BREAKING: Virginia Republicans Nominate “the Cooch” to State Supreme Court

BREAKING: Virginia Republicans Nominate “the Cooch” to State Supreme Court

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Apparently defeated in trying to put Rossie Alston on the Virginia Supreme Court, it looks like Republicans are going for someone even MORE right wing than Alston — none other than our old climate-scientist-persecuting, LGBT-bashing, Obamacare-hating, birther-flirting, reproductive-rights-denying, former Attorney General, Ken “the Cooch” Cuccinelli. My god, these Republicans are completely, utterly, bat**** crazy. Of course, if Cooch DOES end up on the state Supreme Court, one person will be REALLY happy — Ed Gillespie, who would not have to face his strongest potential rival for governor in a GOP convention next spring. The only question is whether the Gillespie folks are actively pushing Cooch for Supreme Court behind the scenes, because it’s really a brilliant move for them if they are…

UPDATE 4:39 pm: @AndrewCainRTD just tweeted, “Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment says he “can confirm that Attorney General Cuccinelli will receive 21 votes in the Senate.”
UPDATE 4:34 pm: @gmoomaw just tweeted, “Cuccinelli says he’s hasn’t completed Va. Supreme Court, but will ‘prayerfully review this possibility.'”


P.S. For background on how crazy Cuccinelli is, see Video: Ken Cuccinelli Summarized in 47 Seconds (“Ken Cuccinelli is: ‘pro life, anti gay, and a climate change denier…[he’s] equated Medicare to mugging the sick and elderly…he has sued the EPA, he has suggested that gays are not protected by the 14th amendment, and he has said your Social Security number is being used to track you.'”)

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From Progress Virginia:

    Virginia Senate GOP Finds World Least Qualified Judicial Candidate

    “Ken Cuccinelli isn’t qualified to be dog catcher”

    Richmond, VA – Apparently accidentally thinking today is April Fools, the Virginia Senate Courts of Justice Committee moved forward the nomination of Ken Cuccinelli, general Virginia embarrassment and failed gubernatorial candidate, for a 12 year term on the Virginia Supreme Court.

    “Ken Cuccinelli isn’t qualified to be dog catcher,” said Progress Virginia executive director Anna Scholl. “During his infamous term as Virginia Attorney General, his quixotic campaigns against affordable health care, LGBT Virginians, and climate science were laughed out of court. Maybe we should consider it ironic that on international women’s day, Virginia state Senators proposed the most anti-woman candidate they could find to serve on our Supreme Court, but it’s not. It’s a sad and frightening day for Virginians. Ken Cuccinelli isn’t qualified to be dog catcher, much less a state Supreme Court justice. Virginians rejected his outrageous, extremist, radical Tea Party ideology in 2013 and there’s no way we’ll stand to see him on the Supreme Court.”

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia:

    NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia Responds to Cuccinelli Supreme Court Nomination

    Calls Cuccinelli “disqualified to serve”; the nomination an “unprecedented political attack on Virginia’s women”

    Richmond, VA – This afternoon, the Virginia Senate Courts of Justice Committee approved SR 79, a resolution to nominate anti-women’s health extremist Ken Cuccinelli to the Virginia Supreme Court. The resolution is expected to go to the full Senate and House of Delegates for a vote tomorrow.

    “Ken Cuccinelli is arguably one of the most virulent anti-abortion ideologues Virginia has ever seen,” said Tarina Keene, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia. “From sponsoring unconstitutional “personhood” legislation to outlaw all abortion, including in cases of rape, to arguing people should “go to jail” to protest expanded access to contraception, Cuccinelli has spent his entire career working to dismantle and restrict the fundamental, constitutionally-protected rights of Virginia women and their families.

    “He is not just unqualified to serve on the Virginia Supreme Court – he is disqualified,” Keene continued. “This is a man who wants to overturn Roe v. Wade, and who as Attorney General grossly and intentionally misinterpreted Virginia law in an attempt to shutter Virginia women’s health centers. How dare these legislators claim to support due process and the Commonwealth’s women, while simultaneously supporting a partisan ideologue with a proven record of putting his political agenda before the law. This nomination is an unprecedented political attack on Virginia’s women, and we will do everything possible to stop it.”

  • Charles Bright

    Would Douche-inelli be allowed to run for governor while sitting on the bench?

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From DPVA:

    Cuccinelli’s Record on Women’s Health Makes Him Unfit for the Bench

    Virginia Republicans are contemplating doing the unthinkable: nominating failed gubernatorial candidate and certified extremist Ken Cuccinelli to the Virginia Supreme Court to replace a qualified and nonpartisan female jurist.

    As the closed and unaccountable process moves forward, Virginians deserve to know exactly who it is that Republicans believe should hold a 12-year term on their Supreme Court. Both Cuccinelli’s record and his rhetoric are openly hostile to a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions. He is the most extreme and dangerous pick imaginable to serve on the Supreme Court and make decisions about the future of this Commonwealth.

    Over the coming hours, DPVA will highlight different reasons why Cuccinelli would be a damaging choice for Virginia’s Supreme Court: first up, women’s health.

    Here is a sampling of the Cuccinelli record on women’s health:

    Cuccinelli Pushed for Passage of 2012 Personhood Bill that Could Have Outlawed Abortion and Birth Control. ” Washington Post Editorial Board wrote: “The practical effects of “personhood” measures, including the one in Virginia to which Mr. Cuccinelli affixed his name, would easily include banning the most popular forms of contraception.” [Washington post, 9/4/2013]

    Cuccinelli Warned of God’s Judgement of America over Abortion.

    In September 2012, Cuccinelli said during a speech at Cherish Life Ministries’ Christian Life Summit: “Really, Given that God does judge nations, it’s amazing that abortion has run as far and fouly as it has, without what I would consider to be a greater imposition of judgment on this country. Who knows what the future holds.” [Christian Life Summit 2012, ~11:25, 9/30/12]

    Claimed Abortion Was 97% of What Clinics like Planned Parenthood Do.In June 2011, Cuccinelli said on WMAL: “Well Live Action, Lila Rose’s group has really been doing a great job compiling information that demonstrates that these ads, especially in the Washington area that you hear, not necessarily on WMAL, but you hear them in this area, talking about all this health care that they provide. Well it turns out they don’t really. You know, 97% of what they do is abortion. And people obviously have strong and different feelings on the question of abortion but this isn’t a variety of health care options. It’s one option. It’s end pregnancy by abortion. And Indiana’s chosen another course.” [WMAL, ~9:57, 6/2/11]

    Cuccinelli Supported Regulations Designed to Shut Down Women’s Health Clinics. In an interview with Peter Shinn, president of Pro-Life Unity and director of Cherish Life Ministries, Cuccinelli said: “That involved regulations which we were involved with seeing through to their end point. And the governor recently signed them, they’ll go into effect January 1 of next year. And they’ll basically, as I had said earlier, require treating the women that go into those facilities, making a decision you and I don’t appreciate to say the least, but will make these facilities treat them with the respect they deserve.” [Interview with Peter Shinn, ~1:51, 5/7/12]

    Cuccinelli Called Himself The “Most Aggressive Pro-Life Leader” In Virginia’s Senate. At the Republican Party of Virginia Convention in 2009 Cuccinelli said: “If you want a candidate who’s been the most aggressive pro-life leader in the Virginia senate in some time, then I need your vote.” [Republican Party of Virginia Convention, ~4:54, 5/30/09]

    Cuccinelli Called Bob Marshall The “Most Perseverant Pro-Lifer” in Virginia. In 2010, at the Divine Mercy Care Gala, Cuccinelli said, “In Virginia politics, the longest-lasting and most perseverant pro-lifer is here tonight. It’s Delegate Bob Marshall.” [Divine Mercy Care Gala 2010, ~4:55, 11/13/10]

    Cuccinelli Wanted People to “Go to Jail” in Protest of the Contraception Mandate. In January 2013, on the Steve Deace show, Cuccinelli said wanted people to “embrace civil disobedience” in order to fight the contraception mandate. Cuccinelli said, “My local bishop said, ‘Well, you know I told a group I’m ready to go to jail.’ And I said, ‘Bishop, don’t take this personally: You need to go to jail.’”

    Cuccinelli Opposes Abortion Even in Cases of Rape, Incest and Health of the Mother In October 2013, the Washington Post reported, “Cuccinelli opposes abortion in most cases, including rape and incest, but not when the life of the mother is at stake. In the Senate, he co-sponsored a “personhood” bill that would have granted constitutional protection to embryos from the moment of fertilization, which may have outlawed certain forms of contraception.” [Washington Post, 10/15/13]

    Politifact: Cuccinelli Claim That He Didn’t Support Bills to Undermine Roe v. Wade is “False” In August 2013, Politifact reported, “Republican Ken Cuccinelli says if he’s elected governor, he won’t push for strategic bills that could be used to challenge the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v Wade decision that established abortion rights… Cuccinelli said all the bills he’s supported defining life as beginning at conception have contained language saying measures are intended to comply with Supreme Court rulings on abortion rights. Cuccinelli has backed two bills during his career; one had the qualifying clause he described and the other — which Cuccinelli cosponsored — did not. We rate his statement False.” [Politifact, 8/10/13]

    Cuccinelli Warned of Divine Retribution for Abortion—“Given that God Does Judge Nations, It’s Amazing that Abortion Has Run as Far and Foully as It Has Without What I Would Consider to be a Greater Imposition of Judgment Upon This Country” In October 2013, NBC 12 reported, “Then later on in the speech, which also touched on gay marriage and other social issues, Cuccinelli gets very specific about his view of God’s review of the United States as it relates to to its abortion policies. ‘Really, Given that God does judge nations, it’s amazing that abortion has run as far and foully as it has, without what I would consider to be a greater imposition of judgment on this country,’ Cuccinelli said. ‘Who knows what the future holds?’” [NBC 12, 10/14/13, Video]

