National Journal

Candidate Kaine's Marriage "Pirouette"

North Carolinians overwhelmingly voted one week ago to define marriage as between one man and one woman in their state constitution. The same day, Virginia U.S. Senate candidate Tim Kaine was asked about his position on the issue. Kaine’s answer was anything but clear. In fact, his obfuscation led the National Journal to label his attempted response “policy pirouettes" (see Shane Goldmacher at Hotline On Call blog). Kaine said:

The number one issue is should committed couples have the same legal rights and responsibilities and the answer to that is an unequivocal yes. I believe in the legal equality of relationships. Is it marriage, is it civil unions, is it domestic partners? I kind of let that one go.

The crowd and reporters kept pressing, but Kaine remained steadfastly vague. His remarkable press session is chronicled here at the Washington Post's Virginia Politics Blog by Ben Pershing.

In 2006, then Governor Kaine publicly opposed Virginia’s marriage amendment, going so far as to campaign against the measure that eventually passed with 57 percent of the vote. Just a few months before, while a candidate for Governor, Kaine gave The Family Foundation Action the following response to a candidate survey question about the measure:

I have long supported Virginia law that declares marriage to be between a man and a woman, and I support a Constitutional amendment.

Incredibly, just days after being sworn in as governor, Kaine reversed his support for the ballot measure and urged the General Assembly to keep it off the ballot. (The legislation calling for the measure passed the 2005 General Assembly but had to pass again in 2006 to be placed on the ballot.)

At one point during the press availability last week, Kaine indicated that "marriage" is little more than a label, saying, "I think the labels actually get in the way of the issue."

But marriage isn't the only issue on which Kaine has shifted since running for governor in 2005. Relatedly, at that time, he told The Family Foundation and the media that he opposed homosexual couples adopting, but supported Virginia law allowing homosexual individuals to adopt. Late in his administration, however, he introduced a regulation that would have prohibited child placement agencies from considering homosexual behavior at all when choosing parents for adoption. Last year, he said that unmarried homosexual couples should be able to adopt if a judge determined it was in the best interest of the child (contrary to the Virginia Constitution and statute).

One has to wonder why Kaine continues to dodge the question if opinions on the issue of marriage are shifting — as constantly asserted as fact by same-sex marriage supporters and mainstream media. Of course, while progressives insist that Americans are shifting in their opinion on the definition of marriage, they are 0-31 when it comes to marriage amendments at the ballot box. Candidate Kaine knows that.

Conveniently in 2005, Kaine invoked his Catholic faith in response to his position on the death penalty. No mention of Church teaching on this issue. Hmmm. Our guess, however, is that whatever he says on the issue while on the campaign trail doesn't really matter. History has proven that Tim Kaine's position is likely to change as soon as Election Day is over.

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.

DISCLOSE Act Defeated For Now

We've kept you updated on the so-called DISCLOSE Act over the last couple of days. The hideousness of the bill's free-speech restrictions and its partisan purpose are easily understood simply by reading no further than the sponsors line (see Eliza Carney at National Journal): U.S. Representative Chris Van Hollan (D-Md.) and U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), the current House Democrat Campaign Committee chair and the two-time Democrat Senate Campaign Committee chair, respectively. As the Wall Street Journal reports, this bill is Senator Schumer's tool to take over as Majority Leader. Fortunately, last night, if barely, the Senate failed to invoke cloture, losing on a 57-41 vote (60 votes were needed). All Republicans voted no with the exception of Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada), who voted with the GOP for a procedural reason. Virginia's two Democrat Senators, Mark Warner and Jim Webb, predictably voted to stifle free speech. (See and hear what  Senator Warner thinks about people with opposing views.) One Republican, Senator John Ensign (R-Nevada) was absent, but presumably on the correct side.

With the Senate about to take its August recess, the bill may be dead for the year. But there's no guarantee the Dems won't go after their favorite Republicans — Senators Scott Brown of Massachusetts, and Maine's Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins — or try a parliamentary trick to pass it. Anything to maintain their grip on absolute power.

