August 2010

Message from the Chair
Special Reports
Electing Democrats from the Ground Up
Every Virginian has a Stake in Wall St Reforms
Campaign Reports
Update from Moran for Congress Campaign
Update from Barnett for Congress Campaign
Report from Rep. Gerry Connolly
Update from Delegate Plum
Congressional District Reports
8th Congressional District Report
Standing Committee Reports
Finance Committee Report
A Time for Democrats to Act
Diversity Committee Report
District Committee Reports
Hunter Mill Report
Dranesville Report
Braddock Report
Lee Report
Mason Report
Mt. Vernon Report
Providence Report
Springfield Report
Sully Report
State Issues and Reports
Cuccinelli vs. Academic Freedom


Rex Simmons, FCDC Chair

Most of us travel in multiple social circles. In a lot of our circles, especially in Virginia, it is not unusual to hear someone rail about “guvment,” taxes, deficits, Obamacare, socialized medicine, conspiracies, and waste. Reflexively we pounce back, retreat to the safety of spousal conversation, or just jump into our cars for a quick getaway. There is a better alternative.

Throughout Northern Virginia and Fairfax County there are regular opportunities to socialize with other FCDC members and fellow Democrats as well as help to do fun things to elect even more Democrats. Our districts and candidates have picnics and feasts often disguised as fundraisers (some are in fact free). And candidates host office parties disguised as campaign work. As members of FCDC you are welcome to attend all of these events. Do it.

You will find many kind, generous, hard working, and like-minded people. You will be so energized that friends in the other crazy circles will wonder what got into you.

So show up at the Dranesville Fall Festival, the Mason Crabfeast, and the Springfield Fall Event. Go to the Connolly, Barnett, and Moran fundraisers. Try the Democrats Dine Out nights at area restaurants. Stop by the candidates’ campaign offices and ask what you can do for a couple of hours. It will be refreshing just like air conditioning in this steamy, hot summer. And the company will be pretty darn good.

Thank you, Rachel Rifkind for volunteering to again edit The Democrat. Rachel previously edited The Democrat in its paper format for many years. As many of you know she is also the Mason District Chair, the DPVA Women’s Caucus Chair, and a volunteer for many, many Democratic causes.

We published some incorrect contact information last month for 10th Congressional District candidate Jeff Barnett. The correct information follows.

Office:             344 Elden Street, Herndon, Virginia 20170
Phone:             (703) 657-2664
Mail:                Jeff Barnett for Congress, P.O. Box 941, McLean, Virginia 22101

Glenda C. Booth, Precinct Chair, Hollin Hall Precinct, Mount Vernon District

This is the second of several articles on basic precinct work: how Democrats working in their precincts at the grassroots level can help fulfill our fundamental mission to elect Democrats.

How to Recruit and Retain Precinct Workers

By Glenda C. Booth, Precinct Captain, Hollin Hall Precinct
Mount Vernon District Democratic committee
May 19, 2007

Building and expanding our core base of workers is critical to electing Democrats.  A precinct captain’s ideal is to have an enthusiastic, reliable cadre of volunteers willing to do whatever needs to be done.


Always be on the lookout. As you move about your community, go to school events, church events and do your shopping, keep in mind that everyone you encounter could be a volunteer.

Attend civic events. Often, when an issue or controversy surfaces (e.g., widening a road, speeding through a neighborhood, closing a facility), people become active and vocal. This is a great opportunity to move those civic-minded people into the more political arena of electing Democratic candidates.

Talk politics. Ask people about current events and people in the news to gauge their interest in working for the Democratic Party.

Promote Democrats. Wear Democratic t-shirts, hats, and insignia. This often provokes questions and conversation.

Take people along. When there is a Democratic event or a candidate appearance, invite several people to go with you. Offer to drive them, especially people who can’t or don’t want to drive (many of our older voters won’t drive at night). Introduce them to the candidates and to party officials. Bring them into the fold.

Host an event. Most of our office holders and candidates would welcome a coffee or informal event for them. It does not have to be elaborate (simple beverages and snacks are fine). It can be for 10 people or 100. Don’t wait to be asked. It is your job to help our candidates meet people. The candidates and party officials can help you organize it. Invite your neighbors, children’s friends’ parents, church friends, and neighbors. Explain that they will not have to make a donation at this event. If they come, they are most likely Democrats.

Send a letter or call. Using our “good guys” and primary voters’ lists, send a letter inviting people to get involved. Give some examples of ways they can help


Utilize their strengths. Each person brings his or her strengths and talents to precinct operations. Some people like to telephone; some hate it.   Some can make deliveries; some cannot. Some only like to stuff envelopes.

Have a meeting. Have a precinct meeting to talk through the tasks needed to be done. Explain how tasks are done. Allay fears.

