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Fri Oct 31, 2014 at 06:24:18 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, October 31. Happy Halloween!
Do Republicans have a plan for the country? The answer is 'no'.
* The GOP's Other Takeover ("Republicans are about to take control of state legislatures across the land." This is a huge problem.)
* Rush Limbaugh Defends Street Harassment: 'It Was Men Being Polite' (I can never figure out if Limbaugh actually believes all the crazy, disgusting things he says. But what about his listeners? Now that's a frightening thought for Halloween!)
* Capture of Accused Cop Killer Eric Frein Saves Halloween
* Hard-Nosed Advice From Veteran Lobbyist: 'Win Ugly or Lose Pretty' (This guy is by any measure one of the most evil people in America, for instance fighting to make it easier to abuse, mistreat, torture animals. Why does he do it? Simple: $$$$$$$.)*
* Virginia Senate race narrows to seven-point gap
* McDonnell defense moved for mistrial over juror's ouster
* Suzanne Patrick pledges efforts to protect against storm damage during Hampton visit
* Cuts in public safety prompt legislators to eye ABC for more revenue
* Western Marcellus Pipeline is 3rd seeking passage through Va. (Bad, bad idea.)
* McAuliffe sees 'no contamination issues' at Wallops Island
* New regulations likely for small day cares in Virginia
* China-based company buys Petersburg chemical plant, plans 376 jobs
* Rep. Robert Hurt takes no stance on Atlantic Coast Pipeline (Profile in courage, eh?)
* For Arlington County Board and school board (Just keep in mind, the guy who writes these endorsements, Lee Hockstader, never comes to debates or other events, doesn't interview the candidates, basically has no clue what he's talking aobut, and frequently does boneheaded things like falsely calling the hard-right Frank Wolf a "moderate" and endorsing him repeatedly.)
* Feds subpoena records from deals made by jailed developer
* Halloween weather not too spooky, but the weekend won't be a treat
Thu Oct 30, 2014 at 06:33:45 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Thursday, October 30. The photo is courtesy of Rep. Connolly's communications director George Burke.
5 Ways Life in America Would Be Better If Everyone Voted ("Low election turnout perpetuates income inequality and social injustice")
* "The Great Invisible": The BP oil disaster and our fossil-fuel addiction
* Weather Channel Rebukes Its Co-Founder On Climate Change (Good for the Weather Channel. Its co-founder is an imbecile.)
* EJ Dionne: Moderate thunder out of Kansas
* An exaggerated claim concerning savings on Metro's Silver Line construction ("Comstock's campaign could offer no evidence to defend the repeated use of the $400 million figure")
* Boucher: Why Warner deserves re-election
* Pipeline protestors visit lawmakers' local offices ("About a dozen Nelson County residents protested a proposed 550-mile natural gas pipeline Wednesday, stopping at the local offices of Democratic and Republican lawmakers to urge them to oppose the project.")
* What Is Ed Gillespie's Backup Plan? (Governor in 2017? "It's not clear whether Gillespie would be willing to run against Obenshain, as they have a close relationship.")
* Goodlatte looks poised for bump-free ride to 12th term (Really unfortunate, the guy's truly BADlatte not Goodlatte.)
* E.W. Jackson says Democrats attack Christian values with anti-discrimination laws about gays and lesbians (Yep, that's E.W. Jackson for ya.)
* Democratic congressman pressured VA to help politically connected contractor (Hmmmm.)
* Budget backtrack: Transportation concerns lead to $50m back pedal
* Wittman tells Kiwanis Washington should be 'reined in' (Standard, mindless Republican rhetoric...)
* Brutal cost of children who are homeless ("The State of the Region report released this month by Old Dominion University offers a sobering estimate of public costs for one often-overlooked group: children without a place to call home.")
* NASA reports broken windows, imploded doors after explosion
* Economic action plan ("The sequestration cuts set to resume in 2016 must be stopped - which will protect the Hampton Roads economy to say nothing of assuring the continued strength and readiness of our nation's armed forces.")
* Newport News could pay up to $42.6M to accommodate Tech Center research park
* Bumgarner, Giants edge K.C. to claim third World Series crown in 5 years
* A weather treat today, but look for tricky and icky on Halloween
Wed Oct 29, 2014 at 06:29:49 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Wednesday, October 29. Also, check out the video of President Obama explaining, with regard to Ebola, that "America is not defined by fear."
Pope Francis says evolution is real and God is no wizard (In general, science is fact-based, empirical, etc. Religion is in a completely different realm of human thought.)
* Obama rejects idea of state-level quarantines (Agreed, it's not helpful.)
* Unrealized Promise ("House Republicans have been incredibly unproductive. There is no reason to think that's about to change.")
* Fifty Protocols, Fifty States, One Gigantic Mess ("Chris Christie, Andrew Cuomo, and other American governors are the last people who should be making rules about Ebola.")
