Connolly Office Contradicts Brian Moran for Governor Campaign

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This morning I contacted the the phone number listed on gerryconnolly.com to get the official results of the the St. Patricks Day Straw Poll. I was told that every gubernatorial campaign purchased a block of tickets for the event, though they were not allowed to release the number of tickets each campaign purchased. Upon contacting the Brian Moran for Governor campaign, I was told by Jesse Ferguson, Communications Director, that that the campaign had not purchased any tickets for any of their supporters. When I informed him that the Connolly office had confirmed that the Brian Moran for Governor campaign had purchased a block of tickets, there was an awkward pause followed by a confused response. Ferguson took my name and number and told me he would call me back. I am now waiting for their reply.

The Deeds and McAuliffe campaign have both reported the number of tickets that each campaign purchased. The Moran Campaign has been consistently putting out the line that no tickets were purchased, as evidenced by the link below:

http://www.bluecommonwealth.com/node/6562#comment-3114

Rumors are floating from multiple sources that the Brian Moran Campaign for Governor purchased anywhere from 100 - 250 tickets.

of course they did

Oh my, the Moran camp having issues again? Go figure. The right hand does not talk with the left hand over there.

Or maybe gullible partisans

are more interested in hearing what they want to hear instead of the truth.

Yet, they are wrong

and there was no effort in the Moran campaign or among supporters to distribute tickets like there was right out front at the McAuliffe tables. All we had was canned food, buttons and literature. No tickets. If you are right, you should call the Washington Post to get it corrected.

I followed up on this a bit

Conflicting info flying around again, so I called Connolly's office to verify.

I spoke with Donald, who laughed like a staffer who had had his peaceful afternoon ruined when I told him why I was calling. First, he said they are not commenting beyond the WP article.

All Donald would say was that every campaign had purchased tickets.

That would be consistent with the Moran camp’s statements on this, as they admit they purchased two tickets for the candidate and his wife.

[edited since posting]

Campaign funds for tickets?

Are you seriously telling us that Moran used campaign funds to buy two tickets for the party? Are you telling us that our contributions are going to help him avoid paying the measly $40 per ticket, or $125 for a higher level of sponsorship?

You have to be wrong! If you say the campaign bought tickets for the staffers, I think that is fair and reasonable.

If you are telling us that the staffers had to buy their own tickets, that could be against the law as it is subtle pressure that if they did not attend the event (for which they have to pay from their limited resources and low pay) they would be considered as not doing their job! Do you know conventional terms of employment require that employees reach the office on their own, and then the employer pays for moving around (to client offices, events etc.) and certainly all event admission charges are to be paid/reimbursed by the employer!

This whole controversy can be put to rest by some honesty and a declaration of how many tickets were purchased, and how they were distributed.

Know what I believe is the problem? The Moran campaign bought more than 280 tickets and had a hard time finding takers, since his supporters did not want to take the time out to come to the party. Time will tell, as I am sure there must be some law which requires Connolly campaign to file reports on donors to his campaign and any contribution from Moran will be for these tickets.... perhaps they were sneaky and had supporters buy the tickets?

Wow.

Speculate much? Will your outrage be equal if you find that Deeds used his donated money and McAuliffe used his donated money to buy for the candidate and guests to attend??

And that is what you BELIEVE to be the problem? What - do you live in an alternate reality where what you believe becomes fact? How's that working out for you?

Do you understand Outrage?

I wonder, Rena. If McAuliffe campaign bought X number of tickets and two of them were used for him and his wife, and remaining X-2 were used for staffers and guests, and supporter contributions were used to pay for the tickets, there is nothing to be outraged about.

BUT, if McAuliffe bought two tickets for himself and his wife, and made all his staffers buy their own tickets (out of their VERY hard earned money), I would be more than outraged. I would write nasty letters to McAuliffe and do all I can to make him write a personal check back to the campaign for the two tickets he used campaign funds for, and I would work very hard to get donors to pay for staffer tickets, as a reimbursement. I would work day and night to collect designated donations for this purpose.

Thank the Lord I do not have to go through this as McAuliffe campaign honestly declared how many tickets they purchased, and staffers did not have to buy tickets out of their personal funds.

BUT as stated by one of the Moran supporters if Moran and his wife used two tickets exclusively bought for their use, I would be outraged. Fortunately, I believe Moran is a man of principles and will never sink to such low despicable levels. He is far too good a man and public spirited Virginian to do anything like what the supporter wrote.

