Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star

Herman Cain Rocks Richmond!

I hope you were among the 1,100+ people who packed the Greater Richmond Convention Center ballroom on Saturday night to hear from Herman Cain.* If not, you missed what many people are calling the "best Gala ever." Herman Cain, as expected, delivered a message that brought the crowd to its feet several times. Mr. Cain repeatedly referenced the 2011 Gala theme “Our Time Is Now” in calling the attendees to stay engaged in the process of choosing our nation’s leaders. Because the future of our country is at stake, he exhorted the crowd to stay informed, involved and inspired. Never one to shy from speaking his mind, he told the crowd that he was a mathematics major in college and, "never took a course in political correctness and I’m never going to!"

He also shared in depth on his personal journey, including how his faith got him through his bout with Stage IV colon cancer, adding a very personal element to his message that proved inspiring to all.

After an enjoyable time visiting with old friends and meeting new ones during dinner, the audience heard an inspiring report from Family Foundation President, Victoria Cobb, on the year's impressive legislative victories. She also reminded everyone of the importance of next month's elections, when Virginians have the chance to elect a conservative majority in the Virginia Senate and break the stranglehold on that body in which liberals have enjoyed for far too long.

After the event concluded guests had the opportunity to meet Mr. Cain and have him sign copies of his new book.

If you appreciate the work of The Family Foundation, and want to make a special gift in support of the Gala, you can do so by clicking here and choosing the option that says, “I am unable to attend, but would like to make a special gift. . . .” and then filling out the appropriate payment information.

Thank you for your support of the Gala and The Family Foundation as a whole. We hope you can join us for next year’s Gala . . . so you can see just what we do to top this one!

Visit our Flickr page to see a few photos from the event by clicking on the image or caption below:

Bringing down the house! Herman Cain brought 1,100 people at the Greater Richmond Convention Center to their feet several times with an exciting, motivational speech.

You can see news coverage of the event at the following links, including from three national media and two video reports:

Presidential candidate Cain emphasizes economy as a priority (WTVR/CBS6.com video)

Herman Cain rallies Republicans in Richmond (WWBT/NBC12.com video)

Cain embraces "American black conservative" label (CBSNews.com)

Cain offers rousing speech at Family Foundation gala (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Cain says dream is 'under attack' (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Cain rallies social conservatives at Va. gala (AP/blueridgenow.com)

GOP presidential candidate Cain pitches plan in Richmond (The Daily Press)

Cain Embraces 'American Black Conservative' Label in Richmond (National Journal)

 

* DISCLAIMER: Mr. Cain’s appearance was in his personal capacity, not as a candidate, and does not imply any endorsement by The Family Foundation.

Paid for by The Family Foundation Action.

Primary Thoughts

Now that the dust has settled — not from the earthquake (another aftershock of 4.5 magnitude at 1:00 a.m. with possibly more in the offing) — but from Virginia's General Assembly primary season, some thoughts. First, although my prediction on Monday concerned the general election, it already has taken an embryonic form. It was an exceptional night for conservatives in numerous Republican Senate primaries, yet barely a whisper emanated from the mainstream media about this revolution. Throw in a previously held nomination contest in Hampton Roads as well as some conservatives who were unopposed. it's almost a lock that whether the GOP wins the Senate or not, its caucus, already trending to the right, may become nearly aligned with its House counterparts. But not all media are ignoring this trend or letting it slip them by. John Gizzi at Human Events recognizes it and is one of the few national columnists to trumpet the results.

If the GOP does win control of the Virginia Senate, not only will the caucus have a decidedly different philosophical bent from its past leaders, the likes of Ben Loyola, Jeff Frederick, Dick Black, Bill Carrico and Tom Garrett, among others, joining Mark Obenshain, Steve Martin, Jill Vogel and company, will create a dynamic not ever seen in Virginia history. The possibilities should jump start all ends of the conservative coalition, from social conservatives to limited government advocates, into a turbocharged grassroots effort this fall for an unprecedented opportunity — delivering both chambers of the General Assembly into conservative stewardship.

As for specific highlights: Turnout wasn't great, and there was the earthquake to deal with, but 10 percent turnout was not unexpected. What was shockingly appalling was the 2.5 percent turnout in the Southwestern 21st district. Delegate Dave Nutter took a late gamble by forsaking his safe House seat very late in the process (Roanoke Times), after denying he was interested, and jumped into the Senate race, defeating Tea Party backed Tripp Godsey. He will have to not only gain the Tea Party's enthusiastic backing, but energize a slew of activists to work hard for him to defeat entrenched liberal incumbent John Edwards. In what is still a blue district, Delegate Nutter now has even more work cut out for him.

Speaking of blue districts, now that he's won the 30th district Democrat primary, say hello to Senator Adam Ebbin. More reason than ever to turn the Senate conservative: As left as there is this side of Europe, Mr. Ebbin in the Senate majority will be able to advance every left-wing cause he advocated for in the House, but which met merciful deaths there.

