October 17th, 2009
02:45 PM ET
5 years ago

VA Gubernatorial Candidate Stumps in Key Area

The president last campaigned for Deeds in August.
The president last campaigned for Deeds in August.

FALLS CHURCH, VIRGINIA (CNN) – Fresh off the announcement that President Barack Obama will stump for him later this month, Virginia gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds stumped on Saturday throughout the key battleground area of Northern Virginia, in the Washington suburbs.

The suburbs around Washington are considered crucial to the outcome of the contest for governor, and a recent Washington Post poll showed Deeds trailing his Republican opponent Bob McDonnell in this area. Several statewide polls have also shown Deeds behind McDonnell in the race.

"Let me dispel any rumor of my demise," Deeds told an enthusiastic crowd of Hispanic and organized labor supporters at a Spanish restaurant.

Deeds on Saturday was stumping in areas populated by several key ethnic groups, accompanied by incumbent Virginia Governor Tim Kaine, who cannot run for re-election.

After weeks of guessing of whether and when the President would make a return visit to campaign for the Democratic nominee, Deeds' campaign was thrilled when it could announce on Friday a return visit for Oct. 27. The President had attended a fundraiser and rally in August. Obama was the first Democrat to carry Virginia in a presidential election since 1964.

"We registered...almost 600,000 new voters last year. We had 74% turnout, turnout for Barack Obama. I think it is a win-win," Deeds told CNN. Deeds has previously blamed the national economic picture for some of his campaign's problems and said he supports most of the president's policies.

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Filed under: Creigh Deeds
October 17th, 2009
10:00 AM ET
4 years ago

Political stars descend on Virginia campaigns

Sen. John McCain is holding a rally with Bob McDonnell on Saturday.
Sen. John McCain is holding a rally with Bob McDonnell on Saturday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – As one of only two statewide campaigns in the 2009 election cycle, the Virginia governor's race has seen a parade of national political stars make the trip to the Old Dominion.

Late Friday, Creigh Deeds' campaign announced that President Obama would join the Democratic candidate on the trail at the end of the month. Obama's 2008 presidential rival will get there first: On Saturday, Sen. John McCain will make his second trip to Virginia on behalf of Republican candidate Bob McDonnell. McCain, a decorated Navy hero, will help McDonnell make a closing pitch to veterans at a rally in Hampton Roads, a region of the state with a heavy military population.

McCain isn't the only high-profile Republican who has stumped for the former Virginia Attorney General: Two other former presidential candidates - former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee - have twice visited the state twice to campaign. Former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani also raised money for McDonnell.

Along with Romney and Huckabee, McDonnell has welcomed a number of top Republicans who may run for president in 2012. That list includes Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association. Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele campaigned with McDonnell in May.

Creigh Deeds, who spent the first half of the year in a three-way fight for the Democratic nomination, hasn't had an army of national figures campaign with him. But several prominent Democrats have chipped in to help.

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October 16th, 2009
07:33 PM ET
5 years ago

Clinton to rally Virginia Democrats for Deeds

Clinton supported his friend Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia Democratic primary.
Clinton supported his friend Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia Democratic primary.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Obama still hasn't committed to campaign with Creigh Deeds before Election Day, but the Democratic gubernatorial hopeful is getting an assist from a former President: Bill Clinton.

Clinton will appear at a rally with Deeds somewhere in northern Virginia next Tuesday, a Deeds aide said. The exact location has not yet been finalized.

Longtime Clinton ally Terry McAuliffe, who sought the Democratic nomination before losing to Deeds in June, will also be in attendance. McAuliffe has sent out a fundraising e-mail on Deeds' behalf, but he has also urged Deeds to run a more positive campaign if he hopes to catch up to Republican Bob McDonnell before Election Day, Nov. 3.

Former Vice President Al Gore is raising money for Deeds on Friday evening.


Filed under: Al Gore • Bill Clinton • Creigh Deeds • Terry McAuliffe • Virginia
October 16th, 2009
07:11 PM ET
5 years ago

Deeds campaign: Obama to hit the trail in Virginia

(CNN) - President Obama will hit the trail with Virginia gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds October 27, the Democrat's campaign announced Friday.

The appearance, Obama's second with Deeds, will follow a visit next week to a campaign rally for New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine.


Filed under: Creigh Deeds • President Obama
October 16th, 2009
03:56 PM ET
5 years ago

Deeds: Obama will campaign for me

The president last campaigned for Deeds in August.
The president last campaigned for Deeds in August.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Creigh Deeds, Virginia's Democratic candidate for governor, is pledging that President Obama will campaign for him again before Election Day.

The President has scheduled a rally next week with Gov. Jon Corzine in New Jersey, but the White House has been quiet on whether Obama will do the same favor for Deeds, who is trailing Republican Bob McDonnell in the polls. Obama last appeared with Deeds at a rally in August.

When asked for an update on the situation by NBC12 News in Richmond, Deeds didn't hesitate.

"President Obama will be back in Virginia, yes," he said. "He will be back in Virginia to campaign for me."

Asked again if he and the president will appear together on the same stage at some point in the next 19 days, Deeds responded: "You will, yes."

Despite the candidate's sunny outlook, the Deeds campaign said nothing has been finalized with the administration.

"They've been very, very helpful and supportive," Deeds senior adviser Mo Elleithee said of the White House. "We're still in talks with them about trying to get the president to come back to Virginia."