    Cuccinelli Doubled Down on Remark that God Will Punish Nation for Abortion—Compared Abortion to Slavery and the Punishment of the Civil War In October 2013, Cuccinelli was asked by Newsmax reporter Steve Malzberg, “One is about this tape that they’re making a big deal about, that you talked about, again, your strong right-to-life views, and about God and being surprised that God hasn’t punished America in some way for abortion. Is that one of those gotcha things that they’re exploiting or what?” He said, “Oh yeah. If you go back to Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War, he looked at the Civil War as sort of a national penance for slavery, the evil of slavery, letting it go on, and the founders knew how bad it was. And we have other things in this country today, and abortion is one of them. And it’s certainly one of those things that—I want to work us toward a culture of life, where everybody respects life and responds accordingly and where we value our children, and we take care of them as best we can.” [Newsmax Interview, 10/16/13, Video]

    NBC 4: When Asked to Clarify His Statement that ‘God Would Judge America on the Issue of Abortion,’ “Cuccinelli Compared His View of Abortion to Abraham Lincoln’s View of Slavery” In October 2013, NBC 4’s Julie Carey reported, “Well Republican candidate for governor Ken Cuccinelli has never tried to hide the fact that he is an enormous opponent of abortion. But Democrats say his latest comments go too far. Democrat [video skips] have hit Ken Cuccinelli harder on his pro-life viewpoint than any other issue. Earlier this week, they spotlighted a 2012 speech given to the Christian Life Summit in which Cuccinelli talked about how God would judge America on the issue of abortion…Today Democrats spotlighted brand new comments that came when an online TV show host asked Cuccinelli to explain what he had meant, and Cuccinelli compared his view of abortion to Abraham Lincoln’s view of slavery.” [NBC 4, 10/17/13,Video]

    Cuccinelli AGAIN Warned God Would Punish the Country for Abortion In October 2013 on a campaign stop, Cuccinelli repeated his claim that God would punish the country for abortion. WCAV reported: REPORTER: When asked about it during his campaign stop, Cuccinelli didn’t back down from the statement. CUCCINELLI: Any time that we get on a wrong track as a country, there are consequences. And you can take that in any policy at all. [WCAV, 10/17/13, Video]

    Cuccinelli Pushed for Passage of HB 1 Personhood Legislation, Said “The Fight For Life Is Going To Last For All Of Our Lives”In 2012, National Journal Hotline quoted Cuccinelli at rally for HB 1 personhood legislation, saying “It’s hard to believe we actually have to come and advocate for something as basic as life, but we’ve had to do it for decades and we’re going to have to do it for the rest of our lives. The fight for life is going to last for all of our lives.’“ [National Journal Hotline, 2/16/12; CBS 6 WTVR, 2/15/12, Video]

    AP: Personhood Bill “Would Effectively Outlaw All Virginia Abortions” In February 2012, the AP reported: “Del. Bob Marshall’s House Bill 1 would effectively outlaw all Virginia abortions by declaring that the rights of persons apply from the moment sperm and egg unite.” [AP, 2/14/12]

    Cuccinelli Cosponsored Personhood Bill In 2007 In February 2007, Sen. Cuccinelli cosponsored legislation introduced by Del. Bob Marshall that would prove that “the right to enjoyment of life” guaranteed by Article 1, § 1 of the Constitution of Virginia applies to “preborn human beings from the moment of fertilization.” The bill failed in the House. [HB 2797, 2/5/07]

    HEADLINE: BILL THAT COULD HAVE BANNED ABORTIONS FAILS [AP, 2/6/07]

    Personhood Bill Could Have “Effectively Banned All Abortions in Virginia”In February 2007, the AP reported, “The measure would have given constitutional rights at fertilization. A bill that could have effectively banned all abortions in Virginia died on the House floor Monday. Del. Robert G. Marshall’s bill would have granted constitutional protections at the moment of fertilization. The measure failed to advance on a 43-53 vote. Such bills rarely die in the conservative House, and are killed by the more moderate Senate.” [AP, 2/6/07]

    AP: Abortion of “All Types Would Become Illegal”In February 2007, the AP reported, “By giving embryos the constitutional protection of personhood from the instant of fertilization, abortions of all types would become illegal.” [AP, 2/6/07]

    Virginians For Life: Cuccinelli’s Bill Would “Dismantle The Tragic Roe V. Wade Decision” In February 2007, the Petersburg Progress-Index published a letter to the editor from Bob Kline, a member of Virginians for Life. The letter praised the Virginia Life at Conception Act, sponsored by Ken Cuccinelli, saying that it “would dismantle the Tragic Roe v. Wade decision that legalized the murder of innocent children on demand.” [Petersburg Progress-Index, letter to the editor, 2/6/07]

    Cuccinelli Touted Himself as “Most Aggressive Pro-Life Leader” in the Senate In March 2010, the New York Times reported, “As a lawmaker from one of the state’s most liberal regions, Mr. Cuccinelli proudly described himself as ‘the most aggressive pro-life leader in the Virginia Senate.’ He favored legislation granting legal rights to fetuses at conception and voted against a bill stating that contraception is not abortion. He also sponsored bills requiring regulations so strict they would have put most abortion clinics out of business.” [New York Times, 3/25/10]

    Cuccinelli on TRAP Regulations: “The Ultimate Goal Which is to Make Abortion Disappear in America” In a May 2012 interview with Peter Shinn, president of Pro-Life Unity and director of Cherish Life Ministries, Cuccinelli said “You know, we want to show them the respect and love they need at a very difficult time all while keeping in mind the ultimate goal which is to make abortion disappear in America and make people want it that way.” [Interview with Peter Shinn, 5/7/12]

    Cuccinelli “Threatened” Board Of Health That He Could Deny Them Legal Counsel If They Disregarded His Advice On Abortion Clinics In September 2012, the Virginian-Pilot reported: “Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has threatened Board of Health members that they could be denied state legal counsel and have to pay for their own defense if they again disregard his advice about relaxing controversial abortion clinic rules and litigation ensues. That warning is spelled out in a memo Wednesday from the Attorney General’s Office – the lawyer for state agencies and boards – obtained by The Virginian-Pilot days before a board meeting to reconsider regulations for the licensure of clinics.” [Virginian-Pilot,9/13/12]

    Editorial: “Cuccinelli Bullied the Commonwealth’s Board of Health” In October 2012, the Manassas News & Messenger wrote in an editorial, “But last month Cuccinelli bullied the commonwealth’s Board of Health to reverse its own decision allowing such grandfathering by threatening to withhold any legal support from his office, should individual board members ever face lawsuits over their actions. The enormous influence of the attorney general’s office has rarely ever been used so blatantly and egregiously to further the personal political agenda of a sitting AG – a foul distortion of state government made even stranger by the fact that Cuccinelli is also a self-proclaimed gubernatorial candidate.” [Manassas News & Messenger, 10/21/12]

    Regulation Issue Had “Long Simmered in Virginia’s General Assembly” but “Took on New Life” after Cuccinelli’s Opinion The Daily Press reported, “The issue has long simmered in Virginia’s General Assembly but took on new life this year when Republican Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli issued an opinion in August saying that the Virginia Board of Health has the power to bypass the Legislature and to immediately enact the new rules.” [Daily Press, 2/25/11]

    Cuccinelli Touted Personal Years-Long Effort to Pass the Legislation: “As a State Senator I Tried for Several Years to Pass This Legislation” He said, “As a state senator I tried for several years to pass this legislation. It is great to see that today, members from both sides of the aisle — and the lieutenant governor — realized the importance of this legislation and were able to score this victory for life and the dignity of women.” [News and Advance, 2/25/11]

    Cuccinelli Introduced Legislation Twice in the Senate In 2003 and 2004, Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would define “’hospital,’ for the purposes of the Board of Health’s regulatory requirements, to include “any clinic or other facility performing 25 or more abortions per year.” The legislation failed in the Senate Education and Health Committee both years. [2004: SB 146; 2003: SB 772]

    Abortion Clinic In Norfolk Closed after Cuccinelli-Backed Regulations Given Final Approval In April 2013 the Virginian-Pilot reported, “Picketers couldn’t do it. Neither could a bomber, an arsonist or an anti-abortion activist firing two dozen bullets into the building on East Little Creek Road. For four decades, Hillcrest Clinic – South Hampton Roads’ first medical facility devoted to providing legal abortions – defied efforts to close its doors. That run ends Saturday. Virginia’s new licensing standards for abortion clinics, coupled with a drop in demand for pregnancy terminations, have driven the clinic out of business.” [Hillcrest Clinic, accessed 7/8/13; Virginian-Pilot, 4/19/13]

    At a rally at Liberty University Cuccinelli said, “This personhood bill recognizes a scientific reality. Life begins at conception. Make sure you talk to your senators. Advocate for this issue.”

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From DPVA:

    Republicans Turn to Extremist Cuccinelli in Latest Embarrassing Effort to Bump Qualified Female Jurist

    Early today, the Virginian-Pilot reported that Republicans are considering failed gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli for appointment to the Supreme Court of Virginia. This is the latest chapter in a political disaster for Virginia Republicans who are throwing everything at the wall trying to keep a qualified and bipartisan female jurist off of the bench.

    During his time as Attorney General, Ken Cuccinelli has been described as someone who, “demeaned his office by using it as a blatantly partisan bully pulpit to attack Obamacare, illegal immigrants, homosexuals and climate-change scientists.” Virginians rejected Cuccinelli for Governor, but Republicans remain under the delusion that Cuccinelli would be qualified for a role that demands impartiality. Meanwhile, Republicans are hell-bent on replacing Jane Roush, a well-respected and experienced jurist who everyone agrees is qualified to do the job.

    “Virginia Republicans are considering ramming Cuccinelli into Virginia’s highest court to replace a well-qualified, bipartisan female jurist, even after Virginians rejected his extreme positions during his failed 2013 gubernatorial bid,” said Emily Bolton of the Democratic Party of Virginia. “Instead of simply accepting the appointment of Jane Roush as a qualified and respected pick for the court, Republicans have engaged in an embarrassing and demeaning effort to remove her that has imperiled the impartiality of our judiciary system. It’s time to bring this rolling fiasco to an end and elect Justice Roush to the full term she deserves.”

