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More on Herndon, Virginia

Earlier today, Kevin posted about the ouster of the pro-illegal immigrant town council members in Herndon, Virginia. This story has been picked up and discussed by a number of bloggers because it demonstrates what the rest of America thinks about this issue and how they will vote in November.

Alexander McClure at PoliPundit:

The town of Herndon is one of the biggest bellweathers in the United States!


Herndon has this importance in spite of the fact that Herndon isn't a state. It's not even a county! It's a town in western Fairfax County. But this does not matter. Becuase as you know, every election night, the attention of the citizens of the United States is focused on what Herndon County will do. I imagine it's covered on Univision too for all the illegal aliens. "El pueblo de Herndo, el mas importante en los Estados Unidos, nos aparece votar para el candidato..." With bated breath, the candidates for President of the United States await the vox populi in this town of 21,655 people.

In regard to the complete rejection of pro-illegal alien politicians, Michelle Malkin asks, "Comprende, Washington?"

John Hawkins at Right Wing News:

All I can say is that George Bush and the Republicans in the Senate who are soft on illegal immigration better start thinking hard about what the ramifications of their position will be at the ballot box in November. As it is, things aren't looking so hot and unless there are big changes in the Senate GOP's pro-illegals stance, the situation seems unlikely to improve.

La Shawn Barber:

Most day center-supporting members got a swift kick to the curb, including Mayor Michael O'Reilly, who I called a fool for implying that taxpayers in Herndon had no right to influence the feds or their local legislators. How dare they complain about public funds being used for illegal purposes! Right now, O'Reilly's probably wondering what right the people had to vote him out of office. Whatever America is -- a democracy, a constitutional republic, a borderline Socialist nation, take your pick -- a dictatorship it ain't, and the people have the right, the duty, to express their will by voting and influencing people who write the laws.

Mary Katharine Ham at Hugh Hewitt asks, "Has the Backlashing Begun?"

Mark in Mexico:

In Herndon, Fairfax County, Virginia, 3000 voters dumped pro-illegal immigrant councilmen as well as the mayor, turning a town council that was 5-2 pro illegal alien job center into a 6-1 majority against. That's the way it works there. One takes a stand based on one's principles, beliefs or poll results, the majority disagrees, and it's "Adios amigo, find other employment."

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Comments (14)

victory!... (Below threshold)
FAIRFAX GUY:

victory!

It does seem a bit silly to... (Below threshold)
docjim505:

It does seem a bit silly to see the results of one election in one small town as evidence of a "backlash". Now, if we see LOTS of "pro-illegal" candidates across the country getting thrashed in November, THEN we can talk about a backlash.

Normally I would agree, Doc... (Below threshold)
Retread:

Normally I would agree, Doc, but I lived in Herndon for a number of years and it'd be hard to find a more lefty, liberal area on the East Coast. That the vote went against the grain for the area is more significant than one election in one small town, that it went so far to the opposite extreme may not be.

And then there's <a href="h... (Below threshold)

And then there's this little brouhaha taking place in Mamaroneck, New York!

So the guy in Mexico thinks... (Below threshold)

So the guy in Mexico thinks America is a mean place because we won't force genuine citizens, those who are born here and those who take the time to become naturalized, to make it easy for illegals to get a tax-free job.

Interesting....

"The town of Herndon is one... (Below threshold)
Gmac:

"The town of Herndon is one of the biggest bellweathers in the United States!"

Perhaps, in actuality they were just the first.

Retread,Hmm... (Below threshold)
docjim505:

Retread,

Hmmmm... Interesting. Thanks for the info.

Retread - Well, next to Pe... (Below threshold)

Retread - Well, next to People's Republic of Alexandria. Feh. From Forida to Alexandria, I went from midline Republicans and conservative Democrats (at least where I was) to Jim Effin Moran.

Retread may be exaggerating... (Below threshold)
Jim:

Retread may be exaggerating a little, but Herndon is definately a left-of-center town. The past council's mistake was listening to a few activists with loud voices, versus listening to the majority who don't get in your face.

There's a chart on my site that shows voters A) prefer no special treatment for illegal immigrants, and then B) prefer competent incumbents.

Doc, he's right. As I said ... (Below threshold)

Doc, he's right. As I said in my post, I live outside of Herndon and all I have to do is drive about 1-1.5 miles down my apartment into the more "immigrant" areas beyond the typical NoVA shopping areas and it's obviously poor and old. It does feel a lot like taking a drive through Mexico these days and people are starting to wake up. I agree with the other commenter that NoVA is a very, very liberal/establishment part of the country. If the native voters threw out the politicians, that is a sign of interesting times potentially being dead ahead.

