The contest this year in deep-red VA-06 between Democratic nominee Jennifer Lewis and retiring Rep. Bob Goodlate (R)’s hand-picked successor, Ben Cline, arguably demonstrated the widest disparity between any two candidates – in terms of intelligence, knowledge, competence, etc. – in Virginia’s House races last year. I mean, there’s strong competition (e.g., village idiot Morgan Griffith vs. super-smart Anthony Flaccavento in VA-09) for this dubious honor, but certainly VA-06 was in the top two. Unfortunately, despite the fact that Jennifer Lewis would have been an infinitely better U.S. Representative than Ben Cline, the voters in their infinite wisdom (as the expression goes) selected Cline. Yeah, we’ll see how that choice works out…ugh.
Anyway, earlier today we had an encounter between Cline and Lewis at a town hall in Staunton that starkly demonstrated what I’m talking about. So basically Lewis asked Cline a series of questions, one of which (Savanna’s Act) Cline was utterly clueless about; the second of which (DREAMers), Cline struggled to even articulate what the issue is, let alone provide a coherent response; third of which (cutting entitlements), Cline claimed he didn’t support; and fourth of which (money in politics, taking money from Dominion and the NRA), Cline tried desperately to dodge, but pressed by Lewis, finally admitted that he’ll take money from “anyone who supports my campaign.” Hahahaha.
So yeah, Cline’s completely clueless, inarticulate, and a tool of corporate interests. But perhaps that’s an upgrade from Bob Goodlatte, who is that deadly combo of evil and powerful (for a little while longer, anyway, until he mercifully leaves Congress). The latest example of Goodlatte – or as I call him, BADlatte – being evil? The dude is basically singlehandedly blocking a totally non-controversial bill called “Savanna’s Act,” which passed the U.S. Senate UNANIMOUSLY on December 7, for absolutely no reason that he or his staff have explained. Why does this matter? As the Minneapolis Star-Tribune explains, this bill is needed by Native American women “to help in fight to stem the violence they face.” The bill is named after Savanna Greywind, “the vibrant young woman who died a horrific death when a Fargo, N.D., neighbor cut open her womb and stole her unborn baby in August 2017.”
Yet BADlatte is blocking the bill to “help other American Indian women from becoming victims of violence,” and his chosen successor, Ben Cline, has absolutely no clue that this is the case or what the bill is or…anything? That, tragically, is what happens when voters elect candidates who have no business being in Congress, while NOT electing those (e.g., Jennifer Lewis) who clearly do. Ugh.