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Fairfax Police Endorse Janet Oleszek for Braddock District Supervisor!

There are no two ways about this one (see press release from the Oleszek campaign: below), it's a HUGE endorsement for Janet Oleszek. That the Fairfax Police, arguably the most respected organization in Fairfax County (along with the firefighters and Fairfax Sheriff Stan Barry, who have also endorsed Janet), and a group which endorsed Republican Ken Cuccinelli (over Janet Oleszek) in 2007, has now endorsed Janet Oleszek over Republican John Cook, speaks volumes. For one thing, it demonstrates how much Janet's improved as a candidate since 2007. It also, as the endorsement states, stems from their confidence in  Janet being "exactly right on the current issues facing the police department."

Finally, I'd just add that although this endorsement is entirely positive FOR Janet, the subtext is that the Fairfax Police are clearly expressing their LACK of confidence in the incumbent Braddock District Supervisor, John Cook. That's got to be painful for Cook, as well it should be. So sad for John Cook, so great for Janet Oleszek! :)


Oleszek sweeps endorsements from Police, Firefighters and the Fairfax Sheriff

Janet Oleszek is proud to announce the endorsement of the Fairfax Coalition of Police (Local 5000).  In response she issued the following statement:

"Fairfax County Police are known nationwide for their accomplishments and I am thrilled to accept their endorsement of my campaign.  The next Supervisor in Braddock District must be committed to public safety- especially as we consider the budget.  Supervisor Cook has voted against public safety when he has voted against Fairfax County's budget."

Mike Scanlon, President of Local 5000 made the following statement:

"We were proud to endorse Janet Oleszek, who has always been a friend of public safety.  Janet is exactly right on the current issues facing the police department.  Police spend their years on the force building relationships in the community that help us solve crimes and keep the public safe.  We need a Supervisor who understands the importance of protecting the promises Fairfax has made to our police with their compensation and pension.  Otherwise we will continue to lose officers to other law enforcement agencies, costing the taxpayers millions in new training."

Fairfax Firefighters, Paramedics Strongly Endorse Oleszek, Blast Cook as “irresponsible”

See the following press release for great news on the endorsement front for Janet Oleszek!! This endorsement is especially impressive when you consider how rare it is for the Fairfax firefighters to endorse a non-incumbent in a County Board race.  In fact, the last time they did so was 1999, when Cathy Hudgins defeated incumbent Bob Dix. Also of interest: apparently, there is no record, at least in the past 20 or so years, of any Fairfax County Board incumbent opposed by the firefighters being reelected. Should John Cook be getting worried? It sure seems like it, but frankly, as a Janet Oleszek supporter, I'd rather see our Tea Party/Kookinelli-supported friend continue along the overconfident, arrogant road he's been on. Heh.

Public Safety Emerging As Key Issue In Braddock

Janet Oleszek is proud to announce the endorsement of the Fairfax County Professional Firefighters and Paramedics (Local 2068). In response she issued the following statement:

"Fairfax County Firefighters are known worldwide for their accomplishments and I am thrilled to accept their endorsement of my campaign.  The next Supervisor in Braddock District must be committed to public safety- especially as we consider the budget.  Supervisor Cook has voted against public safety when he has voted against Fairfax County's budget."

Oleszek also noted that during the last debate she used one of her rebuttal opportunities in response to Supervisor Cook questioning the need for a 4th firefighter on Fairfax ladder trucks. "This has been an issue the fire and rescue department has identified since a 2001 internal review.  The lack of a 4th firefighter on ladder trucks creates safety issues for the other firefighters and paramedics.  I was appalled that John Cook still doesn't seem to understand this".

John Niemiec, President of Local 2068 made the following statement:

"We were thrilled to endorse Janet Oleszek, who has always been a friend of public safety.  Janet is exactly right on the current issues facing the fire and rescue department.  Our firefighters were shocked to learn that Supervisor Cook continued to publicly attack a policy that the fire and rescue department has identified as a way to make our jobs safer. We will not stand for politicians that try to save a buck by putting our citizens or our personnel in jeopardy. Supervisor Cook's position is irresponsible and unacceptable".