More from FRC Action Senior Vice President Tom McClusky:

The Senate's rejection of the DISCLOSE Act is a victory for free speech rights and for the democratic process. Liberals in Congress failed in their attempt to push through legislation which only amounts to Democrat incumbent protection legislation disguised as campaign finance reform.

Instead of addressing the problems often found in the financing of campaigns, the DISCLOSE Act would add to the already onerous burdens placed on organizations that act within the law by going after their donors and exposing them in public forums. The exceptions, or "carve-outs," in this unconstitutional bill demonstrate the hypocrisy of its supporters. They provide special treatment for select special interest groups in a bill supposedly designed to crack down on the power of special interests.

Virginia News Stand: April 10, 2009

Most people have taken today off, but we're still here putting out the best of Virginia's Web — and beyond — so you don't go through political junkie withdrawal. So, what's new? Seems — surprise! — liberal out-of-state groups are raising mega amounts of money and taking aim at Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell. Already. Meanwhile, the non-partisan National Journal senses that independents may be trending back to the GOP. On the culture front, CNN reports illegitimate births are at an all-time high. Looking for irony? A Democrat busts McDonnell's brackets and wins a dinner with the former A.G. (see previous comment). News:

Democratic Groups Target McDonnell (Washington Post)

Democrats attack McDonnell, GOP on rejecting unemployment funds (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

GOP Fights Kaine on Jobless Benefits (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

Democrat Deeds reports first-quarter fundraising  (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Saxman Latest Valley Delegate To Get Challenge (Harrisonburg Daily News-Record)

Ware says he'll run for re-election (Roanoke Times)

Kaine names Del. Melvin to fill Portsmouth judge post (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Democratic official wins dinner from McDonnell (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

National News:

Out-of-wedlock births hit record high (CNN.com)

Are Independents Going The GOP's Way? (National Journal)

Virginia News Stand: March 24, 2009

Wake Up Virginia, Part 2: Obama Admits Energy Prices Will Skyrocket Under His Plan

Last night we posted a breaking news story which soon became the talk of cable news and is dominating talk radio today (click here). A tape of an interview Democrat presidential candidate Barack Obama gave in January to The San Francisco Chronicle has him saying he wants to put the coal industry out of business. More of the tape has come to our attention since. If you haven't heard, Senator Obama admits that under his "cap and trade" proposal  . . . well, why don't you listen for yourself:

"Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket."

So, he doesn't mind mile-high energy prices? Then why was he blaming everyone and their brother for them earlier this year when oil and gas prices reached record levels? This is a man who is not afraid to speak his mind. He clearly has the most leftist agenda in modern American history; perhaps in all of American history. The question is, why aren't people taking him at his word? Senator Obama says he wants to make things fair in America. What's fair about the government targeting an industry vital to our way of life and those who work hard in such an industry? 

Here's an objective source: National Journal. It is regarded by both sides in Washington as non-partisan. (Full disclosure: Obama's press secretary worked there before joining his campaign.) It ranks Senator Obama as the most liberal senator in Congress. The startling aspect of this isn't that fact, because rankings can be relative. However, in this case, it says much that he is rated more liberal than even Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who for the record calls himself a socialist. Sanders is an independent, but caucuses with the Democrats. The third most liberal senator? Joe Biden.

One more quote voters should know about: It comes from Senator Obama's autobiography, Dreams From My Father. Obama wrote, "I chose my friends carefully. The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists."

Live From Roanoke! Jim Gilmore And Mark Warner In Senate Debate Tonight

We had some comments earlier this week on the vice presidential debate, such as posing questions we'd like to hear asked. We only had two. Alas, neither were asked. In just a few hours, live at 7:00 from Roanoke's new Taubman Museum, former governors Jim Gilmore, the Republican nominee, and Mark Warner, the Democrat nominee, will have their only live televised statewide debate in their campaign for Virginia's open U.S. Senate seat. (George Allen and Jim Webb even debated on NBC's Meet The Press.) It will be worth watching. Record it if you must. In some areas it will be replayed later and C-SPAN is televising it and may repeat it as well. Others are Web streaming it.

