Keynote address will call for bipartisanship

Democrats will get a look at what might have been when former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner takes the stage tonight.

Warner, leading in his U.S. Senate race against his Republican challenger by a couple of dozen polling points, was once considered a contender for the Democratic nomination.

But with Hillary Clinton thought by most to be a shoo-in in the fall of 2006, Warner removed his name from consideration. A year later, he announced his Senate candidacy.

Tonight, Warner and Clinton's public paths cross again as he goes to the stage as keynote speaker before her effort to soften the bitterness over her and Barack Obama's pitched battle for the nomination.

Warner, a Harvard Law School graduate, worked for Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., before using his knowledge of telecommunications law to amass cellular phone licenses and eventually help launch Nextel.

Hs tenure as Virginia governor was marked by a bipartisan approach and fiscal conservatism. His popularity was so great that his lieutenant governor, Tim Kaine, was able to succeed him in a lopsided victory. Warner told reporters that he's not planning to fire up Democrats as much as he plans to make a plea for bipartisan cooperation.

“There may be parts of the speech that aren't going to get a lot of applause,” Warner told the Associated Press , “but I've got to say what I believe will get our country back on the right path.”

With Obama in need of Virginia's electoral votes and polls showing voters evenly divided in the Old Dominion, some Democrats want Warner to use some of his political capital to beat up John McCain.

“This isn't the Richmond Chamber of Commerce,” said Democratic consultant Paul Begala.

Warner's seeming refusal to play partisan attack dog underscores what analysts see as his problem within the Democratic Party, and his ultimate obstacle to any presidential ambitions.

“He would have been crushed in his party's primary,” former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele said. “And that's the way our system works, unfortunately. You have to appeal to the extremes to get nominated. Would Mark Warner do well in a general election? Quite possibly? Would his party accept his approach? Not likely.”

Bay Area NewsDemocratsLocalspeech

Just Posted

California Highway Patrol officers watch as Caltrans workers remove barricades from homeless camp sites as residents are forced to relocate from a parking lot underneath Interstate 80 on Monday, May 17, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
San Francisco’s broken promise to resolve homeless encampments

‘There is an idea that The City is leading with services, and they are not’

The Department of Building Inspection, at 49 South Van Ness Ave., has been mired in scandal since since its creation by voter referendum under Proposition G in 1994. (Courtesy SF.gov)
The Department of Building Inspection, at 49 South Van Ness Ave., has been mired in scandal since its creation by voter referendum under Proposition G in 1994. (Courtesy SF.gov)
Whistleblowing hasn’t worked at San Francisco’s Department of Building Inspection

DBI inspectors say their boss kept them off connected builders’ projects

Sharon Van Etten, left, reached out to Angel Olsen about working on a song and they ended up releasing “Like I Used To,” which may be performed at Outside Lands. (Courtesy Dana Trippe)
Sharon Van Etten, left, reached out to Angel Olsen about working on a song and they ended up releasing “Like I Used To,” which may be performed at Outside Lands. (Courtesy Dana Trippe)
Performers’ emotions are high as Outside Lands returns to San Francisco

Festival features Sharon Van Etten and Boy Scouts alongside The Strokes, Lizzo and Tame Impala

A felled tree in San Francisco is pictured on Fillmore Street following a major storm that produced high winds and heavy rains on Oct. 24, 2021. (Photo courtesy of Philip Ford)
Extreme weather in California: Prolonged drought and record rain

By Soumya Karlamangla New York Times This week has been one for… Continue reading

Most Read