Rena, one more time let me tell you and others of your kind - PLEASE do the right thing and support Moran by writing about his accomplishments, and why he would make a fine Governor. If you doubt his ability, let me assure you he will make a fine Governor. Do not destroy his campaign by such irrational statements and allegations.

Since you are so well connected, why do you not get the Campaign Manager make a statement on how many tickets they bought, how they were distributed and why they made such a big secret of it?

It is very likely they bought more tickets than the votes they registered, and the persons who received the tickets did not turn up because Fairfax is too far away, and it was a cold night and parking was not the best (particularly for the rich and famous who are used to valet parking). Unfortunately the impoverished people who had to be allegedly bribed by the McAuliffe campaign did not mind parking far away and walking in the cold for the free food and drink. Give me a break!

So who has the grass roots support of the hard working Virginians? Not a trick question, but some folks like to live in denial. Is one of them named Rena?

Actually, it was a warm, beautiful night

I don't mean to be pedantic but it was a nice evening, compared to last year's ice storm. So, let's not re-write history here.

The Allegation

was that the Moran campaign bought a large amount of tickets to give away to supporters. Stop splitting hairs over whether or not they bought tickets for the staff; that's meaningless and is nothing to get outraged about.

Why did Donald laugh?

Maybe because the Moran campaign donors bought more tickets than votes that were cast in Moran's favor? That could be the reason they are not admitting how many tickets were purchased.

I think if truth be told, we need to get over this and move on.

Moran is a great candidate, that does not mean all his staff and supporters are equally competent. Some make mistakes, and we need to forgive them their errors.

Let us focus on issues and ability to take Virginia forward.

Does that mean you're finally over whatever it is that seems

to be upsetting you and will stop the drama? I still can't understand what ethical rule you thought was being violated, but if you're signaling that the show is over that's fine by me. You seem impervious to the suggestion that the accusation itself was completely baseless since you're still talking about the mythical surfeit of Moran tickets.

Verify the information

is the lesson you teach the world, Mr. Hyde thank you.

In my wildest dreams I did not dream that the Moran campaign would lie! This is a horrible feeling that a strong contender for Virginia Governor could lie on such a trivial issue, and use that lie to undermine another candidate.

This truly calls for an official statement - if the campaign previously lied that they did not buy tickets, just admit someone made a mistake, admit how many tickets were purchased and how they were distributed, and move on!

Buying tickets is not the challenge! Getting people there is the challenge. I am sure that the majority of folks who attended the event have contributed more than the $40 to the campaign they believe in. I have. To more than one campaign. AND, I paid for my ticket. My son paid for his.

They already made one.

And a follow-up call was made (by a person who supports NEITHER Moran NOR McAuliffe) and appended to this post in a comment that is in complete line with the TWO public comments the Moran campaign has made.

And it's absolutely HILARIOUS that you think this particular post is some implementation of "verifying the information". Because a careful reading will show you that mr.Hyde didn't even give the NAME of the person he contacted at some number he found on a website.

Good God. Step away from the comments for a while.

Kinda makes me feel foolish

that I did not find some friendly campaign to pay for MY ticket.

Oh well, the Corned Beef and Beer was amazing, and Jerry certainly is deserving of my much missed moolah.

Yet another objective source....

.....just telling it like it is, right?

Whatever.

Let's here it from the campaigns. If the Moran camp has lied about this, I want to know. I'm with donkey, I guess I don't matter too much if nobody wanted to give me my ticket...that's OK, I was happy to pay my way in and support Gerry.

Exactly

Doug. The majority of us went to support Gerry - his campaign invited me and that is the reason I went. None of the candidates invited me to go - and certainly no one offered me a free ticket ): Not even for my son who is a sophomore in college - boo hoo ):

The Moran campaign needs to tell the truth now, and move on. It does not matter who bought the tickets - the Moran campaign, or donors and supporters of the campaign. Any one who bought bulk tickets (more than 2) needs to own up and say how it was distributed. Silence is often taken as confirmation of allegations - particularly when there is a controversy like this where the organizers inadvertently stated that all candidates bought tickets, and the Moran campaign not only denied buying tickets, but threw mud on the two candidates who frankly admitted they did buy candidates for some of their guests and their staffers.