Since Jim Gilmore has repeatedly asked for several live debates, as is the Virginia tradition, and since Mark Warner bailed out of one and only agreed to this one late in the game, we'd like to hear any one of these questions to Mr. Warner:

1. Mr. Warner, you claimed at the time, and still do, that your record setting tax increase was necessary because you had cut state government spending as far you could and needed the state revenue to keep the budget in balance. If so, why does the State Department of Planning and Budget Web site (click here) show that state spending under your administration went from $12.1 billion in Fiscal Year '03 general fund spending to $12.4 billion in FY '04 and then to $13.8 billion in FY '05. What exactly did you cut before you burdened Virginia's families with higher taxes?

2. If you tax increases left Virginia in such great fiscal shape, why has Governor Tim Kaine felt it necessary to try to raise taxes still more every year since?

3. Mr. Warner, when you were governor, you vetoed a bill to allow off shore drilling in Virginia. Now you say you are for it. Why should we believe you are for meaningful off shore drilling that will create thousands of jobs and bring in millions in revenue for Virginia?

4. Mr. Warner, you say you are a "moderate" who is willing to reach out and be bi-partisan. Yet you have not shown one area of disagreement with Barack Obama, who was listed as the most liberal senator in the U.S. Senate by the non-partisan National Journal (more liberal, even, than the avowed socialist Bernie Sanders of Vermont). Please list some major policies where you disagree with Barack Obama and agree with John McCain.

5. To both: What year was Franklin Roosevelt elected president and when did he first go on television?

We're not expecting any of the questions to be asked, but the candidates are welcome to come here and respond.

Stations Showing The Debate Live Tonight Charlottesville: WVIR 29 NBC Johnson City, Tenn.: WJHL 11 CBS Harrisonburg: WHSV 3 ABC Norfolk: WVBT 43 Fox Norfolk: WHRO 15 PBS Richmond: WWBT 12 NBC

Richmond: WTVR Digital 6.2 CBS (Comcast Channel 206) Roanoke: WBRA PBS Roanoke: WSLS 10 NBC  National: C-SPAN Streaming live online at News8.net Streaming live online at NBC4.com

 Streaming live online at WTVR.com

Streaming live online at WJLA.com

Stations Re-Broadcasting The Debate Washington, D.C.: News Channel 8 at 11:00 p.m. Friday Washington, D.C.: WRC 4 NBC at 7:00 a.m. Sunday

Does Warner Suck The Life Out Of Kaine's Veep Ambitions?

Now that Democrat Presidential candidate Barack Obama has chosen one Virginia Democrat, former Governor Mark Warner, to give the keynote address at his party's national convention, surely it's a good sign that the other Virginia Democrat, Governor Tim Kaine, will get his long coveted Veep spot on the ticket — NOT! Although anything's possible, and the Dems' obsession with turning Virginia blue appears to preclude nothing short of nationalizing Colonial Williamsburg, giving two Virginians such prominent roles in the national party seems a bit much. Plus, given his silly simply-being-Obama-would've-stopped-the-Russian-invasion-of- Georgia comment on CBS' Face The Nation Sunday, Kaine's gushing hype — exposing his foreign policy ignorance — probably was too embarassing, even for the novice Obama.

Come January, Governor Kaine will be back to the less sexy issues of roads, more government pre-K, "greening" state office buildings, and demonizing legislators who don't agree with his thirst for tax increases on Virginia families.  

By the way, speaking of Warner, now that he firmly is locked into the 97-percent-liberal-rated Obama (per the highly respected, non-partisan National Journal), does he continue to deny that he's a "national Democrat" and, if he's no liberal, will he finally enumerate the exact issues on which he disagrees with the fiscally and socially liberal Obama?