Thursday, September 21, 2017
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“I’m not rich,” said the lawyer to the nurse, “so we...

by Kellen Squire 2017- the only year in which a lawyer can lecture a nurse on how we need to be more understanding of the plight...

Debate in Albemarle: Progressive Challengers vs. Entrenched Incumbents

Today was the first “debate” between Angela Lynn and her opponent, Steve Landes, and between Kellen Squire and his opponent, Rob Bell, sponsored by...

Video: In New Ad, Virginia House of Delegates Candidate Kellen Squire...

I like this a lot, reminds me a bit of Jason Kander's famous ad. I just wish the final frame was of Kellen Squire...

“I would’ve spoken out against the Nazi, but I didn’t want...

by Kellen Squire Last week, I posted an article about discovering that my opponent, Delegate Rob Bell, sat through a meeting of the Greene County,...

The KKK came to our community; my rep was silent. Here’s...

On Saturday, the KKK came to our community. But as I've come to expect from the wonderful milieu of people that make up the 58th...

Shad Planking May Have Seen Its Day

 photo c956111b-3444-45e5-a3ec-b560ee96d1ef_zps180c9dc1.jpgShad Planking was a disappointment yesterday for any of a number of reasons. Leading up to the event, the sponsors failed to stem years of cumulative attendee alienation. Responding to criticism of extremism among participants, the Ruritans alienated the other half. Ken Cuccinelli's keynote was as flat as the shad.

What was clear was that the bluster of Tea Party insurgents and in-your-face Confederate flag-waving misfits in recent years put off a large portion of the politically motivated who came for a more civil kind of camaraderie. The Ruritan Club's charitable efforts to raise money for local causes was wounded by this turn of events. Make no mistake, this was a self-inflicted wound.

Ruritan officials took issue with Mo Elleithee's assessment that the event has outlived its relevance, claiming it will live on another 65 years. Apparently the fact that the proceeds go to charity is supposed to excuse the inhospitable behavior that has been tolerated too long.
As anyone who has attended regularly knows, when the dinner bell rings there is always a rush to get in line for the featured meal. But a crowd that was less than 60% of last year's was underwhelming. As a measure of success, the meal became a no wait, all you can eat event, there was so much remaining to be consumed.

The Biggest Frauds Are The Voter ID Bill Patrons

Delegate Rob Bell (R-58th) is touting his voter ID bill by perpetrating a fraud. The fraud is either his intellectual capacity or his argument supporting the bill. Bell's "Exhibit A:" a report that 38 persons were charged with voter fraud in 2008. Guess what. None of them misrepresented their identity.

This is the kind of fellow Democrats dream of running as the Republican candidate for Virginia Attorney General. But then again, his Republican opponent, Senator Mark Obenshain (R-26th) is probably more familiar with voter fraud, hailing from the seat of Republican voter fraud shenanigans: Harrisonburg. Unlike Bell, maybe Obenshain read the entire RTD article and has refrained from using it as the rationale for his own bill (SB 1256).

"None of the cases appeared to involve someone who misrepresented his or her identity at the polls to vote." - Richmond Times Dispatch

How is it that Rob Bell's bill (HB 1787), or Obenshain's for that matter, will solve any real voter fraud issues? It really doesn't matter and they don't care. Bell's bill won't go into force until 2014. If it is so important, why the delay? Doesn't matter, that isn't his objective. He simply wants to pander to the Republican delegate demographic that Ken Cuccinelli's subterfuge has delivered to their convention this year.

By the way, both of the bills require the state of Virginia to provide the form of required ID. Obenshain's places a photograph on the voter's registration card. How's that for a subtle way to suppress the vote?

Black Helicopter Wing on the Rise

Rejoice among Democrats that Kenny C will be the Republican nominee is premature. So, no such right wingnut could become Governor of our Commonwealth? This would be the same reactionary who won the statewide contest for Attorney General in 2009. And this would be the same DPVA that was swept.

There is nothing substantive the DPVA can show as a response to the 2009 debacle. Republicans have a completely new wardrobe on order for 2013. OFA blew in, blew up, and blew out. Republicans still hold everything but the teetering state Senate (one special election away) and have an amazingly slick snake oil salesman in the Governor.

Note to all Democratic hopefuls: the OFA field organizers did nothing without guidance and were held on a short leash. Not a one was required or allowed to demonstrate initiative or individual competence. They followed a well designed call-center playbook; they might as well have been selling time shares. Political acumen was not in their terms of reference. They consistently alienated their local Democratic contacts. Check beyond their references before bringing them on.

Meanwhile, the Republicans are reining in the vitriolic. It will fade as we proceed through the 2013 General Assembly session. Delegate Rob Bell (R-58th), candidate for Attorney General, is already stepping up as a defender of the elderly. This despite his party's burial of a bill last session he now claims to champion. Republicans are moving back toward dog whistle politics. Remember, crazy is not an impediment to political success (See Hitler, Adolph). You just need someone to blame.

Assessing the gains from the OFA effort locally is difficult. At least in my locality, we know who volunteered. But the OFA walk list has not been fully harvested. The use of social media is not a DPVA strong suit despite Frank Leone's (who is now more focused on hockey than Virginia politics) promises, but OFA has been redirected to use that medium to sell policy rather than promote candidates and that may mitigate effectiveness of any DPVA mimic. Mimicry is not what we need. We really need professionals to determine the way ahead. Unfortunately, those professionals are persona non grata at DPVA.

Republicans Compensating for their Sandusky Connection

Virginia Delegate Rob Bell (R-58th) hails a set of laws directed at sex crimes against children he walked through the Virginia Legislature at the height of the Sandusky scandal. If they were so essential, why did it take Governor McDonnell months to "sign" them?

In fact, if they were anything more than gimmicks, if they solved any threat to public safety, why weren't they passed as emergency legislation? And why did their effective date pass without fanfare? Instead, last Friday, they provided a photo op for Bell's campaign for Attorney General.

Over the last two years in Virginia there have been 215 adults convicted of these vile crimes, and only 10 cases have resulted in life sentences. The median sentence overall was only 13 years. I believe the only sure way to keep other children safe is to keep these convicted sexual predators locked up for the balance of their lives. - Delegate Bell's AG campaign E-mail

And who was Attorney General over the past two years and in the years just preceding? Who was governor during those same two years? And when did either Cuccinelli or McDonnell ever mention mandated reporting for public and private college employees before the Sandusky scandal? Or condemn the Republican Pennsylvania Attorney General's foot dragging in the Sandusky case?