I guess when the president'... (Below threshold)
viet vet:

I guess when the president's approval rating is at a dismal 32%, this is the kind of non-story that conservative blog sites post.

Why do republicans hate the Unites States so much?

Residents of Herndon used t... (Below threshold)
Greg G:

Residents of Herndon used to complain bitterly about Latino day laborers gathering at the parking lot of a 7/11 store along the main street that runs through Herndon. The Mayor and Town Council made the tough and unpopular decision to open an official regulated Day Labor Site to clean up the 7/11 mess and try to create a solution.

A strange thing happened when the Day Labor Site finally opened in late last year...no more gathering of day laborers at the 7/11 store parking lot, that problem was solved.

But now it will probably close and the day laborers will most likely gather again at the 7/11 or some other store in the area. These new leaders in Herndon will not solve the national immigration issue by closing the local regulated Herndon site, they will just transfer it to another unofficial area and declare some impotent victory that does not address the original problem.

Herndon is not a liberal left wing area as Retread stated, my god...my hometown is extremely conservative and very suburban. And to Mike T. who drives through my town and calls it akin to driving through Mexico, wow, get a grip on reality man...just what kind of artificial plastic homogenous environment do you live in that would make you compare and characterize suburban Herndon to Mexico? Oh yea, Reston, I forgot...sorry...the epitome of artificiality and plasticity coalesced in an uber-planned sterile community!!!

What about the corporations that love cheap labor here in the USA and in Mexico? The same corporations that love bringing down the wages for the middle and working class of this country while paying lobbyist to grease the palms of politicians who talk tough on immigration with a wink in the eye as they turn their heads away from the problems at the border? To think you won something by celebrating a 5 percentage point voting defeat of the Mayor of Herndon or the 1 percentage point voting defeat of town council members, who are all white suburban Republicans in the first place, is a huge bubble waiting to be burst.

This is not a conservative versus liberal problem, it is a real life problem that needs imaginative creative solutions--one that needs everyone on board, so quit the fear mongering and petty political bickering...for it is time we work together to solve this problem on a national level and not by taking some weird personal political partisan satisfaction on the removal of the mayor and town council in Herndon, Virginia.

Taking issue with GregG's m... (Below threshold)
Jim:

Taking issue with GregG's misinformation, the town of Herdon is liberal, not conservative. The 2004 results were:
48% Kerry, 51% Bush - Nation
46% Kerry, 54% Bush - Virginia
53% Kerry, 46% Bush - Fairfax Co.
66% Kerry, 34% Bush - Herndon
This is a wider margin toward Kerry than any state in the nation, even his (very liberal) home state of Massachusetts. Herndon is not 'conservative' like GregG claims, it is liberal/democrat.

Herndon is suburban, but 2 out of 5, fully 38% of Herndon residents, are foreign-born now. Though NOVA (Northern Virginia) has always had a diverse population, this is a huge change.

The illegal immigrant issue (as posted by Kevin and Kim) is non-partisan; to date neither party has taken the action needed. With none of the candidates party endorsed, the article on my site makes it absolutely clear that illegal immigration was THE issue in the Herndon election.

Jim, you may know the Shena... (Below threshold)
Allright3:

Jim, you may know the Shenandoah, but please do not claim to know the facts on Herndon's stance to the immigration debate. The Shenandoah is WILDLY different than Herndon. Has been since the mid 70's. Still is today.

Throwing stats around does fellow readers no good unless you put them into perspective.

#1. Only 3,000 votes were cast in this election. That's slightly more than 10% of the registered voting population.

#2. Why Kerry got the vote? Herndon has been a very conservative town. Throughout it's history. It still is today. More "conservative" residents have become independent thinkers over the years, and don't vote strictly on party lines. Many of us tired of Bush after version 1.0.

#3. Herndon is an amalgamation along with Sterling, Reston, Ashburn, Great Falls, Chantilly, etc. It's one big blob now. Yes, liberals have come, and exerted influence on the political scene. But Herndon, and this whole area, is becoming the middle of the middle. Not overwhelmingly liberal.

#4. The ex-Herndon Mayor, and majority of the council, was dead set pushing the day labor center through. The planning commission recommended a no-go. Mayor and council did it anyways. No, the residents who chose to show some effort and attend the meetings, in the end, were not heard.