In the hotly contested, newly drawn very red 22nd Senate district, where five Republicans went at it, Louisa County Commonwealth's Attorney Tom Garrett won. Some have asked whether it's a coincidence or irony that the 22nd was the epicenter of Tuesday's earthquake, as hard fought as it was. Bryan Rhode proved good looks, youth and a lot of money can't overcome among GOP voters a perceived slight to then-Attorney General Candidate Ken Cuccinelli (Lynchburg News & Advance).

Meanwhile, the Republican Party of Virginia establishment got crushed by the former state party chairman it ousted. Despite former U.S. Senator George Allen and other establishment Republicans endorsing opponent Tito Munoz, Jeff Frederick won the 36th district easily (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star). Lesson for the party royalty: Opposing Jeff Frederick typically leads to his success. He is the supremo at channeling establishment opposition into intense grassroots insurgencies that make said opposition look clueless.

Another loser — Bearing Drift. Perhaps the most influential and most read Virginia conservative political blog, and very dear friends, its endorsed candidates in the four highest profile and contested primaries took a beating — five if you consider the fact that it endorsed Rhode and Mark Peake in the 22nd, hedging its bets. The winner: Social and grassroots conservatives. In many races, all candidates had certified conservative bona fides and other factors came into play, notably, experience and electability. The latter taking in many considerations, such as residence and community involvement and name identification in the most populous portions of the district, for example.

What about the Tea Party? A surprise during the filing period was that the expected shoe did not drop on many GOP incumbents. Only one, caucus leader Tommy Norment of the 3rd district, received a challenge. Instead, Tea Party backed candidates (really, the old-line movement/grassroots conservatives) went another route, gunning instead for newly redistricted and open seats. By and large, they were successful.

Is It Howell Or Rorschach?

One of the most unsightly of all the sausage making that is the legislative process is redistricting. Every 10 years, all 140 General Assembly districts, as well as Virginia's Congressional districts, must be redrawn to reflect population shifts as accounted for in the census. The districts can get pretty contorted, to say the least, with compactness and communities of interest giving way to snake-like shapes that slither from one end of the state to another (not that Virginia is an exception, either). Complicating matters is that whatever the General Assembly and governor agree to must be approved by the Justice Department because Virginia falls under the Voting Rights Act. But there are several rare dynamics at play this year. For one, it's the first time since Reconstruction that opposite parties control the two chambers during a redistricting year. As each chamber has prerogative over its districts, traditionally they don't interfere with each other's plan. However, with Governor Bob McDonnell as a GOP backstop to Senate Democrat mischief, Senate Dems laid down the law: Instead of two bills this year, anything coming from the House would be attached to the Senate's bill as a way of safeguarding its new districts from the governor's veto or amendments. If not, Senate Dems promised stalemate on the House plan. Interestingly, in this interview (read transcript) on The Kojo Nnamdi Show on WAMU-FM in March, Majority Leader Dick Saslaw (D-35, Springfield) was asked what the governor's role was in redistricting and he replied, "sign or amend" the bill. No mention of the veto option.

Here's more from the senator that day (hear audio), starting partisan, then trying to soften:

Well, if I lose a few seats as a result of redistricting, and I'm in the majority, I'm not doing a very good job. ... And I would simply say, well, you know, our goal is to make the Democratic districts, particularly the marginal ones, a little bit better than they are now. I'm not greedy. I'm not trying to put all the Republicans out of business by any stretch. They didn't do that to us 10 years ago. And we're not gonna do that to them.

So much for that. Governor McDonnell vetoed the bill sent to him last week anyway, primarily because of the dysfunctional and obscenely drawn Senate districts that drew fire from groups as varied as Prince William County to the NAACP (see Jenifer Buske at the Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog). While the House plan passed with all but 10 Democrat votes, the Senate plan — which could add up to three Democrat seats per the Richmond Times-Dispatch — was divided on party lines, 22-18. No wonder. None of this was a surprise.

More dynamics: While there is time to settle the Congressional districts because those elections are not until next year, all 140 General Assembly seats are up this year. Already, primaries have been pushed back to August to accommodate the readjusted districts. Candidates filing to run still don't know where they are running. Even if the parties and governor come to an agreement, there's this: This is the first redistricting since the Voting Rights Act with a Democrat president. Who knows what changes his Justice Department might demand. If all of this can't be wrapped up by a time certain, the entire process for both chambers gets transferred to judges.

But today there is hope. After he bragged that he wouldn't change "a dot or a comma," declared with bravado he wouldn't "surrender" and dared the governor to issue a second veto (Ros Helderman at the Post) for fear of sending it to the unelected judiciary, Senator Saslaw backed down. Now, Senators Janet Howell (D-32, Fairfax) and Jill Vogel (R-27, Winchester) are leading a bipartisan working group to come up with a new plan (the Post). But is it false hope? Senator Howell echoed Senator Saslaw's original sentiments: "We won’t negotiate away our majority." But then Senator Saslaw told the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star, "There are some of us who are going to try to . . . get things worked out in an amicable fashion. We're determined to try to make the process work right." The whiplash changes in attitude are enough to require psychological testing. More on that in a second.