* BREAKING: Court Refuses To Intervene In Case of 40,000 Missing Voters In Georgia (That's crazy!)
* Schapiro: GOP divisions aren't helping Democrats - yet ("Long term, however, Democrats could thrive. That's because the issues debate among Republicans seems to only drag their party further to the right - further from where fast-changing, suburban-dominated Virginia usually stands.")
* John Foust cuts television ad buy in Virginia House race
* Poll: Warner maintains lead over Gillespie heading into election (It's a crappy Roanoke College poll, but for the record it's Warner by 13 points over "Enron Ed." What happened to the "race is tightening" narrative the media's been pushing? Hmmm.)
* Brat, Trammell square off over Ebola, Obamacare (I'm not sure Brat said anything truthful or accurate during that debate. Lots of Big Lies though. Also, the LAST thing we need is to send such a bizarre, extreme "economist" to Washington!)
* A look at the undecided in the Warner-Gillespie Senate race
* They're baaack -- General Assembly meets Nov 10 to vote on judges
* Pipeline company moves to initiate federal review of proposal
* Former U.S. president fires up local GOP supporters (None other than Dubya, aka one of the worst presidents in U.S. history.)
* Summit aims to tackle port congestion
* Ebola seminar seeks to tamp down public fear in Southwest Va.
* Wrapping up Asia trade mission, McAuliffe appeals for money to lure businesses to Va.
* Virginia may remove highway guardrails over safety concerns
* Unmanned rocket explodes seconds after launch from NASA facility in Va.
* Prelude to the big chill: Cool and rainy today, downright cold by the weekend
Tue Oct 28, 2014 at 06:37:53 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Tuesday, October 28.
Minimum wage gives Democrats a rare edge over GOP
* Scott Walker to Chris Christie: Thanks for nothing
* Ebola fears should not lead to overreaction (So far, much of the media -- PBS and NPR certainly being expections -- have been an utter disgrace on this. Right-wing media, in particular, has been a cesspool of misinformation, fearmongering, politicizing, etc. The usual, in other words...)
* The Dangers of Quarantines ("Ebola Policies Made in Panic Cause More Damage")
* Right-Wing Media Praise Failed Theory Of Trickle-Down Economics Myth To Condemn Hillary Clinton ("Conservative media praised the failed theory of trickle-down economics in response to Hillary Clinton's remark that the middle class, not tax cuts for corporations, spurs economic growth, a position backed by economists.")
* Ed Gillespie uses Redskins name issue in political ad against Sen. Mark Warner (Seriously?!? I believe that's what's known as a "Hail Mary" pass! LOL)
* Decision Virginia: Dave Brat / Jack Trammell debate preview
* Lobby firm snaps up Cantor aide with Wall Street ties (Lovely, eh?)
* Legislators gave localities an out on proposed constitutional amendment
* McAuliffe's new Va. ethics panel meets for the first time
* Governor's panel endorses tougher Virginia ethics laws ("In addition to tighter policing of public officials' behavior, the panel also agreed today that the state's congressional and state legislative districts should be drawn without regard to political party.")
* Virginia prepared to invoke involuntary quarantine power for Ebola (Monitoring is a good idea, although I'm not sure why we're singling out Ebola per se and not other dangerous, infectious diseases.)
* Of groundhogs and pull-string dolls: Rep. Rigell talks Hampton Roads energy
* Morgan Griffith, independent candidate face off in 9th District
* Sportsplex audit: wins and losses
* Quality warm sunshine today before Wednesday rain and weekend chill
Mon Oct 27, 2014 at 20:39:58 PM EDT
Student debt is currently about $1.2 trillion. Even more staggering is that, according to Brookings Institution figures, the amount increased by 20% in just the past 2 years. And though Brookings' research plays down the consequences, the analysis is flawed. Warner has recognized what could become a significant crisis.
stories about student debt on the Wall Street Journal This Morning today and in the Journal's newspaper yesterday mentioning initiatives by Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and others. Unfortunately and maybe intentionally, our Senator's initiatives went unheralded.
During a swing through Virginia last month, Senator Warner stopped at a number of campuses to discuss his concerns. The commercial media has not given Warner's ideas the attention they deserve and his opponent hasn't been challenged on the issues.
Studies like the one done at Brookings that downplay the impact of student loan debt rely on data from 2010 and before; not recent enough to capture the changes to the economic landscape precipitating from the financial crisis. They also fail to account for the debt generated from loans that paid for "educations" from predatory for-profit colleges and universities and the waste of veterans benefits squandered at those same institutions.
Plus there is an intangible factor bearing on the psyche of graduates that the Senator lays out after explaining that his own first two ventures in entrepreneurship and capitalism ended in failure and financial loss:
"The point of the story is: if I had come out with, the way many students are now, with forty, fifty, sixty, seventy thousand dollars' worth of debt, I'm not sure I would have had the courage or ability to try to take those multiple chances."
