Tag: Bob Goodlatte
Goodlatte rightly points out that both Republicans and Democrats know that the present tax code is badly broken and riddled with preferences for those with the money to buy them. Somehow, Goodlatte thinks that ending the tax code at a date certain will force Congress to sit down, sing "Kumbaya" and miraculously write a simpler, fairer tax system. You think?? How did that" fiscal cliff" go, folks?
By making deep cuts to defense and domestic programs, the rationale for the so-called "fiscal cliff" was that it would force Congress to compromise and come up with a better solution to our long-term deficit. So far, I simply see Congress, House Republicans in particular, simply kicking that can of fiscal dynamite down the road for a couple of months and refusing yet again to face reality. Goodlatte's latest fiscal folly, HR 352, would do nothing but put the broken tax code in the same place that the budget has ended up - held hostage by rigid ideologues on the right who have no idea of how to govern a representative democracy.
As long as the GOP is manipulated by a group of extremists who believe that compromise is surrender, as long as the main goal of Republicans remains to make President Obama fail, we will not be able to solve very real and very serious problems we face as a nation. We need leadership, not empty attempts to gum up the works of government like Goodlatte's lame proposals.
Had the bill not passed, before July 1, federal highway money would have dried up, costing millions of jobs, and student loan interest rates would have gone from 3.4% to 6.8%. Barbara Boxer (-CA) introduced a highway bill in the Senate last year and John Mica (R-FL) in the House in January. There, the proposed legislation languished until the obstructionists who are determined to stop Congress from passing anything were overwhelmed by pressure to do something and voted "yea" on the conference report with a student loan amendment that combined the Senate and House bills. All the obstructionists, that is, except 52 Republicans including Goodlatte and Hurt.
I'm sure I could contact Goodlatte's office asking why he voted as he did. I would receive back a form letter stating how glad he was to hear from me and then spending the rest of the letter telling me what a great fiscal conservative he is and how all our ills would be solved by a balanced budget amendment. After all, that's the response I've gotten in the past, no matter what the issue was. I don't think I'll waste my time.
Both of these men need to remember that the only "new" money Bob McDonnell's phony "transportation plan" found for Virginia highways came from bonds sold using money from future federal transportation funding as collateral. In fact, they both should remember that federal jobs in NoVA and defense dollars in Hampton Roads fuel Virginia's economy.
What drew the LCV's ire? Every single Republican voted for the House Republican budget resolution to gut the Clean Air Act & Clean Water Act, to protect billions in tax giveaways for oil corporations that banked $137 billion in profits in 2011, and to weaken offshore drilling safety rules even as they pushed to bring oil drilling to the Virginia coast:
Harry Reid, reacting to the protests against PIPA, has postponed bringing it up for a vote (which means he doesn't have the votes to pass it). In the House Lamar Smith, chair of the House Judiciary Committee, said he will not consider SOPA "until there is wider agreement on a solution."
As Andrew Cohill of Design Nine in Blacksburg told The Roanoke Times about the bill from Goodlatte's subcommittee, "The law is written so broadly that the federal government could literally shut down any website they chose to. That's the problem with a poorly written law: It doesn't matter what the intent is if it's poorly written."
Neither bill currently before Congress does what proponents say is their goal - protecting copyrighted works from pirates. Instead, the powers given to the government endanger the freedom of the Internet with the threat of arbitrary shutdown of sites. That sounds more like China than the United States. Back to the drawing boards, Goodlatte, or better yet, retire from Congress like you promised long ago.
I am running as a Democrat to take the 6th District congressional seat away from the Republican, Bob Goodlatte. With this campaign, we have an opportunity to achieve something of real importance, something that reverberates far beyond the 6th District.
Sure, it's an uphill fight. Sure, our incumbent Republican opponent will far outspend us. Sure, this is the most difficult district in Virginia in which to beat a Republican.
All the better! The more surprising our victory, the more powerful the blow we will strike by winning this race!
Remember the nature of this terrible crisis we face in America today. Money power is taking over our country, robbing average Americans of their futures while enriching the already fabulously wealthy.
