My district is a competitive one this year. Rep. Gerry Connolly has embraced the Obama agenda and faces a self-financed businessman, Keith Fimian. The precinct where I voted at a non-peak time had a line more akin to a presidential year. In our state, electioneering is permitted in the parking lot, but not inside the voting area. (My son was urged to put on a sweatshirt over his partisan T-shirt.)
On the way in, voters passed in the parking lot booths for each of the candidates. A gentleman in a maroon sweater snarled at the Connolly volunteer, “You’ve cheated our country.” He tells me his wife was once a liberal Democrat and is now a Tea Partier. He is most upset that lawmakers don’t read the bills they are voting on. “If they get a $5,000 bill, they’d read it. But health care they don’t read.” A small and unscientific sample, to be sure, but the “throw the bums out” mood is prevalent.