kaine

Virginia News Stand: November 2, 2009

Annotations & Elucidations  Election Eve Edition

Will tomorrow be the dream come true for exiled Virginia Republicans? Or will the vaunted Democrat machine of Obama, Warner & Kaine pull a dramatic upset? The Mason-Dixon Poll, the Gold Standard of Virginia political polls, has always called the winners, usually with remarkable accuracy. In 2006, it called it for Jim Webb by one percent. Yesterday's results, in the Times-Dispatch, have it 53-41 for Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell. It also has his running mates, Lt. Governor Bill Bolling, and attorney general candidate Senator Ken Cuccinelli, up by double digits. 

What of the House of Delegates? Only months ago, Democrats were hopeful of a takeover. Now, projections run anywhere from a two to 12 seat gain for the GOP (see the Washington Times below). Expect at least one shocker. Maybe two. Today, of course, the News Stand (even the National and Commentary sections) is all about  the election.

News:

McDonnell extends advantage in Times-Dispatch poll (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

3 Points in 3 Months: VA Gov Contest Polling Ends Just About Where It Began, with GOP Sweep of VA Races (SurveyUSA.com)

McDonnell maintains large lead (PublicPolicyPolling.com)

Republicans Unleash "McBollinelli" (WTVR.com/WTVR-TV)

Virginia candidates step up efforts in waning hours (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Now it's a sprint to Tuesday (The Daily Press)

Virginia governor candidates hold last-minute rallies (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

McDonnell, Deeds push key campaign themes as race nears end (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Welcome to work, governor. It's time to slash the budget. (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

McDonnell and Deeds mostly mum on how to fund their ideas (Washington Post)

Virginia Republicans expect to make gains (Washington Times)

Republicans hope to gain House seats (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

Palin records calls urging Virginians to vote (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

LU hoping for strong voter turnout on Tuesday (Lynchburg News & Advance)

National:

A few elections, a few clues about our politics (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Scorn for property taxes drives NJ governor's race (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Third party challenges in NJ, NY are warning sign (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Limbaugh says Obama 'in over his head' (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Commentary:

Republican Leaders Seeing the Light and Going Conservative? (Bobby Eberle/GOPUSA.com)

Virginia News Stand: October 1, 2009

Annotations & Elucidations  It's Almost Too Sad — Too Much News, Not Enough Time

There is so much news out there . . . of course, it's campaign season, so one would expect that. But this year seems different. Different types of news, different angles. Wish I could cover it all. Looking for something you come across something even more interesting. Can I get to it all? No, and that's the one frustrating aspect of blogging. Oh well. I've bookmarked some articles I hope to get to tomorrow, particularly about how the Dems now are trashing former Governor Doug Wilder (see Washington Post) over his non-endorsement of Democrat gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds. But why trash him when, rumor has it, the DNC is already dumping Deeds? That was one thing I picked up on when searching something else (see here).

The one national story that's getting traction is a Democrat Congressman who said the GOP health care plan is to tell people to not to get sick and if they do, die quickly. Oh, yeah, the liberals are so pure, innocent and nice to play with. Please see the AP article and Bobby Eberle's commentary. Maybe we need to pray for liberals, which is what Newsweek looks at (remember, it's Newseek!). On a more uplifting note, there was a rally for school choice at the U.S. Capitol yesterday as the Washington Times documents.

News:

Race for governor: McDonnell takes swipe at Kaine (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Election 2009: Virginia Governor Election McDonnell 51% Deeds 42% (RassmussenReports.com)

Poll: Bob McDonnell pads lead over Creigh Deeds in Virginia (Politico.com)

News7 SurveyUSA poll shows frontrunners in November elections (WDBJ-TV/WDBJ7.com)

Kaine sees tougher fight, more negative tone in governor's race (Lynchburg News & Advance)

On the Wilder Side of Politics, Picking None of the Above (Washington Post)

National News:

Democrat says GOP wants sick to just 'die quickly (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Vote on health care expected mid-month (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Rallying for school vouchers (Washington Times)

Obama admin. defends official for gay advice (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Essay in military journal urges end to policy on gays (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Obama's 'Safe Schools' Czar Admits He Poorly Handled Underage Sex Case (FoxNews.com)

Commentary:

You Lie vs. You Die . . . Where's the Real Apology? (Bobby Eberle/GOPUSA.com

Praying for Liberals (David Waters/Newsweek)

Analysis:

Democrats Win Lobbyists But Lose Basic Reforms (Michael Barone/GOPUSA.com)