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Del. Alfonso Lopez: “OK… Let me get this straight… The Virginia Senate Republicans just put forward Ken Cuccinelli for the State Supreme Court?!?! In 2013, gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli went so far as to compare immigration to pest control and immigrants to RATS. They can’t be serious…”

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Sen. Adam Ebbin: “The notion that Ken Cuccinelli is fit to serve on the Virginia Supreme Court is offensive and frightening. He is far outside the views of mainstream Virginians. I will be working to see that his nomination is rejected.”

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Former Rep. Leslie Byrne: “If either Senators Vogel or Reeves want to run for Governor they had better think twice about voting for Cuccinelli. That goes for any Rep. thinking of state-wide office.”

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From DPVA:

    Cuccinelli’s Multiple Conflict of Interest Scandals Make him Unfit for the Bench

    Over the coming hours, DPVA will highlight different reasons why Cuccinelli would be a damaging choice for Virginia’s Supreme Court.

    Other reasons Cuccinelli is unfit for the bench:

    #1: Cuccinelli’s record on women’s health

    #2: Cuccinelli’s record on LGBT issues

    Here is a sampling of Cuccinelli’s multiple conflict of interest scandals:

    Virginia’s Inspector General found “that a deputy in the office of Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II improperly collaborated with energy companies.” Virginia’s inspector general has found that a deputy in the office of Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II improperly collaborated with energy companies in a legal dispute over natural gas royalties in southwest Virginia, according to a report released Tuesday. [Washington Post, 10/15/13]

    More precisely, Virginia’s Inspector General found that Cuccinelli’s office had “inappropriately used Commonwealth resources” and that a senior assistant attorney general acted “beyond the scope of her authority and position.” Based upon the results of this inquiry, the OSIG confirmed that the SAAG inappropriately used Commonwealth resurces in support of the aforementioned private litigation beyond the scope of her authority and position. [OSIG, 10/15/13]

    The parent of one of the relevant companies — CONSOL — gave $32,000 to Cuccinelli’s campaign for attorney general, and more than $111,000 to his campaign for governor. [VPAP, acc. 3/8/16]

    A federal judge called the attorney general’s office’s actions “shocking.” Within the 85-page decision, Sargent wrote: “Shockingly, these emails show that the Board, or at least Pigeon, has been actively involved in assisting EQT and CNX with the defense of these cases, including offering advice on and providing information for use on the Motions before the court. [Associated Press via Bristol Herald-Courier, 6/6/13]

    As Attorney General, Ken Cuccinelli failed to disclose $4,500 worth of gifts from Jonnie Williams and more than $10,000 worth of stock in his company. Cuccinelli had initially failed to disclose, as is required for Virginia elected officials, that he owned more than $10,000 in stock in a single company, Star Scientific. About a month later, Cuccinelli announced that he had not reported gifts worth $4,500 from Williams. The gifts were two stays that Cuccinelli and his family had made at Williams’s Smith Mountain Lake vacation house, one last summer and the other over Thanksgiving in 2010, when Williams also supplied a catered turkey dinner. [Washington Post, 7/18/13]

    Cuccinelli accepted $55,000 from Bobby Thompson, the director of the U.S. Navy Veterans Association. Democrats called on Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II (R) on Monday to give away more than $55,000 in campaign contributions he received from a man who served as director of a charitable organization that is now under scrutiny by officials in three states and that led an effort to loosen laws governing charity registration in Virginia this year. The Democrats’ calls came on the day that Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) said he would give an established veterans charity a $5,000 contribution he had received from Bobby Thompson, who until last fall was director of the U.S. Navy Veterans Association. [Washington Post, 5/18/10]

    “Thompson was Cuccinelli’s second-largest individual donor” in the 2009 cycle. Thompson was Cuccinelli’s second-largest individual donor before the November election. [Washington Post, 5/18/10]

    CNN: U.S. Navy Veterans Association was “a charity scam that stole millions of dollars intended for Navy veterans.” A man convicted of running a charity scam that stole millions of dollars intended for Navy veterans was sentenced in an Ohio courtroom Monday to 28 years in prison […] The defendant was convicted in a Cuyahoga County court last month of running a telemarketing scam through his Florida-based U.S. Navy Veterans Association. Authorities have said the charity raised about $100 million from donors in 41 states from 2002 to 2010, but little went to help veterans, The Plain Dealer newspaper of Cleveland reported. [CNN, 12/16/13]

    Cuccinelli gave away the funds only after two months of public discussion and pressure. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has decided to give away $55,500 in campaign contributions he received last year from the director of an embattled veterans charity organization that is under investigation in Virginia and several other states. Cuccinelli’s decision, announced Wednesday, comes after two months of controversy and unanswered questions about the activities of the U.S. Navy Veterans Association and its mysterious director, Bobby Thompson. [Roanoke Times, 7/28/10]

    Thompson was subsequently sentenced to twenty-eight years in prison for his crimes. Bobby Thompson, convicted mastermind of a national veterans charity scam that bilked donors out of an estimated $100 million, was sentenced to 28 years in prison this morning by Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Steven Gall. Thompson is a stolen identity used by John Donald Cody, 67, to set up the U.S. Navy Veterans Association, based in Tampa, which solicited donations in Ohio and 40 other states from 2002-2010. [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 12/17/13]

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From DPVA:

    Cuccinelli’s Record on LGBT Issues Makes Him Unfit for the Bench

    Over the coming hours, DPVA will highlight different reasons why Cuccinelli would be a damaging choice for Virginia’s Supreme Court.

    Other reasons Cuccinelli is unfit for the bench:

    #1: Cuccinelli’s record on women’s health

    Here is a sampling of Cuccinelli’s record on LGBT issues:

    Said the “homosexual agenda” brings “brings nothing but self-destruction, not only physically but of their soul” [Washington Post, 2/05/08]

    Said homosexual acts are “intrinsically wrong” and “they don’t comport with natural law” and claimed homosexuals “choose” to be homosexuals and society shouldn’t “encourage” that type of behavior or “alter our law to make people feel good” [Virginian Pilot Editorial, 10/26/09; Susan Baer, Washingtonian, April 2011]

    Voted against overturning Virginia’s antiquated sodomy law which criminalizes consensual, private relations by up to five years in prison and a $2,500 fine [Senate Bill 477, 2004, and The Roanoke Times, 2/12/04]

    Said he fought gay marriage so that “sex-based relationships wouldn’t be forced on the rest of society as if those relationships were normal.” [Connection Newspapers, 1/14/04]

    Said, “The militant homosexual agenda generally threatens the stability of our families and our society. I want a resolution to say we want to keep things the way they are in Virginia.” [Connection Newspapers, 1/14/04]

    Tried to force Virginia’s public colleges and universities to end policies that ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation including for faculty, employees and students. [Washington Post, 3/6/10]

    Opposed adoption by gay couples, directed the state Department of Social Services it could not ban discrimination by adoption agencies based on sexual orientation [UPI, 4/14/11]

    One of fourteen Senators to oppose private companies allowing employees to add domestic partners to their health care plans—Virginia was the only state to prohibit this .” [The Washington Post, 02/25/05, and Senate Bill 1338, 2005]

    As AG, Cuccinelli advised Gov. McDonnell to drop an executive order allowing state employees to add domestic partners to their health care plans [Roanoke Times Editorial, 2/01/10]

    Sponsored legislation calling on Congress to pass a Constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, civil unions and domestic partnerships [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/18/04]

    Voted to prohibit civil unions sanctioned in other states from being recognized in Virginia [The Associated Press State & Local Wire, 3/10/04]

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Senator McEachin Decries Nomination of Ken Cuccinelli to the Virginia Supreme Court; His Judgment and Ethics are Disqualifying

    Richmond – Senator A. Donald McEachin (D-Henrico) today issued this statement about the nomination of Ken Cuccinelli to the Virginia Supreme Court.

    “Ken Cucinelli’s egregious policy positions are well-known. His positions are and remain out of step with the views of Virginians. However, we must not forget that his ethics and his judgment also disqualify him from any judicial position. As Attorney General, he failed to disclose thousands of dollars in gifts from Jonnie Williams. He tried to keep tens of thousands of dollars in contributions from a con artist who ran a phony veterans’ charity. Worst of all, his office improperly assisted a major campaign donor — seemingly to the detriment of Virginia landowners.”

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    A plausible theory I’m hearing from a Richmond insider (paraphrased): I think Republicans convinced Sturtevant that they needed Gillespie, NOT Cuccinelli, to be their 2017 gubernatorial nominee. The problem is that Cooch would most likely beat Gillespie in a GOP convention and then lose to Ralph Northam in the general election. So they kicked Cooch upstairs to the Supreme Court. I can see why that argument worked for Sturtevant, as he basically saves his party from likely defeat in 2017 and instead gives them a good chance at a sweep of all three statewide offices.

    • Morris Meyer

      His tweet above suggests that he is on to being gamed.

  • http://www.bearingdrift.com/ Brian W. Schoeneman

    All of this would have been avoided if somebody would have crossed over and voted for Judge Alston.

    McEachin and the gang have nobody to blame but themselves for Justice Cuccinelli.

    • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

      Talk to Glen Sturtevant.

      • http://www.bearingdrift.com/ Brian W. Schoeneman

        Or any of the Democrats.

        • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

          Why on earth would any Democrat in his or her right mind have voted to boot a superbly-qualified female justice off the court? Clearly, they shouldn’t have and they didn’t. This is 100% a Republican issue, as much as you try to “blame the victims” (the Dems, sure, but also every Virginian and anyone who cares about the rule of law).

