Bearing Drift colleague Mike Fletcher said it best in his post about the dinner: George Allen is a statesman.
There is finger pointing from those who accuse him of being "establishment" because of his years of service in the Commonwealth of Virginia but it's always selective finger pointing as they conveniently overlook other long-serving legislators. I maintain that George Allen was conservative before conservative was cool.
Virginia is the better for Governor Allen's time in public service, and that was evident from Dr. Bob Holsworth's introduction at Saturday's dinner. Dr. Holsworth, formerly a professor of political science at Virginia Commonwealth University and author of the Virginia Tomorrow blog, offered what Mike described as a glowing introduction of the former Delegate, Congressman, Governor, and U.S. Senator, and his accomplishments while Governor that included abolition of parole and welfare reform. Mike added, "And in saying that history will likely view Allen as one of Virginia's most prominent Governors, Holsworth stopped just short of an endorsement."
My mom was equally complimentary of Governor Allen as she noted:
Dr. Robert Holsworth introduced the five candidates for Senate who were at the dinner last night and each one had nine minutes to speak. Allen was last and Holsworth mentioned that he had met Allen when he was Governor. When Allen finished his remarks, he received a BIG round of applause, as always.In nine minutes, George Allen gave hope for the future and a reason to vote for him to make a change in Washington.
Once representing the people of Albemarle County in the House of Delegates seat held by Thomas Jefferson, George Allen's common sense has served him well as a leader for Virginia. His Blueprint for America's Comeback shares his "vision of achieving the American Dream [that] has been badly shaken by our struggling economy, falling home values, and a government that borrows $40 for every $100 it spends."
As Mike wrote at Bearing Drift, "We know this man. We’ve worked for this man. And we know what he stands for. ... Seeing the five candidates together merely served to reassure me that I’ve been right all along."