Senator Howell needs to understand that she doesn't determine the majority. If she did, there would be no need for elections. Voters determine majorities. One wonders what she and Senator Saslaw fear. Only three years ago, liberals heralded Virginia as blue. The existing Senate districts were good enough to flip a one-time 24-16 GOP majority to 22-18 Democrat. If Senate Democrats are so confident in their ideas and performance the last four years as the majority, what's with the gerrymandering that has split some localities into as many as eight districts?

Grossed out yet by the sausage making? Then you may or may not want to take this little test based on Senator Howell's vetoed plan. The districts' shapes are so contorted one might think they are ink blots on a Rorschach test. Click here to take the Is It Howell Or Rorschach? test. Disclaimer: Score does not correlate to actual state of mental health, but may indicate the insecurity of some Senate Democrats.

Eerily Ironic Anniversaries: ObamaCare And Patrick Henry's "Liberty Or Death" Speech

Today is the one year anniversary of ObamaCare becoming law. You can't escape it. The Mainstream Media's celebrations are more ecstatic than those provoked by a March Madness last second game-winning shot. More significantly, and what really should be celebrated, is today's anniversary of Patrick Henry's "Liberty or Death" speech in 1775, which lit the torch for freedom from Great Britain in the colonies. It was a speech that resonated thousands of miles to inspire liberty in an era when paper tacked on a tree was considered mass communication; it similarly has transcended throughout time to freedom loving people on guard against the advance of the Leviathan. The spirit today remains willing. But is the body politic?

When he filed his lawsuit against ObamaCare last year, also on this very date, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli noted the appropriateness of defending liberty on the same day when — at a courthouse about a mile from St. John's Church where — Mr. Henry inspired Virginia and a fledgling country. He made that point again today in the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star. But it is eerily ironic that a seminal event for the defense of freedom shares the anniversary day of the largest government grab of liberty in the history of the Republic.

So as to give you a flavor of Mr. Henry's speech on this great anniversary, and to pick up the slack of the contemporary culture and education establishment, here are two videos. The first is a video tour of historic St. John's Church in Richmond, via C-SPAN (click here for more about the church and other Virginia historic sites). The second is a partial reenactment of the speech, which is performed weekly during the summer and on special occasions at the church.

America given rise to . . . in a church.

A call to defend liberty that resonated throughout the land then and which has transcended time now.

Virginia News Stand: April 30, 2010

Annotations & Elucidations Close Of Business, April

It's almost like it's a holiday weekend — there's not much going on. Maybe it's a collective political sigh. After all, it's been an eventful week. So, today brings us more reflection on all of the good news on the cultural front as the media still can't get enough of it. Leading the News, again, is coverage of Governor Bob McDonnell's reversal of the Kaine administration's gag order on Virginia State Police chaplains not to pray according to their faith tradition. We're mentioned in both articles linked below.

News

*McDonnell reverses chaplain prayer policy (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star

*McDonnell lifts ban on State Police troopers referring to Jesus in public prayers (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

VCU reaffirms nondiscrimination policy (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

National News

Hawaii Lawmakers OK Civil Unions, Send Bill to Gov (AP/FoxNews.com)

Lawsuits target AZ law amid calls for boycotts (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Denver school district bans work travel to Arizona (AP/GOPUSA.com)   

Congress sets Puerto Rico statehood effort in motion (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Crist's defection could be gift to Democrats (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Feds open criminal probe of Goldman (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Palin wades into Minn. governor's race (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Okla. lawmakers want tougher immigration law (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Commentary

Barack Obama, America's Selective Salary Policeman (Michelle Malkin/GOPUSA.com)

Strikingly Unpresidential (David Limbaugh/GOPUSA.com)

First, He Was a Community Organizer (Frank Salvato/GOPUSA.com)

Will 'Independent Day' Work? (Matt Towery/GOPUSA.com)

Superheroes and Slashers (Brent Bozell/GOPUSA.com)

Virginia News Stand: April 22, 2010

Annotations & Elucidations The Landmark Edition

A short edition today, which gives you no excuse for not reading every article. Leading the news is the landmark pro-life budget amendment passed last night by both chambers of the General Assembly. We're quoted and mentioned prominently in the lead link below. This may only be the start. Nationally, states are moving toward using a provision in the government health care takeover law that allows them to opt out of paying for abortion in health care. Ashley Horne of CitizenLink.org has an in-depth analysis of the hows and whys of federal government funding of abortion in this new law, despite the so-called prohibitive language in the legislation and President Obama's executive order supposedly prohibiting it. Speaking of executive orders, Peter Sprigg of FRCBlog explains the impact of the president's order allowing "same-sex partners" hospital visitation rights and such.  

While most of the ink is about yesterday's "Veto Session," the Richmond Times-Dispatch highlights yesterday's "Virginia Annual Political Rite of Spring," The Shad Planking in Wakefield. Former governor and senator George Allen was the keynote speaker and about 1,200 attended, less the 138 (two House seats are vacant) from the General Assembly. You'd think they could schedule it on a day when Virginia's princes and princesses could attend. On the other hand . . . maybe that's the point?