          • http://www.bearingdrift.com/ Brian W. Schoeneman

            Because the Governor didn’t follow protocol, and because there was no way Judge Roush was going to get the appointment. Judge Alston, a superbly-qualified African-American judge, could have gotten the slot instead.

            But folks voted no, so now you’re going to get Ken Cuccinelli on the Supreme Court. Next time, these guys need to think twice before they do something dumb.

            Had McAuliffe just picked up the phone in the first place, all of this could have been avoided.

          • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

            Fascinating narrative, very creative. :)

          • Alexsis Rodgers

            If Republicans were so concerned about protocol, they would have properly interviewed Cuccinelli just like every other judicial nomination. This is not about protocol. This is about partisan politics.

          • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

            Bingo. Specifically, it’s about two main things: 1) the 2017 gubernatorial election and Republicans’ desire to avoid a nasty, divisive convention pitting Ken Cuccinelli against Ed Gillespie (even worse from their perspective, resulting in a Cooch nomination and another loss statewide in November 2017); 2) giving a big FU to Terry McAuliffe, just because…

          • http://www.bearingdrift.com/ Brian W. Schoeneman

            Sure it is. But this all started with the Governor acting like he could pull a fast one on the General Assembly. Blame him for this.

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From DPVA:

    Ken Cuccinelli’s Crusade Against Climate Change Science

    …Here is a sampling of how Cuccinelli launched a full-blown crusade against climate change science:

    HEADLINE: A Climate Skeptic With a Bully Pulpit in Virginia Finds an Ear in Congress

    Cuccinelli Waged “One Man War” against Climate Change Science

    In February 2011, John Collins Rudolf profiled Cuccinelli’s “one-man war” against climate change science in the New York Times.

    The piece read, “For nearly a year, Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II, Virginia’s crusading Republican attorney general, has waged a one-man war on the theory of man-made global warming.” [John Collins Rudolf, New York Times, 2/22/11]

    Cuccinelli’s “Allegations” against Climate Science “Resonating” with Tea Party Members of Congress

    In February 2011, John Collins Rudolf profiled Cuccinelli’s battles against climate change and noted he gained traction with Tea Party members newly elected to Congress.

    The piece read, “Now his allegations of manipulated data and scientific fraud are resonating in Congress, where Republican leaders face an influx of new members, many of them Tea Party stalwarts like Mr. Cuccinelli, eager to inveigh against the body of research linking man-made emissions to warming. ‘There’s a huge appetite among the rank-and-file to raise fundamental questions about the underlying science,’ said Michael McKenna, a Republican strategist and energy lobbyist.” [John Collins Rudolf, New York Times, 2/22/11]

    Promised to Sue Federal Government over Any Climate Change Legislation

    In November 2009, Inside Energy with Federal Lands reported Cuccinelli had promised during the campaign to sue the federal government over any climate change legislation became law.

    The article read, “In another development in the Virginia election, Republican Ken Cuccinelli won the race for attorney general. During the campaign, he said he would use his new office to sue the federal government if it passed a climate-change bill capping greenhouse gas emissions from electric utilities, oil refineries and other industries.” [Inside Energy with Federal Lands, 11/09/09

    Cuccinelli Called Climate Change Proposal “Ration and Tax”

    The article read, “Cuccinelli, in an October opinion piece, said he would oppose any efforts to enact such a system in Congress. ‘As attorney general, I will use the tools of the office, including the 10th Amendment, to oppose ‘Ration and Tax’ and to pre-serve the opportunity for Virginians to have the energy they need to be successful in today’s difficult economy,’ he wrote on the conservative political web site Redstate.com.” [Inside Energy with Federal Lands, 11/09/09]

    Cast Doubt on Global Warming after Major Snowstorm

    In February 2010, the Richmond Times Dispatch reported Cuccinelli mocked global warming after a major snowstorm hit the DC metro area.

    The article read, “In the Feb. 8 edition of The Cuccinelli Compass, his e-mailed newsletter, the Fairfax County resident wrote that he was looking ‘out the window at 30+ inches of global snowing.’” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/17/10]

    Filed Federal Lawsuit to Overturn EPA Ruling that Greenhouse Gases Pose a Health Risk

    In February 2010, Cuccinelli and the Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott filed a complaint with the US Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia asking that the federal court formally review a December 2009 EPA ruling classifying greenhouse gases as a risk to human health.

    In the December ruling the EPA held that carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases (GHG) pose a risk to human health and the environment and consequently are subject to regulation under the federal Clean Air Act (CAA). [Chemical News & Intelligence, 2/17/10]

    Cuccinelli’s Lawsuit Signaled “Major Shift” in “Virginia’s Approach to Climate Change”

    In February 2010, the Richmond Times Dispatch reported Cuccinelli’s lawsuit to overturn the EPA ruling classifying greenhouse gases as a health risk and thereby subject to regulation was a “major shift” in Virginia policy.

    The EPA finding came after a 2007 Supreme Court ruling that heat-trapping gases are pollutants that the EPA can regulate.

    The article read, “The moves signal a major shift in Virginia’s approach to climate change. A commission appointed by previous Gov. Timothy M. Kaine, a Democrat, found that global warming could spread disease in Virginia, threaten coastal areas and imperil native animals such as crabs. The panel, which included scientists, business people, lawmakers and environmentalists, unanimously adopted its final report in 2008.” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/17/10]

    EPA Stood by Ruling: “Scientific Evidence Overwhelmingly” Supported

    EPA spokeswoman Adora Andy defended the ruling, “EPA found that the scientific evidence overwhelmingly indicates that greenhouse gases are a threat to the health and welfare of the American people.” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/17/10]

    Sierra Club: Cuccinelli “Wasting Taxpayers’ Money on Frivolous Litigation”

    Glen Besa, director of the Virginia chapter of the Sierra Club, said, “The attorney general is wasting taxpayers’ money on frivolous litigation. . . . In effect, he’s questioning climate change.” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/17/10]

    Cuccinelli Made State “First in the Nation” to Contest Global Warming Ruling

    In February 2010, the Virginian Pilot reported, “Virginia’s attorney general said Tuesday that the state will be the first in the nation to contest a key finding by the Obama administration that carbon dioxide is a danger to public health and contributes to global warming. In a statement, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli said he has filed petitions with the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington in hope of reversing the finding.” [Virginian Pilot, 2/17/10]

    EPA Ruling “Pivotal” to Cutting Greenhouse Gases

    The article read, “The ruling is pivotal to the Obama administration’s drive to cut greenhouse gases through emission permits for sources such as factories, power plants, cars, trucks and businesses, as well as through incentives for clean-energy development.” [Virginian Pilot, 2/17/10]

    Sierra Club: “Embarrassing” to the State to Have “Climate-Denier” AG

    “It’s a shame, and, frankly, embarrassing, that we now have a climate-denier as an attorney general,” said Glen Besa, state director of the Sierra Club, an advocacy group. [Virginian Pilot, 2/17/10]

    Cuccinelli Questioned EPA Use of IPCC Data in Reaching Greenhouse Gases Ruling

    In February 2010, Cuccinelli questioned the data used by the EPA in reaching its ruling on greenhouse gases.

    The 200-page EPA technical document supporting its endangerment finding for greenhouse gases specified that it relied heavily on the findings of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as the basis for its decision to regulate those emissions.

    The article read, “The IPCC reports contend that warming of earth’s atmosphere has been consistent in the decades since the end of World War II, that it is continuing and that human activity is likely the cause of those atmospheric temperature gains. But Cuccinelli contends that leaked e-mails from scientists at the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia in the UK have fatally undermined both the data and conclusions of IPCC reports.” [Chemical News & Intelligence, 2/18/10]

    Cuccinelli: EPA “Ceded” Responsibility by Using other Data

    The article read, “In relying on IPCC reports, said Cuccinelli, ‘EPA substantially ceded its obligation to make a judgment on the dangers of greenhouse gas emissions…There are significant issues with the EPA basing much of its endangerment finding on IPCC reports.” [Chemical News & Intelligence, 2/18/10]

    Criticized EPA for Using UN Data instead of US Data

    He said, “The IPCC reports were produced without regard to US data standards and thus lack the transparency and data quality standards that the EPA should be demanding in the reports it bases its endangerment findings on.” [Chemical News & Intelligence, 2/18/10]

    Said EPA Ruling Driven by Politics

    He said, “The EPA was driven by political concerns and used questionable scientific reports to reach an outcome dictated by politics. We cannot allow unelected bureaucrats with political agendas to use falsified data to regulate American industry and to drive our economy into the ground.” [Chemical News & Intelligence, 2/18/10]

    Cuccinelli and “Global Warming Skeptics” Harped on Leaked Emails related to Data Used by the EPA

    In February 2010, the Richmond Times Dispatch reported Cuccinelli and global warming skeptics criticized the EPA for using a UN climate change report related to a British email leak.

    The article read, “According to Cuccinelli, that faulty data made their way into a key 2007 climate-change report by a United Nations panel and ultimately were used by the EPA to make its finding that global warming threatens the public. Many global-warming skeptics have been calling the British e-mail flap ‘Climategate’ and saying the messages disprove the notion that people are warming the planet.” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/18/10]

    NASA Scientist: British Emails Do Not Undermine Research

    Bruce A. Wielicki, senior scientist for earth sciences at the NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, said the British e-mails do not undermine the voluminous research that shows people’s actions are warming the Earth.

