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Votes

GOP Convention Selects Candidates

Countryside resident John Andrews does not want to hear anyone say that one vote does not count.

Andrews' own vote could have tied him with Bruce Tulloch, who won the Republican nomination for the Potomac Board of Supervisors seat at the Republican Convention. Andrews forgot to turn in the delegate form due two months ago that allows Loudoun residents supportive of the Republican Party to vote.

"It was disappointing that I could have tied if I registered," said Andrews, member of the Loudoun County Republican Committee (LCRC) and School Board member for the Potomac district. Andrews is not sure if he will run for the School Board seat now that he lost the party's support for the Board of Supervisors. Even so, "It just gets me to work harder next time to make sure I pick up that one more vote."

Andrews is glad a tie vote did not have to go before the full Republican Committee. "It would have been competitive and caused splits in the Republican Party. It's better I lost by one than tied for the good of the party," he said. "We have a bunch of good candidates, and it's time to move forward."

THE REPUBLICAN CONVENTION started at 10 a.m. Saturday with nearly 1,500 of the 1,987 registered delegates attending. Less than one in seven of the delegates were members of the LCRC, which has about 300 members.

Following about 45 minutes of procedure and rule adoptions, the 19 candidates for the constitutional officer and Board of Supervisors contested races had a chance to speak. The at-large candidates were allowed five minutes and the candidates for the district board seats, three minutes.

"So many campaigns had good messages and political dreams and aspirations for Loudoun County," said Randy Minchew, LCRC chairman and master of ceremonies for the convention.

The delegates voted at 12:30 p.m. while candidates for state office spoke. The final candidates were announced at 2:30 p.m.

"The convention was nothing less than a stroke of brilliant leadership," said Andrew Gupta, communications director for LCRC and a Leesburg resident. "Chairman Minchew filed very detailed plans on every aspect of the convention management. ... A lot of hard work and dedication went into utilizing the plan, and it worked."

The convention followed the plan's time line within two minutes, Gupta said. "It was stunning how well the convention conformed to the planned timeline," he said.

ALL BUT ONE of the contested races was elected by acclamation, where the non-victorious candidates moves that the winning candidate be elected the Republican nominee.

"I'm very, very impressed with the non-victorious candidates," Minchew said. "They showed themselves to be honorable people."

The Republican nominees for the at-large seats, including those selected at the convention, are:

* Robert "Bob" Gordon, chairman of the Board of Supervisors.

* Stephen Simpson, Sheriff.

* Jim Plowman, Commonwealth's Attorney.

* Roger Zurn, county treasurer.

* Robert "Bob" Wertz, Commissioner of the Revenue.

The nominees for Board of Supervisors district seats are:

* Ben Weber, Blue Ridge.

* Lori Waters, Broad Run.

* Geary Higgins, Catoctin.

* Stephen "Steve" Snow, Dulles.

* James "Jim" Clem, Leesburg.

* Bruce Tulloch, Potomac.

* Eugene Delgaudio, Sterling.

* David "Mick" Staton, Jr., Sugarland Run.

"I most certainly endorse and strongly support the results of those elections," Minchew said. "I will do everything I can do to support all those wonderful campaigns that are going forward and provide the support a local party can provide its candidates."

By June 16, Minchew is required to certify the nominees to the state Board of Elections as winners of the Republican Party convention.