News

*Va. legislature votes to restrict abortion funding (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

McDonnell bid to restrict abortion funding upheld (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Virginia legislature restricts abortion funding (Washington Post)

McDonnell cuts for broadcasting, at-risk children rebuffed (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

House rejects at-risk youth cuts, others by gov (The Daily Press)

Session finalizes budget matters (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

General Assembly veto session a mixed bag (Roanoke Times)

Former McDonnell brother-in-law addresses gay-rights rally (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Allen and about 1,200 turn out for Shad Planking (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Rep. Scott questions police procedures after hotel visit (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

National News

States Opt Out of Paying for Abortion in Health Care (CitizenLink.org)

Analysis

Hospital Visit Horrors? Here’s the Rest of the Story (Peter Sprigg/FRCBlog.com)

How Exactly Will the Government Fund Abortion Under the New Health Care Law? (Ashley Horne/CitizenLink.org)

Virginia News Stand: April 15, 2010

Annotations & Elucidations The Nuts And Bolts, Tax Day, TEA Party Version

After yesterday's very meaty edition of the News Stand, we've compiled a very basic version today — can't always keep that pace up, you know. Plus, there's other stuff to do. (What good conservative blogger wouldn't be getting ready for the TEA Party tonight?) Still, we have a good variety of reading for you today, especially of state news, of which we play a big part (the first three links).

Something else of interest: The Virginia Supreme Court heard arguments earlier this week on a property dispute between the (liberal) Episcopal Diocese of Virginia and nine more traditional (or orthodox) parishes that broke away and kept their property when the Episcopals appointed an openly homosexual bishop in New Hampshire a few years ago. The diocese wants the land back. At contention is an 1867 Virginia law meant to referee such disputes. 

Nationally, the polls show liberal leaders falling faster than American prestige around the world, and — lo and behold! — TEA Party members are wealthier and better educated than most and not racist! Golly Gee! (This is only news to mainstream media types, but fun to cite.)

Have fun paying your taxes (those who do) and attend a TEA Party!

News

*McDonnell proposes adding to Va. budget to attract commerce (Washington Post)

*Pro-choice plate avoids McDonnell veto pen (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

*Governor McDonnell Targets Abortion Funding (Video 2:16) (CBS6/WTVR.com)

McDonnell makes no vetoes to legislation (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Going fast more costly (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

McDonnell amends 122 bills (Roanoke Times)

19 Baptist pastors criticize McDonnell (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Va. Episcopal hierarchy fights to keep church property (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Analysis

Tea Party Supporters Richer, More Educated Than Most, Poll Finds (FOXNews.com)

AP-GfK Poll: Obama slips, other Dems slide, too (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Poll shows resistance to health care bill rising (AP/GOPUSA.com)

National News

Tea Party leaders on alert for infiltrators (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Bunning endorses outsider Paul in Kentucky US Senate race (AP/GOPUSA.com)

RNC chairman: GOP wants to help black community (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Fla. governor Crist might run for Senate as independent (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Commentary

Establishment Terrified by Tea Party Movement (Matt Towery/GOPUSA.com)

GOP Should Push Tough Regulation of Wall Street (Michael Barone/GOPUSA.com)

William Ayers' Wyoming Debacle Highlights Leftist Weaknesses (Christopher G. Adamo/GOPUSA.com)

The Individual Mandate: We're All Amish Now (Jon N. Hall/GOPUSA.com)

Virginia News Stand: April 12, 2010

Annotations & Elucidations Time For Tea (Parties)

It's a busy Monday version of the News Stand. We're in the news, again, because liberals are complaining about us. Translation: We're doing an effective job thwarting their agenda.

Someone else doing an effective job are the lobbyists paid for by local governments with  your tax money, who lobby, mostly, against interests of taxpayers and for the interests of government. Hundreds of thousands of dollars across the state, in fact. The Norfolk Virginian-Pilot features one such lobbyist and the dough she rakes in for the Virginia Beach School Board. However, some localities have stopped paying for outside help, which is good. But they continue to lobby the General Assembly with in-house staff. Not much better. Elsewhere, Tea Parties are spring up across the state and there are several dispatches regarding such. In news sure to cheer Planned Parenthood, a Catholic pharmacy which did not sell contraception, closed.

Nationally, we see the class exhibited by the New Jersey teachers union (it circulated an e-mail wishing for Republican Governor Chris Christie's death). In Analysis, Internet safety  activist Stacy Rumenap looks at a recent big win in federal court against the FCC and Henry Lamb discusses how President Obama got that national security force he campaigned for . . . in the health care bill! Nancy Pelosi was right. We did have to pass the bill to learn what was in it! In Commentary, Michelle Malkin and Mark Tapscott examine how the left in the media and out will try to sabotage the Tea Parties.

