I’ve had discussions with learned Republicans in this area about the Boucher v. Carrico race. Just about every Republican I’ve talekd to has already conceded this race. There’s no way–no way–that Bill Carrico can beat Rick Boucher.
The general consensus is that the GOP will either have to wait until Boucher retires (which is probably a very long way off), or until State Senator William Wampler decided to run against him.
You may know that Senator Wampler’s father, Bill Wampler, was the 9th district’s Congressman from 1952-1954 and from 1966-1982, when he was defeated by Boucher. GOPers think that Wampler may want to “vindicate” his father for the loss. Others think that simply based on his last name, he could beat Boucher.
I say no way.
First, we’re not even sure if Wampler would want to run for Congress. I’ve heard from a Republican friend of mine (who ran for Lt. Governor in 2001, if that tells you who it is) that says Wampler won’t run for any higher office until his children are older, and even then, he would probably like to run for a statewide office (Lt. Governor is the most likely choice, apparently). That’s a way to kill three birds with one stone, right there. Not only would Wampler’s Senate seat come open (a possible Democrat pickup–Boucher held it before he did), but a losing race would probably eliminate Wampler from running against Boucher, and, since Wampler isn’t exactly what I would call chairismatic, he would probably lose the LG race (maybe even in the primary if it’s 2009).
So, I’m here to say to the Republicans, Bill Carrico is not going to be our congressman. William Wampler is not going to be our congressman. Running against Rick Boucher is a lost cause, folks.