College debt may be an obstacle to the kind of freedom necessary for the creativity and invention that made America the leader in innovation. Warner offers a number of ideas to mitigate the challenge that student loan debt presents.
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Mon Oct 27, 2014 at 06:29:24 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Monday, October 27. Also, check out the photo of Sen. Mark Warner and Fairfax County Dems Chair Sue Langley, from a "meet-and-greet" yesterday.
ACA OK ("The verdict: It's going well. A big expansion in coverage, which is affordable for a large majority; the main exceptions seem to be people who went for the minimum coverage allowed, keeping premiums down but leaving large co-payments. None of the predictions of disaster has come even slightly true.")
* Is the Affordable Care Act Working? ("The Number of Americans Without Health Insurance Is Down by About 25 Percent...Wall Street Analysts See Financial Boon Across the Health Care Spectrum")
* Under Pressure, Cuomo Says Ebola Quarantines Can Be Spent at Home
* The Bushes, Led by W., Rally to Make Jeb '45' (Just what we need, huh?)
* The secrets behind the midterms ("Republicans could have been running away with this thing. They're not, because they look more extreme and out of touch than they did four years ago.")
* Obama's Hug With An Ebola Victim Puts Reagan's AIDS Response to Shame ("In embracing an Ebola victim, Barack Obama succeeded where Ronald Reagan failed.")
* Tens Of Thousands Of Voter Registrations Have Mysteriously Vanished In Georgia
* How To Enjoy Halloween Candy Without Worrying About Ruining The Planet ("The sure-fire winners either skip palm oil altogether or deliberately source it from sustainable producers.")
* Virginia Holds Back on Quarantine of Ebola-Exposed Travelers
* Gerrymandering deters competition in House races
* After Foust goes on offense, final debate in N. Va. race turns raucous ("Foust's closing statement was interrupted by shouts so many times that he was offered an opportunity to start over." Charming.)
* Warner: Making college better ("Upcoming, bipartisan legislative reforms will improve students' prospects after college")
* Ethics panel to consider redistricting ("Gov. Terry McAuliffe's new ethics advisory panel holds its first meeting today, with that topic given fresh urgency by a recent court decision.")
* Va. abortion laws still too strict
* Future of Bob McDonnell's gifts still cloudy
* Our view: How purple is Virginia?
* Choices for rail expansion in Norfolk
* Virginia State Crime Commission reconsiders penalties for sexting
* Gorgeous day streak isn't over yet, but much cooler air is on the way
Sun Oct 26, 2014 at 07:26:34 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Sunday, October 26. Also check out Bill Clinton's speech at last night's Human Rights Campaign National Dinner. This country has certainly come a long way on LGBT equality since the days of "don't ask don't tell."
The Horror Before the Beheadings ("ISIS Hostages Endured Torture and Dashed Hopes" -- utterly despicable, horrible, you name it. The Islamic State is evil.)
* Nurse Quarantined In Ebola Scare: I Felt Treated 'As If I Was A Criminal'
* Bill Clinton fires up gay-rights group's gala
* Thomas Frank: "We are such losers" ("We persuade ourselves that the answer to the savagery of the right-the way to trump the naked class aggression of the One Percent-is to say farewell to our own tradition and get past politics and ideology altogether.")
* Greens grow into electoral powerhouse (Not the Green Party, mind you, but people who care about protecting the environment.)
* Schapiro: What a tangled Webb he weaves ("Kaine also is pressing an issue that addresses Webb's concerns about the how and when of U.S. military deployment: Kaine wants to rewrite the rules for declaring war, demanding Congress have a greater voice. It's a move that just might muffle Webb's." Fascinating article.)
* Gas pipelines become a campaign issue in 5th District
* Casey: Where's that pipeline gas going?
* COMMENTARY: Warner is a bipartisan problem-solver
* Vote Mark Warner for US Senate on Nov. 4
* Road-tested and reliable (Glad to see another endorsement for Mark Warner, but the Daily Press throws in some really stupid comments, like how Warner's vote for the Affordable Care Act was a "mistake." In fact, the ACA is working quite well, and would be working even better if Republicans would stop obstructing it - first and foremost, Medicaid expansion in states like Virginia, an integral part of the ACA).
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Sat Oct 25, 2014 at 06:53:48 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Saturday, October 25. Also see President Obama's weekly address, in which he "discusses the measures we are taking to respond to Ebola cases at home, while containing the epidemic at its source in West Africa."
The Republican Party's electoral philosophy: Cheating wins ("The explosion and enforcement of restrictive voter ID laws make this one thing very clear")
* 5 New York Epidemics That Were Way Worse Than Ebola Will Be
* Sarah, Bristol & The Recurrence Of The Eternal Victim ("...their dead-ender defenders need to accept that if you're a public figure, a recent candidate for national office, and you crash a party drunk and the fists start flying and the police have to show up to sort everything out, people may end up hovering over the details and getting a chuckle out of it. That's life.")
