Home Virginia Politics Virginia News Headlines: Friday Morning

Virginia News Headlines: Friday Morning


Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, April 17.

*Obama would get key trade powers under legislation

*The world according to Jeb Bush (War and economic disaster, just like in the last Bush administration. Sounds great, huh?)

*Federal Judge On Stopping EPA Rule: ‘Why Would We Do That?’

*Expert demolishes the right’s “war on coal” myth: The real reason the industry is dying

*Paul Krugman: That Old-Time Economics (“In recent years, however, innovative economic ideas, far from helping to provide a solution, have been part of the problem. We would have been far better off if we had stuck to that old-time macroeconomics, which is looking better than ever.”)

*As Cities Raise Their Minimum Wage, Where’s the Economic Collapse the Right Predicted? (The right is wrong yet again. Shocker.)

*Editorial: Discussion, not arrests, needed at the University of Mary Washington

*After arrests, Divest UMW group vows to demonstrate

*Scott Rigell, Bobby Scott oppose death tax repeal (Wow, a supposedly journalistic newspaper used the outrageous, loaded, right-wing-nut term “death tax” in their headline? WTF?!? The actual term, of course, is “estate tax.”)

*Virginia Supreme Court: Dominion can’t bypass local zoning for new power line project

*When the Virginia General Assembly wraps up, let the fundraising begin

*Fixing an error in Virginia lawmakers’ ethics bill proves to be not so simple (“The governor’s amendment mistakenly imposed a $100 lifetime gift cap rather than an annual one.”)

*​End racial gerrymandering in Virginia (“The General Assembly’s redistricting plans violate the Fourteenth Amendment”)

*Virginia’s economy needs Dulles Airport to soar again, boosters say

*Additional I-64 widening on the Peninsula gets green light

*High court: VDOT’s bullying must stop (“Virginia’s Supreme Court on Thursday corrected a particularly egregious wrong done to a Virginia Beach couple during their tenacious, six-year fight with the Virginia Department of Transportation.”)

*Dye Senate challenge shows campaign fundraising surge (“Candidates in this year’s legislative elections raised more than $5.4 million in the first quarter, a reflection of the high stakes in November and increased competition since 2011, the last time all 140 seats were on the ballot.”)

*Loudoun County Board of Supervisor’s First Quarter Fundraising

*Angry about funding, parents, teachers to rally at capital

*Arlington Democratic candidates seek to restore citizen trust in County Board

*Area Senate candidates off to brisk start in fundraising (“Former Del. Bill Janis, who hopes to succeed retiring Sen. Walter A. Stosch, R-Henrico, reported $123,000 in contributions in the year’s first quarter, and an ending balance of $107,584.”)

*Rains showers expected early and late today ahead of a spectacular Saturday

  • From Progress Virginia:

    Members of the Senate and House of Delegates this afternoon rejected the Governor’s amendments to HB2070 and SB1424 to close travel loopholes that will allow gifted trips to go unreported. “Shame on members of the General Assembly for rejecting the Governor’s commonsense proposals to close glaring loopholes in the ethics legislation,” said ProgressVA executive director Anna Scholl. “It’s simply pathetic and disgraceful these politicians put their own personal enrichment and convenience ahead of integrity and transparency. Virginians expect and deserve better than elected officials who thumb their nose at ethics reform.”

    Legislators on the floor fallaciously argued the Governor’s amendments could require local politicians to seek travel waivers or file disclosure forms for simple reimbursements from their localities for mileage or official meetings. That argument is clearly disproven by Lines 1542 and 2872-2880, which exempt officially paid, in-state travel from reporting and travel waiver requirements. In fact, by rejecting the Governor’s travel amendments, legislators have left open gaping loopholes that allow any private party to pay for an elected official’s travel to official meetings or national conferences with zero disclosure. In practice, this loophole means Dominion could fly legislators across the state for committee or commission hearings, or to American Legislative Exchange Council meetings in another state with zero disclosure.

    “Approving the $100 aggregate gift cap was literally the least legislators could do today,” continued Scholl. “They took action on a single, headline-grabbing item while refusing to approve a litany of proposals to strengthen the ethics bill and increase transparency. Disgustingly, legislators have repeatedly complained about how difficult life would be if they couldn’t accept free gifts and travel. The politicians who opposed commonsense proposals to increase transparency and accountability in Richmond today should be ashamed of themselves.”

  • Governor McAuliffe Statement on General Assembly’s Acceptance of $100 Annual Aggregate Gift Cap

    RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe released the following statement after the General Assembly agreed to his amendment strengthening ethics reform legislation by adding a $100 annual aggregate cap on gifts:

    “I am pleased that the General Assembly has accepted my top ethics reform priority: a $100 annual aggregate cap on gifts that public officials can receive from people seeking influence with the state. This victory for transparency and accountability will strengthen the legislation passed this year significantly. It will also send Virginians a message that their leaders recognize the need to restore their trust in government.

    “Increasing transparency and accountability in government is an essential part of my administration’s efforts to build a new Virginia economy.  I look forward to signing this legislation, and to continue working with the General Assembly in the years to come to build on the progress we made this year.”

  • “House Democrats are pleased to support an ethics bill which includes a 100 per year aggregate cap on gifts,” said Democratic Leader David J. Toscano.  “The bill is not perfect, but it is substantially better than present law, establishes some bright-line prohibitions, and will go a long way toward restoring the public’s trust in elected officials damaged by the McDonnell conviction.”

    “While I am disappointed that some of the Governor’s amendments that would have strengthened the ethics bill were not adopted, the final bill is a positive step forward to restore public trust in Virginia’s public officials,” said Delegate Jennifer McClellan.

  • “On my first day in office I imposed a strict ethics policy and $100 gift ban on my staff, my family, and myself and I don’t think we’re missing out on anything. We should all be in public service for the benefit of the people, not personal gain. We’ve still got more work to do to ban campaign funds for personal use and to establish a real ethics commission, but this is another important step in rebuilding the public trust that has been so badly damaged in recent years. Governor McAuliffe has been relentlessly pushing this issue forward since day one. He refused to let the momentum for ethics reform fade and I thank him for his strong leadership.”

  • “Today’s vote by the General Assembly in favor of a $100 annual aggregate cap on gifts was absolutely the right thing to do. I applaud Governor McAuliffe for advocating for this amendment and for his administration’s leadership and consistent support of ethics reform. This is an important step in the right direction.”

  • Dippert Withdraws From State Senate Race

    Citing Professional and Health Concerns Dippert Exits Race

    CULPEPER, Va. (April 17, 2015) –   It is with a “heavy heart” Traci Dippert announces her withdrawal from the race for the Virginia State Senate, District 17.

    “I thought I could give 100% to both my career and the campaign but now I see that is not possible.  I have spent nearly 2 decades in the teaching profession and it is my first passion, my financial stability and must come first,” explained Dippert.

    She continues, “While it was an excruciating decision, I know I have made the right one for myself professionally as well as personally.”

    Dippert further explained that the work involved in such a race was beginning to also take a toll on her health.  

    “I have been awed by the tremendous support throughout the district and beyond and appreciate everything that has been done for me by my supporters.”