Tuesday, February 20, 2018
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Chris Zimmerman Speaks “Frankly and Honestly” About “Secure Communities”

Last night at the Arlington County Democratic Committee meeting, County Board Vice Chair Chris Zimmerman gave a powerful speech on immigration, and specifically on the program called "Secure Communities." Check it out.

Del. Ebbin on ABC Plan: “I don’t know of one Republican or Democrat who...

Here's Del. Adam Ebbin (D-Arlington, Alexandria), speaking at the Arlington County Democratic Committee meeting last night talks about why "you should be hissing" about Bob McDonnell's absurd, gimmicky, half-baked, damaging ABC privatization proposal.

Fortunately, according to Ebbin, "I don't know of one Republican or Democrat who favors the proposal...so it's not likely to go anywhere."  Still, what a waste of everyone's time and energy, when Governor McDonnell should be focusing on much more important issues, like finding $1-$2 billion per year in the new, dedicated revenues for transportation that are required in Virginia just to keep from falling further behind.  Right now, all he's talking about is a one-shot, $458 million blip to the huge hole we're in on transportation, after which Virginia actually would lose money every year.  As Adam Ebbin points out, this might be enough to build an interchange or mow the lawns, but that's about it. All so we can have a lot more liquor stores in Virginia?  Horrible, horrible idea.

Fundraiser for Donald McEachin

On October 14 in Richmond, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm, there will be a reception honoring State Senator Donald McEachin.  For all the details, click here. Donald's been there for us, fighting for progressive values and against radical right wingers like Ken Cuccinelli.  Now we need to be there for him. Thanks.

Video: Tom Perriello Endorsed by Veterans of Foreign Wars PAC

"Clips from the Veterans of Foreign Wars P.A.C. endorsement of Rep. Tom Perriello. October 6, 2010. Dan Daniels Memorial Park, Danville, Virginia." Go Tom!

Bob McDonnell Glosses Over Source of $2 Million in Health Care Funds

Read the following press release from Bob McDonnell and try to figure out where the $2 million came from. All you get in this press release are weasel words, like "more than $2 million...was awarded," but almost completely glosses over WHO AWARDED IT and WHY.  The correct answer?  That's right, $2 million, courtesy of the hated (by Republicans) federal government, and specifically courtesy of the hated (by Republicans) "Obamacare", aka health care reform legislation passed earlier this year despite almost uniform Republican opposition. Can you find any praise for President Obama, Democrats, or health care reform in this press release? Or, does it sound like Bob McDonnell taking credit for the $2 million?  As Faux "News" might say, "we report, you decide!"
Governor McDonnell Announces Over $2 million in Funds for Older Virginians and Virginians with Disabilities

Funds expected to expand menu of services for this increasing population

RICHMOND- Governor Bob McDonnell announced today that more than $2 million in grant funding from the Administration on Aging and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services was awarded to the Virginia Department for the Aging and Department of Medical Assistance Services.  The funds will expand and develop new and innovative community-based services for older adults and individuals with disabilities.

According to the Virginia Department for the Aging, the number of older adults in Virginia will reach 1.8 million by 2030-more than double the population in 2000.  In just two decades, almost one in every five Virginians will be age 65 or older, with people over the age of 85 being the fastest growing segment of the population.

Speaking about the grants, Governor McDonnell noted, "I know how hard it can be to care for a parent with health challenges and the stress that it places on family members and caregivers.  This funding will be of enormous aid in helping Virginians keep their loved ones in their home as long as possible and provide greater options for both aging adults and adults with disabilities."


Caps Practice at Kettler Iceplex in Arlington

The Washington Capitals start their season this Friday against the Thrashers. Hopefully, this will be the year they take home Lord Stanley's Cup. In preparation for that, the Caps are training hard at Kettler Iceplex in Arlington, Virginia. Here's some video from this morning's workout. Go Caps!

VA-05: It Appears SurveyUSA Is an Outlier After All

Yet another poll has the 5th Congressional District race between Rep. Tom Perriello (D), State Senator Robert Hurt (R), and Jeffrey Clark (I-Tea Party), to be a tossup between Perriello and Hurt. According to The Hill/ANGA, it's Hurt 45%-Perriello 44% among likely voters. This poll follows one by Custom Strategic Research, which has the race at Hurt 44%-Perriello 43%. Basically, at this point, the only polling outfit which has the 5th CD as anything but a tossup is SurveyUSA, which claims that Hurt leads Perriello by 23 points. That's becoming more and more of an "outlier" every day.

Meanwhile, as NLS points out, Glenn Nye trails by 6 points to Scott Rigell (42%-36%), despite running a campaign in which he's distanced himself from...well, basically being a Democrat. In contrast, Perriello has staunchly defended his progressive votes for his district, and it doesn't seem to be hurting him relative to conservadem Nye. If this result holds on election day, I hope that it does some serious damage to the concept that Democrats have to run away from what makes the Democrats in order to get elected in "swing" districts. As I've always believed, voters don't have to agree with a candidate on everything, as long as they believe the person has integrity and really believes what he or she is advocating.  That's Tom Perriello to a "t."  Glenn Nye?  Not so much.

Arlington County Board Chairman Issues Statement on County Manager

The other day, we published some questions for the Arlington County Board on the departure of County Manager Michael B. Brown, as well as on the $110,000 severance payment he received after just four months on the job.  Now, we have some answers, in the form of a statement by County Board Chairman Jay Fisette.  I don't have the statement in writing, but here are the main points from notes I took listening to Jay Fisette over the phone:

*He understands that some clarity is required regarding the severance payment for former County Manager Michael Brown.

*The County Board takes this situation very seriously and assumes full responsibility.

*When it was determined that Michael Brown's fit was not what had been hoped for, he was given the opportunity to submit an official resignation letter.

*"Brown's severance payment was fully consistent with the terms of his contract and was not discretionary. This is a standard provision in contracts for city and county managers."

Overall, I think this makes sense. In fact, one can even say that the Arlington County board was the victim of "no good deed goes unpunished." However, I'd also add that they brought some of this on themselves by not being more forthright, mostly in their attempt to be as generous to Mr. Brown as possible, and also on the rushed timetable they were operating under.  

In the end, it's not like there's some big scandal here, and really there's little for the Republicans to latch onto. Of course, that won't stop them from trying, but something tells me that in four weeks, the end result will be the same as usual, with Democrats riding high in blue Arlington. We'll see.

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