t’s official. We’ve finally moved into our new building!
But it’s not just any building. A mid-nineteenth century four-story Greek Revival historic town house tucked among city sky scrapers in downtown Richmond, buttressed by a significant rear add-on with additional space, accented with a large and fully-enclosed courtyard and three walk-out balconies, all just a block and a half away from the state Capitol. And only by God’s unforeseen but abundantly clear leading, coupled with the faithful partnership of supporters like you, we are now the owners
This afternoon, in an extremely rare and unexpected twist in the abortion industry’s zealous efforts to strike down nearly all of Virginia’s abortion restrictions, Judge Henry E. Hudson issued a sudden 180-reversal from his devastating decision last week declaring that non-doctors can commit abortions in Virginia.
With virtually no control over what happens next, this is yet another moment for all pro-life Virginians to reflect on one unasailable reality: Elections have consequences. That being true, while we may have little control, we have the ear of the One who has all control. Please join me in praying for the outcome of this case to be fully argued on May 20th. So much is at stake for so many who need the laws' protection.
A few weeks ago, I told you about an attempt by a state agency to target and punish faith-based counselors who would simply help a minor work through struggles with unwanted sexual attractions or gender dysphoria. Now, there are several state licensing boards with clear ideological motives that are aiming to do the very same thing. This time, it’s the Board of Counseling, and they need to hear from you!
While many GOP House candidates are polling well, few have the numbers that elicited a "WOW" from NRO's Jim Geraghty. Of course, polls this early can mean anything and the pros will say SurveyUSA is not a top tier pollster on the lines of Mason-Dixon or Rasmussen Reports. But, SurveyUSA was the first to poll Virginia last summer (51 weeks ago, to be exact) and it had all three statewide races right from the beginning to the very end, including double digit leads when all the more "reputable" polls showed it closer. In fact, one political pro told me the SurveyUSA results were "embarrassing," but the only people embarrassed last November were the doubters and the Democrats.
The numbers are even more astounding considering a hard fought Republican primary, a Libertarian candidate and some TEA Party dissatisfaction with Senator Hurt. (SurveyUSA breaks down its research here.) It admits it has factored Republican turnout to be much greater than Democrat turnout (not surprising since when comparing the U.Va. student drop-of from 2008, where Perriello benefited from a large Barack Obama student turnout, to 2009). However, SurveyUSA says even if it factors in a 50-50 Republican-Democrat turnout, Hurt still wins by 11 points. At this point. (Which would allow the GOP to focus on the other three seats.) But, if the trend holds, it's a remarkable sign for House Republicans — and one down and 39 to go.
Former U.S. Representative Virgil Goode not only shocked the political world yesterday, he confused it as well, saying he joined the Constitution Party, but will remain a Republican. A new twist on political double speak?
I encourage you to take a gander at all that's here. It's one of our best News Stands ever, with lots of state news, including a fair interview with Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli from WSLS-TV, and the reporter Jay Warren's observations of the AG in his blog. In the "What is our country coming to?" category, check out Phil Klein in Commentary. Some students were sent home from school for wearing USA shirts on Cinco de Mayo. We also have columns from such stars as Michael Barone, who discusses the important elections in Britain; Larry Kudlow on the debt crisis (here and abroad); and Michele Malkin on terrorists gaining U.S. citizenship.
Former Charlottesville Daily Progress reporter Bob Gibson refers to much of what passes as fact in our world today as "designer information." There's no doubt that politicians, the media and groups on both sides of issues play fast and lose with the facts. Last night we witnessed some of that on the floor of the Virginia Senate surrounding debate over the abortion funding amendment. Some of the claims made were, to be polite, creative.
Which brings us to the current leader of the free world (yeah, I know, but stick with me here) and his own personal PR firm, the Mainstream Media. President Obama is clearly one who can craft a message out of just about anything and make it fit his agenda, and there are few in the MSM willing to call him out on it and risk being thrown out of the press pool. The White House is the Madison Avenue of "designer information."
Case in point was last week's announcement by the White House that same-sex partners could no longer be denied visitation rights at the nation's hospitals. Homosexual rights groups rejoiced at this monumental "civil rights" moment (never mind they already could do this). In fact, in Virginia, the General Assembly passed useless legislation a few years ago saying this very thing. No one objected because it wasn't necessary. Anyway, the media said the president had been emotionally touched by a story out of Florida where a lesbian had sued a hospital over not being able to visit her partner. The story was oft repeated, and has been for a while.
The most important piece of information to consider from our side of this story is that the charge nurse on duty the night Ms. Pond was in our care — and the person who made all visitation access decisions that evening — is herself a lesbian with a life partner. In addition, numerous members of the medical team working in our trauma unit are openly homosexual. We can assure you that Ms. Langbehn was not treated differently because of her sexual orientation.
Oops. But then again, don't count on too many Americans learning of this tiny little discrepancy between fact and messaging.
Annotations & ElucidationsThe Mostly All Virginia Edition
Today's News Stand is all Virginia, for the most part. Even The Weekly Standard'sMary Katherine Ham's feature on the use of the Internet by GOP campaigns has a lengthy portion devoted to the expertise in which Governor Bob McDonnell's campaign used new technology to find and target voters. We have a round-up of Tea Party Day across the commonwealth. Commentary also has a Virginia ledger today, with Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli's opinion piece making National Review Online.
Here's the get-you-ready-for-the-weekend version of the News Stand. The Times, the Times and the Times-Dispatch explore the strategies in the waning days of the Democrat gubernatorial primary: The Virginia Dems are going after each other real hard, but hard enough to create hard, stay-at-home feelings among the supporters of the eventual two losers?
At the same time, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell comes out for state commissioning of charter schools. Right now, only school districts can do it, which is why there only are four in the entire Commonwealth! Norm Leahy at Tertium Quids offers a look. We also bring you Michelle Malkin's take on the media's coverage of two recent murders and, in national news, one expert discusses why former Vice President Dick Cheney is wrong in supporting same-sex marriage.
Whadaya know? We lead off the news with two articles and a radio interview about TFF Action's General Assembly Report Card (click here to order, download or print). The WRVA interview marks the News Stand's first radio audio. The Charlottesville Daily Progress article is via the AP and is a little misleading when it says banning funding for embryonic stem cell research failed. It was not banned in a budget amendment, which is the vote recorded for the Report Card. But separate language, as part of another bill, did ban it. (To see more about the Report Card, click the following links for TFF Action's news release, statement and video.)
In national news, California's Marriage Amendment ("Prop. 8") is under attack while a study shows abstinence education does better than so-called "comprehensive sex education," contrary to the liberal spin. Medical professionals conscience protections remain under assault by those who claim to promote "choice" and David Limbaugh offers his insights on the importance of understanding the role of abortion semantics in the public debate (we had our own take yesterday).
Finally, check out an interesting cultural item from OneNewsNow.com: Christianity may have a role in American Idol voting.
We're glad to bring the News Stand back to you today. (Translation: It's a slow day at the GA.) But looky here — it seems we just can't stay out of the news. Two of our major initiatives lead the News Stand: Pro-life legislation, predictably killed in the "Committee of Death" Thursday, and the ongoing chaplain prayer controversy. That bill now will be heard Monday at 8:30 a.m. in the Senate Courts of Justice Committee, or so we're led to believe.
Abortion bills voted down in Senate committee (Lynchburg News & Advance)