Respect workers’ wishes, while emphasizing all the work that needs to be done and value every contribution in whatever form.

Take workers to candidate and party events. The September  Mt. Vernon District Ice Cream Social is a great event because it is free, fun, and near the election, or the Hunter Mill District Summer Picnic, and post-election Thank You Parties.

Provide materials, “security blankets” and information. Arm your workers with election issues, candidate information, websites, precinct handbooks, telephone numbers, all the materials they need to be comfortable.

Don’t overwhelm them and “tell it like it is.” It’s easy to give someone too much to do. Try to sense what they can realistically and comfortably do. Also, make clear that most precinct work is not “glamorous,” it can be quite tedious and mundane, but very necessary.

Be sensitive. Some people have anxieties (e.g., knocking on doors) or disabilities (walking, hearing). They may be embarrassed to fully disclose the disabilities. Try to sense what they are comfortable doing and be responsive, without making them uncomfortable.

Express appreciation, over and over. After an election, give our candidates a list of the workers so the candidates can send a thank you note. Hearing from our candidates and elected officials goes a long way toward keeping spirits up. Have a thank-you party. Invite the candidates and elected and party officials.

Be realistic. You have to realize that people do come and go. More volunteers surface in presidential election years than other years. Unfortunately, they are less interested in helping in local and state elections. Some try a task and get “turned off.”  Don’t let the defections discourage you.

A few examples of precinct operations work:  identify unregistered Democrats by visiting them and urging them to register; identify unidentified Democrats by visiting or calling; deliver material door-to-door; invite people to party and candidate events; help with candidate and party events, e.g., prepare food; work at candidates’ headquarters, e.g., answer the telephone; persuade people to vote for Democrats; write letters to the editor; telephone non-voting Democrats on election day; raise money; work inside and outside the polls on election day.

Michelle Obama, First Lady

When you hear about the new health reform law these days, too much talk is focused on the political.

What I’ve found is that most Americans just want to know how this new law helps their families stay healthy — and how it reduces their costs.

The first thing I tell people who ask about the Affordable Care Act is that, for moms like me, it makes our lives easier. It gives families control over their own care. And it gives us the comfort of knowing that our insurance will be there when we need it most — especially if we get sick. Then I tell them that it gets better, but there’s a lot to know. To help, this administration has set up, where folks can see customized information about how care will improve for their families.

So much of what makes this law great is its emphasis on preventive care — right now, too many people aren’t getting the check-ups or the screenings they need to stay healthy. Twelve percent of kids haven’t seen a doctor in the past year. And 59 million adults — and 11 million children — depend on an insurance plan that does not cover basic immunizations.

Health reform is changing that. Under this new law, all new private plans will provide basic preventive services — things like childhood immunizations and checkups, mammograms, colonoscopies, cervical screenings, and treatment for high blood pressure — absolutely free of charge. No copay. No deductible. No co-insurance needed.

And, on, you can not only learn what preventive steps will help keep your family healthy, but also what insurance coverage options are available based on your needs.

A focus on prevention will help us to combat diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure — chronic illnesses that right now lead to seven of ten deaths in the United States and 75 percent of our national health care costs.

And it will help us tackle an issue that is dear to my heart — childhood obesity. As some of you know one of my top priorities as First Lady is the Let’s Move! campaign, where we have made it our goal to put a stop to the challenge of childhood obesity within a generation, so children who are born today grow up at a healthy weight.

Each of us needs to take responsibility for our own health and the health of our families, and the new health reform law can help. That’s why I’m writing today — to make sure you and Americans across the country know how their health plans are getting better day by day under reform.

Please visit and find out more about your care:

Thank you,
Michelle Obama

Sen. Mark Warner, Jr. Senator from Virginia

Our nation will take an important step forward today to bring greater accountability to Wall Street and provide greater security to folks on Main Street. Every Virginian has a stake in the comprehensive financial reform legislation that becomes law today.

Eighteen months ago, our nation was on the verge of an economic catastrophe. Many families became over-extended and a lot of businesses got over leveraged, triggering a financial storm that also hurt many Virginians who were playing by the rules: retirement savings and college saving funds were devastated, home values plummeted, and many of our small businesses had to close their doors.

But modern new financial rules of the road that become law today will help create a 21st century financial system that works for all Americans — not just the big banks.

More importantly, we have created a framework for economic recovery and growth.

As a new member of the Senate Banking Committee, I was proud to be asked to help lead a bipartisan effort to address how we could better monitor, and disentangle, complex and interconnected financial companies that get themselves into trouble.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to hear the words “too big to fail” ever again.

So we have designed several new tools that should allow regulators to recognize when one of these financial firms is on the verge of failure. They will have the ability to impose tough new capital and leverage requirements that actually make it undesirable for any financial firm to get too big.

