Okay, sorry. I got carried away with alliteration in the title there. But for voters and activists still deciding whom to support in the 45th, there is one unique opportunity this afternoon to see all 6 candidates for the 45th district race together:
ALEXANDRIA DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEE
FIREHOUSE 109 & LADREY 101 PRECINCTS PRESENT
45th District, Virginia House of Delegates Candidates Forum
Introduced by Mayor Bill Euille
Sunday, May 22, 2005
3 – 5 PM
Charles Houston Recreation Center Gymnasium
901 Wythe Street, Alexandria
Moderated by Lavern Chatman, CEO, Northern Virginia Urban League
Now, before you call me crazy for calling this a "unique" opportunity (since these candidates have participated together in more forums than I can count, to their credit!) hear me out. Like the Democratic Presidential primary debates in late 2003 and early 2004, candidate forums with 6 candidates from the same party can get pretty tedious, especially if the format calls for all candidates to answer every question and the candidates by and large agree on most major issues.
But I've been told that the format for today's candidate forum will shake things up quite a bit. Not every question will be answered by every single candidate (thank goodness for small mercies!) and, last I heard, participants will be able to ask unmoderated questions from the floor. In the world of the usually staid candidate forum, this is the equivalent of Extreme Sports. Bring your helmet and kneepads, folks.
And if you want to prepare an informed question or two, don't forget to review the candidates' responses to the Arlington/Alexandria for Democracy Candidate Questionnaire as well as their Web sites. (I know, I know, the rest of us in other districts in Virginia are just in awe at the embarrassment of Democratic riches over in the 45th. My Democratic relocation package idea ain't sounding so crazy, now, is it, when you consider that only one of these great candidates can go on to the general?)