#5. Let's talk about the demographic of the 3,000 voters in Herndon's election.

The majority of the citizen opposition to the day labor sites were either A or B with very little in-between.

A. Long-time baby boomer conservative residents, who lived in majority white, minority black blue collar middle class neighborhoods, who saw the fabric of their neighborhoods change over the last two decades.

B. New money families with kids in expensive homes falling victim to severe stereotyping, "in the name of safety, and their kids".

How do I know this?

I moved to Herndon in 1979 when I was 4. My father was transferred from 32nd Street Naval Station in San Diego, to the Navy Annex.

My next door neighbor is one of the original members of the Herndon Minutemen. So is the neighbor next to her. So is my neighbor across the street. So is the neighbor down the street.

The father, of a good friend, was/is the vice-chairman of the Herndon planning commission during the evaluation process for the Herndon day labor site. The father of another friend has been Mayor, Vice-Mayor and council member for what seems an eternity. My father used to carpool with another council member.

My good friend, white guy, bought a home in the middle of what is now the Hispanic area of Herndon, across from "El Mecadado". His neighbor, long time resident of that area, works for me. I am now 31, and have been a part of, what I affectionately call, the immigrant waves:

The middle eastern wave in the early 80's. Vietnamese, Laos, Phillipino in the early to mid 80's. Indian's and Pakistani's in the mid-late 80's and early 90's. And lastly, the Hispanic wave of the last 15 years.

I would go on summer break each year, and when I returned to school, there was always a new, very, very noticeable and large group of immigrant kids. Kind of like, when you see a classmate after summer break and the kid grew a foot. It was wild.

Of all immigrants, the latest wave (post 2000, 2001) have been the most uneducated, most unwilling to assimilate, the most likely to carry a sense of entitlement, the most likely to be exploited by slum lords and dubious contractors. The least likely to give a damn about America's, or suburbia's, cultural values.

The early central American immigrants of the early 90's wanted to be a part of Herndon. They came here to make a better life, to live a better lifestyle. They would invite us "natives" to sit, and share their food with us during their communal lunches, during our lunch hour. They made sure their kids learned English, mixed and participated in multi-ethnic activities.

When I moved to my new home in Sterling (Herndon's neighbor), two years ago, my neighbors had just shut down a flop house, four doors down from me. There were so many people in the home, they moved the furniture outside to fit more mattresses.

Work trucks would rumble down our street at 6am, honking air horns, urging the cheap, uneducated labor to come exploit themselves at various labor jobs, and utterly disturbing the neighborhood peace. One of my neighbors, an original Herndon minuteman, was a carpenter by trade. He had no work, companies would see he was white and not hire him. Too expensive. He sold his home this January and moved to North Carolina.

A Hispanic family bought the home and moved in. They said it was just the husband, wife two daughters, and family friend. Police found 3 - 4 more unrelated men living there. They own a landscaping business.

They parked all their equipment in the backyard. Someone evidently complained to zoning, so they put up a beautiful fence. Only, they built it with the rough side facing the neighbors. So much for security. But hey, at least THEY have a beautiful fence to look at.

Their daughter isn't in school. 7 years old, knows hardly any English, yet education is not a priority for their daughter. Oh, I almost forgot.

Last garbage day my neighbors and I must have done a bunch of heavy duty landscaping, we were not aware of, as 4 homes got multiple black bags of landscaping debris. On garbage day.

Naturally, it wasn't "lawn debris day" so my neighbors and I had to drag 60 pound bags of sod, bricks, gravel and tree limbs off the street and claim it as our trash.

My buddy who lives by the El Mercado must water his lawn religiously, because every other time he goes out back, the water on his faucet is on. Must be the same people who borrowed his mountain bike out of his shed.

Oh, let me not forget the men living in the shed in the neighbors house behind me. Or their neighbors, who enjoyed the leisurely pursuit of cockfighting in their shed. Luckily concerned neighbors, and the Minutemen helped alleviate all these problems.

Hmmm, I can't forget about the clipped Hawk they kept in their tree. Or any lack of responsibility, engagement or communication when approached about their children provoking our dogs with sticks and play swords. Or repeatedly playing "futbol" against the chain link fence, agitating our animals purposely.

Think about what it's like, when a neighborhood in which you raised your family, begins to get doorknob solicitation in Spanish, a language you can't even understand. It's certainly doesn't feel like "your" neighborhood anymore.

Especially when the new residents could care less. Over 3,000 people in Herndon thought about it.




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