The legislation creates an “early warning” council of regulators who will be empowered to compare notes and identify and address systemic risks posed by these companies, their products, or their activities before they can threaten the stability of our overall economy.

These financial companies must periodically submit “funeral plans” with a road map for their own rapid and orderly shutdown should the company go under.

These new tripwires will allow us to “unwind” these failing corporations through an orderly bankruptcy process, and all of this will occur at the expense of the financial industry — not the American taxpayers.

That means company executives, members of their board and their investors will pay the price for their company’s financial mistakes. These failing companies will be put out-of-business. They will not be propped-up by the taxpayers, like we saw with AIG and CitiGroup.

In addition, these new reforms put an end to many predatory and deceptive lending practices. Every consumer will be empowered by access to clear and concise information they need to make the financial decisions that are right for them.

The bill creates an independent consumer watchdog at the Federal Reserve, with the authority to ensure that consumers get the information they need to shop for mortgages, credit cards, and other financial products. Never again will Virginians be treated unfairly because of the “fine print” or hidden bank fees.

Virginia’s smaller, community-based banks and credit unions – local financial companies who followed the rules and did nothing to trigger the 2008 financial catastrophe — are exempted from many of these new requirements.

We also provide tough new rules for transparency and accountability for the Wall Street credit rating agencies. That means investors and shareholders who want to see their companies grow and prosper will have greater access to more relevant information they need to make responsible financial decisions

The legislation takes responsible steps to stop the Wall Street practice of shopping around for the weakest possible regulatory oversight.

It also eliminates loopholes that allowed risky and abusive practices to go unnoticed and unregulated, including loopholes for over-the-counter derivatives, asset-backed securities, hedge funds and mortgage brokers.

I recognize that simply passing this legislation is only half of the challenge: now these new requirements must be implemented in a responsible and rational way.

The legislation does not address the problems and abuses at the federally supported home loan agencies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. After we see more signs of stability in the housing markets, Congress must address those challenges – hopefully next year.

But two years after a financial meltdown, I believe we have acted appropriately to ensure that a similar crisis does not happen again.

We have provided consistent and rational oversight within the financial markets – new rules that will allow our country to compete globally even as we grow our economy locally.

When the American financial system operates on principles of fairness and openness that promote economic growth and stability, we all win.

Mark Warner

Mary Moran, Campaign Manager

Campaign Kicks Off With an  Afternoon of Family Fun in Falls Church

FALLS CHURCH—More than 150 friends and supporters kicked off Congressman Moran’s campaign this June at an afternoon barbeque at the Cherry Hill Park Pavilion in Falls Church. The event was a resounding success, filled with supporters of all ages and featured a passionate address by Congressman Moran.

The event began with a photo opportunity with the Congressman, made all the better by the face painting booth and children’s games going on seemingly everywhere. With Charley, Gene, and friends manning the grills (using umbrellas to shield them from the brief downpour) everyone was treated to a great meal before gathering outside as the clouds cleared to listen to the congressman.

The congressman spoke at length about the need to defend the recent reforms to health care legislation, using his own daughter Dorothy’s struggle with cancer to emphasize the need underprivileged families have for low cost medical care. He moved on to the importance of protecting the environment, especially in light of the growing crisis in the Gulf of Mexico, and more locally, inter-sexed fish in the Potomac. The congressman went on to speak about the very real need for immigration reform, moving many in the audience with the story of his assistant Maria, and the difficulties she encountered before earning her U.S. citizenship on the “proudest day of her life.”  The congressman closed with a passionate denunciation of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy and the demand for equality in our armed services.

The event wound down with many supporters offering their time to support Congressman Moran in his fight for re-election and even more people vying for one last moment with the congressman!

Chesapeake Bay Organization Honors Congressman Moran

CHESAPEAKE – Congressman Moran has been bestowed with the Official Climate Leadership Award by the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, a not for profit, grassroots organization dedicated to fighting climate change and global warming.

“The ongoing oil drilling disaster in the Gulf should serve as a wakeup call for all Americans. It’s time to beat our addiction to fossil fuel and get serious about conservation, efficiency, and moving towards a clean, sustainable-energy in the future,” Congressman Moran said in his acceptance speech.

The award helps highlight a key difference between the congressman and his opponent. As chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior and Environment, Jim Moran has stood time and again against opening the shores of Virginia to drilling efforts. Meanwhile, his opponent would open U.S. shores wherever the potential for exploitation arises, especially in Virginia. It is differences like these that we must consider in shaping the future of Virginia and this country.