* NPR Guts Its Environment And Climate Reporting Team, Becomes 'Part Of The Problem' (My confidence in NPR just dropped several notches. WTF?!?)
* Polluters Push a Paragon of Misinformation, But Most Americans Want Climate Action
* Ebola Quarantines Seen as Barrier to Volunteers
* Comstock's property taxes raise questions about a central campaign narrative (She's lying, in other words.)
* The Post's endorsements for Congress in Northern Virginia (Beyer and Connolly of course, but NOBODY in the 10th CD? Uhhhhh...)
* Virginia's busiest elections office reportedly embroiled in infighting ("'In a nutshell, it's chaos,' the liaison between unionized employees and Fairfax County officials said." Greeeaaaat.)
* Remains found in Albemarle County positively identified as Hannah Graham's (So sad.)
* Ex-legal client pleads guilty to trying to blackmail Va. Senate leader ("A former legal client pleaded guilty to trying to blackmail the senator over 'embarrassing e-mails and text messages.'")
* Judging when it is OK to elect a legislator's relative to the bench ("Wonder who Del. Lionell Spruill, D-Chesapeake, is thinking of with his proposed legislation to restrict the General Assembly from electing a judge if a candidate is a spouse, parent, child or sibling of a member of General Assembly?")
* National Park Service considers Lewis and Clark legacy trail in Virginia
* Fairfax's later start times for high schools may set a trend
* Little faith in Norfolk's schools
* Blue skies, gentle breezes and plenty of sunshine in store for the weekend
Fri Oct 24, 2014 at 06:30:07 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, October 24. As for the map, obviously Virginia has a lot of room to improve when it comes to energy efficiency.
EU leaders agree to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 (Excellent news, now the U.S. needs to do the same or more.)
* Fox News Attacks Chuck Todd For Calling Out Fox's Media Bias "Obsession" In Media Matters Interview (Kind of proving Todd's point, I'd say!)
* Fox Hosts Lash Out At Media Matters Following Widespread Criticism For Discouraging Voters (The truth hurts, huh Fox?)
* After The First Confirmed Case Of Ebola In New York City, Three Reasons For Optimism
* Joni Ernst Reserves The Right To Use Her Gun To Defend Herself Against The Government (In a sane world, that "bullet box/ballot box" style comment should disqualify her.)
* House hopeful John Foust on federal workplace issues
* Former AP editor sues AP for defamation after 2013 firing
* Today's top opinion: Day care needs tighter regulation (But, but...I thought Republicans always said there was too MUCH regulation?!? I'm so confused now. **snark**)
* Gillespie loans his campaign $435,000
* Judge moves Maureen McDonnell's sentencing
* Governor's ethics commission meets Monday, sets public hearing for Nov. 6
* Brat, Trammell, Carr field questions at Goochland forum
* Gillespie: 'We Have to Get our Numbers Up' in Arlington (Yeah, good luck with that Enron Ed!)
* Hampton Roads military bases brace for climate change, sea-level rise
* Warner, Gillespie square off in Virginia Beach
* Panel discusses elected school boards in Norfolk
* Man held in Alexandria killings to go on trial next October
* No rain ahead, but breezy conditions persist as temperature fluctuates
Thu Oct 23, 2014 at 06:33:51 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Thursday, October 23. Also check out the NewsHour story, which explains that it's by far and away non-Ebola diseases (e.g., the flu, measles, whooping cough, antibiotic-resistant bacteria) which pose the real health threat to the American public when it comes to infectious diseases.
Economists See Limited Gains in Republican Proposals (Ya think?)
* EJ Dionne: The politics of Ebola ("...it's something else again to stoke alarm and to set up an unrealistic policy demand as a test of 'toughness.'")
* Alison Lundergan Grimes finally goes off-script (Maybe Chuck Todd will say she's "qualified" now? LOL)
* Attack on Ottawa: PM Harper cites terrorist motive
* Canada's Coverage of the Ottawa Shootings Put American Cable News to Shame
* Piketty's prophecy comes true: The planet's middle class is rapidly going extinct ("New research reveals the superrich have grabbed half the world's resources -- and their wealth is only growing")
* Exclusive: DSCC going back up with ads for Alison Lundergan Grimes in Ky.
* Comstock, Foust in Close Race for 10th Congressional District Seat
* Brat's Strange Immigrant-Bashing (Brat, as always, is an extremist.)
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Wed Oct 22, 2014 at 06:37:18 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Wednesday, October 22. Also see the video of Sen. Tim Kaine at the Richmond Times-Dispatch's "Public Square" on war powers.
Mark Levin Urges Viewers To Vote Republican Because Obama Will Go "Full Mussolini" After Midterm Elections (Jut remember, this maniac endorsed Barbara Comstock.)
* BREAKING: Federal Judge Rules Against Marriage Equality, Mocks Other Judges In Angry Diatribe ("Given the makeup of the First Circuit, the overwhelming consensus among federal judges in favor of marriage equality, and the belligerent tone of Pérez-Giménez's opinion, it is unlikely that his decision will be upheld on appeal.")
