Daily Press

What Media Bias?

Brian Kirwin over at Bearing Drift found this nugget in a Daily Press editorial endorsing several candidates for the House of Delegates:

“We admire his willingness to get involved in the political process, but we cannot get behind his belief that facts and figures should take precedence over leadership and persuasion in implementing laws.”

If you’ve been wondering why the preposterous notion of a "war on women" has been trumpeted by the media, while the details (facts) of bloody equipment in abortion centers goes completely ignored, now you know why. The principle applies to a host of other issues, of course, and fits the modern political paradigm that emotional outbursts (what they call leadership and persuasion these days) takes precedence over truth (facts and figures) in everything from abortion to health care to tax policy.

I know this probably comes as no surprise, as we watch so many people make electoral decisions based on feelings and emotions instead of facts. And when the principles we believe in take more than 140 characters to explain, forget about it.

Of course, such a conclusion by the almighty editors at the Daily Press, when taken to its logical conclusion, can be used to explain away the worst leaders in human history because, after all, they were very persuasive, and didn't let little things like facts and figures get in the way.

Edd, Maime Locke on Line 1...

Yesterday, the Daily Press blog “The Shad Plank” reported that Democrat state Senator Maime Locke was upset when a group parked a truck outside her church and called her out for her pro-abortion voting record.  The blog post states:

She also questioned the groups motives.

"The interesting part is there were three trucks parked in the parking lot of a church adjacent to ours. That's clearly mixing religion and politics," Locke said.

The dreaded mixing of politics and religion...

Interestingly, a day later, the Free Lance Star has an article about a different group’s efforts in state Senator Edd Houck’s district.  Apparently a local pastor is upset at fliers being distributed in his community that call out Houck’s pro-abortion record.  The Free Lance Star adds,

As a result, [Rev. Lawrence] Davies invited Houck to speak at his church.

“I told him I felt like the people needed to know that he was not the ogre that this flier is projecting or showing him to be. They need  to see that he is human,” he said.

I’m sure Maime will be on the phone with Edd any minute now urging him not to mix religion and politics.

Policy Issue 3, Big Government: Follow The Money

This is the third in a series of five policy statements on issues that will come before the 2010 General Assembly. The second, regarding life, can be found here. Each statement covers one of The Family Foundation’s five areas of principle. The others will follow over the rest of the week.

Today marked the beginning of the 2010 General Assembly session. Twenty new members of the House of Delegates and two new members of the state Senate joined 118 incumbent legislators today to begin the new session. If one word can appropriately sum up the dominating focus of this year’s legislature it’s this:

$ Money $.

Not that money and the budget aren’t usually the dominate theme, but since the General Assembly is tasked with forming a budget covering the next two fiscal years, beginning July 1, and with spending at an all time high and revenues plummeting because of the economy, the pressure is on like no other time in recent memory. Governor-elect Bob McDonnell, who will take the oath of office Saturday, won his election by promising to not raise the tax burden on Virginia’s families and businesses. Some in the General Assembly are likely to fight for tax increases to cover the estimated $4 billion deficit in the current budget, plus projected revenue shortfalls for the next budget. Governor Kaine proposed an increase in the income tax to cover the "shortfall."

Truth be told, the problem they face is self-inflicted. By passing budgets and budget amendments in 2008 and 2009 that projected large revenue increases even as the economy was shrinking, and relying on one time windfalls from federal "stimulus" packages, the General Assembly and Governor Tim Kaine (Daily Press) made the bed in which they, and Governor-elect McDonnell, now lie.

Already, special interest groups and citizens have lined up at budget meetings pleading their case for their special needs to not be cut. Some claim that "the fat" has been trimmed so now we have to cut core services or raise taxes. Others live an illusion that fat alone will cover the deficits. The fact is, substantive changes have to be made to how the state allocates money for government education and social services programs.

The phrase "budget deficit" is a misnomer. In fact, the problem always had been a "spending surplus." Virginia government has plenty of money from the hardworking families of Virginia. What too many of our elected officials don’t have is the ability to control their spending habits.