News

*UR recognition of Family Foundation leader protested (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

*Jepson alumna condemned by students for leadership award (The Collegian)

*Family Foundation lobbies McDonnell on abortion, stem cell research (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

Some school divisions think lobbyists worth the investment (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Catholic pharmacy shutters in Virginia (Washington Times)

Tea Party: We're taxed enough (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Farris, Viguerie To Speak At Culpeper Tea Party (Culpeper Star Exponent)

Tea Party seeks to ‘wake up’ America at Freedom Rally (Danville Register & Bee)

New flap brings McDonnell’s national viability to fore (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

'Jobs' governor's first 90 days have veered off course (The Daily Press)

Mims sworn in as Supreme Court justice (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

After loss, Va.'s Deeds tries to regain his footing (Washington Post)

National News

Teachers union memo 'prays' for governor's death (CNN.com)

Obama election-year jobs agenda stalls in Congress (AP/GOPUSA.com)

GOP senators push for 'mainstream' court nominee (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Psst: Hilary Rodham Clinton for court? (AP/GOPUSA.com)

GOP Chairman Steele: 'I've made mistakes' (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Analysis

Obamacare Will Be at Center of High Court Hearing (Michael Barone/GOPUSA.com)

Obama's Private Army (Henry Lamb/GOPUSA.com)

Court Rules FCC Lacks Authority to Regulate Internet (Stacy Rumenap/GOPUSA.com)

Commentary

Crash course: Your illustrated guide to Tea Party saboteurs (Michelle Malkin/MichelleMalkin.com)

Will Mainstream Media reporters and editors expose, screen out, or help Tea Party saboteurs? (Mark Tapscott/Beltway Confidential-WashingtonExaminer.com)

Are All Cultures Equal? (Thomas Sowell/GOPUSA.com)

Pregnancy Resource Centers: A Winning Reversal Of Fortune At The General Assembly

At the beginning of this year’s General Assembly session, pregnancy resource centers were in the crosshairs of the abortion industry. From a press conference releasing a now debunked report about PRCs, to legislation that would have burdened them with unnecessary regulations, Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia must have thought they were well on their way to putting their competition out of business. What a difference a few weeks — and the truth — makes.

Yesterday, instead of finalizing anti-PRC legislation, the House (HJ 435) and Senate (SJ 265) passed identical resolutions honoring the work of pregnancy resource centers across the commonwealth. This took place despite a frantic effort by NARAL to derail the resolutions (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog). The resolutions were introduced at the request of The Family Foundation.

Earlier this session, the anti-PRC legislation was defeated in House and Senate sub-committees, with the Senate patron, Dr. Ralph Northam (D-6, Norfolk), actually asking for his own bill (SB 188) to be defeated. This happened in a sub-committee meeting, that he chaired, where the truth about the work of PRCs was presented through personal testimonies from young women who received support from PRCs in their time of need.

The Family Foundation was honored to work with so many great PRC directors who serve women and families in crisis each and every day. (Click here to read more about the battle in this Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star op-ed.) We especially thank Senator Jill Vogel (R-27, Winchester) and Delegate Chris Stolle, MD (R-83, Virginia Beach) for introducing these commending resolutions on behalf of Virginia's pregnancy resource centers.

Virginia's PRCs are grateful, too. Below is a letter we received from one center after the news the two resolutions were passed:

Thank you so much for all your work on the front lines for family values in Virginia. We continue to thank God for you all. The help and guidance that you and the FF team provided to the Virginia Directors in mid January was deeply appreciated. Weren't we all amazed by the miraculous ways in which God moved in the Health subcommittee on January 26, 2010. I truly will never forget that day!!!!

News from the Family Foundation this morning regarding the resolutions honoring the work of PRC's across the Commonwealth, requested by the FF and passed in both House and Senate yesterday, has truly been humbling in light of all you have already done for us. Thank you so much for your partnership in standing for life in the Commonwealth of Virginia and for the tremendous work that you do both in session season and out. May God continue to bless you all.

"And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28

Protecting Pregnancy Resource Centers

Earlier this session we celebrated one of our most significant victories — defeating draconian regulations of our Commonwealth’s pregnancy resource centers. The effort to frighten women in crisis away from these important ministries was led by NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia and Planned Parenthood.

In yesterday’s Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star, I was given the opportunity to present the case for PRCs in an opinion piece (click here).

NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia was given the opportunity to make its case against PRCs here. I urge you to read both opinion pieces.

Once again, I also ask you to support the pregnancy resource center in your community. As you will read in my op-ed, they make an incredible contribution to our communities by helping women in crisis realize they have a real choice other than abortion when faced with a crisis pregnancy. I hope you will join the PRC in your community today.

Virginia News Stand: November 10, 2009

Annotations & Elucidations Houck Not Going Anywhere

The hot rumor going around was that Senator Edd Houck (D-17, Spottsylvania) would accept a job in the new McDonnell administration, thus opening up a potential re-take of the Senate by Republicans by winning that seat in a special election. Democrats hold a one seat majority in the chamber, but a tie would flip it back to the GOP because of the re-election of Lt. Governor Bill Bolling. However, Senator Houck has dampened that speculation in today's Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star.