    He said, “The Climate-gate issue is totally blown out of proportion . . . What we are primarily seeing is disinformation being spread by people who are not experts in climate science.” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/18/10]

    2007 UN Climate Change Report Cited by EPA Won a Nobel Prize

    In February 2007, the Richmond Times Dispatch noted the 2007 UN climate change report cited by the EPA in its ruling won a Nobel Prize. [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/18/10]

    George Mason Meteorologist: Global Warming “Practically Undeniable”

    The article read, “The evidence for manmade global warming ‘is practically undeniable,’ said Jim Kinter, a meteorologist, part-time George Mason University faculty member and director of the Center for Ocean-Land-Atmosphere Studies, a Calverton, Md., nonprofit dedicated to climate research. ‘There is little or no dispute in the scientific community about global warming,’ Kinter said.” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 2/18/10]

    Cuccinelli Said EPA Ruling was “Not Real Science”

    The article read, “At issue for Cuccinelli is the EPA’s reliance on information from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The credibility of the panel and some prominent climate researchers in England has recently been questioned. E-mails stolen from the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia showed that some climate scientists stonewalled skeptics and discussed hiding data on climate change. ‘It’s political science, not real science,’ Cuccinelli said.” [Virginian Pilot, 2/18/10]

    Editorial Slammed Cuccinelli’s Lawsuit to Overturn EPA Ruling as Part of His “Political Agenda”

    In February 2010, an editorial in the Virginian Pilot slammed Cuccinelli for his lawsuit to overturn the EPA ruling on greenhouse gases.

    The editorial read, “VIRGINIANS knew it wouldn’t take long for Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli to focus his attention and office on furthering his political agenda and ambitions. The surprise, perhaps, is that it took him a whole month to put Virginia embarrassingly ahead of Texas as an opponent of science and the source of states-rights nonsense.” [Virginian Pilot Editorial, 2/19/10]

    Cuccinelli Filed Complaint with EPA and a Petition in Federal Court, “Just to be Sure”

    The editorial read, “Cuccinelli on Tuesday filed paperwork asking the Environmental Protection Agency to essentially ignore a 2007 Supreme Court ruling that the feds have an obligation to regulate greenhouse gas emissions helping to warm the planet. He also filed a petition in federal court, just to be sure.” [Virginian Pilot Editorial, 2/19/10]

    Despite “Concerns of Constituents,” Cuccinelli Picked an “Expensive Losing Fight”

    The editorial read, “You’d think the attorney general of a state with one of the places most vulnerable to rising sea levels — that would be Hampton Roads — would be sensitive to the concerns of constituents. Instead, he’s decided to pick an expensive losing fight with a federal agency that has science and the Constitution on its side.” [Virginian Pilot Editorial, 2/19/10]

    Editorial: Cuccinelli Denied Global Warming even before EPA Ruling and So-Called Faulty Data

    The editorial charged, “Here’s the interesting thing, though: Cuccinelli was convinced that global warming was bunk long before either the stolen e-mails were released or the minor problems were found in the IPCC report. The attorney general was convinced before any of the discovery of the evidence he cited at Wednesday’s press conference. That’s probably not how Virginians want the state’s top lawman to reason: Reach a verdict first, then consider only the evidence that supports it.” [Virginian Pilot Editorial, 2/19/10]

    HEADLINE: Cuccinelli investigates ‘Climategate’ scientist

    Demanded UVA Turn over Former Professor’s Emails about Global Warming Research

    In May 2010, the Washington Post reported, “Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II is demanding that the University of Virginia turn over a broad range of documents from a former professor to determine whether he defrauded taxpayers as he sought grants for global warming research.” [Washington Post, 5/04/10]

    Washington Post Editorial: Cuccinelli’s Investigation of Michael Mann “Designed to Intimidate and Suppress Honest Research”

    In October 2010, the Washington Post editorial board stated, “The attorney general’s logic is so tenuous as to leave only one plausible explanation: that he is on a fishing expedition designed to intimidate and suppress honest research and the free exchange of ideas upon which science and academia both depend — all because he does not like what science says about climate change. Among other things, the attorney general demands that U-Va. turn over any correspondence it may have between Mr. Mann and 39 other scientists. Mr. Mann points out that among those Mr. Cuccinelli did not list by name are the two other researchers on the African savannah research grant that the attorney general is supposedly investigating.” [Washington Post Editorial, 10/6/10]

    Editorial Praised Virginia Supreme Court Ruling Against Cuccinelli’s Investigation that Forced the University of Virginia to Spend $600,000 on Legal Fees

    In March 2012, the Washington Post editorial board wrote, “Now that the Supreme Court has shut Mr. Cuccinelli down, what’s left is a range of consequences that can only hurt the commonwealth. The university had to raise nearly $600,000 for legal fees — money the cash-strapped university should have been able to use for something productive. On top of that are the public resources of the attorney general’s office that Mr. Cuccinelli wasted.” [Washington Post Editorial, 3/11/12]

    2011: Richmond Times Dispatch Editorial: Cuccinelli Should Drop Inquiry and Apologize to Mann and Taxpayers

    In August 2011, an editorial in the Richmond Times Dispatch stated, “The editorial read, “At this point, the decent thing for Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli to do would be to drop his own inquiry, apologize to Mann and then apologize to the taxpayers.” [Richmond Times Dispatch Editorial, 8/26/11]

    2012: Richmond Times Dispatch Editorial: Cuccinelli’s “Pursuit Of Mann Was Wrong In Just About Every Way That It Is Possible To Be Wrong”

    In March 2012, a Richmond Times Dispatch editorial stated: “Unfortunately, his pursuit of Mann was wrong in just about every way that it is possible to be wrong. That it rested on dubious science was the least of its many shortcomings. After all, the AG is not a scientist and cannot be expected to know much about climatology. But he is a lawyer, and he should know something about the law. Yet in order to bring a civil investigative demand, Cuccinelli relied on an extremely elastic interpretation of Virginia’s Fraud Against Taxpayers Act (FATA) — a move not gracefully executed by someone who professes to believe in strict scrutiny and original intent.” [Richmond Times Dispatch Editorial, 3/5/12]

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Another interesting Cooch-related theory I just heard: he left office in January 2014, which means his COBRA just ran out in February. Ironically, seems like this anti-government crusader needs a government job to get health insurance of his (large) family! LOL

    • Charles Bright

      I thought he was the leader of the Senate Conservatives Fund. Is that a paying/insuring gig?

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From DPVA:

    Cuccinelli the Conspiracy Theorist: Tin Foil Hats Don’t Match Judge Robes

    …Here is a sampling of Cuccinelli’s conspiracy theories:

    Agreed “Obama is Going to Have His Attorney General Indict Our Current Governor,” Said “There Are Days I Have That in the Front of My Mind”

    In July 2013, Cuccinelli agreed with a man at a town hall meeting who speculated that President Obama would indict Governor McDonnell in October. The Virginian-Pilot reported, “Most of the queries from the friendly crowd were policy-oriented, giving the GOP candidate a chance to pitch his platform. One member of the audience, however, had a strategic concern. ‘Obama is going to have his attorney general indict our current governor,’ the man said. ‘And he’s going to drop that bomb on everybody in October. I hope you have that in the back of your mind.’ Cuccinelli replied: ‘There are days I have that in the front of my mind.’” [Virginian-Pilot, 7/16/13]

    Did Not Want Social Security Number for His Youngest Son for Fear of Government Tracking

    In June 2009, the Washington Post reported, “A video clip making the rounds on GOP and Democratic blogs shows Cuccinelli at a spring campaign event saying that he might not obtain a Social Security number for his seventh child out of fear that it ‘is being used to track you.’” [Washington Post, 6/12/09; Video]

    Cuccinelli Implied Obama Not Born in the United States, Said “The Speculation is Kenya”

    In March 2010, the Washington Independent posted an interview from an unknown date in which Cuccinelli doubted Obama’s citizenship, stating, “Someone is going to have to come forward with nailed down testimony that he was born in place B, wherever that is. You know, the speculation is Kenya. And that doesn’t seem beyond the realm of possibility.” [Washington Independent, 3/15/10, Video]

    HEADLINE: “Ken Cuccinelli Suggested Planned Parenthood Is Racist” [Politico, 5/28/13]

    Politico: Cuccinelli Has Drawn Connections “Between Planned Parenthood And Racism”

    In May 2013, Politico reported: “Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has said he won’t defend the statements of lieutenant governor candidate E.W. Jackson, including his assertion that Planned Parenthood has ‘been far more lethal to black lives than the KKK.’ But Cuccinelli, too, has drawn similar connections between Planned Parenthood and racism.” [Politico, 5/28/13]

    Cuccinelli: “Let’s Dispense with the Outrageous Notion” that Sex Ed Reduces Teen Pregnancy

    In 2008, Cuccinelli wrote a letter to the editor of the Virginian-Pilot defending his amendment to defund Planned Parenthood by arguing that sexual education programs sponsored by Planned Parenthood were a marketing tool for the organization. He wrote, “Finally, let’s dispense with the outrageous notion that Planned Parenthood is reducing teenage pregnancy on some mythical altruistic basis. Planned Parenthood reduces teen pregnancy by providing abortions, which both makes Planned Parenthood a lot of money and ends a pregnancy. Planned Parenthood’s sex-ed programs in our schools are what a marketing executive might call a “loss leader,” used to introduce their organization and all it has to offer, e.g., abortion on demand, to our children. I believe most Virginians agree with me that such an organization should not receive the hard-earned tax dollars of Virginia’s citizens.” [Cuccinelli Letter to the Editor, Virginian-Pilot, 3/7/08]

    Cuccinelli: Medicare and Social Security “Make People Dependent on Government”

    He wrote in his book The Last Line of Defense, “One of their favorite ways to increase their power is by creating programs that dispense subsidized government benefits, such as Medicare, Social Security, and outright welfare (Medicaid, food stamps, subsidized housing, and the like). These programs make people dependent on government. And once people are dependent, they feel they can’t afford to have the programs taken away, no matter how inefficient, poorly run, or costly to the rest of society.” [Washington Post, 1/30/13]

    Cuccinelli Wrote Medicare and Social Security Created by “Bad Politicians” to “Grow Government,” Called Government Benefits like Medicare and Social Security “Goodies”

    He wrote in his book The Last Line of Defense, “Sometimes bad politicians set out to grow government in order to increase their own power and influence. This phenomenon doesn’t just happen in Washington; it happens at all levels of government. The amazing this is that they often grow government without protest from citizens, and sometimes they even get buy-in from citizens — at least from the ones getting the goodies.” [Washington Post, 1/30/13]