The Family Foundation will monitor the budget talks all session and advocate proposals that will save taxpayers anything from small amounts of money to potentially billions of dollars. For example:

» Once and for all, we must stop taxpayer subsidies of the radical pro-abortion group Planned Parenthood (LifeNews.com). There is no reason this $1 billion organization should receive money from the taxpayers, especially in difficult economic times.

» The Family Foundation has asked Delegate Chris Peace (R-97, Mechanicsville) to submit legislation calling for a study to find out how much money would be saved by making Family Life Education, or sex-ed, an "opt-in" class instead of the current "opt-out."

» The most significant savings the taxpayers would see is by finally giving families the freedom to choose the type of education they want for their children through a tuition tax credit program. Not only would this save money, it would reduce class sizes, thus improving student-to-teacher ratios, increase per-pupil spending for students that stay in public schools, and improve the education outcomes for all Virginia’s school children.

» SOQ reform.

There are many who believe that we must continue to prop up state government by once again increasing the tax burden on families, even if these difficult times. The simple question for them is this: When does it stop? How much of our income is the government entitled to? Ten percent? Thirty? Fifty? All of it? Where do we draw the line?

We believe the line must be drawn here and now. Government must become more efficient and less intrusive. Freedom must be its ultimate purpose, not the redistribution of our wealth. If we are unable to stop this General Assembly from raising our tax burden now, we may never be able to again.

Virginia News Stand: October 7, 2009

Annotations & Elucidations  Dirty Deeds, Dems In Disarray

If you want state campaign news, scroll to National News. Of course, we have a comprehensive list of articles from Virginia-based papers, but as most anticipated, the national media has taken a great interest in our beloved commonwealth. So, see USA Today, Wall Street Journal, ABCNews.com and Politico.com for the national perspective. When you do, you will see what we and the state press corps has come to see: That even Democrats don't like Creigh Deeds' gubernatorial campaign, from the White House down to Governor Kaine and other liberal electeds at all levels and regions of Virginia. (Deeds isn't cozy with Governor Kaine, now, anyway, so one wonders if his comments aren't a tit-for-tat.)

All this internal Democrat commotion brings us to a time of reminiscence, that first Deeds bumper sticker. What did it say? "Not Words. Deeds"? Or something to that effect. Yes, we have seen his deeds — not just in his big spending, anti-marriage and pro-abortion policies and flip-flops, but also in his terribly negative campaign. So bad, the inevitable has happened — an AC/DC knock-off video. (See it here.) One note of interest on another subject: According to The Daily Press, there are 100,000 fewer voters on Virginia's books this year than last. Hmmm. Why do you think that happened?

News:

Kaine says it's time for Deeds to make case to voters (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Moran Advises Deeds: Give People a Reason to Vote for You (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

McCain, Holtz to rally for McDonnell (Washington Times)

McDonnell talks business during Charlottesville stop (Charlottesville Daily Progress)

BET co-founder apologizes after mocking Deeds' stammer (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Words about Deeds stir a new controversy (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Deeds uses video to swipe at McDonnell (Roanoke Times)

BET co-founder apologizes for mocking Deeds (Washington Times)

State will have fewer voters this November (The Daily Press)

Road Plans Differ in Details, Not Chances (Washington Post)

Term Limits Proposed (Harrisonburg Daily News-Record)

Bouchard, Stolle in a rematch for 83rd House District (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Bell, Curren Talk Jobs, Spending (Harrisonburg Daily News-Record)

Valentine, Garrett debate voting records (Lynchburg News & Advance)

Longtime incumbent faces familiar foes in 82nd District (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

State senator wants GOP nod for 5th District; Hurt aims to unseat Perriello (Charlottesville Daily Progress)

National News:

White House Steps Back in Virginia Race (Wall Street Journal Online)

Deeds points finger at Washington (Politico.com)

Virginia race seen as referendum on Obama (USA Today)

National Parties Battle in VA and NJ to Set Stage for 2010 (ABCNews.com)

High Court Takes Up Case of Cross on Public Land (FoxNews.com)

Did Forbes Magazine, CNBC Do Their Homework In Naming Virginia Best State For Business?