SurveyUSA's Results in Virginia Will Please Republicans, But . . . (Jim Geraghty/National Review Online's the campaign spot blog)

Threat Assessment

Yet another government agency, this time the Virginia State Police, has issued a terrorism assessment report that includes concerns over Christian conservatives. You remember that earlier this month the U.S. Department of Secret Police Homeland Security issued a report to law enforcement agencies across the country warning them about the threat of military veterans, pro-lifers, etc. Now, we have a report right here in the old Commonwealth, you know that place that was started by "anti-government types," that alleges Christian colleges, along with predominantly black universities, as potential hotbeds of terrorism. The Va. State Police report has even raised the ire of Governor Kaine, protector of free speech (as long as it doesn't include publicly saying the name of Jesus, of course). He issued a statement criticizing the report and has ordered an investigation of the investigation.

Now, the left will have you believe that all us pro-life graduates of Christian colleges are simply being paranoid. But what's the old saying? It's not paranoia if they really are out to get you.

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)

Family Foundation's 2009 Legislative Agenda: Protecting Chaplains' Religious Liberty Rights

 

This past fall, as Virginians worried about the failing economy and state government announced massive revenue “shortfalls,” the Kaine administration tried to quietly introduce a new regulation that forbid state police chaplains from praying in the name of Jesus. Apparently the superintendent of the state police did this proactively, without any complaints from anyone “offended” that a chaplain had actually prayed to God.

 

Six of 17 chaplains resigned their positions as chaplains over this order. We were honored to have two of those chaplains at our Richmond Gala in November.

 

The superintendent and governor’s office alleged that the policy change is based on a recent 4th Circuit Court decision involving prayer at government meetings, specifically a case where a pastor in the Fredericksburg area was ordered to stop praying “in Jesus name” at city council meetings. The court concluded that allowing someone to publicly pray according to his beliefs at a government meeting was an "establishment of religion" because the prayer was "government speech."

 

Other circuit court rulings, however, are in direct conflict with the 4th Circuit, and many legal experts conclude that the state police decision is a misapplication of a flawed 4th Circuit Court ruling. In other words, this new policy never should have happened.

 

To remedy the Kaine administration’s decision, The Family Foundation will support legislation this year introduced by Senator Steve Martin (R-11, Chesterfield) and Delegate Bill Carrico (R-5, Independence). Working with Alliance Defense Fund and its expert attorneys we believe that there is a legislative answer.

 

Next week, the 2009 General Assembly will begin. The Family Foundation is poised to bring our pro-God, pro-life, pro-family agenda to the center of the debate. We hope that you will be ready to take action when bills like this one protecting the religious liberty rights of chaplains are debated.

High Water Mark

This afternoon has been the high water mark thus far for the Special Tax Session of the General Assembly. Moments ago, Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw's 35 percent increase in the gas tax passed the Senate on a party-line vote of 21-16 (interestingly, two Tidewater Senators, Blevins and Quayle are absent today . . . hmmm). The bill now goes to the House where . . . for two hours this afternoon the House Rules committee drilled the state's transportation secretary and Minority Leader Delegate Ward Armstrong (D-10, Martinsville) on the Governor's tax hike bill. Republican Delegates Cox, Hogan, Landes, Griffith, and Speaker Howell, really led the charge. The most interesting moments were when Armstrong and the Governor's representative argued that "raising taxes won't affect people's actions" and that they don't believe higher taxes on new cars will reduce car sales or a higher tax on selling a house will make it harder to sell a house. Except when it comes to the gas tax, where Armstrong argued that a higher tax will hurt sales. Republicans were incredulous. 

No vote was taken, delayed by the Speaker until "after the Senate does something." Word is that the entire House of Delegates will get the opportunity to vote on the Governor's package, and on the statewide hike in the gas tax. Neither will be killed in committee. Republicans want Delegate Brian Moran (D-46, Alexandria), candidate for Governor, and others on record. 

There are also rumors that the General Assembly will be back for at least a day or two next week.

If nothing else, this week has proven to be great political theater. No one believes any policy of substance will materialize, but the debates have been great and the competing strategies interesting to see evolve. Only time will tell which strategy will prevail.

Report Card

The Virginia Catholic Conference has produced an excellent report card for the 2008 General Assembly session. (The card does include two issues The Family Foundation does not take a position on, the death penalty and immigration.) Especially interesting is the section dedicated to the Senate Education and Health committee. 

Check out how your delegate and senator voted on key issues during the 2008 General Assembly. Now is a great time to try to meet with them to let them know your support or opposition to their votes.