In one week’s time, Virginia Democrats will vote for their choice to represent the Democratic Party in one of the most contentious Governor’s primary races in recent memory.
McAuliffe, Deeds and Moran have leveraged their internet resources in a vein similar to Obama’s bar-setting e-campaign performance in 2008. While Bob McDonnell is putting his internet resources to use as well, it’s interesting to see how Deeds and Moran created a web presence to help bridge the visibility gap between them and Terry McAuliffee, the former head of the DNC.
Polls show that it may have worked – coupled with the endorsement by the Washington Post, Creigh Deeds went from third to first place in the select polling, and his “always underestimated, never outworked” strategy seemed to take place in cyberspace as well. His Campaign Blog is perhaps his greatest link to fundraising, and considering how it’s an obviously weak area for the Senator from Bath, his web presence has probably sustained his campaign until the Washington Post endorsement broke.
Regardless, one thing is highly-probable: if the next Virginia Governor is a Democrat, then you can expect the newly-elected Governor to work closely with President Obama to make government services more readily available to everyday people. Any look at Commonwealth of Virginia websites, with the exception of DMVnow.com, leads one to beleive that the sites are not very easy to navigate and are very hard to do appropriate internal content searches with. With the former Virginia Secretary of Technology (Aneesh Chopra) and another Office of the Governor of Virginia veteran (Vivek Kundra) in the White House, though, the inevitable collaborations between Richmond and D.C. should equal real dividends for Virginia’s web users.
The next Governor may be able to negitiotate using Virginia as a testing ground for websites thate enhance the transparency of government agencies (for instance, getting stimulus money to post election registration forms online.)
As web application technology improves on a monthly, almost daily basis, you can expect the new Governor to use these improved technologies on the Commonwealth’s most heavily used websites.