voters

Virginia News Stand: November 23, 2009

Annotations & Elucidations Will Dave Marsden's Quick Move Move Him To The Senate Or Backfire?

News in the two Virginia Senate special elections is heating up. In the 37th district, which is open due to the election of Attorney General-elect Ken Cuccinelli, Democrat Delegate Dave Marsden is being pressured to resign his House seat now that he is officially campaigning for the Senate. The reason: If elected, he will leave the 41 district delegate-less in the House for a good portion of the 2010 General Assembly while yet another special election is called. Marsden refuses, but there is another twist: Marsden doesn't live in the Senate district, so he is taking a room in the home of a supporter who lives in an overlapping  precinct. It gives new meaning to carpetbagging. It may solve (cheesily) the technical residency requirement, but it's brazenness may alienate voters.

In Commentary, Thomas D. Segel looks at a doctor shortage that will get worse under Obamacare, Star Parker writes about D.C.'s new homosexual friendly city council, and Henry Lamb weighs in on property rights. Meanwhile, the AP's Tom Raum analyzes the Federal Reserve's massive liquidity policies that are cheapening the dollar and sinking the economy further, faster.

News:

Kaine: 'Not out of the woods yet' on economy (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Officials seek ways to deal with budget shortfall (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

GOP asks Marsden to resign House seat (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)

Health care divides Senate hopefuls at GOP forum (Norfolk Virginian-Pliot)

8th Senate District GOP primary may go nasty — and quick (BearingDrift.com)

National News:

FBI: More anti-religious, anti-gay hate crimes reported (AP/Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)

Schumer: Dems ready to go-it-alone on health care (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Senate Democrats at odds over health care bill (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Mammogram guidelines spark debate over health bill (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Palin dines, prays with Rev. Billy Graham in NC (AP/GOPUSA.com)

RI bishop asked Kennedy in 2007 to avoid Communion (AP/GOPUSA.com)

Analysis:

Fed under fire as public anger mounts (Tom Raum/AP/GOPUSA.com

Commentary:

Where Have All The Doctors Gone? (Thomas D. Segel/GOPUSA.com)

U.S. Capital Going The Way Of Sodom (Star Parker/GOPUSA.com)

They're Still After Your Water (Henry Lamb/GOPUSA.com)

Give Me Character Over IQ Any Day (Doug Patton/GOPUSA.com)

Inside The Rasmussen Poll

Here are some key findings of the Rasmussen Poll which shows Republican Bob McDonnell leading Democrat Creigh Deeds by 51-42 percent (see RasussenReports.com for full summary). See how, if at all, it reflects how the Mainstream Media has portrayed the campaign thus far:

» Fifty-one percent of voters now say the thesis is at least somewhat important in affecting for whom they will vote, a negligible change from the last poll.  

» Deeds' tax increase position is more poison to him than the thesis is to McDonnell. By 51-36 percent Virginia voters trust the GOP candidate more on the tax issue, which the GOP is using to hang around Deeds in conjunction with other unpopular Democrat state and national policies.

» By 45-32 percent, voters now trust McDonnell more than Deeds on Virginia's most pressing economic issue, transportation. Previously, voters were split on the two candidates. 

» Fifty-three percent of Virginians view McDonnell favorably; 46 percent view Deeds. That's one point down for McDonnell over the last poll, four down for Deeds. (Going negative brings down the instigator more than the target, sometimes, and that appears to be the case here.) 

» Among those with strong opinions, twenty-nine percent have a very favorable opinion of McDonnell; thirteen percent very unfavorable. For Deeds, it's 20 percent very favorable and 23 percent very unfavorable.

McAuliffe's Response

It was quite interesting to hear Democrat gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe basically tell the far left, homosexual lobby to get over the Marriage Amendment in his answer to a question in Saturday's Democrat debate. Ironically, his tone is reminiscent of what conservatives find irritatingly familiar from many quarters —that no one cares about social issues, they drive away voters and let's unite around fiscal issues (never mind many of these people advocate higher taxes and spending anyway). He basically said that it takes three years to get a constitutional amendment on the ballot and passed — which is what is needed to repeal the Marriage Amendment. A governor has four years to make a difference, so why take up three years (75 percent) of your one term trying to fight something Virginians passed overwhelmingly two-and-a-half-years ago? Instead, let's worry about jobs.