    Cuccinelli Would Target Anti-Pollution Regulations, Calling Environmental Movement a “Shell” for Plots to Destroy Capitalism

    In October 2009, Robert McCarthy wrote in the Washington Post that Cuccinelli would take on anti-pollution regulations because he believed the environmental movement was designed to end capitalism. He wrote, “Anti-pollution regulations could be a target, as Cuccinelli told College of William and Mary students Sept. 20, ‘The environmental movement has been used more than any other movement in the last 25 years as a shell for people who have a different agenda, and that is to destroy and get rid of capitalism.’” [Robert McCarthy, Washington Post, 10/22/09]

    Cuccinelli Criticized Public Pools in Recent Book for Cutting into the “Liberty Pie”

    In his recent book The Last Line of Defense, he writes, “Many localities, for instance, build big public recreation centers with pools, racquetball courts, and workout facilities. That sounds great, and they’re certainly fun to use, so what’s the problem? The problem is that government is competing with privately owned businesses…Because government’s ability to crowd out private activity not only reduces economic efficiencies and the power of the free market, but also the opportunities of entrepreneurs and the choices of consumers, citizens’ liberties once again finds itself reduced to a smaller and smaller sliver of the liberty pie.” [The Last Line of Defense, Page 240]

    Suggested Obama Stole the 2012 Presidential Election

    In November 2012, Think Progress reported, “Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) told a radio host he completely agreed with her assertion that investigations are needed to determine why President Obama lost “every one” of the states with photo identification requirements for voting, yet won re-election. Cuccinelli, who has lost most of the major legal cases he has brought since taking office in 2010, told the host she was ‘preaching to the choir.’” [Think Progress, 11/27/12]

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From DPVA:

    Even Cuccinelli’s Own Party Thinks He’s Too Extreme

    …Here is a sampling of how Cuccinelli’s own party thinks he’s too extreme:

    Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling on Cuccinelli: “I Worry about the Kinds of Issues He Would Focus on as Governor. I Worry about His Ability to Build the Consensus that’s Necessary to Solve Problems and Get Things Done”

    In August 2013, Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling said in an interview with Real Clear Politics, “I worry about the kinds of issues he would focus on as governor. I worry about his ability to build the consensus that’s necessary to solve problems and get things done. He has tended to be a rigid ideologue who thrives on conflict and confrontation and tends to be drawn to the more controversial and divisive issues of the day. They fire up the Tea Party base, I’m just not sure they’re the right skill set for someone who wants to be governor.” [Real Clear Politics, 8/25/13]

    Former Republican Congressman Tom Davis: Cuccinelli Running on a Platform More Suited for Fifteen Years Ago

    In October 2013, Former Republican Congressman Tom Davis criticized Cuccinelli’s campaign. He stated, “The [GOP] party has got to recognize times change and running a race that might have been successful 15 years ago doesn’t necessarily work in these times.” [NBC 4, 10/15/13]

    Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling: Republican Ticket Is “Probably The Most Conservative And Ideologically Driven Ticket In The History Of The State”

    In May 2013, Bill Bolling said on NewsChannel 8: “So we ended up with this closed party convention. These conventions attract not just the most conservative voices, but the most ideologically driven voices within a party, and as a result of that we have nominated what is probably the most conservative and ideologically driven ticket in the history of the state. It is certainly a ticket that will excite the Tea Party groups and the Ron Paul folks. The question is will that ticket be able to connect with the more moderate and independent voters whose support you have to have to win elections in Virginia these days.” [NewsChannel 8, 5/27/13]

    Former Republican Delegate Vince Callahan: Cuccinelli’s Tax Plan Would Have a “Huge Negative Impact’ on Education and Public Safety

    In May 2013, former Republican Delegate Vince Callahan who served in the House for forty years stated, “Cuccinelli is proposing to reduce taxes, but is silent as to where will the needed revenue come from. Reducing taxes would have a huge negative impact on state services, including, but not limited to, education and safety services. Core services under this plan would have to be reduced or eliminated, and there is no indication as to which ones in this proposal will be cut. State taxes in Virginia are relatively low, which is why Virginia is considered a good state in which to do business.” [Roanoke Free Press, 5/7/13]

    Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling on Cuccinelli: “I Have Serious Reservations About His Electability and His Ability to Effectively and Responsibly Lead Our State”

    In November 2012, Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling stated, “I know his strengths, and I know his weaknesses. I have serious reservations about his electability and his ability to effectively and responsibly lead our state.” [Washington Examiner, 11/18/12]

    Former Republican Senator Russ Potts: Cuccinelli Is “Radical” And “Out-Of-The-Mainstream”

    In February 2013, former Republican senator Russ Potts said during an interview on WAMU: “I do want to touch on something you all were saying earlier. You were talking about a lot of the radical legislation by Bob Marshall. Well I can assure you, I served in the Senate for eight years with Ken Cuccinelli and he was every bit as radical or more so than Bob Marshall. And there’s not a dime’s worth of difference between Bob Marshall and Ken Cuccinelli in terms of a radical, out-of-the-mainstream legislator.” [WAMU, 2/20/13]

    Former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough: Cuccinelli Is “Certifiable When It Comes To Mainstream Thought”

    In February 2013, former Republican congressman Joe Scarborough said on MSNBC: “I’d like to say a good example, and I’ll just say it: Cuccinelli. Right? So here’s a guy, he’s a Tea Party favorite in Virginia. The guy is certifiable when it comes to mainstream political thought.” [MSNBC, 2/4/13]

    Former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough: Cuccinelli “Has Said More Things That Offend The Voters That Swing Elections Than Is Humanly Possible”

    In February 2013, former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough said on MSNBC of Cuccinelli: “This is a guy that has said more things that offend the voters that swing elections than is humanly possible.” [MSNBC, 2/4/13]

    Cuccinelli Confronted by Republican Business Leaders “About What Is On the Minds of Many Virginia and National Republicans: Whether the Tea Party-Backed Attorney General Can, Or Wants to, Run a Pragmatic Campaign”

    In February 2013, Politico reported, “Two prominent northern Virginia business leaders got into a heated exchange with Virginia Republican gubernatorial hopeful Ken Cuccinelli in front of a few hundred top GOP donors at a closed-door meeting Friday, multiple sources told POLITICO. Bobbie Kilberg, a longtime Republican donor and CEO of Northern Virginia Technology Council, and Gary Shapiro, CEO of the Arlington-based Consumer Electronics Association, stood up separately to confront Cuccinelli about what is on the minds of many Virginia and national Republicans: whether the Tea Party-backed attorney general can, or wants to, run a pragmatic campaign in the increasingly moderate Old Dominion.” [Politico, 2/25/13]

    Republican Bruce Thompson: “We’re Trying to Attract Businesses from Other Areas of the Country and We’re Telling Women that We’re Going to Regulate the Way That They Run Their Life?”

    In July 2013, Bloomberg reported, “’Mr. Cuccinelli’s very hard stance on some of the social issues is a concern for me,’ said Virginia Beach developer Bruce L. Thompson, chief executive officer of Gold Key/PHR Hotels and Resorts, a financial backer of current Republican Governor Bob McDonnell who in May gave McAuliffe $25,000. ‘I believe personally in a woman’s right to choose, but I also think from an economic development standpoint, we’re trying to attract businesses from other areas of the country, and we’re telling women that we’re going to regulate the way that they run their life? I just don’t think we can be exclusionary when it comes to women’ and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered individuals, Thompson said.” [Bloomberg, 7/22/13]

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From DPVA:

    Cuccinelli’s Record on the Violence Against Women Act Make him Unfit for the Bench

    …Here is a sampling of Cuccinelli’s opposition to the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA):

    Cuccinelli One of Three Attorneys General not to Urge Congress to Reauthorize the Violence against Women Act. The Washington Times reported, “Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II was one of just three state attorneys general who did not sign onto a letter urging Congress to reauthorize the federal Violence against Women Act – a decision that is now placing Virginia’s top prosecutor squarely in the middle of another politically charged debate.” [Washington Times, 4/01/12; National Association of Attorneys General Letter to Congress, 1/11/12]

    Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance: VAWA Saves Lives “In Nearly Every Locality in Virginia” Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance co-directors Kristi VanAudenhove and Alba Jaramillo wrote to Cuccinelli that the act “supports life-saving services for women, children and men in nearly every locality in Virginia, including crisis intervention, shelter, specialized law-enforcement officers, additional prosecutors, and offender-treatment programs.” [Washington Times, 4/01/12]

    Editorial: “Virginians Should Remember His Cowardly Inaction” as He Runs for Governor. In April 2012, an editorial in the Roanoke Times urged Virginian s to remember Cuccinelli’s cowardice in failing to urge Congress to reauthorize the Violence against Women Act as he ran for governor. The editorial read, “Virginians should remember his cowardly inaction as he seeks to become the next governor. He should put the commonwealth solidly behind protecting women from violence and providing services that help victims. If he cannot bring himself to do that, he should explain the deficiencies he sees in the bill.” [Roanoke Times Editorial, 4/05/12]

    The Stakes:

    Ø 62,000 calls to domestic and sexual violence hotlines in 2010

    Ø 166 Virginians lost their lives to domestic violence, a 19.4% increase in domestic homicides from 2009 to 2010

    Ø 6,261 adults and children received 188,982 nights of emergency of temporary shelter due to domestic violence

    Ø …Yet 2,571 were turned away due to lack of space

    Ø 4,687 forcible sex offenses, including rape and sexual assault, reported in 2010

    Ø 61.3 percent of reported forcible sexual offenses victims in 2010 were under the age of 18

    Ø Approximately one in four (24.6%) of the reported forcible sex offenses in 2010 involved offenses committed against family members or intimate dating partners

    Ø 35,846 emergency protective orders were issued by magistrates and judges [Office of the Attorney General, Domestic and Sexual Violence in Virginia, 2011 Annual Report]