* Ben Bradlee, legendary Washington Post editor, dies at 93
* The GOP's Attack on Mark Warner Is One of the Most Hypocritical of This Election Season ("So, in short, Virginia's top Democrats, panicking about the potential loss of Senate control and the fate of the governor's legislative priority-not to mention the fate of 400,000 poor Virginians' health and financial well-being-tried to fight fire with fire, and favor with favor, and lost...even if the overtures crossed some line, there is no disputing which overture came first, what the original sin of this saga was.")
* Mark Warner attacks Ed Gillespie in new ad tying his former firm to 'dictator'
* Today's Top Opinion: Sen. Kaine calls for war-powers clarity
* Virginia jobless rate unchanged at 5.5 percent for Sept.
* Schapiro: A governor's chief of staff is his chief operative ("Reagan's error was not that he did his job. It was that he left fingerprints - lots of them. Did he do something illegal? Probably not, according to lawyers in both parties. Did he do something stupid? You don't have to consult a lawyer to answer that question.")
* Kaine says midterm election keeps Congress from debating war (Actually, it's the fact that Congress has for decades been close to impotent when it comes to debating war.)
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Tue Oct 21, 2014 at 06:56:45 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Tuesday, October 21.
Americans don't have a constitutional right to vote - it's time for that to change
* FLASHBACK: When Conservative Media Didn't Care Bush's Bird Flu Czar Had No Medical Experience (In case after case, Republicans were perfectly fine when all kinds of bad stuff happened in the Reagan, Bush 41, or Bush 43 administrations. Obama, of course, is a totally different story!)
* Politicians Who Say 'I'm Not A Scientist' On Climate Offer Their Advice On Ebola (Rule of thumb: if a politician calls science into question, whether on climate or evolution or whatever, they shouldn't be listened to on anything, let alone elected.)
* Solar power prices are dropping fast, NREL says (Attention: Fossil fuel shills at the Virginia State Corporation Commission!)
* Elizabeth Warren makes a powerful case
* Poll: Bowser over Catania by 12 points (Barring a huge mistake, looks like Bowser's got this one.)
* Potential presidential candidate Jim Webb talks about memoir in N.H.
* Despite missteps in N. Va. race, Foust pushes on down the campaign trail ("The Democrat is in an uphill battle for the House seat in Virginia's 10th Congressional District.")
* New Gilmore PAC dropping ads in Virginia, Iowa and New Hampshire (Yep, the same guy who drove Virginia's budget into the ditch...)
* Kaine: Other side is stoking fear, talking down U.S. leadership (Right, so why would voters reward them for this crap?)
* Tim Kaine to headline Public Square today on U.S. war powers
* Sheriff endorses Warner for re-election to Va. Senate
* Mosher tells Mathews NAACP he wants to protect 'social safety net'
* Va. prison system faces $45 million shortfall in inmate health care (Yet again, Medicaid expansion would help with this problem. Thanks Republicans!)
* Pilot newsroom to shrink by almost one-quarter (Fewer and fewer trained journalists looking into politicians' shenanigans means less sunlight on said shenanigans. Not good.)
* New Counts for Suspect in Abduction of University of Virginia Student
* Some sunshine, but cloudy skies and scattered showers will rule the day
Mon Oct 20, 2014 at 06:50:36 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Monday, October 20.
Twitter Mocks Media Bias, White-on-White Violence after Pumpkin Riot ("Don't these people have jobs? Where are the white fathers? What will end this corrosive culture of violence?!" Spot on critique of the media's double standard.)
* George Will Spreads Misinformation About Ebola on Fox News (That's about all George Will's been doing for years now -- spreading misinformation. Why is he allowed in newspapers and on TV shows?!?)
* Rand Paul: The Most Interesting Conspiracy Theorist in Washington (It's really fascinating how similar this guy is to his conspiracy-theory nutball father. The main difference is Rand hides it better than Ron.)
* Pentagon makes plans for U.S. Ebola response
* Both parties face a blue-collar imperative ("Over the weekend, Bill Clinton was in Arkansas, and he will campaign Monday in Louisiana. He's trying to bring home voters who once saw his party as the working man's best friend.")
* POLITICO poll: Alarm, anxiety as election looms (The alarm and anxiety are wildly overblown. Thanks a LOT corporate media and Republicans for stoking it!)
* American meat's disgusting secret: Why factory farms are even worse than you thought (There's really no excuse for anyone to eat factory-farmed meat. Ever. It's horrific.)
* Foust, Comstock locked in contentious and expensive House race in Virginia
* In N. Va. House race, seasoned politico Comstock blazes a new path ("'She will stop at nothing to tear apart her opponent,' Murphy says now. 'She will stop at nothing, because she is an expert in the politics of personal destruction.'")