Campaign Contact Information

311 North Washington Street, Suite 200L

Alexandria, Virginia 22314


Campaign Manager Mary Moran

(w) 703-299-0064

(m) 703-731-0136

Field Director Atima Omara-Alwala

(w) 703-528-8588

(m) 434-409-9035

Marc Abanto, Campaign Manager

From Fairfax to Front Royal, Jeff Barnett’s campaign for Congress is building tremendous momentum across the 10th District. Independence Day weekend was a great one for our campaign: Jeff, his family, our staff, and some great volunteers reached out to thousands of voters over three days. We all got a bit sunburned, but we changed a few minds, won some votes, and had a great time. Since then, we’ve hit the ground running with canvassing, fundraising, and community events.

Jeff’s active campaign schedule stands in stark contrast to Frank Wolf’s disengagement. While our 30-year incumbent congressman sits in Washington voting against Wall Street reform, Jeff is campaigning hard, talking to voters about bringing a new brand of pragmatic and anticipatory leadership to Washington. In late June, Jeff challenged Frank to a rigorous and open series of debates – one in each county of the 10th District. This election is too important for voters to make their decisions based on sound bytes and campaign mailers alone. Voters deserve to learn about their choices directly from the candidates. Jeff thinks that it is among a leader’s most important obligation to remain accountable to those he serves. Sadly, it doesn’t seem that Frank Wolf agrees: weeks after Jeff invited Frank to discuss the most pressing issues of the campaign, Wolf’s campaign still hasn’t responded.

Jeff is committed to listening to voters and sharing ideas with them, so our campaign is putting together a great series of town hall meetings all across the district. Stay tuned for a schedule!

We’re talking to thousands of voters every week, but, with only three months until Election Day, we need your help to broaden the scope of our efforts. If you’ve got a few minutes, why not make a few phone calls or put up a couple of yard signs? If you can pitch in, contact our field director, Dan Henshaw, at Remember all of the close victories Democrats achieved in the last few years?  Ten volunteers working one afternoon could make the difference in this race. Jeff isn’t letting up for a single moment between now and November. Can we count on you to stand with him?

P.S. Check us out on Facebook!

Jeff greets a voter in McLean on July 4th

Barnett staff and volunteers get ready for a parade in Leesburg

Rep. Gerry Connolly, VA – 11th

While most campaigns take a breather in the dog days of August, our campaign is in full swing. We just opened up new offices in Fairfax and Prince William, and now have field organizers covering every corner of the 11th District. Our campaign is aggressively reaching out to thousands of Democrats and Independents across the 11th. I want to thank those of you who have already been volunteering with my campaign this year. Because of your hard work we have been able to connect with thousands of voters over the phone and at their doorsteps. As everyone knows, we still have a lot of work to do as we sprint toward Election Day.

Fairfax Democrats know we must work hard to be successful on Election Day, and this year is no exception. National Republicans and the Tea Party are targeting me for defeat. The Republicans will stop at nothing to take back this seat. In 2008, my opponent spent almost half a million dollars of his personal wealth on negative TV ads distorting my record. This year he has pledged to spend whatever it takes to win. I need your help to fight back against the negative attacks. We have all witnessed the impact of these Karl Rove style tactics before, and that is why I need you to help me fight back. Email my campaign at to get started today.

Last month, President Obama signed legislation into law that will end the reckless practices of Wall Street, and ensure that taxpayers will never again foot the bill for another Wall Street bailout. This new law is designed to protect consumers and create meaningful oversight of our financial institutions. I proudly voted for this historic legislation because we must rein in the reckless greed on Wall Street and prevent a future economic collapse.

My opponent’s approach to the largest economic meltdown in the last 80 years is to do nothing. This election is a choice between the Republican policies that drove our nation into the worst economic ditch since the Great Depression, or the policies that have our economy on the road to recovery. The difference is clear, my opponent supports the interests of the big banks on Wall Street while I want to return to Congress and continue fighting for the people of Northern Virginia.

Hon. Ken Plum

Delegate Ken Plum, chair of the Democratic Caucus in the House of Delegates, will hold his annual Plum Family Picnic at North Point Pavilion, Reston, on Saturday, September 11, 4-6 p.m. Democrats of all ages and their families are welcome. Good food, entertainment, and local political leaders. Suggested contributions from $35; sponsorships from $100. More information, email or Facebook “Kenneth R. Plum”.

