Washington Post Reporters Say Hillary Clinton Should Drink "Mad Bitch" Beer

Friday, July 31, 2009

How many sharks does the Washington Post have to jump before we all cancel our subscriptions? I don't know, but I think they're getting closer to their last shark with juvenile, frat-boy nonsense like this. Hillary Clinton should drink "Mad Bitch" beer? Hahahahahahaha, that is SOOOOO clever and funny! Not.

UPDATE: The Washington Post has pulled the video, saying that there was "a section of the video that went too far." Ya think? :)

Protest Against "Naked" Forgery by Bonner & Associates

Get it? "Naked" forgery? LOL

P.S. If you missed the backstory on this protest, please click here.

Hopefully This Won't Happen to You This Weekend!

Credit Where Credit Is Due: Nice Speech

Cantor Blames Liberals, Bloggers for "Birther" Story

My god, Eric Cantor will truly say anything.
Mr. Cantor doesn’t question the President’s citizenship, but he has serious questions about the President’s push for government controlled healthcare, taxes on small business job creators, and a huge energy tax on middle class families. He finds it ironic that those most eager to talk about the President’s citizenship are in fact some of his biggest cheerleaders–whether it’s Chris Matthews or others on MSNBC, the Huffington Post, or camera toting liberal bloggers chasing people through the streets of Washington.
Riiiight. It's ALWAYS the "liberals'" fault, whether it's the Bush economic disaster, the huge national debt racked up under Reagan and Bush, or the latest right-wing cuckoo-for-Cocoa Puffs conspiracy. I'll tell you, it must be nice to live in a world where you're never at fault, where the truth doesn't matter, and where if you just keep telling the Big Lie over and over again you eventually get at least a few people to believe it. Welcome to Eric Cantor's world! :)

BREAKING: Pro-Polluter Lobbyists Forge Letters to Rep. Perriello

UPDATE 3:02 pm: The Sierra Club press release, "Forged Letters to Block Clean Energy? Allegations Call into Question Efforts to Oppose Climate and Energy Bill," is in the comments section of this diary.

UPDATE 2:08pm: Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) announces Congressional investigation into fake letters, saying, "This is an appalling abuse, and Congressman Tom Perriello deserves great credit for seeing through it and casting a vote that will create clean energy jobs in Virginia and throughout the United States. I encourage all Members of Congress to be on the lookout for other suspicious and illegal materials."

Posted by The Green Miles

Stunning news out of Charlottesville today from the Daily Progress:
As U.S. Rep. Tom Perriello was considering how to vote on an important piece of climate change legislation in June, the freshman congressman’s office received at least six letters from two Charlottesville-based minority organizations voicing opposition to the measure.

The letters, as it turns out, were forgeries
. [...]

The person who sent the letter has not been identified, but he or she was employed by a Washington lobbying firm called Bonner & Associates. [...]

This was not a ‘mistake,’” wrote [Tim] Freilich, who is also legal director of the Immigrant Advocacy Program of the Legal Aid Justice Center. “This was a deliberately and carefully forged letter that used the logo, address and name of Creciendo Juntos without authorization. Additionally, I understand from Ms. Hegyi that our organization was not the only Charlottesville-area organization whose reputations were used in an unauthorized manner to try to influence Congressman Perriello on this particular vote.”

After being notified of the bogus Creciendo Juntos letter, staffers in Perriello’s office realized that the wording of the letter sounded familiar.

The staffers dug through the stacks of thousands of letters, e-mails and faxes Perriello received about the bill — the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 — and found five more forged letters, these purportedly from the Albemarle-Charlottesville branch of the NAACP. [...]

“It’s very unfortunate that opponents of this bill would resort to deception and made-up letters,” [Perriello press secretary Jessica Barba] said. “Spreading false information is not healthy for real debate in our democracy. Congressman Perriello voted in favor of the bill because of its potential to create clean energy jobs, which is why the NAACP and many other groups supported the legislation in the first place.”
Once again, congratulations to Rep. Perriello for standing up for what was right for Virginians.