I met Moran hours before the event

and asked him if he was giving out tickets. He said no. I believe Brian Scrafford was in that conversation as well. I ask again: if they bought 100 or more tickets, then why didn't any of his most ardent supporters here receive one? RenaRF was kind enough to give me two tickets and I can show you the email from her with the PDF attachment.

Are you suggesting that the campaign gave tickets to a group of people, and they're all just keeping it a secret? Ridiculous! I want to hear from the source who says Moran bought 100-250 tickets. The onus is on them. When you make a ridiculous accusation, it's up to you to back it up. I say ridiculous for two reasons: one, we haven't found a single supporter (non-staff) who received one of these mythical tickets. Two, if they were planning to influence the straw poll, then why was there no promotion of the event? No yard signs, not one invitation email, nothing?

I can confirm...

...that I took part in the conversation.

I'm confirming as well. I helped at the table prior to the

event and asked if we had tickets to give away. The answer was no. I went to buy a ticket for myself online and had received a commission check earlier in the day and decided to purchase three so that I could have some other folks there with me.

Helluva conspiracy.

Not a question of distribution, just a question of procurement

Bob Holsworth of Virginia Tomorrow reported that McAuliffe campaign has “resources and knows how to use them, in this instance arranging for donors to pay for 400 tickets for his supporters.” The Washington Post reported that “McAuliffe out-shined his rivals in both organization and spirit at the event, arranging for donors to purchase 400 tickets for his guests.”

So we know McAuliffe campaign did not directly buy the tickets for their guests - the tickets were donated to the campaign.

What about the Moran campaign? Did their generous donors buy tickets that were distributed to supporters? Not at the event, but before the event? I know a small donor with a big voice asked for free tickets (my, my, there was an expectation!), was told none were available, and then she generously bought three tickets and sent two to a supporter. She honestly admits this, even to the point of stating where she got the money from.

Why can not the rest of the Moran campaign be equally honest and admit that generous donors bought tickets that were distributed to their supporters? Nothing wrong with the act, any one is welcome to invite guests, or sponsor guests.

It is the silence that is deafening and bewildering, to say the least.

This controversy would have been no big deal, if the Moran campaign supporters had not gone haywire accusing the McAuliffe campaign of having bought the votes at the Straw Poll! I am a proud Virginian and I feel violated that the Moran campaign supporters think that people like can be bought for a sparse meal and some beer or wine.

Being vegetarian and not drinking wine or beer, to me the party was sheer support for Connolly and an opportunity to introduce my son (a dedicated Democrat) to our wonderful Congressman. And, what an introduction that was, as the gracious Congressman actually spent about 10 minutes discussing policy issues with my opinionated sophomore son.

Three cheers for Congressman Connolly!

I trust Moran

I am sure he did not give out tickets.

His most ardent supporters are exactly that - they are his most ardent supporters. More power to them for supporting a great candidate.

BUT:

Bob Holsworth of Virginia Tomorrow reported that McAuliffe campaign has “resources and knows how to use them, in this instance arranging for donors to pay for 400 tickets for his supporters.” The Washington Post reported that “McAuliffe out-shined his rivals in both organization and spirit at the event, arranging for donors to purchase 400 tickets for his guests.”

So we know McAuliffe campaign did not directly buy the tickets for their guests - the tickets were donated to the campaign.

What about the Moran campaign? Did their generous donors buy tickets that were distributed to supporters? Not at the event, but before the event? I know a small donor with a big voice asked for free tickets (my, my, there was an expectation!), was told none were available, and then she generously bought three tickets and sent two to a supporter. She honestly admits this, even to the point of stating where she got the money from.

Why can not the rest of the Moran campaign be equally honest and admit that generous donors bought tickets that were distributed to their supporters? Nothing wrong with the act, any one is welcome to invite guests, or sponsor guests.

It is the silence that is deafening and bewildering, to say the least.

This controversy would have been no big deal, if the Moran campaign supporters had not gone haywire accusing the McAuliffe campaign of having bought the votes at the Straw Poll! I am a proud Virginian and I feel violated that the Moran campaign supporters think that people like can be bought for a sparse meal and some beer or wine.