* Rasoul: No Medicaid? Blame gerrymandering (Agreed, that's a big part of the problem.)
* Talk of pipeline surveyance creeps into Franklin County
* Clear choices in Portsmouth
* HRT reduces Naval Station light rail route possibilities to six
* A dose of sunshine today before clouds and possible showers move in
Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 13:42:27 PM EDT
This is an update to - and a bit different from - my post of December 29, 2013, in which I ranked my nearly 11 years as a political blogger at the time. In this post, I'm going to rank Virginia's elections from 2005 (when I started blogging about Virginia, so these are the Virginia elections I know the best) through 2014, from the perspective of a Democrat and progressive, but also from that of a political junkie who likes to follow exciting, hotly-contested political races. Which Virginia elections from 2005 were the most exciting, inspiring, interesting, entertaining and successful (a combination of all those factors) for Democrats? Here they are, in descending order.
2009: Just a godawful year in every way; do we even have to talk about it? In brief, we got wiped out in the Tea Party madness, resulting in the loss of great Democrats in the House of Delegates, not to mention the election of far-right-wing extremist Ken Cuccinelli as Attorney General, Jonnie Williams' BFF Bob McDonnell, etc., etc. Plus, the Democratic primary between Terry McAuliffe, Brian Moran and Creigh Deeds was one of the most unpleasant experiences most of us who were involved in it have ever experienced. Good riddance 2009, may you forever rot in hell.
2010: Not quite as bad as 2009, but not good either. I mean, any year when a superb Representative like Tom Perriello is defeated by an utter loser and right wingnut like Robert Hurt can't be good. Throw in the loss of Rep. Rick Boucher (to the climate-science-denying wacko Morgan Griffith) and the defeat of Rep. Glenn Nye by Scott Rigell, and there's really nothing good to say about 2010. Miserable.
2011: The first election after the 2010 census and redistricting was no fun at all. As if losing two Senate seats (and control of the Senate, despite pro-Democratic gerrymandering) wasn't bad enough, we also got our butts handed to us in the House of Delegates, falling from 39 to 32 Democrats. Oh, and as an added "bonus," we had an extremely nasty/godawful Democratic primary between Barbara Favola and Jaime Areizaga-Soto. Definitely not a fun year in any way.
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Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 07:03:04 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Sunday, October 19. By the way, just click on that image if you want to tell the fossil fuel industry and corporate shills at the Virginia State Corporation Commission what you think about their wildly false, dishonest, disgraceful "report" on the impacts of EPA's Clean Power Plan on Virginia.
The Dangerous Legal Rule Behind The Supreme Court's Latest Voter Suppression Decision
* Vatican meeting walks back language on gays, divorce (As usual, right wingers and bigots stand in the way of human progress. What else is new?)
* D.C. mayoral choice: Muriel Bowser's caution or David Catania's combativeness?
* Scott Brown: If Romney Was Prez 'We Would Not Be Worrying About Ebola' (Scott Brown, disgusting as always.)
* Schapiro: Va.'s 'Kafka-esque' obstacles to a second chance ("The auditor suggested creating a central debt collection agency, rather than relying on an array of entities and officials. Couple with it, Kalantari says, an easy, one-stop payment system for debtors. The backing of the legislature - political and financial - might make such a move easier. Perhaps the idea should be run by another guest at the Drive-to-Work luncheon: Bill Howell, the speaker of the House.")
* Kaine has found his niche in the Senate, will talk war powers at Public Square
* Rigell fends off attacks in 2nd District congressional debate ("Democratic challenger Suzanne Patrick accused U.S. Rep. Scott Rigell of failing to adequately support the region's military economy, veterans and issues important to women.")
* Editorial: Will Virginia meet the challenge ("One redistricting predicament is that Democrats in Virginia tend to be concentrated in urban areas while Republicans are spread among exurbs and rural regions. The W&M students managed to surmount the challenge. If 'amateurs' can come up with a fair design, then surely the state's professionals can, too.")
* Still distracted while driving? Hands off, legislator says
* Remains found in search for U-Va. student
* The choices in Virginia Beach
* McAuliffe to take Virginia sales pitch to Asia during trade mission
* Virginia budget cuts won't hamper Arlington streetcar funding, state says (Good news!)
* A sunny but brisk day with possible frost tonight to north and west
Sat Oct 18, 2014 at 07:41:56 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Saturday, October 18.
President Obama: Americans cant give in to fear on Ebola (As Republicans and the wildly irresponsible corporate media stoke it...ugh.)
* The nasty politicization of Ebola ("Conservatives pillory NIH director for stating the truth about budget cuts.")
* Assuring Public on Ebola, but Obama Is Said to Be Seething ("President Obama has projected calm but privately has a different assessment of his administration's handling of cases in the United States.")
* Why An Ebola Flight Ban Wouldn't Work (For starters: "There are no regularly scheduled direct flights to the U.S. from Liberia, Guinea or Sierra Leone - and very few from other countries in West Africa.")