We may only be scratching the surface of the dirty tricks and deception used by opponents of clean energy reform in a failed attempt to stop the American Clean Energy and Security (ACES) Act. It was already known that a group called the "Tea Party Patriots has been urging its members to lie about their residency in their calls to Congressional offices:
When you write or call, please make sure you are armed with a city name and zip code in the home state of the Senator you are calling. They may not want to hear from you without this information. You can decline to give further personal information.
I've heard many other rumors of lies, forgery and deception from right-wing groups in their fight against ACES. Today's story in the Daily Progress only scratches the surface.

Cooch hiding his views on abortion and gay marriage?

This is what Ken Cuccinelli's "issues" page on "life and family" looks like now.

And this is what it used to look like, before he (apparently) started his faux-"moderate" makeover for the 2009 elections, just like Bob McDonnell. Fascinating.

Anti-Perriello Lobbying Firm Claims to Have Invented Term "Netroots"

The anti-Perrriello, pro-polluter lobbying firm mentioned below by Miles Grant actually claims to have invented the term "netroots". From the Bonner and Associates website:

No, this is not a joke. In fact, "The first popular use of the term in its modern definition is Netroots for Howard Dean, by Jerome Armstrong in December 2002 on MyDD." Close! :)

Why Won't McDonnell Condemn the "Birthers" and Other Crazies in His Party?

Star City Harbinger has the scoop:
Tucker Martin, Director of Communications for Bob McDonnell’s campaign, tells SCH that the former Attorney General has no doubts about the legitimacy of Mr. Obama’s presidency and thinks the issue is a frivolous one:
Bob McDonnell believes this matter is a distraction. The President is a United States citizen. In this difficult time of rising unemployment and economic uncertainty we need to focus on the important issues at hand. That is what Bob McDonnell is doing in his positive campaign to bring new jobs and more opportunities to every part of Virginia.”
Well, gee, it's great that Bob McDonnell in his generosity admits that our president is a natural-born citizen of the United States, which the state of Hawaii and every other sane person has proven/known beyond a shadow of a doubt for many months now. Congratulations! Now, what about condemning Bob Goodlatte and the other "birthers" in your party, since you are now the de facto head of the Virginia Republicans (as their nominee for governor)? How about, while you're at it, condemning the calls by Catherine Crabill - running downballot for you on the same Republican ticket! - for violent, armed revolution against the U.S. government? How about condemning all the other insane conspiracy theories and wild rhetoric floating around out there, like accusing the president of being a "terrorist," "socialist," "racist," etc., etc? In short, how about being a leader for a change, not just someone who says that serious issues within his own party are a mere "distraction." Lame.

So, why won't Bob McDonnell condemn the "birthers" and other crazies - like Catherine Crabill - in his own party? There are three main possibilities. First, he might actually agree with these people. Second, he might disagree with them privately - at least to some extent - but have made the cold, political calculation that it helps him to be seen by the right-wing fringe as a potential ally and/or soulmate. Or third, he might privately disagree - at least to some extent - but is simply terrified of his "base" and the possibility that they'll turn on him with a vengeance if he condemns their crazed rhetoric (and the candidates who spew it). Which is the correct answer? Only Bob McDonnell knows, and he's not telling.

Reminder on Site Rules

Just a reminder, particularly to a few of our Republican "friends'" recent comments, that profanity, personal attacks, bigotry, and "trolling" are not allowed on this site. Included in "trolling" is most definitely "birther" madness. In the future, comments questioning the fact (emphasis on the word FACT) that Barack Obama was born in the United States (Hawaii, to be exact) will be deleted with no further warning. Thank you for your cooperation on this. And no, this is not "censorship" because this is a private blog (e.g., not a government site) - mine - and I have no intention of allowing it to be overrun by idiocy and craziness. Also, there are hundreds (thousands?) of other blogs (Free Republic, etc.) where you can join with your fellow "birthers" if that is your desire. Go to it - just not here!