Pixie Bell, 8th CD First Vice Chair

The next meeting of the 8th CD will be at the Falls Church Community Center on August 16. The State Steering and Central Committee will meet Sept. 10/11 at the Fredericksburg Expo Center on September 11, the sometimes annual pig roast will be held at the Mark Warner farm, starting at noon. There will be food, drinks, kid’s games and other activities. The contact person is Andrew Smith ( Courtney Dozier, formerly on Senator Warner’s staff, has accepted a position at the Center on the States at the Pew Charitable Trust. She still can be contacted on her cell phone (703-402-6079) or e-mail ( The new outreach person for Senator Warner’s staff is Anna Payne at (202-224-2397) or ( The Senator’s state scheduler, Cassidy Rasnick, can be reached at (202-224-2440) or ( for scheduling requests and state travel ideas. (If the print out looks like just a line between last and first name in e-mails, it is an underscore _ )  As many of you may know, the contested election for 1st Vice Chair for Organization of the Democratic Party of VA was won by Gaylene Kanoyton. Also elected was new Vice Chair for Finance, Jon Bowerbank; Allison Lawrence is the new finance director, and Tyee Davenport is the new deputy political director hired by the State Party. All who attended the Jim Moran kick off had a wonderful time. Food, drinks, great company and stirring speeches – especially by Jim! See everyone at the Mark Warner pig roast, followed that evening by the Mason District Crab Feast!

Mary Ann Hovis, Vice Chair Finance

After our two victorious special elections this winter, your FCDC Finance Committee initiated a program of fun things this year. We had Supervisor Sunday in April, the Jefferson Jackson Dinner in May with our special speaker Sen. Dick Durbin of Ill., and a Thank You Brunch for our Sustainers.

Last month, we started our Democrats Dine Out program at Kilroy’s in Braddock District. What a turn out! We had about 75 good Democrats who came together just to have dinner and chat. We are scheduled to be in Mason for pizza at McGill’s on August 19 (please sign up at

We will also be in Providence District in September and then in October, your Finance Committee will host the Dine Out in Fairfax. We will move around to each district giving us an opportunity to invite democrats to enjoy some of your favorite restaurants, or find a new one, and visit with Democrats across the county. Watch your e-mail for information about these fun times.

You can look forward to a special event this fall – stay turned!  On Jan. 2, we will send off our Democratic legislators at the Road to Richmond brunch, once again at Springfield Country Club.  Something new and exciting is coming in late January to honor the 50th anniversary Kennedy Johnson Inaugural.  If you would like to help with any of these events, just contact one of the Finance Committee members. We work hard and have a lot of fun!

Do you know who is on the FCDC Finance Committee? Here they are:

2010 FCDC Finance Committee

FCDC Vice Chair Finance: Mary Ann Hovis
FCDC Chair: Rex Simmons
FCDC Treasurer: Nadja Golding
FCDC Executive Director: Mike Burns
Braddock: Bruce Neilson
Dranesville: Leslie Mason
Hunter Mill: Ed Robichaud
Lee District: Barb Slinker
Mason: Virginia Field
Mt. Vernon: Rob Peters
Providence: Susan Weltz & Ryan Phair
Springfield: Francisco Apodaca
Sully: Alen Krishnan

At Large:
Barbara Caputo
Kim Cones
Jack Dobbyn
Kate Fisher
Yvonne McGee
Ginny Peters
Nancy Rice

Please check the FCDC calendar regularly to find all the interesting and important things going on at FCDC.

by The National Affairs Standing Committee (NAC)

Sandra Klassen, Co- Chair National Affairs Committee

It is our time again. Our previous time was in 2008 when a young upstart named Barack Obama was nominated to be our party’s presidential candidate. This time it is in the form of the various mid-term and special elections in 2010. So-called experts are telling us that it is a foregone conclusion that by the time all the 2010 election dust has settled, Democrats will have lost seats in both the United States Senate and House of Representatives. After all, they reason, historically, the party that holds The White House always loses congressional seats in mid-term elections. Plus, there are the vocal and energetic Tea Party groups that are working to toss out of office any and all incumbents, particularly Democrats, as quickly as possible. And if all that wasn’t enough, there is the vulnerability of the President himself, whose approval ratings have dropped since his first months in office. Given all that, Democrats are being told they need to hold on tight, hope for the best and brace themselves for an inevitable drubbing in 2010 that they will be lucky to survive and be left anything that even resembles an influential voice in the legislative and governing process.

All this, of course, is one perspective that is being thrust upon us. But if one takes a moment or two to dig beneath the surface of those dire forebodings, then it becomes quickly obvious that these predictions weigh little more than the air on which they travel. Here are a couple of reasons why: As of this writing, President Obama’s approval ratings are higher than those that either Presidents Reagan or Clinton had at the same time period in their presidencies. Plus, all indicators are it is on the upswing. This will make the president’s voice and message even more effective when he hits the campaign trial on behalf of his fellow Democrats. Another reason is the preference voters are showing for Democrats over Republicans. Several national polls show that voters prefer that Democrats remain in the majority of both our party and, most importantly, our country. Finally, the issues are on our side. The economy, for instance, is getting better and more people are going back to work.

But in order to ensure these predictions do not come to pass, then Democrats need to mobilize much in the same way we did in 2008. It is our time to continue our efforts to keep our country on-track in ways that best reflect the values of our nation.

