BY OLYMPIA MEOLA
As we told you yesterday, Gov. Bob McDonnell has endorsed Jeff Frederick for Senate and could back that up with a financial assist.
Today, we learned that McDonnell is also helping Senate hopeful Dick Black’s campaign in the 13th state Senatorial district. The governor is hosting a breakfast fundraiser for Black on Oct. 26.
Black is running against Shawn Mitchell, a Democrat.
According to an invitation for the event that was first noted by the Democratic Party of Virginia, McDonnell says “I need Dick Black to join me in the fight to bring energy independence and jobs to Virginia.”
Democratic party officials pounced on the news, saying in a release that the endorsement of Black “may be more troubling as the former Delegate is best-known not for any effort to create jobs, improve education or fix transportation, but for his laser-like focus on a radical social issues agenda that led him to mail plastic fetuses to fellow-legislators as a protest of a woman’s right to choose.”
No word yet on any fundraisers for Frederick, but McDonnell’s political adviser, Phil Cox, said Tuesday that “The governor strongly endorses Jeff and will be supporting his campaign financially.”
Frederick is challenging three-term incumbent Democrat Linda T. “Toddy” Puller in the 36th Senate district, which includes parts of Prince William, Stafford and Fairfax counties.
The governor’s support of Frederick is happening two years after then-gubernatorial candidate McDonnell backed then-Del. Jeff Frederick’s ouster as chairman of the state Republican Party. The reversal comes as the GOP is battling to gain a majority in the state Senate to add to their control in the House of Delegates and Executive Mansion.
McDonnell has given directly to candidates in targeted Senate races, including $93,000 since January to Sen. William M. Stanley Jr., R-Franklin County, and at least $50,000 to three other candidates. He more recently doled out $745,000 to the state Republican Party from his political operation.
Frederick announced the endorsement on Monday in an e-mail to supporters.
“Having served with Jeff in the state legislature, I know him to be an energetic small-business owner who will focus like a laser on creating jobs and improving Virginia’s economy,” McDonnell said in the e-mail. “We need Jeff Frederick in the State Senate to help us control spending, lower taxes, and create jobs.”