In today’s Hampton Roads Daily Press editorial, they agree with my assertion that Paula Miller’s victory in Tuesday’s special election is a sign of things to come. The two points that they make — and they’re both very good — are:
- Her Republican opponent promised, like President Bush and Gov. Jim Gilmore before him, to lower taxes and provide more services. That’s facially impossible and, for the first time in years, the voters knew it. Miller refused to lie, like her opponent, and make such pie-in-the-sky promises.
- Miller benefited hugely from a last-minute $50,000 contribution from the Leadership for Virginia PAC, a Republican PAC whose mission is to support those candidates “to pay its bills” and, in the words of the Daily Press, “discourage the free-lunch politics of recent years.” This is a Republican PAC that has found that, quite simply, Democrats serve classical Republican values in Virginia better than these loony-radical Republicans.
The Virginian-Pilot‘s editorial is, if anything, stronger. They say that “[t]he precinct results make clear that Republicans abandoned Ball and crossed over to the Democrat,” and Miller’s victory is actually “a bigger setback for the right wing of the Virginia GOP than the closeness of the results would suggest,” pointing to the very-Republican-friendly redistricting that just took place there as making the district as anti-tax Republican-friendly as any district in the state could be.
For 10 years, the Republican right has pretended that Virginians can have tax cuts without losing essential services. Tuesday’s election suggests that the truth may be catching up with that fantasy.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it many times again: the shift has begun.