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Friday News: Bill Gates Dishes on Trump’s Ignorance, Idiocy, Insanity; “Did China Just Bribe Trump to Undermine National Security?”; “Virginia GOP Primaries Overwhelmed by Personal Attacks”


by Lowell

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, May 18.

  • From the Reilly Family:

    MVP Suffers Blow, As Does The First Amendment.

    Landowners Denied Civil Liberty to Peaceful Protest of Pipelines, Reilly Family in Contempt of Court “by Proxy”.

    Franklin County, Va. – On May 15, Judge Elizabeth Dillon delivered her much-anticipated ruling on MVP’s efforts to have the Reilly and Werner families held in contempt for refusing to take action to remove three unknown tree sitters on their Four Corners Farm. Less than 24 hours after the Court’s ruling, MVP advised the Reillys that it intended to set up camp on their land in order to conduct 24-hour surveillance. Within hours, the Reillys filed a motion for a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction against MVP.

    “We view this as a partial victory. MVP didn’t get what it wanted yesterday. The Werners were dismissed as were the unknown tree-sitters. We disagree with the Judge’s findings of contempt against the Reillys and the imposition of any fines, and believe it has serious First Amendment implications.” said Terry Frank, attorney for the Reilly and Werner families.

    MVP filed a motion to enforce an injunction in April, and after a round of legal briefs, the parties attended a hearing before Dillon on May 4. After several hours of testimony and legal argument, the judge declined to rule from the bench or to award MVP the relief it sought. The Court acknowledged that there was no proof as to the identities of the tree sitters, much less whether they had any notice of MVP’s contempt filings. She did not order US Marshals to the farm or assess daily fines.

    In a disturbing turn, however, and despite a finding that the Reillys did not fund, construct, or install the tree sits, erected before the Court ever granted the Easement to MVP, the Court did find the Reillys in contempt of its earlier order granting MVP an easement and assessed a penalty of $1,000 each. The Court based its decision solely on the Reillys providing tents and a camper to individuals who may (or may not) have been some of the same ones in the trees. Because the Reillys publicly and vocally opposed MVP, and because the Court believed they “engaged in behavior that, in concert with the actions of the tree-sitters, have delayed, obstructed, or interfered with MVP’s use of the easement,” the Court specifically found the Reillys in contempt by “allowing the Tree-sitters to violate [her] order by proxy.” In essence, Judge Dillon used the Reillys’ First Amendment opposition as evidence to support a contempt finding.

    The Reillys and their attorneys are evaluating their legal options.

  • Ladies and gentlemen, we present to you the frontrunner for the VA GOP 2018 U.S. Senate nomination!


  • From the Spanberger for Congress campaign in VA-07:

    Chesterfield County Democratic Committee Chair Announces Personal Endorsement of Abigail Spanberger

    GLEN ALLEN, VA — Today, Sara Gaborik, chair of the Chesterfield County Democratic Committee, announced her personal support of Abigail Spanberger’s bid for the Democratic nomination in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District. Chesterfield County, which overlaps with the 7th District, was a traditionally held Republican County that shifted Democratic in both local and state elections in the November 2017 election, confirming the shifting tide of the 7th and the likelihood of success for the Spanberger campaign.

    “In today’s world, we need a leader who has critical thinking skills and will stand up to special interests to put the American people first,” said Gaborik. “I am personally endorsing Abigail because I believe her combination of knowledge, experience, and compassion make her the best choice to represent the people of the 7th District. I am certain that Abigail will be the voice we need to represent us in Congress.”

    In appreciation, Spanberger commented, “I am honored and thankful for Sara’s support and faith in our campaign. Her leadership in the community has been an inspiration, and will contribute to our success in November. I look forward to working together and ensuring we bring new leadership to the 7th.”

    Gaborik’s endorsement joins a growing list of local elected officials and community leaders backing Spanberger. In March, three members of the House of Delegates, as well as seven former and current Democratic committee chairs all within the 7th District, announced their support of Spanberger. Nationally, Spanberger is supported by EMILY’s List, the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, NARAL, the nation’s leading pro-choice advocacy group, and End Citizens United, a grassroots organization dedicated to reforming campaign finance. Moms Demand Action also recognized Spanberger as a “Gun Sense Candidate” and NewDemPAC added her to their ‘Candidate Watch List.

  • From VA-10 Dem candidate Lindsey Davis Stover’s FB page:


  • Alison Friedman released the following statement in response to today’s school shooting at Santa Fe High School in Texas.

    “This is the 38th school shooting this year.

    My heart breaks for everyone who has lost a loved one to gun violence. Over the course of this campaign, I have met teachers who compare notes on how to break protocol to keep their kids safe, a graduate of Marjory Stoneman Douglas who lives here now and can’t stop from crying, and too many students who have lost the people they love to suicide. I have sat on steps, listening to neighbors discuss the shooting the next street over. I have watched friends nod in agreement as a young woman explains how scared she is to turn around, with anti-Hindu graffiti becoming commonplace and guns readily available.