* Conservatives fear Roberts going soft (Translation: they fear Roberts might actually follow precedent, fact, the Constitution, etc.)
* Supreme Court Upholds Texas Voter ID Law (So much for the previous item?)
* Russell Brand slams Fox News outside of Fox News headquarters, is threatened with arrest
* Gillespie reissues ad on Puckett scandal ("The original ad had featured an erroneous news report about Sen. Mark Warner that had been pulled." It also doesn't mention the fact that it was REPUBLICANS who bribed Puckett - successfully, I might add - to resign, throwing the State Senate to Republican control.)
* Warner and Gillespie spell out major differences ("The candidates made separate appearances onstage at Christopher Newport University to answer questions on topics including immigration, health care and fixing Washington's dysfunction")
* Woman who fell ill on bus at Pentagon doesn't have Ebola (Another example of hysteria.)
* The wrong ACA prescription ("By repealing ACA revenue-raising measures, Mr. Gillespie's alternative would leave nearly $300 billion less in the treasury over 10 years, even after all its spending cuts.")
* More Coal Industry Propaganda (There's so much of it out there, even including denial of climate science. Appalling.)
* Sentencing delayed for Maureen McDonnell in Virginia
* McAuliffe mobilizes command group to prepare for Ebola
* Retirement funding improves for first time since 2008 ("The funding of Virginia's pension plans for state employees and teachers improved in the last fiscal year for the first time since 2008, before the recession cut deeply into the retirement system's investments.")
* Sentencing delayed for Maureen McDonnell in Virginia ("One of her attorneys had requested the change because of a scheduling conflict.")
* Virginia Tech celebrates installation of new president Timothy Sands
* A blustery, cool autumn day that
turns much colder overnight
Fri Oct 17, 2014 at 06:06:50 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, October 17. The photo is from last night's 8th CD Democratic Kennedy-King Dinner, saluting Rep. Jim Moran for his many years of service.
Nothing to fear but panic itself ("Ebola panic carries serious risks." Agreed, and guess who's spreading it? Yep, the media and the Republicans - shocker, eh?)
* Why a travel ban wouldn't work ("The political momentum for a travel ban on West African nations continued to swell Thursday, but health and transportation experts were uniform in saying it wouldn't stem the spread of Ebola - and could do more harm than good.")
* Don't Look Now, a Democrat Is Leading in Georgia ("Even if she doesn't win, it might spell disaster for the GOP")
* Democrat Foust seeks to regain ground on women's issues (It's absolutely crazy that there should even be a question here of who's the better candidate for women. And no, it's NOT Barbara "Mandatory Transvaginal Ultrasounds" Comstock.)
* Ed Gillespie Will Run Plenty of Ads in the Next Two and a Half Weeks
* Gov. Terry McAuliffe Urges Energy Savings by State Government
* Gillespie reports raising $1.8 million, temporarily ditches ads
* Leonsis, Minor among donors to pro-Warner Super PAC ("Investors and technology moguls are fueling a pro-Sen. Mark R. Warner super PAC that has put up $1.8 m...")
* McDonnell's legal defense fund donations dwindle
* Md., Va. officials hoping to avoid repeat of 2012 election lines
* Booze price hike upsets Va. consumers, restaurants
* 4th District needs better choices ("Randy Forbes has not been a consequential member of Congress. By almost every measure of effectiveness, he trails his peers in the House of Representatives, not just among the 435 members of Congress, but among the 11-member Virginia delegation." Ouch, the truth hurts.)
* GOP lawmakers seek curbs on travel due to Ebola threat ("Three Virginia legislators say Gov. McAuliffe should consider suing Dulles airport." Uh....no.)
* Students at Virginia Wesleyan protest over sexual assault case
* Virginia Marine Police crack down on oyster violations, poaching
* Stricter Ebola screening begins at Dulles Airport
* Our view: Get on with real business in Roanoke County
* Vihstadt outraises Howze in Arlington County board race
* Gorgeous Friday to kick off a cooler and breezier weekend
Thu Oct 16, 2014 at 06:30:38 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Thursday, October 16.
U.S. Budget Deficit Hits Lowest Since 2007 on Revenue Jump (That's right, this happened under the leadership of President Obama and the Democrats. Actually, it would have fallen a LOT further if we had allowed more of the Bush tax cuts to expire, or if Teapublicans hadn't killed the Obama-Boehner deficit deal.)
* For Republicans, saying no to Obama may be enough on Election Day (Will voters, in their infinite wisdom, actually FALL for this crap?!? Sadly, a lot of them will...)
* Outbreak fuels an epidemic of fear, anxiety in U.S. (Almost all of it completely unawarranted, also wildly out of proportion with real threats like obesity, smoking, the flu, climate change, whatever.)
* Market gyrations raise a question: Is the five-year ride up about to end?