Oleszek Endorsed by Fairfax Education Assoc.; Cook Fundraises with Anti-Education Governor

There's a stark contrast here: 1) on the one hand, a dedicated and effective advocate for public education in Fairfax and beyond (that would be Janet Oleszek); 2) on the other hand, a Tea Party/Kookinelli favorite (that would be John Cook) who's busy fundraising with a governor who's slashed education funding - and hinted at more to come.  If you care about public education, the choice here couldn't be clearer: Janet Oleszek for Braddock District Supervisor!
Governor McDonnell Comes to Fairfax To Fundraise For John Cook

Oleszek demands to know John Cook's position on McDonnell's cuts to public education

Tonight- Governor Bob McDonnell is hosting a high dollar ($500-$5,000) fundraiser for Supervisor John Cook.

In response Janet Oleszek- endorsed this week by the Fairfax Education Association- released the following statement:

"Governor Bob McDonnell has spent his first two years in office cutting state support for public education and making local taxpayers in Fairfax pick up the bill.  In 2010, Governor McDonnell called for $730 million in public education cuts- before eventually winning $646 million in cuts.  Earlier this year, Governor McDonnell called for another $50 million in cuts to public education as well as announcing a $140 million dollar sales tax diversion that Politifact reported would have almost certainly come from public schools.  

Yesterday the Governor attended the State Board of Education meeting and hinted at even more potential cuts to come next year.

John Cook needs to put our Fairfax County Public Schools first- not himself.  I call on him to reject any money raised from this event until the Governor will pledge no more cuts to public education in his upcoming budget."

Sharon Bulova, Janet Oleszek Blast John Cook on Pension Funds

I was at the Braddock District supervisor's debate last night, which was packed with 100+ people, mostly Cook supporters from what I could tell from bumper stickers in the parking lot (note: this was Cook's home turn, as NLS explains). As for John Cook, I'd never seen him in action before, and my first impression was that I can see why he's most definitely a politician (in all senses of that word) -- slick and glib, but fundamentally without much "beef" there (unless you like Cuccinelli-supported Teapublicans pretending to be "moderates"). Cook also makes mistakes, despite being able to rattle off facts and figures, as the following press release from Fairfax County Board Chair Sharon Bulova, along with Democratic nominee Janet Oleszek, explains. I'd just add that if you're looking for "slick and glib politician," then by all means support John Cook for reelection. If, instead, you want someone who's clearly not a politician at heart, but is a real person who cares about her community, and who shares the values of most people in Braddock District, then your choice is also clear -- Janet Oleszek. Finally, if you really want a (self-described) strong fiscal conservative, you can always vote for the independent candidate in the race, Carey Campbell, who is running hard against (in his words) the "borrow and spend" incumbent.
Today the campaigns of Sharon Bulova for Chairman and Janet Oleszek for Braddock Supervisor released the following regarding the pension plans discussed in last night's Braddock District Supervisor debate:

"John continues to misunderstand how Fairfax County maintains the stability of its pension funds", Chairman Bulova said. We are following the guidance of our financial experts with whom I work every day and maintain a level of funding that helps to protect our retirees and current employees from being hurt by market fluctuations. His claim of being the one on the board to stand up is right, but he is standing up against good financial advice and the expertise on the boards of trustees of all three pension funds.

"I think Sharon Bulova has been doing an excellent job managing an extremely complex budget", Janet Oleszek said.  "It's actually laughable that John tried to compare himself to Sharon at one time during the debate, while attacking her record of fiscal leadership in another part of the debate.  If John wants to make this election a referendum on Sharon's leadership of Fairfax County then I accept."

Photo courtesy of Clifford'sPhotography

Janet Oleszek Thanks First Responders for Response to Floods, Hurricanes, Earthquakes,...

See below for an excellent, timely statement by Janet Oleszek, the Democratic nominee for Braddock District Supervisor against Tea Party favorite John Cook. I certainly join her in deeply thanking the region's first responders for their outstanding work through all kinds of crises and disasters, natural and human-caused (e.g., 9/11).
Janet Oleszek, Democratic nominee for Braddock District Supervisor released the following statement today:

"In the past month, we have faced an earthquake, a hurricane and now massive flooding in Fairfax County.  In each of these events, our outstanding police and fire fighters have responded with consummate professionalism, working long hours and extra shifts to save countless lives of our citizens and pets and to protect our property.  On behalf of all the citizens of Fairfax County, I want to recognize and thank them."

"This weekend brings the 10th anniversary of September 11th.  In that event - as they have done so many times - our first responders in Fairfax County were some of the first people on the ground in Arlington to assist in a regional crisis."  

