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Posted November 6, 2012 | comments 9 Comments

Goodlatte, Wolf keep House seats

By Joe Beck

Voters in the Northern Shenandoah Valley returned veteran Republicans Bob Goodlatte and Frank Wolf to the U.S. House of Representatives with decisive victories Tuesday.

Goodlatte (R-6) was rolling over Democratic challenger Andy Schmookler by 65 percent to 34 percent in the 6th District with 83 percent of precincts reporting, according to unofficial returns Tuesday evening.

Wolf (R-10) was comfortably ahead with unofficial returns showing him with 57 percent to Democratic challenger Kristin Cabral's 39 percent and Independent J. Kevin Chisholm's 2 percent, with 74 percent of precincts reporting in the 10th District.

Goodlatte, 60, of Roanoke is a member of the House's Judiciary and Agriculture committees. He won his first term in Congress in 1992.

Wolf, 73, of Vienna was first elected in 1980. He is a member of the House Appropriations Committee and is co-chairman of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission in Congress.

Goodlatte, who won his 11th term, said the heavy amount of attention the district received from Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney made this year's campaign different from others he has run. Romney, along with running mate U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, (R-Wisc.) made several visits to the area and drew crowds Goodlatte estimated at upward of 30,000.

"The thing that stood out in the campaign is how enthusiastic voters were in participating," Goodlatte said.

Goodlatte also congratulated Schmookler "on running a good campaign."

Schmookler criticized the media for creating "a sound-bite culture" with superficial political coverage and "that makes it especially easy for politicians to make stuff up and get away with it. For our democracy to work, we need to be able to have more substance reported to the people through the news media."

Wolf's website lists his work on truck and highway safety among his major achievements for the Shenandoah Valley. It describes him as a "driving force" in the formation of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration that regulates the trucking industry.

He also touts his work with former U.S. Sen. John Warner (R) in obtaining federal funds for a new National Guard armory in Winchester and his support for the creation of the Shenandoah National Battlefield Historic District.

Cabral, 46, criticized Wolf's vote in 2011 for sequestration, a bill that placed limits on military and non-military programs, including public health, environmental protection, police, and roads with the goal of cutting the federal budget deficit by $1 trillion over the next decade.

The sequestration law will not take effect if Congress and the president can agree on a deficit reduction proposal by January. Cabral contended that sequestration would mean the loss of 200,000 jobs in the state.

In statement released through Sean Meloy, her campaign manager, Cabral said: "It was an honor to run for Congress in the 10th district and get to meet people around the district. Fortunately, we live in a democracy, and the people have spoken."

Cabral also made a congratulatory call to Wolf.

Project Vote Smart, a non-partisan voter education Web site, showed Wolf's campaign contributions totaled $1.033 million while he spent $761,512 as of Oct. 17.

Cabral's campaign raised $269,412 and spent $221,311, according to Vote Smart.

The 10th District includes all of Clarke, Frederick, and Loudon counties and the city of Winchester. Wolf also represents parts of Fairfax and Prince William counties.

Goodlatte's recent work in Congress has included voting for repeal of President Obama's health care reform legislation and introducing a bill that would amend the U.S. Constitution by requiring a balanced budget. Goodlatte also cited legislation he introduced with Wolf that created the Shenandoah Valley battlefields district as one of his major achievements for the region.

Goodlatte had taken in $1.492 million and spent $1.591 million as of Oct. 17, according to Project Vote Smart.

Schmookler, 66, of Roseville called for creation of a federal jobs program as an answer to the nation's persistently high unemployment rate. He promised to defend Medicare and favored the addition of a government option to the current health care reform law. Schmookler said a single-payer insurance system should be phased in if private insurance companies cannot compete with the government option in a fair competition for customers.

Project Vote Smart showed Goodlatte had taken in $1.492 million and spent $1.591 million as of Oct. 17. Schmookler received $156,659 and spent $125,426 on his campaign, according to Vote Smart.

-- Staff writer Sally Voth contributed to this article.

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com

9 Comments |

    Andy Schmookler was a fine candidate and had some intelligent arguments to make but it's hard to unseat these "career politicians" (especially around here).

    Goodlatte's voting record is obviously not questioned by the die hard fans.

    The rest of the night was GREAT!

    i'm glad schmookler did not win, but i am not happy with bob. I wish more people cared and voted during the primaries, kwiatksoski would have been great for our district...

    I always find it funny that the turnup for local elections in my town is about 20-30 people, whereas presidential, everyone and their brother is there. Poeple need to get out to the polls and vote!!!

    For a guy operating on a shoe string budget it was a good showing by Andy. I know Andy and he would have helped break the gridlock in the House.

      Yes, I agree. Andy was very impressive. It's the same ole story - BIG MONEY. Now Goodlatte has a "free ride" to continue doing nothing.

      Unfortunately if you can't afford to get on TV (they make big profit regardless of who wins!), you'll most likely lose. Shouldn't be that way and Goodlatte already had the backing of the "fat cats". I've looked at his voting record. NOT IMPRESSIVE, but he's back at the gravy train to start collecting money for next election and the beat goes on.

    Perhaps it is time to start leaning heavily on Goodlatte via emails, letters, etc, to let him know we are here and demand information. Wolf used to send out a report every so often detailing his voting record and proposed items. I also don't remember (part-timers memory issues) when the redistricting took place. I still thought that Wolf was still our representative. I wish that there was a way to convince people that the local elections truly are the ones to affect a person and their environment directly in their day to day life, more so than the national ones.

    Critttermommy has the right idea. Lets keep Goodlatte representing his constituency rather than just supporting the Norquest Pledge. Since we pay his salary, he should be accountable to us.

    Schmockler, not sure how you spell it, but I definatley voted for the schckler. I guess i need to get more involved for the next election. He seemed sort of like me and my neighbor. I guess money talks......sometimes or all the times.


    My shoes smell, so need to spray them down.

    Wolf getting re elected show the need for term limits. This is crazy. Well, the big money talks here in the US. and that is the way it is now in pockets like the N Shen. Valley. Common sense prevailed nationally and Obama was re elected to finish the clean up from the failed Bush wacked policies. BTW repubs, about Bengazi, During Bush's tenure, foreign embassies were attacked dozens of times, with 52 dead. So this is just BS to distract us from the important issues.


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