Being vegetarian and not drinking wine or beer, to me the party was sheer support for Connolly and an opportunity to introduce my son (a dedicated Democrat) to our wonderful Congressman. And, what an introduction that was, as the gracious Congressman actually spent about 10 minutes discussing policy issues with my opinionated sophomore son.

Three cheers for Congressman Connolly!

Look, in the end this was an attempt to paint the Moran camp in

a bad light. Nothing else, and it failed. Like several others had.

And FYI, Moran supporters did nothing of the sort in regard to the McAuliffe campaign announcing that they had bought tickets for supporters--we just pointed out that there's a difference between this kind of organizing and the kind of organizing they'll need to do to get voters to the polls to support them in June. This is a fact, it's not anything to accuse Moran supports of flipping out over....

What will the Moran camp be falsely accused of next? I'm sure they'll find something.

That's OK, we'll be busy getting our friends and neighbors to support Brian, donating, and being more positive about why we support him instead of continuing to react to this tripe.

Well, that's my plan, anyway, and I strongly encourage all other Moran supporters to follow it too.

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Where is Josh? aznew? Lowell? the rest of the concern trolls?

I put up diaries that are meticulously sourced and set forth some pretty disturbing circumstances surrounding McAuliffe's shady business record, and I'm told that there is no "there there".

This is a pure smear backed without a single iota of evidence - the diarist couldn't identify a single recipient of the "100 to 250" tickets Moran supposedly purchased. NOT A SINGLE ONE.

Talk about conspiracy theories.

And then this diary shoots to the top of the rec list?

I'm sorry, but if this is the state of the Blue Commonwealth readership, the VA blogosphere is WAAAYYYY over-credited.

This is a farce.

Not a conspiracy, just a question: Did campaign/donors buy ?

Bob Holsworth of Virginia Tomorrow reported that McAuliffe campaign has “resources and knows how to use them, in this instance arranging for donors to pay for 400 tickets for his supporters.” The Washington Post reported that “McAuliffe out-shined his rivals in both organization and spirit at the event, arranging for donors to purchase 400 tickets for his guests.”

So we know McAuliffe campaign did not directly buy the tickets for their guests - the tickets were donated to the campaign.

What about the Moran campaign? Did their generous donors buy tickets that were distributed to supporters? Not at the event, but before the event? I know a small donor with a big voice asked for free tickets (my, my, there was an expectation!), was told none were available, and then she generously bought three tickets and sent two to a supporter. She honestly admits this, even to the point of stating where she got the money from.

Why can not the rest of the Moran campaign be equally honest and admit that generous donors bought tickets that were distributed to their supporters? Nothing wrong with the act, any one is welcome to invite guests, or sponsor guests.

It is the silence that is deafening and bewildering, to say the least.

This controversy would have been no big deal, if the Moran campaign supporters had not gone haywire accusing the McAuliffe campaign of having bought the votes at the Straw Poll! I am a proud Virginian and I feel violated that the Moran campaign supporters think that people like can be bought for a sparse meal and some beer or wine.

Being vegetarian and not drinking wine or beer, to me the party was sheer support for Connolly and an opportunity to introduce my son (a dedicated Democrat) to our wonderful Congressman. And, what an introduction that was, as the gracious Congressman actually spent about 10 minutes discussing policy issues with my opinionated sophomore son.

Three cheers for Congressman Connolly!

Welcome Back, Mike

If you had bothered to read the thread before you you commented, you might have noticed that I did, in fact, investigate further by calling connolly's office and cheking it out myself. What I found was that there was no story here, and so in my comment concluded that what Connolly's office was saying was consistent with the Moran campaign's statements on this matter. Yes, I found there was no there there.

I find the fact that you equate criticism of your poorly reasoned diaries to constitute concern trolling unwarranted. Earlier, you asserted that pointing out flaws in your argument constituted ad hominem attacks. I'm sorry if your extensive research, as it were, was unconvincing because of a lack of persuasive reasoning and logical fallacies in your argument.

Ball's in your court, Mr. Hyde

In reading this thread I see that several witnesses have disputed the "rumors" upon which you are relying for your diary, and that there has NOT been any verification of your spurious attack on the Moran campaign. Where is your retraction?

You wrote

Rumors are floating from multiple sources that the Brian Moran Campaign for Governor purchased anywhere from 100 - 250 tickets.

