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Goode Wins Nomination

ROCKY MOUNT – Virgil Goode was feeling rather tired on Monday morning.

The former Fifth District congressman had returned home late Sunday from Nashville and he and his wife, Lucy, were now on their way to pick up their beloved dogs.

It would be the first time those dogs had ever been picked up and brought home by a certified on the ballot Presidential candidate.

At the conclusion of its five-day convention, the Constitution Party selected Goode to be its presidential nominee, to take on President Obama and, apparently, Mitt Romney, the presumptive GOP nominee.

“No, not really,” Goode said when asked if, as a young member of the Virginia State Senate he'd ever envisioned himself running as a party's nominee for president of the United States.

Some might regard him as campaigning in the footsteps of Don Quixote, tilting at windmills.

“It's a long-shot,” he admitted of the odds on receiving his daily mail at the White House in January. “But we've got a chance.”

The main focus of the campaign over the next two months is meeting the varying requirements of different states to get on their presidential ballots in November. Every state has its own rules and the deadline for meeting those rules is August 1.

Louisiana has the easiest rules of all.

“You pay $500,” Goode said, “and you're on the ballot.”

In 2008, the Constitution Party's candidate was on the ballot of 36 states. Goode expects to be on the ballot in “at least 40 states.”

The party already has ballot access in 16 states.

He expects to visit Farmville within the next few weeks for signatures necessary to have his name placed on the Virginia presidential ballot.

How seriously will Goode's candidacy be viewed around the nation?

Goode is optimistic that as people take a look at the issues more seriously they will focus on what he, his vice-presidential running mate, Jim Clymer, of Pennsylvania, and the Constitution Party have to say. Clymer is the Constitution Party's state chairman in The Keystone State

He hopes the national media will provide at least some coverage, which will help, but Goode expects to lean heavily on reaching potential voters via the Internet.

The most crucial policy facing the country, Goode believes, is balancing the budget and he points out that the Republicans in Washington, D.C. haven't offered a balanced budget, either.

As Goode battles the political Goliaths from the Democratic and Republican Parties he will do so with a David-like slingshot. While President Obama and Romney raise millions, much from super PACS, Goode is limiting himself to no more than $200 per person and won't become a PAC man, eschewing any PAC money.

Looking ahead, Goode is hopeful of connecting with supporters of Ron Paul following the GOP national convention.

When Goode was appointed to the Constitution Party's National Executive Committee in 2010, then-party chairman Clymer described him as “a man of tremendous stature with a wealth of experience in the public arena, having served in both the Virginia legislature and the United States House of Representatives. An educated patriot and constitutionalist, he has been a stalwart advocate of traditional American values, national sovereignty and limited government. Virgil Goode's association with the Constitution Party is a major milestone for our rapidly growing party and it is symbolic of many Americans who are now ready to look outside the Democratic and Republican duopoly for viable political solutions to the big-government morass they have created.”

Goode served six terms in Congress, as a Democrat, then Independent, and finally as a Republican, after more than 20 years in the General Assembly.

Along with a balanced budget, ending illegal immigration and drastically reducing legal immigration are atop his presidential to-do list.

A to-do list that on Monday included retrieving his dogs from a family member who dog-sat while Goode was winning the nomination to run for president.

Now he's fetching ballot access and votes.