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Ousted Rep. Rick Boucher says ‘it was a send-a-message kind of election’

Rep. Rick Boucher, a veteran Democrat swept out in the Republican wave on Tuesday, said decades of service to his Virginia constituents was not enough to survive the “tsunami” of anti-Democratic sentiment.

“The entire campaign against me was waged by a person who never really indicated what he wanted to do to for the region,” Boucher said in an interview Wednesday. “His campaign was all Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Rick Boucher. It was just tying me directly to the Democratic Party national leadership.”

Boucher ran unopposed for reelection in 2008, but lost on Tuesday to Morgan Griffith, majority leader of the Virginia House. In his district, Boucher explained, “Democrats face a lot of headwinds here in normal times. In this particular election, I was really just facing hurricane winds.”

“It was a send-a-message kind of election. … That send-a-message sentiment really overcame the record of 28 years of service to the region,” he said.

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Two other Virginia Democrats lost reelection to the House, but both were freshmen members – Tom Perriello and Glenn Nye.

Another race, in the 11th District, just outside Washington, remained too close to call, though incumbent Democrat Gerry Connolly had a slim lead.

Michael A. Memoli of the Tribune Washington Bureau contributed to this report.

richard.simon@latimes.com


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