You accused the Moran campaign of lying based on a telephone conversation with some unnamed Connolly staffer and the ever reliable rumor mill of unnamed and unaccountable "multiple sources". Where did you find these "multiple sources", in a high school girls' bathroom? Your sources are about as reliable as any bunch of gossipy teenagers from what I can tell here.

The charge you leveled was extremely serious, in fact, downright scandalous, and goes to the very integrity and honesty of the candidate and his staff. When you set out to "reveal" information ruinous to reputation you'd better damn well have something better than an unsourced rumor mill upon which to base your attack. Therefore, will you man up and admit you have no support for this accusation, or will you persist in this scurrilous attack?

Sure

I spoke with Donald Brownlee at Connolly's office. He confirmed that the Moran campaign bought tickets. Jesse Ferguson, Moran's Communications Director, denied that any tickets were purchased. Neither have returned my call, as I was told they would.

Now, if the Moran campaign bought 2, they should have said that. They still haven't told me how many they bought. Still, 2 is not 0. This does call into question what the Moran campaign is putting out, and rightfully so. They are on the attack saying that another candidate bought the poll and they had NO part in it. If they bought any tickets for anyone, their argument is ridiculous.

By the way, I clearly said rumor. Rumors happen when campaigns can't get a message out properly. If Moran was open and honest, there would be no rumors. But, as that didn't happen, there are rumors. I didn't say they were true, or false. I said that there are rumors, which there clearly are floating around.

So, will you admit that you clearly missed the point. Again, 2 is not 0. If they didn't report the 2 they bought, maybe there's another hundred they forgot as well. I don't trust anything the Moran people put out, as they either don't appear to know or don't want to tell the truth.

It was 2

and that is entirely consistent with what the Moran camp has been saying all along, that they provided tickets to Mr. Moran and his wife.

Now, perhaps Moran purchased tickets through supporters or other channels -- i don't know. I have seen no evidence of that.

But what Connolly's office had to say in no way contradicted Moran. Thse are the facts.

ook, I support Creigh, and for a variety of reasons think Brian Moran would be an awful candidate for the Democrats. But truth matters.

Two tickets is a far cry from 250

This thread's been going on all day, but because you haven't had your very own personal phone call from Jesse Ferguson you're going to persist in your clearly erroneous rumor-mongering? You say "rumors happen when campaigns can't get a message out properly." What message might that be? The rumors were not related to a message, but started in response to the McAuliffe campaign having purchased 400 tickets and given them away to people who then participated in the straw poll. Maybe some in the McAuliffe camp found this embarrassing because that rumor popped up almost immediately. The Moran campaign has said from the start that it did not block-buy tickets, but now that there is overwhelming evidence of the rumor's falsehood you're retreating to a fallback position making it the Moran team's fault they didn't call right away to explain themselves to you.

Rumors do not start because campaigns don't get a message out properly. More often they are the result of idle speculation by people with too much time on their hands, too little access to real information, and too much incentive to think ill of the target of the rumor. Just because you despise the "Moran people" (apparently, in your mind Moran people are a monolithic entity like the Borg), does not lend credence to an unfounded rumor. Hearsay, however much it flatters your interpretation of reality, is still hearsay, and it is still unreliable. Honest people seeking the truth regard hearsay with healthy skepticism, and when confronted with facts in conflict with the hearsay discard the hearsay as unsubstantiated.

I did not miss the point. Your malice shines through in the last line you wrote. You are not interested in the truth.

Actually

the better use of the Borg reference here applies to the groupthink of some of the McAuliffe blogging camp who persistently put false negative indictments out about Brian Moran, his campaign staff, and his online supporters. It's ALL useless banter.

Just get back to the issues, folks. That's how we're going to win. If I see Brian getting overly or unfairly negative then that will recoil my support for him somewhat, but thus far to me, a few digging lines at the JJ Dinner and clever lines delivered here and there does not make Brian guilty of running a horrendous or unfair campaign.

Did the Moran campaign donors buy tickets for distribution?

Bob Holsworth of Virginia Tomorrow reported that McAuliffe campaign has “resources and knows how to use them, in this instance arranging for donors to pay for 400 tickets for his supporters.” The Washington Post reported that “McAuliffe out-shined his rivals in both organization and spirit at the event, arranging for donors to purchase 400 tickets for his guests.”

So we know McAuliffe campaign did not directly buy the tickets for their guests - the tickets were donated to the campaign.