We're as thrilled as the next guy that Virginia continues to rack up victories in prestigious national rankings for business and management. The PR can't hurt, especially in these times. Governor Tim Kaine certainly couldn't contain his enthusiasm this morning on his monthly call-in show on Richmond radio station WRVA when he announced Forbes again named Virginia the best state in the nation in for business. (Never mind the fact that, by Forbes' own admission, Georgia, which moved from 15th to fifth, is the real story this year). This adds to the Old Dominion's CNBC Number 1 ranking, announced last month.   Virginia has won so many "Best State For Business" and "Best Managed State" awards over the last 10 years (all without major league sports franchises and new stadiums, by the way) that one has to wonder how much of it is earned and how much is based on reputation. It makes one question whether CNBC and Forbes have even heard of VITA and Northrop Grumman (see Daily Press). How can either one claim the current administration has managed the state well with a massive agency/private sector partnership in meltdown (see Charlottesville Daily Progress)? What about the constantly missed budget revenue forecasts despite repeated warnings from outside sources and the General Assembly? Not to mention four years without a transportation plan. We don't hear the governor championing those aspects of his government.

Virginia News Stand: July 7, 2009

Leading the news today is the LG campaign as Jody Wagner attempts to counter the obvious — that she underestimated state tax revenue when times were good (laying the pretense for Virginia's largest tax increase) and overestimated them when times were bad, necessitating budget cuts. She's not having much luck so far. Thus, as The Daily Press reports, the commonwealth prepares for yet another round of budget cuts.

A lot of the news today is national: The Alliance Defense Fund is engaged in legal battle with the FDA over the "morning after pill," state budgets have gaping holes (wasn't the "stimulus" supposed to solve that?), D.C.'s recognition of out of state homosexual-marriage now is in effect, the Obama's remain churchless months after leaving Jerry Wright's flock, and there's another push for a personhood amendment in Colorado.

We have a number of commentaries and some analysis today, as well. David Limbaugh looks at the hypocrisy of liberals who thought George W. Bush was "seizing" power, but remain silent on the absolute power grabs and usurpations of freedom by Barack Obama. Meanwhile, Matt Barber notes that Mr. Obama's massive fiscal deficit pales to his moral clarity deficit. We also have an AFA blog post about the censoring of a seventh-grader's pro-life t-shirt. Finally, in analysis, Cliff Kincaid explores the philosophical relationship between the president and Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez, while Rebecca Grace and Elizabeth Delaney (of the Norfolk Examiner, which makes its News Stand debut) each debunk a myth — on homosexuality and "global warming," respectively.

News:

Bolling, Wagner spar on finances (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

State agencies told to prepare for more cuts (Daily Press)

Hmmm. So You Say That How? (Washington Post)

Roanoke political parties ponder futures (Roanoke Times)

National News:

Christian legal group battles FDA over 'morning after pill'  (OneNewsNow.com)

States Straining To Repair Budgets (Washington Post)

Married gays see progress in D.C. (Washington Times)

'Gay marriage' law takes effect in nation's capital (AP/OneNewsNow.com)

Obama's still church homeless halfway through 2009 (AP/OneNewsNow.com)

'Personhood' pushers at it again in Colorado (OneNewsNow.com)

Commentary:

King Barack? (David Limbaugh/GOPUSA.com)

Obama's moral clarity deficit (Matt Barber/OneNewsNow.com)

Seventh-Grader's Pro-Life T-Shirt Censored in California (American Family Association Blog)

Analysis:

Leading 'Progressive' Describes Obama-Chavez Axis (Cliff Kincaid/GOPUSA.com)

Countering the lie of same-sex attractions (Rebecca Grace/OneNewsNow.com)

One world controversy (Norfolk Examiner)

Yesterday's News

There was barely enough time yesterday to post Thursday's News Stand, so I omitted the commentary. However, a few of the articles merit mention and further comment. Foremost was the Richmond Times-Dispatch article that quoted our president, Victoria Cobb, about the incredibly important ruling from the U.S. 4th  Circuit Court of Appeals that upheld Virginia's law banning partial birth infanticide. The Washington Post and Daily Press also reported on this most significant judicial decision.