    As we talk about this needless tragedy, we must also remember the daily gun violence that doesn’t grab the headlines. Common sense gun reform does not apply only to mass shootings.

    This shouldn’t be about politics. This should be about the essential value of a human life. This should be about family and community and protecting one another.

    Congress, it’s time you start praying for our families with your votes.”

  • Video: EW Jackson declares, “I’m not an African American, I’m an American!”


  • Good!

    Governor Northam Vetoes Legislation That Would Undermine Efforts to Ensure Access to Quality, Affordable Health Care for All Virginians

    RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today vetoed Senate Bills 844, 934, 935, and 964, which would put Virginians at risk of being underinsured, result in rapidly increasing Marketplace premiums, and undermine key protections in the Affordable Care Act. Governor Northam remains committed to expanding health care for nearly 400,000 uninsured Virginians, return millions to the state budget, and reduce Marketplace premiums. The Governor’s full veto statements are below.

    Senate Bill 844

    May 18, 2018

    Pursuant to Article V, Section 6, of the Constitution of Virginia, I veto Senate Bill 844. This bill would authorize health insurance carriers in the Commonwealth to offer short-term health plans that last up to 364 days, contingent upon the adoption of federal regulations extending the allowable length of short-term health plans.

    This legislation would place consumers at risk of being underinsured and would fragment Virginia’s federal Marketplace risk pool, leading to rapidly increasing premiums. Senate Bill 844 would allow insurance carriers and individuals to circumvent the protections in the Affordable Care Act. Short-term plans are stopgap policies that frequently do not cover mental health treatment, substance abuse treatment, prescription drugs, or maternity benefits. People with minimal current health care needs are more likely to purchase these skimpy plans, leaving people who have more significant health care needs in the Marketplace. The adverse selection associated with short-term plans, in combination with the elimination of the federal individual mandate, will increase Virginia Marketplace premiums 19.1%, according to the Urban Institute. Virginia is already witnessing unnecessary premium increases in the preliminary rate filings insurance carriers have submitted for 2019, because of federal actions destabilizing the Marketplace.

    We are fortunate to have a better opportunity to expand health care to people who need it and make it more affordable for all Virginians. Expanding Medicaid will connect nearly 400,000 people with insurance and return millions to the state budget to support other priorities that make life better for Virginians. Additionally, states that have expanded Medicaid have Marketplace premiums that are an average of 7% lower than states that have not, demonstrating that expansion will benefit far more people than just those who will receive coverage. Senate Bill 844 would undermine efforts to make sure all Virginians have access to quality, affordable health care.

    Accordingly, I veto this bill.


    Ralph S. Northam

  • Governor Northam Vetoes Legislation That Excludes Criteria Essential to Ensuring Fair Electoral Maps

    RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today vetoed House Bill 1598 and Senate Bill 106, which fall short of establishing sufficient criteria to ensure that electoral maps are drawn fairly. The Governor’s full veto statement for House Bill 1598 is below. Governor Northam signed an identical statement for Senate Bill 106.

    May 18, 2018

    Pursuant to Article V, Section 6, of the Constitution of Virginia, I veto House Bill 1598, which would establish criteria in the Code of Virginia by which congressional and state legislative districts must be drawn.

    While I support codifying criteria that would be followed when drawing legislative districts, this legislation excludes criteria that are essential to fair electoral maps. Any criteria for redistricting must prohibit districts from being drawn to restrict or deny the ability of any racial or ethnic minority to participate in the political process and elect a preferred candidate. I believe the criteria should also prohibit districts that favor or disfavor any political party, incumbent legislator, member of Congress or individual or entity.

    This legislation does not go far enough in establishing criteria that would ensure a fair electoral process for Virginia citizens.

    Accordingly, I veto this bill.


    Ralph S. Northam</blockquote.

  • Governor Northam Vetoes Legislation That Unnecessarily Interferes With Voter Registration Process

    RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today vetoed House Bill 1144, which would place undue burdens on individuals or groups assisting applicants with voter registrations and could result in the applications of eligible voters being unnecessarily delayed or denied. The Governor’s full veto statement is below.

    May 18, 2018

    Pursuant to Article V, Section 6, of the Constitution of Virginia, I veto House Bill 1144. This bill would have required a person who assists an applicant with a voter registration application or collects the completed applications to provide his name, telephone number and name of the group or organization with which he is affiliated.

    Virginia law already requires the individual or group assisting applicants with voter registrations to provide the applicant a receipt with their name and contact information. Including this individual’s information on the actual voter registration application is unnecessary. If this contact information is missing from the application, it potentially could lead to denied or delayed applications. An eligible voter’s right to vote should not be challenged because the application did not include contact information for the volunteer who assisted them.

    This legislation places an unnecessary burden on those facilitating or participating in voter registration drives and could result in denied or delayed voter registration applications for eligible voters.

    Accordingly, I veto this bill.


    Ralph S. Northam

  • Pretty much all you need to know about Rep. Don Beyer’s Republican challenger, Thomas Oh. Hopefully this will be the last time I mention this guy, except for the election results on November 6, when Beyer crushes him.