Saying he is running for governor of Virginia to win, U.S. Labor Party candidate Alan Robert Ogden brought his campaign to Northern Virginia yesterday. He got a chilly reception.
Dressed in a three-piece gray pinstripe suit and carrying a supply of his party's newspaper, "New Solidarity," Ogden stationed himself outside the student center at George Mason University in Fairfax, asking for support in the Nov. 8 election.
"I'm Alan Ogden, Labor Party candidate for governor," he said to one student.
"I'm a Republican at heart," was the student's reply as she walked away.
Another remarked after Odgen's approach: "I don't really appreciate forceful propaganda.
"Have you heard about our program on nuclear energy development?" Ogden asked another student. But the student shrugged his shoulders and walked away.
Nuclear energy is a main issue for Ogden.
He says there is an "immediate necessity for developing nuclear energy" in the U.S. since other countries are pushing for such development. He is also firmly committed to the belief that the world is on the verge of a nuclear holcaust.
Ogden defends the Virginia Electric and Power Co., favoring completion of a nuclear power plant Vepco is building at Louisa, Va.
Many of the students he approached yesterday disagreed with his defense of the safety of nuclear energy something Ogden called "incredible."
The 31-year-old candidate said he has gained support from conservative Republicans and Democrats, "the rank and file of labor" and farmers throughout the state. "I'm running to win this election," he declared.
One person who does not share Ogden's confidence is Michael P. Leahy, a George Mason Univsersity student who is the Democratic candidate for the House of Delegates in Southern Fairfax County.
"It's really nice to meet someone who has less of a chance of being elected than I do," said Leahy after giving Ogden 25 cents for a copy of "New Solidarity." Leahy concedes that he himself has little chance of being elected.
Major state politicians fear that Ogden and his 50-member Virginia Labor Party may be able to capture enough votes to affect the outcome of the expected close race between Democrat Henry E. Howell and Republican John W. Dalton Ogden has gathered from 10.4 to 12.8 per cent of the vote in his three previous election attempts - two tries for Congress and one for the State Senate.
Ogden said he received $1,000 in small campaign contributions but people are afraid to contribute for fear of being harassed by the FBI, which conducted widespread surveillance of the Virginia part and its member for years.