The court's 6-5 vote puts into focus the maxim that elections matter. The 4th Circuit once was the country's most reliably conservative (i.e., constitutionally sound) court. But a retirement or two, a feel good appointment of liberal Judge Roger Gregory by President George W. Bush in the first days of his presidency (when he was all about "reaching out") — and enthusiastically supported by then-Senator George Allen — followed by his inability to overcome a liberal Senate blockade of subsequent appointments, has made for a closely divided court. Think President Obama will nominate a conservative to this court? Not a chance — and he will have plenty of them. The court has a few vacancies.

The one confirmation to the 4th Circuit won by President Bush was that of Judge Steven Agee. A former delegate and Virginia Supreme Court Justice, who once ran for the Republican nomination for attorney general as a "moderate," he was a compromise choice of Democrat Senator Jim Webb and President Bush after his original choices were shot down by the new Democrat majority in 2007. Thankfully, Judge Agee voted in the majority.

Here's the breakdown of the vote (click here for the opinions):

Majority: Judge Niemeyer, who wrote the opinion, in which Chief Judge Williams and Judges Wilkinson, Shedd, Duncan, and Agee joined. Judge Wilkinson wrote a separate concurring opinion (see exerpt here).

Minority: Judge Michael, who wrote the dissent, in which Judges Motz, Traxler, King, and Gregory joined.

In other news, a political shocker: Delegate Kristin Amundson (D-44, Fairfax) surprised everyone with a post-re-nomination withdrawal. Even though the 44th usually goes blue, Republican Jay McConnville is proving to be a solid candidate. Furthermore, a lefty independent is in the mix. With its success in recent Northern Virginia special elections, could this be a surprise GOP pickup?

Finally, the Washington Post, of all papers, has followed up on Republican complaints about Governor Tim Kaine's lack of travel and expenses transparency while working his second job as Democrat National Committee Chairman. While he initially said he would only perform those duties on nights and weekends, the Post uncovered that seven of nine days he has travelled, and reported, are weekdays. The governor also previously said anyone who wants to know where he's been only has to ask. People have, through FOIA requests, and no answers are forthcoming. Also, he now says the DNC will pick up the costs of his security detail. But why were we taxpayers ever paying for these political trips?

Virginia News Stand: March 6, 2009

The Communications Department says he's ill today, so I've cobbled together a couple of interesting articles — or at least an interesting topic: internal strife within the Virginia GOP. Didn't say it was news, because RPV fratricide certainly is nothing new. Still, interesting, as always. Also, there's a link to an interview with Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell via podcast at Bearing Drift. Worth the listen (at least read the summary). Something else of interest that is news concerning the gubernatorial campaign: For as much as liberal groups and Democrat candidates have been, and are, ahead of conservatives and Republicans in the adaptation of new media and technology to campaign effect, Bob McDonnell, according to the March issue of Richmond Magazine, is leading all three Dems in a Facebook supporters landslide with nearly 2,100 as of a few minutes ago (at RM's publication it was 1,700). Sorry, no Web links provided by RM, but we hope to have a scan next week.

News:

Va. GOP chief asked to leave (Washington Times)

Major Va. donor named new state GOP finance chief (Daily Press)

Podcast:

VPOD #52: Bob McDonnell, GOP gubernatorial candidate (Bearingdrift.com)

Polls:

For more substantive polling information than Facebook, there's a recent Rasmussen poll that shows McDonnell leading all three Democrats by significant margins, increasing his December lead over his nearest rival, Terry McAuliffe, who, apparently, has not recovered from liberal blog attacks prompted by not knowing who we are!

Election 2009: Virginia Governor Election — GOP's McDonnell Has Edge Over All Democrats In Virginia Governor's Race (Rasmussen Reports)

McDonnell takes early lead in poll (Pilot On Politics blog) 

Coincidentally, in New Jersey, the Republican gubernatorial candidate leads the incumbent, Democrat Machine Boss Governor Jon Corzine, by nine points, with Corzine's approval rating less than 40 percent.