"The past few budgets have been tight with the economic downturn.  Since 2008, our police and firefighters have not received a raise from Fairfax County- or even a cost of living increase.  This is unacceptable.  I promise the voters of Fairfax County, if I am elected that our first responders will receive a regular cost of living increase in addition to any money for across the board pay raises that the board can find."

Virginia LGBT Democrats Unanimously Endorse Janet Oleszek for Braddock District Supervisor!

Great news from the LGBT Democrats of Virginia PAC, which has unanimously and strongly endorsed Democrat Janet Oleszek for Braddock County Supervisor over the other candidate, the one I call "McCain-Palin Dude" (because he said he strongly supported McCain-Palin for president and vice president in 2008, and also because he's been a Republican his whole life, has never been involved with Democrats, donated to them, volunteered for them, etc.). As the Virginia Partisans LGBT PAC endorsement says, Janet Oleszek "has consistently stood with the LGBT community, refusing to compromise her principles in favor of politics." Go Janet!
LGBT Democrats of Virginia PAC Endorses Janet Olsezek for Braddock Supervisor

Fairfax, VA (Wednesday, August 10, 2011) - The Virginia Partisans, PAC of LGBT Democrats of Virginia, today announced the unanimous endorsement of Janet Oleszek for the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors to represent the Braddock Magisterial District. VA Partisans President Tiffany M. Joslyn praised Janet's commitment to equality, stating "Janet has consistently stood with the LGBT community, refusing to compromise her principles in favor of politics."

Responding to the endorsement by the PAC Board, Terry Mansberger, LGBT Caucus Chair stated, "Janet has been a long time personal friend of mine and the LGBT community for many years and was a leading advocate for safe schools for all our kids as an At-Large County School Board Member. I'm thrilled to see the VA Partisans PAC return that support and look forward to Janet's strong progressive voice for full equality on the Board of Supervisors for Braddock District and our Fairfax area LGBT community!"

Janet Oleszek Says: “It’s Time!”

The following press release (see the "flip") is from the Janet Oleszek for Braddock Supervisor campaign. I strongly encourage everyone to volunteer, donate, and/or vote for Janet on August 23. John Cook is a right wingnut in a "swing" district that used to be represented by Democrat Sharon Bulova, until she became chair of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. Well, now it's time to return this position to Democratic control. And no, that doesn't count Janet Oleszek's primary opponent, who identified himself as a "strong" McCain-Palin supporter in 2008, and who has absolutely ZERO history of involvement in Democratic politics, in helping Democrats, in donating to Democrats, etc. In other words, the Demoocratic primary is a real Democrat vs. a Wisconsin-style fake "Democrat" who's actually a Republican. This is not a hard choice: go Janet!

31st State Senate District Democratic Candidates Speak at Business Forum

See here for my report on the 49th House of Delegates district and here for the 30th State Senate district forums held yesterday morning in Falls Church by the Northern Virginia Democratic Business Council. Last but not least, here's the 31st State Senate district forum, with Democratic candidates Barbara Favola and Jaime Areizaga-Soto.

In his remarks, Areizaga-Soto talked about his background (Attorney, business, Obama administration, JAG, policy advisor to Sen. Mary Margaret Whipple). According to Areizaga-Soto, we need representation to "stand up to the extremism and demagoguery we see every day in Richmond." We also need transportation solutions, including a "dedicated source to fund them." "I believe everyone should have the opportunity for a world-class education...the opportunity to succeed and thrive." He promised to fight the "narrow-mindedness that threatens progress." "I want to go to Richmond and fight for our Democratic values."

Barbara Favola said she's running for two reasons: 1) her long career in local government (14 years on the Arlington County Board) and her local perspective; 2) she wants Richmond to be more progressive, more compassionate. She talked about the many successes we've had in Arlington, including connecting land use and transportation decisions ("that mindset I think will serve us very well in Richmond"). She believes we need to invest more in K-12 and higher education. She called for a dedicated funding stream for education. She noted her work on behalf of the environment and her endorsements by "Sen. Saslaw, Sen. Whipple, Sen. Howell, Sharon Bulova, David Poisson and others."

P.S. I haven't endorsed in this race, but am watching it closely and hope to do so in coming weeks. By the way, the primary elections in all these races will be on August 23.

Video: Dick Durbin Talks About Barack Obama at Fairfax JJ Dinner


Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) was the keynote speaker at last night's Fairfax County Democratic Committee Jefferson-Jackson Dinner.  In this part of his speech, he tells some fun Barack Obama stories and recounts the accomplishments of year #1 of Obama's presidency.