In other news, Senator Robert Hurt (R-19, Chatham) has hired Chris LaCivita as his consultant in the crowded 5th Congressional District Republican nomination campaign. LaCivita, formerly a consultant to former Governor George Allen, is most noted for running the Swift Boat campaign against John Kerry, and is fresh off Attorney General-elect Ken Cuccinelli's landslide victory. Those who hire LaCivita mean to win. Elsewhere, a Democrat big gun is brought in for the recount in the 21st House of Delegates district election (where Republican Ron Villanueva defeated incumbent Democrat Bobby Mathieson); the effect of the Liberty University student vote is looked at in the 23rd district campaign (where Republican Scott Garrett defeated incumbent Democrat Shannon Valentine); and Public Opinion Strategies offers insights into the Obama affect in the Virginia campaign. But mainly, we're happy to bring back editorial comics to the News Stand.  

News:

Houck: No plan to leave (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

McDonnell disagrees with study on trimming tax breaks (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Falwell says he's 'surprised' by election results (Lynchburg News & Advance)

Counting in disputed 21st District race to resume at noon (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Al Gore's Attorney helps Mathieson (BearingDrift.com)

Hurt signs up LaCivita (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

Population, inflation fuel 10-year budget growth in Va. (Washington Post)

Analysis:

Don't Tell Anyone, But Obama Hurt Deeds in Virginia (Public Opinion Strategies/TQIA Blog)

Commentary:

Are Republicans too giddy? (Julian E. Zelizer/CNN.com)

Editorial Comics:

"Wahtchya doing?" (Eric Allie/Townhall.com)

"DrainO" (Nate Beeler/Townhall.com)

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Deeds Desperate? Accepts "2-Percent" Potts' Endorsement

On the heels of what surely was a shocking setback to his campaign Monday — Democrat activist billionaire Sheila Johnson's endorsement of Republican Bob McDonnell for governor — Democrat gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds announced his own predictable list of former-Republican-legislator supporters. The lone somewhat surprise is former Senator Brandon Bell, but considering his record of voting for tax increases, perhaps not. The leader of the group is John Chichester, the former-Democrat-turned- Republican-who-endorses-Democrats. His lackey, independent Russ "2-percent" Potts, also is among Deeds' supporters. (Is Deeds' that desperate?)

But the news here is that the endorsement and Deeds' embrace is more twisted, more convoluted, more hypocritical and more disingenuous than anything politic in Virginia since Mark Warner promised not to raise taxes (or since Governor Tim Kaine said he wouldn't, or since he said his DNC work wouldn't interfere with his gubernatorial duties — take your pick):

From today's Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star:

The legislators will help form "Virginians for Deeds" and according to a press release, support "Deeds' efforts to carry on the tradition of keeping Virginia a low-tax state and the ‘best state for business'."

Then . . .

Chichester, who retired in 2007 after nearly 30 years in office, said in a telephone interview that he's backing Deeds over his own party's candidate, Republican Bob McDonnell, because of Deeds' support for Chichester's budget plans during tough fiscal times earlier this decade.

Those "budget plans" were? . . .

In 2003 and 2004, Chichester — the powerful leader of the Senate Finance Committee — was a key player in the passage of a package of tax increases. ...

Not just any tax increases. They were the largest in Virginia history and during a time when the budget was in robust surplus! So, Deeds wants to keep Virginia a "low tax state" but embraces Chichester, Potts and a host of the largest taxers and spenders in Virginia history? Huh????????????

Now, let's not forget the second part of that equation. It's not only the tax increase. It was the spending of it! Virginia was in a surplus, then raked in $1.4 billion more in taxes. Then those same men — Chichester, Potts, Bell, Marty Williams and others in this disgruntled group, as well as Deeds — spent it all and then some, raiding the Rainy Day fund to its lowest level ever!

Others in the group include pro-abortion, pro-homosexual "marriage," and tax-and-spend liberal Republicans such as Warren Barry, Panny Rhodes, and Jim Dillard, and liberal independent Katherine Waddell.

These former office holders are discontented former Republicans who lost primaries to conservatives or retired when they saw primary defeat coming, and haven't supported Republicans in years. They call themselves "Republicans" to give their predictable endorsements of liberals a lame attempt at relevance. But the only people they are relevent to are the liberal Mainstream Media who play up the ideological lovefest as if it's extraordinary. It will be interesting to compare the media coverage this gets as compared to the media coverage Sheila Johnson's endorsement of McDonnell received.

Virginia News Stand: June 11, 2009

Let the post-mortems and second-guessing begin! It's analysis time. Better analyze all you can because the general election campaign will begin in earnest ASAP, if it hasn't already. In fact, the Washington Times' headline today says it all: "Deeds starts fast in denigrating GOP" (see below). Already going negative, are we? Does that mean Deeds sees himself as behind? We'll have comment on what's negative, who's been negative, and some not-too-smart comments that a candidate said that he thinks were smart, before too long.  News:

Candidates For Governor Get Fast Start (Washington Post)

Deeds's Victory Renews McDonnell Rivalry — With a Difference (Washington Post

Democratic candidates show solidarity with Deeds (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

How Deeds defied expectations and changed the race (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot

Deeds lays groundwork for next phase of race for Virginia governor (Roanoke Times

Deeds prepares for fall rematch (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Deeds starts fast in denigrating GOP (Washington Times

How Moran's Early Edge Unwound (Washington Post

Lack of Va. Roots Doomed McAuliffe's Bid (Washington Post)  