We have an opportunity to show America how people power can defeat money power -- by inspiring old and young, liberal and conservative, to rise up and repudiate those who have put advantage for the few ahead of serving the greater good.
Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Peter Schouk, a professor at Yale Law School, stated, "I can think of no other law that would empower judges to exercise more political and policy-making discretion than a balanced budget amendment. It would quickly realize every conservative's fears of an 'imperial judiciary' that 'legislates from the bench' - even if the courts simply did their job and did not grasp for that power."
C. Neul, who writes his own conservative blog, had an even better reason for people who are conservatives being adamantly against a balanced budget amendment.
"The fact that the House GOP members are pushing such an amendment is more non-partisan proof that you don't want to give too much power to Congress, because, in total, they are simply never the brightest guys in the room. Letting them add a BBA to the Constitution would create a nightmare worse, if that's possible, than our current...fiscal situation."
The State Senate's original congressional plan put the city of Roanoke in the 9th District. I'm sure the rationale there is that the 9th District is far more likely to flip than the 6th, assuming that the Democrats can field a strong candidate against Morgan Griffith, whose home under both proposed plans is finally in the district he represents in Congress. The dilemma for Roanokers is this: Do we have more in common with the Shenandoah Valley or with the New River Valley, with Harrisonburg or with Blacksburg?
Republicans wanted to be sure to put Griffith's home base of Salem in the 9th. Democrats evidently decided they would go along with that but, in return, also give Mrogan an area guaranteed to vote Democratic in 2012. According to the Roanoke Times, in 2008 President Obama carried Roanoke by 9,540 votes. In contrast, Griffith carried the entire 9th in 2010 by 8,963 votes.
So, where does the orphaned Roanoke belong? I would opt for the 9th. However, there are those who say, "But, we have nothing in common with Gate City, Wise, or Bristol." Well, who does? Don't those folks actually have more in common with east Kentucky and east Tennessee than with Roanoke? For years, Roanoke has sold itself as the city of Southwest Virginia. Putting us in the 9th simply validates that truism.
The Mutt and Jeff act is a perfect one-two reactionary strategy. The Attorney General tilts at windmills while the Governor provides a "more balanced" view of principle, sounding reasonable, businesslike, and bipartisan. Meanwhile, uncontested Republicans like Goodlatte (here showing bipartisan appeal) hold town halls with apprehensive audiences where they twist the facts to stoke the fear and resentment. No effective counter from the Democratic Party of Virginia (DPVA).
"George King of Lynchburg asked why energy products that are made in China, such as photoreceptors, couldn't be made in the United States. Goodlatte said the answer lies in reducing the cost for companies to operate in the United States, through lower health-insurance costs and lower corporate taxes." - reported in The News & Advance
It couldn't be the almost slave labor cost advantage...it must be the evil health insurance and taxes. Unfortunately, this plays well in Peoria...or more appropriately, anywhere outside NOVA. And when these trees fall in the Republican forest, the case for a red Virginia is built from the timber.
According to the Lynchburg News & Advance, that city's Tea Party has banned the press from their August 5 meeting with Bob Goodlatte (R-6th) and 5th District GOP challenger Robert Hurt.
At a May meeting than drew about 50 people, the Tea Pots said that the "distraction of the press" being present was what members objected to. What distraction? Reporting what the seven GOP candidates in the 5th District had to say to potential voters?
Not only is the press being denied admission to the August meeting, but chair Mark Lloyd said only "registered members" plus "regular participants" will be allowed to attend. That policy reminds me of those phony "town hall meetings" George Bush used to have, where only card-carrying Republicans were allowed in and questions were screened in order to avoid the press in attendance hearing something critical of Bush.
I agree with the New & Advance editorial. "By excluding the media from Thursday's meeting, the Lynchburg Tea Party is serving only itself. But maybe that's what this third party political movement is all about."
Meanwhile, in August Tom Perriello is again holding 22 town hall meetings - open to the press and to all citizens - throughout the 5th District. Robert Hurt, who was opposed by many of those same 5th District Tea Pots and who has an independent challenger on the far right - Jeff Clark - is making a very big mistake when he agrees to meet the Tea Pots in secret. Just what will he promise them? We'll never know.