I live in Virginia—which, in 1610, became the first permanent English settlement. I’m not a native, but then neither was Captain John Smith, founder of Jamestown (who was such a troublemaker that almost everyone he dealt with had sufficient grounds and every intention of executing him).
Our native sons and daughters are a virtual “Who’s Who of American History.” Native Virginians include Pocahontas, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe, Clara Barton, Robert E. Lee, Dred Scott, Nat Turner, and Booker T. Washington.
General of the Army Douglas MacArthur wasn’t born in Virginia, but he liked it here, so the old Norfolk City Hall was remodeled and is now his tomb and museum, with the upscale MacArthur Mall located nearby.
Virginia is dripping with history, it was here that Patrick Henry exclaimed, “Give me liberty or give me death!” Virginian Richard Henry Lee proposed that the “United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States.” Virginian Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration of Independence, and neighbor James Madison became known as the “Father of the US Constitution.”
British lord and Lieutenant General Charles Cornwallis surrendered to General Washington at Yorktown, VA—the last major land battle of the American Revolution. Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, VA, ending the American Civil War (although some still refuse to accept that fact).
Of course, having so much history means that politicians in Virginia have had time to figure out how to, well, do what it is that politicians do. Virginian John Tyler, tenth President of the United States of America was declared a traitor and an enemy of the state. Virginia’s current governor is being investigated by the Justice Department for campaign fund irregularities; our previous governor is appealing his conviction for influence peddling.
States are very competitive; Illinois is definitely a contender in the Governors Gone Wild contest, even though they impeached Rod Blagojevich before he was convicted. Louisiana’s Edwin Edwards had some good moves, but couldn’t hold a candle to his state’s colorful and outrageously powerful Huey P. Long.
For some odd reason I feel compelled to publicly announce that I will not run, nor will I accept any party’s nomination for any elected position, anywhere, at any time, under any circumstance.
 As William Henry Harrison’s vice president, when Harrison died, Tyler—referred to as “His Accidency,” became the first to hold the office of president without being elected to it. When the South seceded from the Union, Tyler remained loyal to Virginia and served in the Confederate Congress. At his funeral in Richmond in 1862, his casket was not draped with the Stars and Stripes, but with the Confederate flag—the only American president buried under a foreign flag.