House hopefuls face uphill battle against Carr, Cox (Richmond Times- Dispatch)

Virginia News Stand: May 27, 2009

Lots of campaign news today, as one might expect, as Brian Moran racks up more endorsements, and Virginia Republicans gear up for their nominating convention this weekend. But most of the big stuff concerns yesterday's California Supreme Court decision upholding that state's recently ratified constitutional amendment defining marriage as a between one man and one woman, and President Barack Obama's selection of U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court.  There are several good articles and commentaries on these subjects in the National News and Commentary sections below. Also, please read Bobby Eberle's rejoinder to retired General Colin Powell regarding his campaign to minimize conservatism in the Republican Party. Finally, be sure to read about a bill one congressman has introduced that would make 2010 "The Year of the Bible" — and his co-sponsors include members of both parties, as well as Christian and Jewish members. 

News:

Virginians critique nominee (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Moran picking up local support (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star

Democrats' Inside Man Steps Into Spotlight (Washington Post)

GOP hopefuls for Fralin's House seat hold forum (Roanoke Times

McDonnell backs Mullins for chairman of state GOP (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

GOP will choose slate of state candidates this weekend (Winchester Star)

LU Democrats club to meet with Falwell today (Lynchburg News & Advance

National News:

Calif. Ruling Shows Hurdles Remain for Gay Marriage (Washington Post)

Don't expect smooth sailing for Sotomayor (OneNewsNow.com)

For Sotomayor, discrimination case likely issue (AP/GOPUSA.com)

2010: The year of the Bible? (OneNewsNow.com)

Commentary:

'Empathy' in Action (Thomas Sowell/GOPUSA.com)

Sotomayor: Racial Politics and Making Policy (Bobby Eberle/GOPUSA.com)

To Gen. Powell . . . Just Where Have We Gone Too Far To The Right? (Bobby Eberle/GOPUSA.com)

Virginia News Stand: May 11, 2009

The News Stand isn't the only one returning today: Looks like the missing Musketeer, Senator Creigh Deeds of Bath has finally poked his nose out in the Democrat gubernatorial primary campaign. He garners two headlines around the state today and prominent mentions elsewhere. Perhaps he's been there all along and we just didn't know it, as the Washington Post and Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star attest to the lackluster campaign thus far. But maybe Terry McAuliffe's comment on a Richmond radio station will perk things up. Dems also tell The Post they think dreariness and fatigue are what led to some Republican wins in their NoVa bastion as of late. In national news, the current governor's boss, the president, appears poised to take a page from Tim Kaine's policy book and eliminate abstinence education funding. Then there are the tales of two states and approaches to education: A California Senate committee passed what's being called "Gay Day" legislation for schools' curriculum where parents, according to one report, can't opt out their children. By contrast, Texas officials chose a prominent historian to restore basic and traditional lessons, that have slowly evaporated over the years, to its public school curriculum.  

News:

After GOP Wins, Democrats Are Worried About Fatigue (Washington Post)

Delegates urged to attend meeting (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

In the Race for Governor, a Drizzle of Ads Portends a Deluge (Washington Post)

Dems' primary appears lackluster (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Ousted GOP chairman takes aim at 'insiders' (The Daily Press

Deeds: Education, technology key (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Facing uphill battle in governor's race, Deeds still presses ahead (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

McAuliffe touts green energy (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Democrat to challenge incumbent in 6th District (Roanoke Times)

National News:

Obama would ax abstinence-only funding (OneNewsNow.com)

History scholar hopes to revamp Texas curriculum (OneNewsNow.com)

'Gay Day' Bill Passes California Senate Committee (CNSNews.com)

Virginia News Stand: April 17, 2009

Welcome to the end of the week. But the news is only beginning. Leading off, we have a Virginia-based pro-life organization, Life & Liberty Ministries, which says it's been put on a domestic terrorist watch list by the Virginia State Police. Very curious, to say the least. Also of note, Americans For Tax Reform took notice of the work we did on spending transparency and this blog's comment on how it all played out, especially with Governor Tim Kaine's nice veto session surprise (making the bill better). We're honored such a prestigious national organization took notice and we thank them for the help it provided in the long road it took to get transparency passed and signed into law. When you read in the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star how the state paid a company $40,000 just to sit by and wait, you understand why spending transparency is important.

It's not yet time for the Colonial Downs season, but the horse race known as the gubernatorial campaign is well underway and Republican Bob McDonnell is ahead by a couple of lengths and pulling further ahead — as of now. We have the poll info directly from the pollster, Rasmussen. Enjoy your reading.