Saturday: Canvass for Margi

Posted by The Green Miles

Here at Blue Virginia, we'll be doing everything we can over the next few months to help Democrats earn 51 seats in the House of Delegates. That means helping challengers unseat Republican incumbents, but it also means protecting the Democratic delegates we already have.

So I'm hoping you'll join me tomorrow (Saturday) morning in McLean to help send Del. Margi Vanderhye back to Richmond:
Come out and show your support for Margi by going door to door to people in our district. We are meeting at our new campaign office at 7600 Colshire Drive in McLean every Saturday at 10am and Sunday at 12am. Volunteers can go out in pairs or alone and we can give you a packet to match the amount of time you have. Call our campaign office at 703-773-6825 or email to set up a shift.
If you need a ride from Ballston or East Falls Church Metro stops, email me.

If you can't make Saturday's canvass, please make a contribution to Margi through our new ActBlue page -- Blue Virginia: 51 in '09! We'll be adding more House of Delegates candidates to this page as November gets closer, with a focus on progressive candidates in tight races.

One last note -- I visited the websites of a handful of Democratic candidates for House of Delegates from Northern Virginia today and found lots of blank calendars (David Englin's is a notable exception). Are their volunteer events a closely guarded secret?

Whipple Clip Dozen: Friday Morning


County Fair FAIL!!!!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

This has got to be a bad joke, right? Someone in Arlington County government seriously selected the woman who won Season Deux of a totally trashy reality show ("Rock of Love"; "She beat Daisy de la Hoya in a breath-taking final round.") as the Celebrity Guest at the county fair?!? Is this the ultimate county fair FAIL or what?!?

Or, on second thought...maybe this will cause attendance at the fair to spike this year, and maybe that was the ingenious plan all along? Alright, nice going Arlington County! Hahahahahaha.

Cranwell and Connolly Counter Cantor: "That is flat-out false"

Click here to listen to a press conference call held earlier today "in response to the many falsehoods spread by Republicans in Virginia about the success of the Recovery Act both nationally and state-wide." To the contrary, DPVA chair Dick Cranwell and Rep. Gerry Connolly pointed out, there has been "tremendous progress throughout the state resulting from the Recovery Act passed earlier this year." With regard to our friend Eric Cantor, Democratic National Committee Press Secretary Hari Sevugan said:
Congressman Cantor has been out and about essentially spreading misleading information about the effect of the Recovery Act. He says, "the Recovery Act has not produced jobs." That is flat-out false. In fact, he has touted jobs that will be created by the Recovery Act on his own website.
DPVA Chair Dick Cranwell added:
I've been rather amused at Eric Cantor's comments. He and I were colleagues for a long time, and I find it kind of amusing that a guy who was one of George Bush's chief lieutenants that gave us...let the Democrats inherit probably the greatest economic disaster since the Great Depression. And the Stimulus Act, I think, has worked admirably well...the money's really starting to flow...Eric, you go to his own website, he says the high-speed rail is gonna create 185,000 new jobs, yet he says that the stimulus package is not working. Where I grew up out in Richland, they had an old saying, "those dogs don't hunt in the same pack." Now, if this high-speed rail project is gonna create 185,000 jobs in a corridor from northern Virginia down to Richmond, a good portion of that is Eric Cantor territory...I can pick off some projects that are going on as we speak in his district...
Finally, Gerry Connolly commented, "What's ironic about my colleague Congressman Cantor is that he...successfully roped every Republican member of the House to oppose [the Economic Recovery Act]… and claimed that the act hasn't generated the jobs hoped for, while at home he's writing letters urging that a major chunk of that money be invested in his district."

Great stuff, listen to it all here.

PPP Thoughts on the SurveyUSA Poll

Public Policy Polling has some interesting thoughts on yesterday's SurveyUSA poll.
A separate Virginia poll SUSA put out yesterday showed Bob McDonnell up 15 points on Creigh Deeds, but was criticized because those sampled reported having voted for John McCain by nine points, quite different than Obama's six point victory in the state last fall.

