Friday, May 1, 2009

Breaking News: Vice-Mayor Kimble Reynolds Endorses McAuliffe

Martinsville Vice-Mayor Kimble Reynolds has apparently endorsed Terry McAuliffe for governor of Virginia. Full press release from the McAuliffe campaign:

Martinsville Vice Mayor Kimble Reynolds Jr. today endorsed Terry McAuliffe for Governor, citing his decades of experience creating jobs and turning businesses around. As Vice Mayor, Reynolds has helped to lead a city with one of the highest unemployment rates in the state, today a daunting 20.2 percent, and has served in the city government since 2004.

“As Vice Mayor, I’ve seen first-hand what happens when jobs disappear and the unemployment rate climbs,” said Reynolds. “I’ve called Martinsville home for a long time, and Virginians here are looking for a leader who will bring economic opportunities back to our city and open up new avenues of growth throughout the Commonwealth. I firmly believe that Terry McAuliffe will be that leader.”

McAuliffe’s Business Plan for Virginia includes sections devoted to creating jobs in hard-hit areas. His ideas include specialized tax incentives aimed at creating good jobs with benefits in high-need areas by rewarding businesses for locating high-growth industry jobs in Virginia. McAuliffe has also pledged to target his efforts through state partnerships with regional leaders, and the creation of a Governor’s Regional Economic Advisory Committee to advise him on the unique economic issues faced by each region of the Commonwealth.

Said McAuliffe, “I am honored to have Vice Mayor Reynolds’ endorsement. It is heartbreaking to see hardworking Virginian men and women whose jobs have just disappeared. Right now, we are facing some of the worst economic conditions since the Depression, but I truly believe that with the right leadership, we can create high-quality new jobs and ensure that every Virginian who wants to work has a place to work. As a businessman and entrepreneur, I know what it takes to make that happen, and I look forward to partnering with local leaders like Vice Mayor Reynolds to build our economy.”

This is a big deal. For out-of-area readers, Kimble is well-liked and highly respected in the community as a whole, but especially so among the local Democratic grassroots. I have talked to some of the local activists who helped elect Perriello, Obama and Mark Warner; some are already in McAuliffe's camp, but this endorsement may resonate with those who remain uncommitted. As anyone who has worked in campaign organizing knows, the grassroots are the ones who win elections; TV and radio ads play a big role, candidate appearances play a big role, but ultimately it's the person-to-person contact that drives home the message and flips votes. In that regard, I think Reynolds is a very strong ally for the McAuliffe campaign as it tries to win over the grassroots in Martinsville.

UPDATE: The Richmond Times-Dispatch has picked up the story with a post in their blogs section. (H/t Drew)


Drew said...

A press release picked up by the Appomattox News.

A Richmond Times-Dispatch article.

Anonymous said...

Reynolds didn't have the pull you thought he did. Drew you were wrong again.