News:

Virginia pro-lifers labeled 'potential terrorists' (OneNewsNow.com)

Election 2009: Virginia Governor Election — GOP's McDonnell Pulls Further Ahead in Virginia Governor's Race (RasmussenReports.com)

Poll gives McDonnell lead in hypothetical governor matchups (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Bill Clinton, Trump among McAuliffe's donors (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

McAuliffe won't take Dominion cash, but donations from executives OK(Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Candidates in governor's race casting wide nets (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Moran Campaign Contributors Have Business Before Brother (Washington Post)

State paid $40,000 in fees for towing firms to stand by (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

VA Transparency Gets Unexpected Veto Session Boost(FiscalAccountability.org Blog)

Del. Shannon Valentine tops in campaign funds (Lynchburg News & Advance)

Concert to benefit Blue Ridge Pregnancy Center in Lynchburg (Lynchburg News & Advance)

Delegates Defend Internet Use on the Floor (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

National News:

Senate Republicans Reply to DHS 'Rightwing Extremists' Scaremongering(RedState.com)

ACLU demands schools allow access to gay Websites (Nashville Tennessean)

Virginia News Stand: April 7, 2009

It's April so that means three things in Virgilankingnia politics: Veto Session, Shad Planking and campaigns in full swing. They usually coincide to some (or large) degree. But there's something different this year:  Gubernatorial candidate Senator Creigh Deeds (D-25, Bath) is avoiding the Shad Planking. That's almost unheard of for a statewide candidate. Who knows? If he wins the governorship, maybe it'll start a trend. Meanwhile, Governor Tim Kaine faces veto override threats on several bills, including those dealing with the death penalty and accepting strings-attached "stimulus" money for extended unemployment insurance — paid for by tax increases on business, since the fees it pays into that program fund it.

In another state's news that may have national implications, Iowans are fighting back against the edict by its supreme court inventing a "right" to same-sex "marriage." Also, Newt Gingrich talks, albeit briefly, about his conversion to Catholicism. Finally, check out one legal organization's unique avenue to challenge the federal bailout to AIG. 

News:

Kaine's vetoes facing his foes (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Deeds Will Not Speak At Shad Planking (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

Big money flows to Virginia race for governor (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Deeds files petitions for Virginia governor's race (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

McDonnell calls for unity after leading ouster of party chairman (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Rejected GOP Chief To Run Again in Va. (Washington Post)

Battle over bingo laws in Va. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

National News:

Conservative Iowans fight to preserve traditional (OneNewsNow.com)

Does AIG Bailout Violate Establishment Cause? (OneNewsNow.com)

Gingrich tight-lipped on Catholic conversion (OneNewsNow.com)

Virginia News Stand: April 2, 2009

The News Stand doesn't have a large inventory today, but what we have is interesting as usual. The gubernatorial campaign is rolling along with Bob McDonnell and Terry McAuliffe continuing to get the headlines. Where are Creigh Deeds and Brian Moran? It's enough to prompt House Republican Whip Eric Cantor to call it for T-Mac already. Meanwhile, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich sounds the warning on President Obama's war on churches and charities, squeezing them out in favor of a care-for-all, omnipresent government. Speaking of McDonnell, he's promised to run the most technologically savvy campaign in Virginia history. It's a hard lesson Republicans have learned from Democrats who have outpaced them by far in use of the Internet via social networking and the like. But according to Rachel Alexander, there is a conservative tech revolution going on.

Speaking of revolutions, do they have tea or corn parties in Iowa? For all those gearing up for the various Virginia tea parties on April 15, you might want to read and view what went on in Iowa's legislature recently, where the Democrat House Speaker, Pat Murphy, tossed out taxpayers opposed to his tax increase plan. Ah, yes. Freedom of speech in the Age of Obama!

News:

McDonnell pledges support for business during campaign stop (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

McDonnell's gubernatorial campaign makes local stop (Winchester Star)

McAuliffe's Fundraising: High-Dollar, High-Mileage (Washington Post)

Does Cantor Really Think McAuliffe Wins? (TertiumQuids.com)

Ex-Lobbyist, Kaine Brother-in-Law, Among 4 Proposed For U.S. Attorney(Washington Post)

Analysis:

Web 2.0 and the New Conservative Revolution (GOPUSA.com)

National News:

Obama's 'war against churches and charities' (OneNewsNow.com)

When the American Tax Payer Becomes a Nuissance (GetLiberty.org)

Video:

Taxpayers Kicked Out Of Capitol During Tax Debate — Iowa (YouTube.com/KCCI-TV)

Virginia News Stand: March 26, 2009

Virginia News Stand: February 24, 2009

We, and our chaplain's prayer bill, are all the rage — the first four articles below report on its defeat and our reaction. There's also some breaking news in that Delegate Kenneth Melvin (D-80, Portsmouth), a 24-year House veteran, and member of the House Democrat leadership, announced he will not run for re-election. Finally, in the aftermath of the Oscars, what do people want in their movies? Newsweek has a shocking answer. Senate panel kills troopers' prayer bill (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Chaplain prayer bill killed in Virginia Senate committee (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Police prayer bill defeated in committee (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star

Senate panel kills bill on prayers at state police events (Roanoke Times)

Virginia panel kills police chaplain prayer measure (Washington Times)

Web users full of money-spending ideas (Roanoke Times)

Dear Gov. Kaine: Spare Some Stimulus Cash? (Washington Post

La. Governor Took Fast Track to National Prominence (Washington Post)

Del. Kenneth Melvin of Portsmouth won't run for re-election (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Americans want movies with morals (Newsweek)