Rose Chu and Lina Orr, Co-Chairs Diversity Committee

Democrats need higher voter turnout among minorities and young voters in a non-Presidential year. Contact Rose Chu if you can volunteer at the Asian Festival in Reston Sat July 31- Sunday Aug 1and the Reston Multicultural Festival on Sat Sept 25.

Ruy Teixeira is a political scientist at the Center for American Progress who writes about campaigns and polling. He summarized the demographic changes in voters in this recent paper: Minority voters (who voted 80% for Obama) increased their share of presidential votes by 11% between 1988 and 2008 and the share of votes by white college graduates increased by 4%. White voters without college degrees dropped their share of presidential votes by 15%. These trends have been seen in every state and will continue.

According to the CNN 2008 exit polls African Americans who were 9% of the total votes voted 95% for Obama ( Latino Americans who were 13% of the total votes voted 67% for Obama. Asian Americans who were 2% of the total votes voted 62% for Obama. 47% of white college graduates voted for Obama and they comprised 35% of the total vote. 75% of non-white voters with college degrees voted for Obama and they comprised 9% of the total vote. 54% of whites aged 18-29 voted for Obama. The Latino vote is helping Democrats in competitive races.

President Obama has kept more than 100 of his promises and is working on 245 promises. We need to get the word out –

Bettina Lawton and Robert Haley, Hunter Mill Co-Chairs

The Hunter Mill Democratic Committee holds its meetings on the 3rd Thursday every month at 7:30 pm, alternating between locations in Reston and Vienna. Recent events in which the Hunter Mill Committee participated include the Vienna July 4 Celebration, and the July 10/11 Reston Festival. Upcoming is the July 24 Hunter Mill Picnic. A great thank you to Bettina Lawton for coordinating the Vienna July 4 HM Dem booth effort and to Ed Hahn for the Reston Festival Hunter Mill Democratic booth. Contact Ed Robichaud, chair of the annual Hunter Mill picnic, to volunteer and help. Back to School Nights begin on Tuesday September 14 with Madison High School.

The next HMDDC meeting will be held on Thursday August 19 at Flint Hill Elementary School in Vienna. Please refer to the Hunter Mill web site calendar at for other local area political events, and to the FCDC web site calendar at for Fairfax County-wide events.

Ron Bleeker, Dranesville Chair

Following our successful Spring Social, the DDDC has been getting ready for the fall campaign. In addition to preparing for Back to School Nights, we met with Jeff Barnett and his team to plan for his race for Congress in the 10th Congressional District

Our next meeting will be on Thursday, August 26 at 7:30 pm at the McLean Government Center.

Also, watch your e-mail for an upcoming announcement about the date of our Fall Festival fundraiser in September at the home of Terry and Dorothy McAuliffe.

Jan Hedetniemi, Braddock Chair

Lynn and Dave Miller opened their home on June 22 for a wonderful social and business meeting of the Committee.

The event was noteworthy for the opportunity to honor three precinct captains who have retired. Bob Donargo was thanked for his many hours organizing mailings for candidates, FCDC, and for Braddock and for his leadership of the Guinea Road cleanup program. Genevieve Thiem of Olley precinct received warm thanks for her steadfast performance as a precinct captain and for hosting the Guinea Road cleanup crew for a crepe breakfast every year. Martina Leinz of Signal Hill received kudos for her advocacy and for consistent winning margins in her precinct.

Additionally, we welcomed Tom and Susan Johnson as new members to the committee.

The Millers and all of the members who brought dessert and wine are to be thanked.

In preparation for the Connolly campaign, the BDDC Executive Committee will meet at Co-Chair Jan Hedetniemi’s house on Wednesday, September 8. The full committee will have meetings in both September and October—on Tuesday, September 21 and on Tuesday, October 19th.

Hugh Robertson and Steve Bunn, Co-Chairs Lee District

Dig through your closets for your Hawaiian shirts, dresses, and swimwear as it’s time for our annual Lee District Luau!  This Saturday, July 24, from 6:00-10:00 pm we will be holding our “funtastic” fundraiser at the home of Susie Warner at 6229 Edison Drive, Alexandria, VA 22310. The cost is just $35.00 per person and includes Hawaiian food and music, elected officials, silent auction, plenty of drinks, and a sampling of the new vintages from Democracy Vineyards. The pool will be open so bring the whole family for fun and games. To reserve a ticket go to our website at and sign up.

Our next Lee District Democratic Committee meeting will be on Thursday, July 22 at 7:30 pm at the home of Susie Warner. Join us as we do last minute planning for the Luau and decide on a location for our FCDC Dems Dine Out night and Calling Night. We hope to see you there.

Rachel Rifkind, Mason Chair

The Mason District Committee decided not to meet in July. It was felt that many of us needed a break! However, we still have things to do – the first being the 43rd Annual MDDC Crab Feast which is right around the corner. The Crab Feast is our big event leading to the election and we will need all of you and more to make this a big financial success. So please sell your tickets and volunteer with Judy White (703-354-7053 or or go to the google doc and sign up.

