Must-Win Swing Districts
10.11.12 10:43 PM ET
Final Factor: Loudoun County - Virginia's Bellwether Battleground
This election will be decided by swing voters in swing districts of swing states. The second installment of OutFront's election series The Final Factors took me to the key swing district of Virgina - Loudoun County. This is the heart of the new northern Virginia - fast growing, increasingly diverse and wealthy after a decade of defense spending. It voted for President Obama by 11,500 votes in 2008 - making him the first Democrat to win the Old Dominion State since LBJ. Unemployment is now 4% - half the national average. But the swing voters here are feeling the heat from the looming automatic defense cuts set to kick in next year.
"This is going to be as serious a problem to our north Virginia region as the fallout of the car industry was to Detroit," Hammler says. "It will be small businesses like ours that are going to be hit the most. Two million jobs will be lost, half of which will be from small companies. We'll be hit earliest and hardest."
Hammler blames sequestration on congressional division and dysfunction: "It's as if there are certain factions within the parties who are setting things up where because of the pressure of the next primary, because of the pressure of the election, there's no incentive for compromise and collaboration to find meaningful solutions to complex problems."