What about the Moran campaign? Did their generous donors buy tickets that were distributed to supporters? Not at the event, but before the event? I know a small donor with a big voice asked for free tickets (my, my, there was an expectation!), was told none were available, and then she generously bought three tickets and sent two to a supporter. She honestly admits this, even to the point of stating where she got the money from.

Why can not the rest of the Moran campaign be equally honest and admit that generous donors bought tickets that were distributed to their supporters? Nothing wrong with the act, any one is welcome to invite guests, or sponsor guests.

It is the silence that is deafening and bewildering, to say the least.

This controversy would have been no big deal, if the Moran campaign supporters had not gone haywire accusing the McAuliffe campaign of having bought the votes at the Straw Poll! I am a proud Virginian and I feel violated that the Moran campaign supporters think that people like can be bought for a sparse meal and some beer or wine.

Being vegetarian and not drinking wine or beer, to me the party was sheer support for Connolly and an opportunity to introduce my son (a dedicated Democrat) to our wonderful Congressman. And, what an introduction that was, as the gracious Congressman actually spent about 10 minutes discussing policy issues with my opinionated sophomore son.

Three cheers for Congressman Connolly!

Posting the same text four times

does not make the rumor true. Will someone please show me this block of 100-250 tickets that either the Moran campaign or a donor supposedly purchased to give to supporters? So what if they bought tickets for Moran and/or staff? The onus is on Mr. Hyde to prove the rumor because he's the one spreading it around. There's absolutely no evidence.

You need a lesson in blog etiquette.

First, you are "reporting" things here that were written about on this very site two days ago.

Second, repeatedly posting the same comment is called "comment spamming". If I see you do it in another diary, I will flag it as inappropriate simply because it robs others of a smooth ability to read through the thread.

I have already asked him to stop

If he doesn't, I'm sure Admin will take appropriate action.

Oh my God, the drama continues

Same forum, different thread. So, from what I gather, your support for the proposition that the Moran campaign bought and distributed between 100 and 250 tickets is that you knew one donor (a donor being any supporter who might have contributed a few bucks to a campaign), and that donor bought three tickets, one for herself and two for a "supporter". Huh? That's it? You think an individual buying a ticket for himself/herself and perhaps presenting one or two to friends or family is the SAME as buying a block of 100 to 250 and passing them out to supporters in general? You've been told several times in these threads by people who are very devoted supporters of Brian that NONE of them was offered a ticket. In fact, you have yourself noted that your acquaintance ASKED for free tickets, was told there were none, and then BOUGHT three herself. She's apparently not a staffer or member of the Moran campaign and she TOLD you she could not score any tickets even though she is a donor. You just proved that there were no tickets bought up in a big block by the Moran team and distributed to supporters.

You talk about wanting to take the high road, but obstinately refuse to be admit for even a moment that the rumor of Moran ticket block-buying is untrue. Several people have told you you're wrong, but you'd rather just call them all liars. Could you possibly consider for a moment that the reason why silence is greeting your demand for an admission is that there's nothing to admit?

I Have Too Many Good Books To Read

A sane person would not spend day after day writing and reading this crap. I think comrades that you live in an echo chamber. I bid you a pleasant tomorrow.

I did get word of a small block of tickets that were..

assumed to be for Brian. However, this was a check for $500 dollars (12 tickets) from an elderly donor who responded to a request from Connolly's office. The tickets were handed off to a friend of the donor, who happens to be a Brian supporter who distributed them to people in a district of Fairfax. The donor is primarily from Connolly's camp and Brian's staff, knew nothing about it. There was no attempt by Brian's campaign to orchestrate donors to buy blocks of tickets or distribute them.

All I gotta say is..... There are straw polls for a reason folks

Everyone should just shut up and realize straw polls at a fundraiser are done for a reason - to get the supportors out to support their candidate in anyway so that the fundraiser...Congressman Connolly in this instance... MVDDC a couple of weeks ago, can tape into the energy and excitment in a great race going on for the Democratic nominee.

I applaud all partities and individuals who attended the event - because Gerry will put those funds to great use 1) getting himself positoned for a reelection in just 20 months... and get NOVA activist excited again by getting all the candidates in front of as many potential supporters as they can.

So get over it - the results are just about as unimportant as they can be. Remember the only result is what happens on June 9th....