already very modest hopes of moving up the political food chain may be dashed. Gallivanting around the country while not keeping focus closer to home is not going to be rewarded by the voters.
A recent poll seemed to confirm it: While a majority of Virginians have a positive view of the governor, few want him to be spending the next two years on a run for the White House.
But will he take heed?
JUST A LITTLE WHITE LIE: Roanoke College is out with a new poll of Virginians – both Glenn Youngkin and his immediate predecessor, Ralph Northam, saw higher approval ratings – but the responses to one question just struck me as silly.
Virginians taking the poll were asked whether they were paying attention to the Russia-Ukraine war, now in its fifth month, and just under three-quarters (73%) claimed to be following it either somewhat closely or very closely.
Eighty percent of Democrats said so, as did 70 percent of Republicans.
People, people, people … enough with your little white lies. You really want us to believe that, in the midst of summer, your eyes are glued on international affairs? You’re Amurricans: That’s not how we roll.
Shoot, 80 percent of us probably couldn’t find Canada on a map most days, and couldn’t spell it if we spotted you the “C” and all the “a”s. (I’m lookin’ at you, fellow public-school grads….)
I’d wager that when the time comes, and who’s to say when, not even that percentage of people will be “somewhere or very carefully” following our very own Second Civil War, despite what they tell the pollsters.
– Scott McCaffrey