Fairleigh Dickinson poll finds Corzine trailing Christie by 9 points (Newark Star-Ledger)

Virginia News Stand: January 15, 2009

The News Stand, ironically, will be sporadic during the G.A. session. The Communications Department is really stretched since it also doubles as the Policy Department and often doesn't get to drill for the state's media coverage each day. Even when it does, the blogging department will be just as busy working the halls of the GAB and capitol. But we'll do our best. Here's today's news: Kaine lays out plans to boost economy (Richmond Times-Dispatch

Economic Recovery A Priority For Kaine (Washington Post

Education, health services in crosshairs of Kaine budget (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot

Kaine: Look to future for economy (Daily Press

Budget crunch gets top billing (Daily Press

Kaine gives state of the commonwealth address (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Valley Lawmakers See Good And Not So Good In Kaine's Speech  (Harrisonburg Daily News-Record

Newman agrees with Kaine on energy proposals (Lynchburg News & Advance

Local legislators see difficult days ahead (Winchester Star)

Herring Blocked From House Seat After 16-Vote Victory (Washington Post

Plum Elected House Democratic Caucus Leader (Washington Post)

Virginia News Stand: January 6, 2009

Today, it's all news. There are several stories regarding Governor Kaine's reversal on becoming chairman of the Democrat National Committee. There are also two elections today for vacated House of Delegate seats (Richmond and Virginia Beach).

Prayer at Roanoke City Council: Once again, in Jesus' name  (Roanoke Times)

10 years of state spending  (Richmond Times-Dispatch

Kaine refused DNC offer several times (Richmond Times-Dispatch

Kaine: Priority is still being Virginia governor (Fredericksburg Free Lance- Star)

Legislators concerned about Kaine's dual role (Winchester Star)

Kaine Says Top Priority This Year Is Va. Budget (Washington Post)

DNC post for Kaine raises issue of shortfall (Washington Times)

Moran emphasizes Northern Virginia roots (Richmond Times Dispatch)

More budget cuts planned for state transportation projects (Daily Press)

Elections held for 2 Va delegate seats (Daily Press)

Virginia News Stand: December 5, 2008

Here's a lot to chew over the weekend. Click on the editorial comics, as well, which are particularly incisive.  News: 

Video captures abortion coaching (Washington Times

Va. Republicans gather today at The Homestead (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Va. GOP Leader's Tenure at Crossroad (Washington Post)

GOP gathers to assess challenges, begin new race (Daily Press)

K-12 cuts, more layoffs ahead (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Virginia one of 13 states facing $1 billion deficit next year (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot

Virginia state senator will seek to rein in tax breaks (Washington Examiner)

Kaine rules out Cabinet position (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Kaine: Environment, energy are priorities (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Moss rejoins Democrats, to run again for Norfolk treasurer (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot

DC same-sex marriage activists regroup (Washington Times

Editorial Comics:

"Government Stinks" (William Warren, GetLiberty.org)

"Capitol Visitor Center" (Nate Beeler, Washington Examiner)

Virginia News Stand: December 2, 2008

The TFF communications department finally put in a full day at the office today, and look what it came up with: Lots to look over and read. The draught is over. Enjoy our first News Stand of December.  News:

Couples turn to ceremonies in face of gay marriage ban (We're mentioned in this one.) (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Planned Parenthood offers gift vouchers (Washington Times)

Survey Finds Growing Deceit Among Teens (Washington Post)

Don't cut school money, Chesapeake board pleads (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot

Democrats Make Most Of Shifts in Va. Electorate (Washington Post)

Field not set, but let governor fundraising begin! (Daily Press)

Gubernatorial candidate Moran solicits local support (Winchester Star)

Bolling Racks Up Support (Washington Post

Knight wins GOP nod for vacant House of Delegates seat (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)   

Democrats to vote soon on Jones' successor (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Ken Alexander gets some opposition (Bearing Drift)

Editorial Comic:

"Capitol South" (William Warren, GetLiberty.org

Quote Of The Day

In a Daily Press article yesterday (click here) about the commonwealth's deteriorating budget and financial situation, Delegate Phil Hamilton (R-93, Newport News), chairman of the House Committee on Health, Welfare and Institutions, as well as vice chairman of the Appropriations Committee provided a classic one-liner:

"I hope that we actually have an open, honest and candid discussion about the expenditures we make. There are a lot of sacred cows in the budget. In some cases, the farmers have left, and the cows are still doing well."

Here's hoping for a few less cows. Norm Leahy at Tertium Quids has some thoughts as to which and whose cows should get gored (click here). Or at least diet some. After all, isn't that what we humans have to do when our budgets are tight?