I’m suspecting this tape has been leading local newscasts in Virginia for the past few days. The video has gotten national airplay on cable news when discussing the final days of the Allen-Webb Senate race.
This image, of campaign supporters getting into a physical altercation with a political opponent, is the worst nightmare for a candidate or political strategist. The last thing they want voters to read or hear about in the days before the election are the words “police,” “investigation,” and “criminal charges” in connection with their campaign.
The race was already tight enough as it is, and Allen is being very careful with what he says and who he talks to in the aftermath of the Macaca incident and all of the other mistakes that have made what should have been a shoo-in re-election campaign into a toss-up.
This is one hell of an October surprise, one that the Webb campaign couldn’t have planned any better themselves. If they had the time and money, I’m pretty sure this footage would be used in a political ad for the final days of the race, although it might not even be necessary given the amount of media coverage of the incident. If Allen loses next week, this incident might have been the final nail in the coffin for Virginia voters, even if it didn’t involve Allen himself.