Finally! A Democrat tells the liberal base to cool it on the social issues in favor of "kitchen table" issues, because you're driving away voters. Conservatives, on the other hand, don't find that call rare at all. But T-Mac ain't dumb. He realizes the difference — which is, of course, that it is electorally proven that social conservatism wins. 

Falwell Addresses Values Summit

Jonathan Falwell was one of the many speakers to address more than 2,000 guests at The Family Research Council Action's Values Voters Summit. Falwell, the son of the late Jerry Falwell, is definitely not going to back away from engaging in the cultural debate, including the political arena. He challenged the crowd to "not go back in the caves;" that those who paved the way for our movment, like his dad, need the banner to continue to be carried forward. Falwell challenged the crowd to stay in the fight regardless of the popularity of the principles we believe in. Falwell is definitely part of a new generation of church leaders who are going to look beyond just abortion and marriage. While they will continue to be the core values we fight for, Falwell more than once stated that we must address other issues such as poverty and health care, making it clear that faith based organizations can do a much better job than the government at solving these issues. Those who expect a "mini-me" Jerry Falwell will be disappointed. Jonathan is not about trying to be his dad — and its refreshing. He's definitely comfortable with who he is. It will be interesting to see how he expands his role in the cultural debate over time.

Recently, Falwell hosted a luncheon for The Family Foundation's Pastors For Family Values at his church in Lynchburg. Falwell will also address "Watchmen on the Wall," a pastor's conference hosted by The Family Research Council and TFF on September 23. 

If Value Voters Vote

Today in Washington, D.C., there is a meeting of the vast right wing conspiracy. Big surprise, The Family Foundation is in the midst. Although the left might prefer we were the only ones in the room, we are not. The Values Voter Summit hosted by the Family Research Council Action has drawn more than 2,000 people to the historic Washington Hilton. Speaking to this energized crowd is quite a line up of thinkers and doers including CNN host Lou Dobbs, Joe Gibbs, Newt Gingrich, Michael Medved, Stephen Baldwin, Alveda King, Michael Steele, Star Parker, Dr. Bill Bennett, Laura Ingram, Ben Stein, Chuck Colson and many more. 

Casual conversations with folks indicate that they really wish Governor Sarah Palin was joining us but they respect the fact that she is in Alaska deploying her son and since she just drew 23,000 people in Farfax this week, they'll cut her some slack. Michael Steele told us what he has told the media this past week, "I know Sarah Palin and you don't want to mess with Sarah Palin. She shoots moose, what do you think she is going to do to a donkey?" 

The leadership of all of the family policy councils around the country have been here much of the week pow-wowing about marriage amendments on the ballots in Ariz., Calif., and Fla., and much more. A smaller segment of the group is discussing not just issues, but tactics. In particular, a conclusion has been reached by those of us that aren't 50+ year old white men (no offense to those that are) that our movement has not yet grabbed the tools and terminology needed to reach the ever important 18-29 year old voting block. While we don't have all the solutions, I've heard that the first step is acknolwledging the problem. 

Lou Dobbs encouraged conservatives in the room to diversity our issues. Although his comments were aimed at the fiscal issues, closed door meetings have discussed not allowing the left to claim the issues of poverty and social justice. Indeed the greatest efforts toward giving every citizen a shot at the American dream are those that go straight to the root problem — solutions that secure and stablize a nuclear family. A bunch of brainiacs shared some embargoed research with a small group of us yesterday and it continues to be clear that if we want men, women and children to succeed in any way (financial, education, etc.), we must stop the out of wedlock births, cohabitation and divorce. If we want our young men to grow up and not end up on the street or in our prison system, they need their dads! That's not a moral opinion, its a social science fact. Clearly, we need to be a part of making sure we love our neighbor by making sure they know where their next meal comes from, but working to solve poverty runs so much deeper than a bunch of government programs. 

Interestingly, Dobbs acknowledged that FRC President Tony Perkins has been instrumental in his "conversation" to believing that values voters matter and need to have a voice in the public square. Dobbs hasn't always believed that way and said he was used to pursuading people to his point of view, but Tony turned the tables on him.

One thing is for sure, the energy level among values voters has received a monumental shot of adreneline with Sarah Palin joining the Republican ticket. These people are ready to go home across the nation and go to work. That impact will no doubt be felt election day.