    VAWA Delivered $4.7 Million to Virginia to Fight Domestic Violence since Cuccinelli Took Office. In April 2012 the Washington Times reported, “The Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance penned a letter to Mr. Cuccinelli earlier this month saying it was ‘deeply disappointed’ and urged him to support the law, through which Virginia has received more than $4.7 million in grants since 2010.”[Washington Times, 4/01/12]

    VAWA Funded $2.8 Million in V-STOP Grants in Virginia, Supporting 92 Initiatives across the Commonwealth The Violence against Women Act provided more than $2.8 million to Virginia’s Services Training Officers Prosecutors (STOP) Violence against Women Formula Grants program in 2011. The grants are awarded to states to develop and strengthen the response of the criminal justice system to domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking, and to support and enhance services for victims..In 2011, DCJS received $2,899,721 in federal STOP funding, representing an 11.7% increase from the 2010 allocation. Funds awarded to Virginia in 2011 will be used to support grant initiatives during calendar year 2012. In 2011, V-STOP funds supported 92 initiatives statewide in the effort to strengthen law enforcement, investigation strategies, prosecution strategies, and victims’ services.” [Office of the Attorney General, Domestic and Sexual Violence in Virginia, 2011 Annual Report]

    VAWA Funded $800,000 in Community Defined Solutions Grants in Virginia. In October 2010, the Office of the Attorney General along with the Virginia State Police and other state agencies applied for a Community Defined Solutions to Violence against Women Grant (CDS) and received a two year $800,000 grant. The funding has gone toward training and technical assistance on the state and local levels to allied professionals to enhance the coordinated community response to domestic and sexual violence and stalking, to hold offenders accountable through enforcement of protective orders and effective prosecutions, and to enhance victim safety. [Office of the Attorney General, Domestic and Sexual Violence in Virginia, 2011 Annual Report]

    VAWA Funded More than $200K for Sexual Assault Services Program Grants in Virginia In FY 2011, the Violence against Women Act provided a total of $221,858 in Sexual Assault Services Program grants to Virginia, supporting 26 eligible non-profit, non-governmental, sexual assault crisis centers statewide. The grants represent the first federal funding stream solely dedicated to the provision of direct intervention and related assistance for victims of sexual assault. [Office of the Attorney General, Domestic and Sexual Violence in Virginia, 2011 Annual Report]

    VAWA Funded More than $850K to Virginia’s Rape Prevention and Education Initiative. In 2011, the Violence against Women Act provided $863,443 to the Virginia Department of Health, Injury and Violence Prevention Program (IVPP), supporting the Department’s Rape Prevention and Education (RPE) initiative. The program provides technical assistance to 12 local sexual assault crisis centers to promote sexual violence prevention education in local communities. [Office of the Attorney General, Domestic and Sexual Violence in Virginia, 2011 Annual Report]

    Cuccinelli Defended Failure to Sign Letter, Cited Policy to Not Endorse Federal Legislation while Still in Progress. In April 2012, Cuccinelli’s office defended his failure to sign on to the bipartisan letter, stating that his policy was not to sign on to letters regarding federal legislation. The Washington Times reported, “Cuccinelli spokeswoman Caroline Gibson said the attorney general’s office often receives requests from the association to sign on to support letters for federal legislation. But she said bills have often been amended after the initial support, sometimes to the point where the attorney general no longer backed them, so Mr. Cuccinelli’s office has adopted a policy of rarely signing onto such letters.” [Washington Times, 4/01/12]

    Editorial: Cuccinelli May Not Sign Letters on Federal Legislation “But He Has Never Shied Away from Injecting Himself in National Issues” An editorial in the Roanoke Times criticized Cuccinelli, “The attorney general might be shy about signing group letters that endorse legislation, but he has never shied away from injecting himself into national issues. His attacks on health care reform, the Environmental Protection Agency and global climate change come to mind immediately.” [Roanoke Times Editorial, 4/05/12]

    …Yet Cuccinelli Signed a Letter to Congress Regarding Pending Drug Legislation In June 2010, Cuccinelli signed a bipartisan letter dated June 25, 2010, to Congress urging passage of pending legislation, the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act. The letter read, “We write in support of S.3397, the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010, a bill by Senator Klobuchar of Minnesota and Senator Cornyn of Texas that would amend the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) to allow states and private entities to operate responsible drug take-back programs…The Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act would give the United States Attorney General authority to write new regulations governing safe drug disposal – which would, in turn, allow the Department of Justice to authorize appropriate entities to develop effective drug disposal programs. As a result, individuals and long-term care facilities would have access to facilities where they can deliver unused controlled substances to appropriate entities for safe disposal. This would both prevent prescription drug diversion and make our families and communities safer. The bill will have no fiscal impact on the states.”At the time, the bill had been introduced and was pending before the Senate Judiciary Committee. [National Association of Attorneys General, 6/25/10; Thomas, S.3397]

    After Letter, Bill Cleared Senate Committee and Senate Floor In July 2010, the bill cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee and in August 2010 it passed the full Senate by Unanimous Consent. [Thomas, S.3397]

    …Then Bill Cleared House Committee and House Floor. In August 2010, the bill was referred to both the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the House Judiciary Committee. [Thomas, S.3397]

    …Then Amended Bill Passed House after Debate In September 2010, the House passed the bill, as amended, by voice vote. [Thomas, S.3397]

    …Then Senate Concurred with House Amendment and Bill Signed into Law. In September 2010, the Senate voted to concur with the House amendment to the Senate bill by Unanimous Consent. In October 2010, the bill was signed by the President and became Public Law No: 111-273. [Thomas, S.3397]

    Cuccinelli Received More than $260K from Health Care Industry. According to the Virginia Public Access Project, Cuccinelli has accepted $268,305 in contributions from the health care industry. [VPAP, accessed 1/06/13]

    Health Care Industry among Top Industry Contributors to Cuccinelli’s AG Bid. According to the Virginia Public Access Project, the health care industry was one of the top ten industry donor’s to Cuccinelli’s 2009 run for Attorney General contributing a total of $107,006. [VPAP, accessed 1/06/13]

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Video: “Ken Cuccinelli needs your help!”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtJ4Q68J_Tw

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Video: Listen to Ken Cuccinelli sympathize with “birtherism”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-3nkQYONic

  • Quizzical

    Can the Governor stop this?

    • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

      Nope.

      • Quizzical

        What’s the present value of a 12 year stream of income worth $189,000 per year? Whatever it is, it is worth it to buy out Cooch’s future as a Virginia politician.

        • Quizzical

          I’m liking the idea even more today. He would after all work at the Virginia Supreme Court so the element of buying him off isn’t much. Also the other judges on the court would not let him run wild. As a politician he already has done a lot of damage, so good riddance.

          • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

            Except that getting Cooch out of the way helps Ed Gillespie, who would probably be a much tougher GOP gubernatorial nominee for Dems to face in 2017 than Cooch.

  • Stephen Spiker

    Question: should we feel sorry for all of the press release writers whose bosses are falling over themselves to issue a statement (14 in this thread and counting), or should we not because they just get to dust off all of their 2013 talking points?

    • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

      Funny, but what is NOT funny is when you actually READ those press releases and are reminded how corrupt and extreme Cooch is.

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Virginia New American Leaders Respond to the Nomination of Ken Cuccinelli for the State Supreme Court

    RICHMOND – Today, the Virginia Senate Republican Caucus nominated former attorney general and 2013 gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli for the Virginia Supreme Court.

    After the Senate failed to secure the votes necessary to put Appeals Court Judge Rossie D. Alston Jr. onto the State Supreme Court, the Senate Courts of Justice Committee promptly certified Cuccinelli by a party line vote for the position. He will be voted on by the full Senate tomorrow and it appears that the Republicans have the votes to secure his placement on the Court.

    Despite the fact that Governor McAuliffe’s pick, Justice Jane Marum Roush, is an eminently qualified and highly regarded jurist who has presided over many high-profile cases, including the trial of D.C.-area sniper Lee Boyd Malvo, Republicans have refused to give her a full 12-year appointment.

    From immigration to contraception to climate change denial to LGBT rights, Ken Cuccinelli has built a career on extreme conservative positions that are out of step with Virginia today. He also has a long and sordid history of antipathy towards New Americans, immigrants, and Latinos in particular:

    In 2013, gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli went so far as to compare immigration to pest control and immigrants to RATS.

    He drafted a bill that would deny unemployment benefits to employees who do not speak English.

    He derided the 2013 Congressional Immigration Reform Plan as legalization and “amnesty.”

    He threw his full support behind Arizona’s anti-immigration SB1070 law.

    As a state senator, he sponsored legislation aimed at stripping U.S.-born children of undocumented immigrants of their right to citizenship.

    As attorney general he embraced policies that would authorize police to check the immigration status of anyone they stop or arrest.

    He has been a strong opponent of in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants brought to the country at no fault of their own and at a young age by their parents.

    J. Walter Tejada, Community Leader and former Elected Official, stated,” From Donald Trump inciting his supporters by calling Latino immigrants “thieves” and “rapists” or candidates calling for a divisive southern wall or hateful rhetoric being used against New Americans, it seems all we’ve heard is anti-immigrant nonsense spewing from Republican politicians. The proposed placement of Ken Cuccinelli on the Virginia State Supreme Court would represent a very significant step backwards for Virginia.”

    Alfonso Lopez, Democratic Member of the Virginia House of Delegates, stated, “As the son of a Latin American immigrant and the first Latino Democrat elected to the Virginia House of Delegates, it’s incredibly difficult to hear the vitriol that Republicans use against immigrants day in and day out. Today, by proposing Cuccinelli for the State Supreme Court, Republicans are endorsing a person with a long history of doctrinaire, ‘Trump-esque’ positions that are out of step with a modern Virginia.”

    Tram Nguyen, Executive Director of New Virginia Majority, stated, “On International Women’s Day, the Republican Party could not have nominated a more divisive anti-immigrant, anti-choice individual to serve on Virginia’s highest court. Cuccinelli’s extreme views have no place on the Supreme Court. Virginia’s judicial system should not be the victim of political maneuvers.”