Remember that we are not issuing printed tickets for the Crab Feast this year. But we still ask you to sell 10 ‘virtual’ tickets to help us meet our obligations (including paying Crab Feast expenses, paying for our precinct letter, and paying our dues to FCDC). You can purchase tickets on line at MasonDems — or you can click Mason District Crab Feast Tickets to be taken directly to the online purchase form.  Purchasing online makes sure that we get names for check-in purposes and it also ensures we get the information we need for campaign finance reporting purposes — plus It is Easy!!!!

The 2010 campaign is ramping up and we need all of you to be involved as the stakes could not be greater – we have to re-elect Jim Moran and Gerry Connolly. Voter turnout is critical – we will win and return Jim and Gerry to Congress only when we get our voters to the polls. We need the entire committee to be involved in this effort. Call the campaigns, go canvassing, phone bank or offer to host a canvass or a phone bank in your business or home, talk to your neighbors about our candidate (both of their websites have abundant information; avail yourself of it), write letters to the editor, or find people who will put a yard sign in the yard or in Gerry’s words “do you have a bumper sticker yet?” Whatever you do will help to show the rest of the country that Virginia IS turning blue and that 2008 was not an anomaly and that 2009 was.

Thanks to Bruce Waxman (Ridgelea Precinct) and Sean Barnett (Hummer Precinct) who have agreed to be liaisons with Precinct Ops and the campaigns. Important contacts in the Connolly Campaign: Brian Ponton is the Field Director through the Democratic Party of Virginia for the 11th Congressional District. He can be reached at (703) 375-9374 (office) or (615) 319-0882 (cell) or Michael Gleeson is the DPVA Field Organizer for Mason District and he can be reached at cell: (206) 915-3797 or by email at Amina to volunteer for the Connolly campaign, call (703) 375-9374 or go online at The field director for the Moran campaign is Atima Omara-Alwala and she can be reached at work 703-528-8588  or by email at You may also contact the Moran Campaign office directly at (703) 299-0064 or go online at

Back to school nights will begin in mid-September. You can volunteer by going to the google document. If you need the link again call or email Rachel.

Please plan on attending the next MDDC meeting on August 10 at 7 pm at the Mason District Government Center. FCDC will meet on September 28 (location TBD).

Fairfax City Parade – Smitty and Caitlin
Connolly and Mason Member Sean Barnett

Mason Member Bruce Waxman at
the Fairfax City Parade

Janet Myhre, Chair

Mt. Vernon Democrats are planning our 33rd Annual Ice Cream Social, the kick off for the fall campaign season for 2-5 pm Sunday, September 12, at 8146 Wellington Rd., Alexandria, VA (near the GW Parkway at Collingwood Road). Enjoy food, drink, music, Democratic companionship, games for kids, and the return of the Blue Donkey Boutique! Families are welcome and admission is free.

All candidates and local Democratic elected officials usually attend the annual event where we whip up enthusiasm for the fall campaigns. This year, we will give special recognition of past MVDDC chairs and super volunteers. We are also soliciting sponsorships from individuals and businesses to help MVDDC meet its financial goals in 2010. See the flyer in this issue of the Democrat for more information on the event and to RSVP or donate a sponsorship.

Outreach VC Mark Cannady led a contingent of about 40 Democrats in spirited chants at the Lorton Independence Day Parade on July 3 in Lorton. Mt.Vernon Democrats marched ahead of cars bearing Senators Toddy Puller and George Barker and Delegate Mark Sickles. Representative Gerry Connolly arrived (after being in two other parades) in time to present some door prizes from the Lorton Town Center gazebo and meet with supporters at the Mt. Vernon tent. Thanks to Mark, Patti Dinkelmeyer, and the Young Democrats for their hard work.

At our June 16 meeting we elected three new officers, Jack Dobbyn, VC Fundraising; David Mendes, VC Communications; and Robert Veltkamp, VC Info tech. Sadly, we said so long to Doug Reimel, former VC Info tech and tireless precinct worker and hub coordinator, who is moving to Maryland. He was presented with a poem by Laura Sonnenmark and a Mt. Vernon pin by Mary Paden. He is always welcome back and will remain on our mailing list forever.

There will be no general meeting in July. Instead there will be a meeting of hub coordinators and a training meeting for members on Wednesday July 28, at the Lorton Library. The next general meeting will be Tuesday August 17, at 7 p.m. at the South County Center.