* Iraq's chemical weapons ("The apparent cover-up of chemical weapons stockpiles in Iraq - and the injuries sustained by American soldiers disposing of them - represents a new, and stunning, level of callous conduct.")
* The Absolute Weirdest Thing Ever To Happen At A Political Debate (Rick Scott is pathetic, part 5 million.)
* NPR Makes 'Significant Change' To Policy To Limit Use of 'Redskins' On Air
* Fox News doctor unloads on Obama in unhinged racial rant about Ebola (Unhinged rants? Fox? Who would have ever guessed?!? LOL)
* Mark Warner for reelection to the U.S. Senate in Virginia (Good, although of course Lee Hockstader has to make several really dumb comments, such as "Gillespie has the skills to be a bipartisan player in the Senate, as Mr. Warner has been." Seriously?!? Whatever.)
* Foust questioned over 'real job' comment during TV interview (Foust: "The problem is, those jobs were so hyper-partisan, and that was the point I was making.")
* Warner raises $2 million in quarter, Brat outpaces Trammell
* Details emerge over mysterious dismissal of juror in McDonnell case ("The juror...was let go because he called a lawyer he knew and mentioned his jury service - although both he and the lawyer said their conversation did not go far beyond that, court records show.")
* Rand Paul stumps for Gillespie and Brat in Ashland (Two extremists - Paul and Brat - plus one corrupt, crony capitalist. Lovely.)
Comments, 141 words in story)
Tue Oct 14, 2014 at 06:32:33 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Tuesday, October 14.
The Planet Just Had Its Hottest September On Record (Attention Gov. McAuliffe and Daily Press editorial board: this is Reason #1 why we can NOT have an "all-of-the-above" energy strategy.)
* GOP voter ID law gets crushed: Why Judge Richard Posner's new opinion is so amazing ("Conservative icon/federal judge changes mind on photo ID laws, issues blistering dissent against them.")
* Koch donors uncloaked
* C.D.C. Rethinking Methods to Stop Spread of Ebola
* At the Vatican, a Shift in Tone Toward Gays and Divorce
* Red Dawn: The GOP's Growing Monopoly on State Government (Democrats need to focus a LOT more of their time and energy on state government. For the life of me, I can't figure out how they've let Republicans win this crucial battle.)
* Can't quit Mitt: Supporters try to nudge Romney into 2016 race (My god...)
* Democrats find powerful new attack in Barbara Comstock
* Solving the mystery of the no-tax pledge ("ATR's web site says Gillespie signed the pledge on June 4, 2014. We asked Norquist to explain the error, but did not get a clear answer.")
* Warner denies offering job for state lawmaker's daughter
* Warner, Gillespie spar over Puckett scandal in Virginia Senate debate (And Gillespie tries to weasel out of his Grover Norquist no-taxes-ever promise.)
* Gillespie denies signing Norquist pledge not to raise taxes
* Poll says most Virginians believe McDonnell belongs in prison ("More than half of the respondents of every political persuasion said the former governor should serve time.")
Comments, 234 words in story)
Mon Oct 13, 2014 at 06:45:09 AM EDT
Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines for Monday, October 13. As for today's holiday, I'd far prefer that we remember, recognize and celebrate Native American culture prior to the disastrous (e.g., 90% of Native Americans dead due to disease alone) European invasion.
The Big Lie Behind Voter ID Laws
* Turkey Will Allow U.S. Troops to Use Bases to Fight ISIS
* 'Citizens United' is turning more Americans into bystanders (This ruling should be priority #1 for overturning as soon as Democrats are able to take back the Supreme Court from the current gang of far-right wingnuts.)
* Late GOP ad blitz shows hesitation by big donors
* Paul Krugman: Revenge of the Unforgiven ("How Righteousness Killed the World Economy")
* 11 questions that will decide the Senate
* How Republicans Lost the Culture War (We'll see if the theocrats give up, let alone easily...)
* Worries lessen for Virginia gay immigrants, who can now marry
* Most in Virginia say jail McDonnell
* Our view: Who mopped up whom? ("Gillespie shows no signs of being anything other than a predictable Republican vote on things that matter, such as health care (which, for Republican partisans, is exactly the point).")
* Across region, same-sex couples seize chance to marry
* Re-elect Rigell in the 2nd (This is a bizarre editorial, in which the Virginian-Pilot rips Scott Rigell on a number of his positions - immigration, the Paycheck Fairness Act, offshore oil drilling - and praises Democrat Suzanne Patrick, saying she "would be an asset in the House," yet endorses...Rigell? Well, alrighty then.)
* Disgraced, Soon-To-Be-Former Navajo Nation President Attends 'Skins Game (The guy's a total slimeball, "charged with fraud, conspiracy and theft in connection with allegations that he had dipped into slush funds to benefit himself and family members." No wonder why he's sitting next to Snyder.)
* Native Americans plan to mount largest-ever 'Skins protest at Vikings game
* Damp and cool today, but much warmer on Tuesday, Wednesday
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