    Marvin Figueroa, President of the Democratic Latino Organization of Virginia, stated, ”I am extremely disappointed that Republicans in the General Assembly would nominate an individual to Virginia’s Supreme Court with such an extensive track record of radical opposition to immigrants and New Americans. Someone who has so ardently campaigned to amend the U.S. Constitution to end birthright citizenship should not be allowed to serve on our Supreme Court and trusted with defending Virginia’s Constitution.”

    The Honorable J. Walter Tejada, former Member of the Arlington County Board

    The Honorable Alfonso Lopez, Virginia State Delegate, 49th District

    Leni Gonzalez, League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC)

    Marvin Figueroa, President of the Democratic Latino Organization of Virginia

    Tram Nguyen, Executive Director of New Virginia Majority

    Edgar Aranda-Yanoc, Chair of the Virginia Coalition of Latino Organizations

  • Another Scott

    This is just amazing to me.

    Kinda off topic, but how on Earth did Virginia end up with a political system that lets the Speaker of the House overrule a Governor’s veto without even calling a vote? How can the state Senate remove a justice from the State Supreme Court by not voting for her, yet can place someone else on the bench that the Governor hasn’t nominated?

    Are the Teabaggers just making up rules as the go along, or is McAuliffe’s team so incompetent that they don’t know that the GOP can do things like this whenever they want because they have 50.000001% of the vote, or is the Virginia state Constitution so broken that governing is impossible when one side is willing to throw all conventions and traditions out the window because they feel like it?

    What can be done? Yeah, vote in more Democrats, of course. That will certainly help. But what about the apparent structural problems? Are they real, or are they simply the GOP breaking all the previous rules? Can the Democrats fix the problems when they have the majority again, or will it take a new state Constitution?

    :-(

    Thanks.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

    • Stephen Spiker

      “Kinda off topic, but how on Earth did Virginia end up with a political
      system that lets the Speaker of the House overrule a Governor’s veto
      without even calling a vote?”

      Without knowing precisely what you are referring to, the 2014 veto override occurred because the Speaker, acting as a Constitutional officer, ruled that McAuliffe’s veto was improper under the Constitution of Virginia. Obviously, there is a check on this power — the Governor could take it to court and rule the veto improper, but historical precedent was clearly on Howell’s side.

      ” How can the state Senate remove a justice from the State Supreme Court
      by not voting for her, yet can place someone else on the bench that the
      Governor hasn’t nominated?”

      The Governor doesn’t nominate judges in Virginia, the General Assembly does. The only time a Governor has a say is when the GA isn’t in session, which is when McAuliffe made his pick. Typically, the Governor consults with the GA because the GA has to confirm them when they get to session anyways. McAuliffe chose not to, making a power play and political calculation that the GA would be forced to give his pick a full-term. He was wrong.

      In both of these instances, Republicans are following the rules, and McAuliffe is trying everything and anything he can to circumvent opposition majorities in both chambers. Not that I blame the Governor — if anything, this is showing and proving that our system of checks and balances in Virginia works.

      • Another Scott

        Thanks for your reply. I appreciate it, but I’m not sure I accept your spin on things. McAuliffe said he consulted with the legislature regarding the judge. Appointing Cuccinelli seems like a giant “FY” to him and the Democrats to these eyes and seems like nothing to do with the best person for the court. On the veto thing, yes, I was referring to the “non-germane” ruling by the Speaker. It seemed like a “FY” to McAuliffe as well. Saying he acted as a “Constitutional officer” seems like arguing “B therefore A” – that is, he obviously had the power, but that doesn’t mean that’s why he did it (and why there was no vote on it).

        I recognize that many states have weak Executives and Virginia is surely one of them. But I don’t think that the framers intended the legislature to run roughshod over the Executive like this. I’ve lived in Virginia since 1989 and don’t recall any similar actions in my time here.

        It sounds like we risk these things happening again until the Constitution is changed.

        But thanks again. I do appreciate it.

        Cheers,
        Scott.

        • Stephen Spiker

          McAuliffe never consulted with Norment or Howell. Instead, when Dave Albo issued a letter in support of Roush, McAuliffe said he assumed that meant the judge had Howell’s blessing. Again, this entire thing was mismanaged by the Governor’s office, and it’s easy to lead to the conclusion that it was a deliberate power play.

          Is Cuccinelli an “FY”? Most certainly. But I think you’d be hard-pressed to find a Republican who thinks the former lawyer, State Senator, and Attorney General isn’t qualified. It’s not like they’re nominating someone with no experience with the law like an E.W. Jackson.

          Was the override of McAuliffe’s veto an “FY”? Yes and no. Obviously there is a policy disagreement there, but the House and Senate passed the budget Amendments the way they did in order to create policy that could not be subject to a veto under the Constitution. McAuliffe vetoed it anyways, hoping that either the GOP was bluffing or the unlikely chance the Courts would reverse themselves on what is and is not allowed. But mostly, McAuliffe vetoed it to save face with his own party and say that he did everything he could to expand Medicaid.

          I disagree that this is the legislature “running roughshod” over the Executive. In both instances, this is the Governor of one party wanting to get his way and failing against a Senate and House controlled by the other party. McAuliffe wanted Medicaid expansion but it would never pass through the House. He tried to use a trigger that would allow him to bypass the House and expand it as an executive order, of sorts. The House passed a budget amendment to close that loophole, and the Governor tried to veto the amendment but couldn’t. That is a case of the Governor trying to do a run around on the House and failing.

          As for the judge, obviously the two sides are in disagreement on protocol but the way judges are selected it is clear that the framers of the Virginia Constitution wanted the General Assembly, not the Governor, picking judges. The Governor has the power to make temporary appointments via recess appointment. It’s true that those temporary appointments have always been confirmed later on by the GA, but those appointments were also consulted on by both parties. The Governor decided to go it alone and again bypass the House of Delegates.

          Again, I don’t blame McAuliffe. He got dealt a bad hand and is trying to make the most of it. But a bad hand still ends up losing most of the time.

          • Pat Cannon

            an embarrassment to the state of Virginia. And judges judge all citizens, not just republicans.

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    Lieutenant Governor Northam’s Statement on Upcoming Senate Vote to Nominate Cuccinelli to Virginia Supreme Court

    RICHMOND– Today Lieutenant Governor Northam released the following statement in advance of an expected Senate floor vote to nominate former attorney general Ken Cuccinelli II to the Supreme Court of Virginia:

    “This is an embarrassment and affront to the people of Virginia and to the judicial process. Ken Cuccinelli has spent his career as an activist trying to outlaw abortion and birth control, denying science and climate change, and aggressively denigrating and denying our LGBT community of basic rights.”

    “We constantly hear about supposed efforts to politicize our courts, and I cannot think of a more cynical and obvious attempt to politicize the judicial process than to nominate Ken Cuccinelli to the Supreme Court of Virginia. And, with just a few days left in Session, making this nomination in the twelfth hour leaves little to no time for the public, the legal community, and other stakeholders to weigh in and discuss this with their legislators.”

    “I am disappointed that the Senate Courts of Justice Committee would make this nomination and, as President of the Senate, I am hopeful that the Senate will reject this nomination.”

  • http://www.bluevirginia.us/ lowkell

    From Progress Virginia:

    Opposition to Cuccinelli Nomination Explodes

    Thousands of Virginians Demand VA Senate #KeepKenOUT

    Richmond, VA – Over seventy-five Virginians protested the nomination of radical ideologue Ken Cuccinelli to the Virginia Supreme Court Wednesday. Concerned citizens and volunteers from an array of organizations packed the Senate galley to demonstrate their opposition to Cuccinelli’s last minute nomination.

    In the 19 hours since the Senate Courts Committee endorsed Cuccinelli’s nomination, thousands of Virginians have taken action to oppose his election to the state Supreme Court. As of 10am, allies had driven 7,776 emails and 495 calls to State Senate offices, while #KeepKenOut is trending on Twitter across the Commonwealth.

    “We can think of no one less qualified than Ken Cuccinelli to serve on Virginia’s Supreme Court,” said Progress Virginia executive director Anna Scholl. “Virginia families deserve an accomplished and impartial jurist who will equally apply our laws. Cuccinelli’s long record of attacking Virginia women, LGBT individuals, immigrants, scientists, workers, and more clearly demonstrates he is incapable of putting aside his radical ideology. Instead, Cuccinelli has made a career out of abusing his public offices and manipulating the law to further a radical political agenda Virginians soundly rejected in 2013.”

    “Ken Cucinelli has consistently been one of the most divisive figures in Virginia politics,” said Tram Nguyen, co-executive director of New Virginia Majority. “Rather than removing politics from the judiciary, appointing Ken Cuccinelli would guarantee politically motivated judicial decisions. This nomination is an embarrassment to Virginians and should be rejected out of hand.”

    “In 2013, the women, men and young people of Virginia voted to Keep Ken Out of the governor’s mansion. Today, we say with a resounding voice that the State Senate must Keep Ken Out of the Virginia Supreme Court,” said Cianti Stewart-Reid, executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia. “Ken Cuccinelli holds some of the most extreme views on women’s health care. He opposes women’s access to affordable birth control, emergency contraception, and safe and legal abortion. He’s even supported extreme and dangerous “personhood” legislation that could interfere in the personal and private medical decisions of Virginia women. That crusade will surely continue if he makes it onto the Virginia Supreme Court. The State Senate must reject his nomination and maintain the integrity of the Court.”

    Organizations including Progress Virginia, New Virginia Majority, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia, Equality Virginia Advocates, Virginia AFL-CIO, SEIU Virginia 512, United Food and Commercial Workers Local 400, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, Virginia Sierra Club, the Virginia League of Conservation Voters, the Virginia Center for Public Safety, and NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia participating in Wednesday’s action.