Monday’s surprise move to redraw Virginia’s legislative districts caught Gov. Robert F. McDonnell off-guard and left him displeased with the Senate’s work, reports

Gov. Bob McDonnell said yesterday’s surprise redistricting effort from the members of his party in the state Senate was something he only learned about right before it happened.

Which indicates that it is sometimes possible to keep a secret in Richmond. Even from the governor:

While the amendment was clearly in the works for some time, as Republicans provided to the press a full bill and a map of the proposed new districts, Democrats — and the governor — were unaware of the plan until it happened.

“I certainly don’t think that’s a good way to do business,” McDonnell told reporters this morning after speaking to a business group in Richmond.

Probably not. And there are unsubstantiated rumors floating around Capitol Square that the Senate’s actions were just a way to force Democrats into some sort of deal on transportation. That’s quite a leap. In this case, the simplest explanation is probably the most correct: They saw an opportunity and took it.

But I have a few calls out now to see just what the thinking was on this bill. Interestingly enough, the early calls I made have resulted not in answers, but rather in people trying to distance themselves from the matter entirely.


Norman Leahy blogs at Bearing Drift. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.