Political competition is a good thing, but has to be grounded to some degree in realistic expectations.
And as such, the race between Jimmy Bierman and Puneet Ahluwalia to become successor to Fairfax County Supervisor John Foust (D-Dranesville) is more about the future than the present day.
Democrat Bierman is going to win the race; what once was the very swing-y Dranesville District has in recent years become largely a Democratic fortress for a host of reasons. Republican Ahluwali’s assignment from his party is to try and continue rebuilding the GOP’s brand in a county that is almost completely – and after November’s election may indeed be totally – occupied by Democratic office-holders at the local level.
As we’ve noted before, Democratic incumbent Foust has earned retirement from office, but his departure is going to leave a void, both in substance and style. He has taken the job seriously and largely avoided attention-grabbing histrionics.
His presumptive successor, Bierman, could learn a thing or two. The Democratic candidate perhaps doesn’t recognize that he has a tendency in the public arena to come off as . . . well, “obnoxious” is too strong a word, but our handy-dandy 1,300-page “Synonym Finder” by J.I. Rodale doesn’t provide an alternative descriptor that fits the situation completely.
If Bierman could throttle back his at times querulous public persona just a bit, he’ll do himself and his future constituents a world of good. Because, as we all know, Northern Virginia politics already has a number already in office who have raised that to an art form.