Home Virginia Politics Virginia News Headlines: Monday Morning (MLK, Jr. Day)

Virginia News Headlines: Monday Morning (MLK, Jr. Day)

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Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Monday, January 19. Also, check out VP Biden’s speech to the Organization of Minority Women’s 31st Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast, starting about 8:45 am.

*Martin Luther King and the struggle for civil rights, then and now (It’s still very much a struggle, as events of 2014 made clear.)

*U.S.-built Ebola centers in Liberia are nearly empty (So much for the forecasts of disaster.)

*Poll: Run Hillary. Run Mitt. (“They fare much better than Christie and Perry in a survey of would-be contenders.”)

*The reinvention of Mitt Romney (“Former Obama campaign aides mock their 2012 opponent’s new anti-poverty crusade.”)

*Krugman: Hating Good Government (“And why this hatred of government in the public interest? Well, the political scientist Corey Robin argues that most self-proclaimed conservatives are actually reactionaries. That is, they’re defenders of traditional hierarchy – the kind of hierarchy that is threatened by any expansion of government, even (or perhaps especially) when that expansion makes the lives of ordinary citizens better and more secure. I’m partial to that story, partly because it helps explain why climate science and health economics inspire so much rage.”)

*Sen. Tim Kaine arrives in Israel with bipartisan congressional delegation

*Time to upgrade drinking water protections

*Virginia’s minimum wage back in cross hairs (Nobody can live on $7.25 an hour, that’s beyond pathetic. How about double it?)

*$2.6 million project to help Virginia forests

*Sen. Bill Stanley seeks to restore program to attract doctors to Southwest Virginia

*Newport News march honors Martin Luther King Jr. and 23-year-old slain resident

*Virginia university expresses regret for actions during civil rights era (“Longwood stood by while a major battle over education rights unfolded right at its doorstep.”)

*Civil rights group allied with NFL wants R**skins name change

*Professional photographers challenge $100 fee to shoot in Fairfax County parks

*Nats land ace pitcher Max Scherzer (“The addition of the prized free agent makes Washington the favorite to win the World Series.” Yes, I’m looking forward to baseball season!)

*Breezy and sunny for MLK Day; a dose of wintry mix possible on Wednesday

  • KAINE STATEMENT AT CONCLUSION OF CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION TO ISRAEL, SAUDI ARABIA AND QATAR

    JERUSALEM – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations and Armed Services Committees, released the following statement today at the conclusion of a bipartisan congressional delegation to Israel, Saudi Arabia and Qatar:

    “Four days of intense dialogue with Saudi Arabian, Qatari, Israeli and Palestinian officials, as well as representatives of moderate Syrian opponents of the brutal Assad regime, offered significant insight into a range of tough challenges in the region – challenges that Congress will be addressing soon.

    “We must continue to support efforts to battle extremism in the region, whether by ISIL, Al Qaeda, Hezbollah or Hamas. We must continue to seek an end to the Iranian pursuit of nuclear weapons. We must stand against efforts to discredit Israel in international forums. We must continue to insist that Israel and Palestine do the hard work to find a path to peaceful co-existence. And we must continue to do what Americans do to an unprecedented degree – provide humanitarian aid to suffering people such as those fleeing violence in Syria.

    “These are hard problems. And while they can occasionally seem far away, I am reminded of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s words – ‘we may have arrived on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.’ This visit of seven Senators – four Republicans, two Democrats and one Independent – reminds me anew that American leadership is necessary and strongly desired by the people of the region.”

    Delegation members included Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Bob Corker (R-TN), John Barrasso (R-WY), Joe Donnelly (D-IN) and Angus King (I-ME).

  • RICHMOND – Below is a statement from Governor Terry McAuliffe’s Communications Director Brian Coy on Governor McAuliffe’s admission to VCU Medical Center today:

    “While on vacation with his family in Africa, Governor McAuliffe was thrown from a horse, which resulted in seven broken ribs. While the injury did not impair his ability to do his job and his doctors expected the injury to heal on its own, today they identified increased fluid around his lungs that will require a procedure to remove. He is being admitted today and is expected to be back in action after 2-3 days of recovery.”

  • By making access to contraception more difficult, supposedly “pro-life” Republicans like Mark “Criminalize Miscarriages” Obenshain make unwanted pregnancies, and also abortions, MORE likely So much for being “pro-life,” and so much for their claims not to be waging a war on women’s rights.

    Senate Committee Defeats Bill to Increase Access to Birth Control

    All-male committee on Commerce and Labor voted to defeat bill under guise of concern for legislative process

    Richmond, VA – Today, the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor voted 11-3 to defeat SB 1277, legislation to increase access to birth control for Virginia women. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Barker, would have required employers that offer prescription drug benefits to their employees to provide equal coverage for FDA-approved contraception. On a party line vote, the all-male committee decided to pass the bill by indefinitely after attempting to absolve responsibility by questioning whether or not the bill should have been considered by an obscure health reform commission. The committee will inquire with the health exchange commission about the bill, although there is virtually no chance the legislation will be revived.

    Members of the Virginia Women’s Equality Coalition condemned the Committee’s decision:

    “We are incredibly disappointed in today’s vote,” said Tarina Keene, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia. “Ninety-nine percent of American women will use contraception at some point in their lifetimes, and birth control is basic, essential health care for women. Regardless of your political party, I think we can all agree that a Virginia woman should be able to access and use the FDA-approved birth control method that she and her doctor determine is right for her – without her boss getting in the way.”

    “For many women, access to birth control is a significant factor in ensuring their economic well-being,” added Cianti Stewart-Reid, executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia. “Women who have consistent, affordable access to birth control are more likely to attain higher levels of education, have increased stability in their professional lives, and earn higher wages. Senator Barker’s Contraceptive Equity bill is common sense and good public policy. Policymakers should work to remove barriers to safe, FDA-approved and widely used birth control to ensure that Virginia women and families are able to access and use the birth control method that is best for them.”

    “Birth control is essential and basic healthcare for women in the Commonwealth,” said Margie Del Castillo, coordinator for the Virginia Latina Advocacy Network. “In fact, 97% of Latinas who have ever had sexual intercourse have used contraception. Ensuring access to birth control for all Latinas will improve our health and strengthen our communities by supporting a woman’s individual decision-making, rather than allowing her ability to pay, or her employer, dictate whether she can have the care she needs. This is why 89% of Latina voters 18-34 support contraceptive coverage without copays for all women.”

    “Reproductive freedom cannot be fully realized without meaningful access to birth control, and reproductive freedom is the cornerstone of women’s equality and the foundation for building healthy families,” added Aisha Huertas Michel, director of the Patricia M. Arnold Women’s Rights Project with the ACLU of Virginia.

  • RICHMOND – Virginia First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe released the following statement today after doctors at the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center completed a procedure to drain fluid from Governor Terry McAuliffe’s chest cavity following an accident in which he was thrown from a horse while on vacation in Africa last month:

    “My husband is resting comfortably after a successful procedure this afternoon. He and I want to thank the outstanding medical team at VCU Medical Center who just informed us that he is expected to recover well and get back to his full schedule within the next few days.

    “We would also like to thank the many well-wishers from all across Virginia who expressed concern and support for Terry as he continues to recover.”