This site, at least one other, and one, maybe two Facebook pages (hey, don’t touch that last one until the paint dries) have tracked the shockingly ugly process by which Loudoun Republicans are choosing their nominee for Sheriff. Along the way, two other races for nominations to candidacy for local office have been kind of overlooked. That’s easy to understand, perhaps, when those two are being conducted by the oft-overlooked option of suggesting that each candidate has merits they’d like their party-mates to consider, then letting the voters decide. Now, I can only say that with much certainty regarding the race to be the Democratic nominee for the Sterling district seat on the county board of supervisors. For the Republicans seeking to be the nominee in Ashburn, I only know that no one has brought anything untoward about that process to my attention. For more about that one, I’ll rely on my colleague with the funny hat.
The Sterling race, however, I do know something about. The three candidates are all good guys, and have run their campaigns accordingly. Tony Barney is my personal friend of many years. He has a lot of community support, knows how to campaign, and is one of the most decent men I’ve ever met. He’s been making his case, and forcefully so, but hasn’t tossed so much as a speck of mud at his opponents. Koran Saines has also been around for a long time, though I believe he’s only become politically active in the last couple of years. He’s a very sharp man and I’ve liked him since I first met him. He’s not a mud-slinger, either. Bahri Aliriza is making his second attempt to obtain the nomination. Another Virginia gentleman, I’ve never heard anything that tells me he plays dirty, and he deserves some credit on this go ’round for having sought to topple Eugene Delgaudio before evidence of his official misconduct came to light.
These guys are doing it with class, running for nomination without overnight Facebook pages, doctored party e-mails, or anything remotely like the finger-pointing and name-calling that’s been reported here in the Republican Sheriff’s nominating process. This is great for Democrats because it lets them say, with complete sincerity, that they’ll all be happy to support whomever is nominated tomorrow against Mr. Delgaudio. Alas, it also makes for a somewhat boring story, with less attention being drawn. Most likely, the turn-out will be very low. LCDC chair Val Suzdak has said she expects over 300 voters. I’m thinking the number will be less than half of that. That’s too bad, because these three men have all run campaigns that deserve a meaningful public response. Still, a nominee will be chosen, and it’s great to know that all three will be united with one another in that nominee’s effort to take Sterling forward in November.
The Republican Sheriff’s nominating contest is what people think politics is always like. That’s because it’s hard to ignore a noisy brawl, and easy to overlook a mannered debate. Take a moment and post it to your memory, please, that even while another contest makes the system look really bad, we also have some pretty classy guys, showing us how to make it all look good.