Democrats were out in force last weekend. They weren’t at the polls or on the campaign trail: instead, they were at the home of Joe Tompkins for the 24th annual Democratic Ice Cream Social. The social, held at various homes over the years, has been at the Tompkins’ Home for the past few years. More than 200 people took advantage of the nice weather to come together for the annual event.
“It’s not a fundraiser, it’s really more of a rally,” said Scott Surovell, co-chair of the Mount Vernon District Democratic Committee. “People are falling over themselves to volunteer for us and the campaign. All of our events have twice as many people as we expect to have. We’ve probably identified about 5,000 new Democrats in the Mount Vernon Magisterial District so far this year between the primary voter lists, our phone bank, data mining off internet sources, and door-knocking in multiple precincts every weekend. A lot of new voters have registered. It’s really been astonishing. People are very energized.”
Both local and state politicians spoke to the gathered crowd. Among the local politicians were Del. Kristen J. Amundson (D-44), Del. Mark Sickles (D-43); Del. Marian Van Landingham (D-45); Sen. Linda “Toddy” Puller (D-36); Sen. Patricia S. Ticer (D-30); and Mount Vernon District Supervisor Gerry Hyland. Also attending was Herb Harris, former U.S. representative for the 8th District and former Mount Vernon District supervisor, as well as School Board representatives Dan Storck, Janet Oleszek and Cathy Belter.
Also representing Virginia were state Sen. Creigh Deeds of Bath County, Sen. John Edwards of Roanoke and Del. Chap Petersen of the city of Fairfax, all of whom will be running for statewide office in 2005.