Filed under: Bob McDonnell • Creigh Deeds • Virginia
October 15th, 2009
06:51 PM ET
5 years ago

McDonnell holds cash advantage over Deeds in final stretch

WASHINGTON (CNN) - With less than three weeks to go until Election Day, Virginia Republican Bob McDonnell holds a big cash advantage over his Democratic opponent Creigh Deeds, according to fundraising information released by both campaigns Thursday.

The McDonnell campaign announced it has $4.5 million on hand, while the Deeds campaign said it has $2.7 million.

Despite McDonnell's cash advantage over Deeds, the two campaigns raised comparable amounts during the month of September. The McDonnell campaign reported raising $3.8 million last month from a total of 6,440 donors while the Deeds campaign said it raised $3.5 million from 3,763 total donors.

A Washington Post poll released a week ago showed McDonnell leading Deeds by 9 percentage points - 53 percent to 44 percent - in a survey with a sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.


Filed under: Bob McDonnell • Creigh Deeds • Virginia
October 15th, 2009
01:04 PM ET
5 years ago

McDonnell uses top Democratic backer in new ad

McDonnell and Deeds have 19 days to go until election day in Virginia.
McDonnell and Deeds have 19 days to go until election day in Virginia.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Bob McDonnell, the Republican candidate for governor in Virginia, is using his top Democratic supporter in a new television ad.

The 30-second spot is a simple testimonial from Sheila Johnson, the co-founder of BET and McDonnell's most prominent African-American backer. McDonnell has released a slew of ads featuring female supporters, an effort to blunt criticism from Democrat Creigh Deeds that the Republican opposes equal treatment for working women, a group McDonnell described as "detrimental" to the family in his 1989 master's thesis.

Johnson is also a frequent campaign surrogate who landed the McDonnell campaign in hot water earlier this month when she mocked his Democratic rival's stuttering speaking style. She later apologized for her remarks.

"I'm Sheila Johnson, a Democrat businesswoman," she says in the ad, speaking directly into the camera. "I know what it takes to start and grow successful businesses and create jobs. That's why I support Bob McDonnell for governor."

The ad is running in Democratic-leaning northern Virginia.


Filed under: Bob McDonnell • Creigh Deeds • Virginia
October 14th, 2009
12:42 PM ET
5 years ago

Gore to visit Virginia to help Deeds

Former Vice President Al Gore is coming to Virginia on Friday to raise money for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds.
Former Vice President Al Gore is coming to Virginia on Friday to raise money for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former Vice President Al Gore is coming to Virginia on Friday to raise money for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds, a campaign aide confirmed.

Gore will headline a fundraiser at a private home in McLean. At this point, however, Gore is not scheduled to make a public appearance with the Democratic hopeful.

The event comes one week after Deeds got fundraising help from the current vice president, Joe Biden.

President Obama has also campaigned and raised money for Deeds, but the White House is being cagey on whether the president will return to the commonwealth in the final three weeks before Election Day on November 3. But the Democratic National Committee launched a flurry of robocalls into Virginia on Tuesday asking Obama campaign supporters to help elect Deeds.

Deeds trails Republican Bob McDonnell in recent polls. Former GOP presidential nominee John McCain will hold a rally for McDonnell in Hampton Roads on Saturday.


Filed under: Al Gore • Creigh Deeds • DNC
October 13th, 2009
09:12 AM ET
5 years ago

Deeds, McDonnell square off in Virginia debate

Toomey has not always been warm to Romney.
Toomey has not always been warm to Romney.

(CNN) - With three weeks until election day and down 8 to 9 points in the latest polls, Creigh Deeds is firing away at his opponent.

Virginia's Democratic gubernatorial candidate went on the attack Monday night against Bob McDonnell, his Republican opponent. In a prime time debate, the Virginia state senator accused McDonnell of lying, said that the state's former attorney general is no friend of working women, and charged that McDonnell has re-invented himself during this campaign as a moderate to shed what Deeds described as a rigid social conservative agenda.

McDonnell countered by continuing his argument of recent weeks that Deeds would raise taxes and to tie Deeds to the Democratic initiatives that are being pushed by President Obama.

While this contest concentrates on local issues and the candidates themselves, it's also seen as the first referendum on Obama and the Democrats who control Congress.

Current Gov. Tim Kaine, who is also Democratic National Committee Chairman, is term limited and can't run for re-election.

– CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report


Filed under: Bob McDonnell • Creigh Deeds
October 9th, 2009
10:09 AM ET
5 years ago

Poll: McDonnell widens lead in Virginia

Poll: McDonnell widens lead in Virginia.
Poll: McDonnell widens lead in Virginia.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – With less than four weeks until election day, a new poll indicates that the Republicans are widening their lead over the Democrats in the Virginia gubernatorial race.

Republican candidate and former state attorney general Bob McDonnell leads Democrat Creigh Deeds 53 percent to 44 percent, according to a Washington Post survey released Thursday afternoon. McDonnell's nine point margin among likely voters is up five points from his lead in a Washington Post poll from mid September.

The survey suggests that the gains Deeds had made following his attacks on McDonnell's conservative views on social issues, have faded. The past five weeks the Deeds campaign has aggressively highlighted McDonnell's 20 year old graduate thesis, a document that called working women detrimental to families and criticized "cohabitators, homosexuals or fornicators."

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Filed under: Bob McDonnell • Creigh Deeds
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