Carrie Nixon, Chair

Providence’s “Progressive and Proud” Dems held the first in a new event series, called Dinner and Discussion, on July 15 at Marco Polo restaurant in Vienna. Our newest Committee member, Paul Jameson, facilitated a lively discussion on “How to Talk About the Economy to a Disgruntled Obama Independent.”  The idea for this new series was hatched at our last PDDC meeting, and we thank Paul for kicking the series off with enthusiasm. Please look forward to our announcement of PDDC’s next Dinner and Discussion, which will be open to all who are interested.

PDDC has asked Committee member extraordinaire Linda Byrne to serve as our precinct operations liaison to the Gerry Connolly for Congress campaign in the 11th Congressional District. We are pleased to introduce Providence’s new field organizer for the 11th CD, John Hambleton, who will be working through the Democratic Party of Virginia to help us hold this important seat. John can be reached at

In the 8th Congressional District, Providence’s Vice Chair of Precinct Operations, Gil Conrad, will serve as the liaison to the Moran campaign. Gil can be reached at

PDDC still has its “Progressive & Proud” stainless steel water bottles available in exchange for a minimum contribution of $20. Please ask for the bottles and designated contribution form in the FCDC Headquarters office, or contact Susan Weltz at

The next PDDC meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, August 31, 7:30 pm, with place to be determined. Please contact if you have any questions.

Ruth Miller, Chair

Springfield District Democrats are busy with summer activities!  In July, we had a very successful Ice Cream Social for Democrats in our Newgate North and Newgate South precincts. Democratic neighbors in those minority-Democratic precincts were very pleased to meet each other and make new connections. Senator George Barker and James Walkinshaw headlined the event, bringing messages of Democratic pride from the elected officials who represent the Newgates at the federal and state levels. Springfield is hosting more Ice Cream Socials in other precincts as the summer continues, helping connect like-minded neighbors with each other and with their Democratic leaders. Springfield also is planning a major fundraising event for the fall, tentatively scheduled for September 25. Watch this space for more information!

Dana Cimino, Chair

Sully had a well attended meeting in July. Our members had a viewing of 9500 Liberty and then a thoughtful discussion of the current situation regarding the Centreville Square Day Laborer Center led by Sully members Alice and Jerry Foltz. Alice and Jerry are leaders/members of the Centreville Immigration Forum – the group that has been working with the shopping center owner, Albert Dwoskin, to establish the center. The center’s creation is still a go and will hopefully be in place in the fall.

We were also joined by James Walkinshaw and Adam Harsha from the Connolly campaign. They gave us an update on the 11th CD campaign and are looking forward to our continued support to get Gerry elected in November.

David Mills, Executive Director Democratic Party of Virginia

In an Albemarle court this week, the University of Virginia filed a brief asking a circuit court judge to set aside Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli’s request for information relating to research conducted by Professor Michael Mann.  Cuccinelli is investigating whether Mann committed “fraud” in his use of grant money for research on climate change.

The University’s brief states that Cuccinelli’s investigation “threatens bedrock principles of limited government and academic freedom upon which this nation has rested for more than two centuries.”  The University further argues that this investigation will “infringe academic freedom and chill scientific debate.”

“The Attorney General has done serious harm to the integrity of our system of higher education through this indefensible persecution of academic freedom,” said DPVA Chairman C. Richard Cranwell.  Cranwell continued “I am grateful that the leadership of the University of Virginia has decided to take a strong stand against the Civil Investigative Demands issued by the Attorney General’s office.  All citizens of the Commonwealth who believe in the importance of free thought stand with UVA, its faculty, students and administrators as they defend their rights.”

Based on these new developments, the Democratic Party of Virginia has released the following video:

Rachel Rifkind, Chair Women’s Caucus

Pick your favorite recipe and help support the Virginia Democratic Women’s Caucus. We are publishing a cookbook in time for the Christmas Holidays and would love to include you favorite recipe in it. Whether it be appetizer, condiment, main course, vegetable, or dessert it can be used in our cookbook. We need your recipe by August 31. Please email them to Julie Turner at


The Democrat is a monthly email publication of the Fairfax County Democratic Committee.  The purpose of The Democrat is to provide information to Committee members and other interested persons through district and committee reports, campaign reports, articles, and fliers.  Views expressed do not necessarily represent those of the FCDC unless specifically approved by an appropriate committee resolution.

How to submit material

Generally material submitted to The Democrat should be limited to 300 words unless exceptions are made by the Editor or FCDC Chair.  Please email material to Rachel Rifkind,  Attach text file or photos, or copy the material into the email message.  Deadline for submission is the third Monday of each month by 5:00 pm for inclusion in the following month’s issue.

One-page fliers advertising Democratic fundraisers and events will be included with The Democrat if submitted by the deadline.  Limited numbers of The Democrat are mailed, primarily to those who do not have access to email.  FCDC charges $35 for each flier from non-FCDC organizations.

Contact Rachel Rifkind, with any questions about how to submit material or fliers.