Pandak v. Stewart

By Too Conservative
We’re getting inquiries on today’s results in the Democratic and Republican conventions to pick nominees to succeed Chairman Sean Connaughton. I’m pretty far over the horizon, but I’ll convey what I know. (If Vincent were around, we’d be getting all the data right down to blood pressure readings from the main players). I’m very aware of the sparseness of details of this report, so I invite those who have better information to chime in in the comments.Â
My information is that Sharon Pandak, former Prince William County Attorney and Corey Stewart, Occoquan District Supervisor, each won with solid margins in their respective party conventions. I have no information about ambience or peripheral events. This will come out in the fullness of time. But I have heard that the margins for both winners were solid and that the will of each party was clear.
As mentioned in the comments in the post below, I’m somewhat surprised by Pandak’s victory. She’s well regarded personally and as an attorney, but I’ve not thought of her as having the kind of political acumen or support that would enable her to prevail in an intra-party contest that I had thought was very much headed in the direction of her Democratic opponent. Volumes could be written about what I don’t know about Democrats in any jurisdiction outside of Fairfax.Â
It will be an interesting race with clear choices in styles, experiences, outlooks and dispositions.  The irony is that Stewart will be, if past is prologue, running against the incumbent, while Pandak, who served as County attorney during a good bit of the Connaughton years, might be more of the status quo candidate. Â
Although it’s early, I’ll open an Early Bird pool. What’s your prediction about the Pendak/Stewart percentage in the election? If any independents enter the race, I’ll give everyone a chance to start over (any independent candidacies would throw off the percentages wildly). I’ll keep this early bird pool open for one week, until midnight, 26 August 2006 (One entry per person, please). Stewart and Pandak are excluded from this contest, either under their own names or pseudonymously . The winner will be my guest for lunch at a restaurant of MY choosing in Prince William. In the case of ties, I’ll choose a winner from among the most nearly correct entries by criteria that I’ll make up on the spur of the moment.  Â


  • Craig says:

    NOVA Scout, Sharon Pandak deed indeed win and win comfortably. I don’t have the exact numbers but it was described as a landslide. No one should have been surprised by her victory. The informal numbers I heard up until yesterday is that the votes would go as high as 80 – 20 in favor of Pandak.

    This race is not an easy one to call right now. It is going to come down to how much money both sides want to spend on the race. If the Democrats are willing to go in big, maybe even pick up a few TV spots, they can pull out the win. Stewart is pretty hard core though, he is willing to run a tough campaign and put it out there.

    Right now avowed Democrats will vote Pandak, avowed Republicans will vote Stewart. It is the moderate/independent crowd that is up in the air. I think that there are some Republicans that will be willing to consider voting Pandak. Maybe more than there are moderates/independents willing to vote Stewart.

    I don’t think that this race is callable with any level of certaintity right now…

  • Grapes says:

    The Kingpin (t) already threw his considerable weight and political leverage behind Corey. Why does it then surprise anyone that Corey sailed to victory. Why must the Rinos always underestimate t?

  • NoVA Scout says:

    Craig: that I was surprised is clearly a reflection of how little I look into the innards of the Democratic Party in PW. I really am not very much in tune with that. I am aware of Sharon Pandak in her role as County Attorney and I thought she was a very substantive professional.

    I think, that in some ways, the Republicans have cut themselves off from the electoral base that was electing Connaughton. Whether there is another base with sufficient numbers to supplant that, I don’t know. It seems clear, however, that if they are to find a margin of victory, it will come from sources that are different from those that Connaughton commanded unless Stewart can sidle back to the middle very smoothly.

  • charles says:

    NovaScout, why didn’t Mitch write up something? Wasn’t he at the convention? I can’t imagine the loyal readers wanted to interrupt your vacation with Jim Young for this, but there are some PW republicans who TC picked to contribute to the blog, right?

  • Greg Letiecq says:

    NOVA Scout,

    Given your previous unfounded allegations that some umspecified members of the credentials committee have engaged in a conspiracy to prevent delegates apparently committed to Mr. Gray from obtaining credentials, I would like to hear how it was that the convention was smoothly conducted and that only two delegate challenges were made, both involving voters who had no record of being rgistered voters.

    I would also like to hear your impressions of your conversation with Mr. John Gray where he vigorously denied that this conspiracy was taking place which you have failed to disclose, and why you chose to not report on it after learning that your allegations were false.

    I’m sure your readers would love to know the answers to these questions. If you’d rather not have this discussion here, I can arrange for this discussion to continue at BVBL.

  • NoVA Scout says:

    Greg: read my comment from Friday afternoon in the previous post where I recanted and apologized to you. I don’t know Mr Gray and have never spoken to him about any subject. My understanding about yesterday (which I did not receive from Mr. Gray) was that his delegates did not show in the numbers that his registrations would have indicated and that credentials issues were not an issue.  I continue to stand by all previous criticisms of the local GOP (as opposed to credentials) committee for apparently booting away an opportunity to lay down some brand name strength for some time to come. 

  • The biggest complaint about Corey Stewart seems to be that he is in this more for his personal ego than for public service. I do not know much about the man, but this is the main issue he needs to address. He is certainly on the right side of the growth debate and I think the nature of his social services comments were overblown by his critics.

    It will be interesting to see how the issues in PWC play into next year’s Loudoun races. Stewart is very much like Scott York in his attitudes towards development, but is perceived by many as being more of an LCRC type religious conservative. Actually Scott York is more religious and conservative socially than many realize, but is much more measured in his public commentary. There was an interesting quote in the WaPo this morning about the cheering that erupted when Stewart pledged to limit development – can you imagine the reception such a statement would receive at the LCRC?

  • Anonymous says:

    Stewart is not anti-growith–he has voted for thousands of new homes.

    He is currently calling all the major developers asking them for money and promising to support them if they donate.

    This guy will be the downfall of the GOP in Prince William.

  • Charles:

    I was at the convention and do plan to add my thoughts shortly. However, I literly walk out the doors at Battlefield and spent the next eight plus hours fighting beach traffic on a much-needed vacation in the Outer Banks.

    More to come …

  • charles says:

    No problem, Mitch, I just wondered. That means I probably saw you there, but since I’m not supposed to know who you are I couldn’t come say hi.

    Although maybe I did anyway. I was just hoping you too could report good news about the convention from your perspective as a Gray supporter.

  • Danny says:

    To say that the Republicans cut themselves off from the electoral base by electing Connaughton is mathematically wrong. The man won re-election with almost 70% of the vote. That sounds like pretty strong support to me. Then there’s the slow leftward turn of this entire region. I’m not saying we’re going to start producing Kennedys and Feinsteins, but right-wing politicians are not looking at a bright future in PWC. Then there’s the fact that Stewart has only one ally on the BOS – Stirrup. The other 5 or 6 routinely oppose him. No matter what he says about “shaking things up” – he won’t have any support on the Board.

  • NoVA Scout says:

    Danny: I was making the opposite point: that the Republicans, by nominating a guy who has spent a lot of time sniping at Connaughton in the past year, may have cut themselves off from the Connaughton base, which I suspect is still quite substantial. The potential irony is that by going for a technician-type like Pandak, as opposed to the more ideological Friedman, the Democrats may have come closer to the Connaughton/Republican base than did the local Republicans. I frankly don’t think that PW is trending very far “leftward” and is still a fairly conservative jurisdiction. But I also have a suspicion that “Conservative/liberal” stuff will have very little impact on this election. The issue is more likely going to be who the voters think has the best chance of continuing the trend of the past few years.

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