Although I doubt the electorate there this fall will be that Republican leaning, it is worth noting that we have found very little interest in the election from black and young voters who were so pivotal to Democratic success in the state last fall. So I would not be shocked if those who turn out this year split evenly or had some lean toward McCain last year. We're going to ask that on our poll of the state this weekend.
The question is, why is there "very little interest" among core Democratic constituency groups this year in Virginia? Voter fatigue after 2008? Complacency? More interest in national issues? A lack of inspiration and/or excitement from the Democratic ticket, for whatever reason(s)? The fact that Democrats simply haven't tuned in yet but will do so after Labor Day? All (or some) of the above? Or, is The Richmonder onto something here?

Whatever the reason(s), it does appear right now that Virginia Democratic activists aren't as fired up as Virginia Republican activists. Having worked hard four years ago to help elect Kaine, Byrne and Deeds, I definitely notice a difference. At this point in 2005, the progressive grassroots and netroots were cranking. This year, not so much. There's also no comparison between the energy level now and the energy levels at this same point in 2006 and 2008. Of course, there's still time to turn the situation around, but after the elections that didn't go our way (or barely did) last winter and spring in Fairfax County and Alexandria City, combined with the seeming lack of grassroots/netroots energy right now, that turnaround had better start happening soon or I'm starting to think this could be a rough election.

P.S. Don't forget, PPP will be polling Virginia this weekend, so stay close to your phones! Ha. :)

Cantor Claims House Republicans Not Questioning Obama's Birth Certificate

See 3:40 or so, as Congressman Cantor responds to a question about the "birthers."

Uh, Congressman Cantor? You might want to watch this and this and this and...

VEA Flips from Crockett-Stark to Pratt

Great news for Democrat Carole Pratt, running for House of Delegates against incumbent Anne Crockett-Stark in the 6th district. Go Carole!
The Virginia Education Association has endorsed Carole Pratt, candidate for the House of Delegates. The organization, which represents hundreds of educators in the 6th district, cited Carole’s candor and commitment to improving public education from pre-kindergarten through adulthood as the basis for their support. A product of our public schools and universities, Carole will continue to be a tireless advocate for an education system that equips all of our children to compete.

This endorsement is especially important because the VEA endorsed the incumbent, Delegate Crockett-Stark, in 2007. This makes the VEA the first group to switch their support to challenger Carole Pratt.

“Carole is very knowledgeable on the issues facing educators and students, and we trust her do what is right for our public schools,” added Shannon Turner, President of the Pulaski County Education Association. “She will be an advocate for children and educators and we look forward to working with her in the General Assembly.”

“The support of the VEA is something every candidate hopes to earn, and I am thrilled by this endorsement,” said Carole Pratt. “Together, we will never stop working to ensure that all children, regardless of zip code, are provided with an education that prepares them to compete in a global marketplace. Education is so important to improving the lives of our young people, and as a delegate I will always put the families and children of this district first.”

Pratt serves as a Pulaski County Public Schools Education Foundation board member and is a past chair of the New River Community College Education Foundation. She is also a member of the Virginia Tech Alumni Association.

The Demise of the Party: The Blue Dog Coalition

The following is a guest post from Alexander Palmer, Vice President of the Norfolk Area Young Democrats and former Deputy Finance Director for Glenn Nye's congressional campaign. I am posting it here at his request, and because I think it's both well written and an important topic. Thanks.

After a hard fought election, Democrats finally took back control of the White House after eight long years of Republican rule. Since the Democrats already took back control of both legislative houses in the previous midterm election of 2006, many thought the progressive agenda would finally come to fruition. Health care reform and better environmental regulations, just to name a few, this hasn't been the case. Previously, the Republican administration was the biggest obstacle to realizing this agenda. This time, the problem does not stem from the Republicans, they are too few in Congress to actually represent viable opposition, the real problem is from within; the Blue Dog Coalition.

Formed in 1995, the coalition was created to represent the fiscally and socially conservative of the Democratic Party. Since the inauguration, the nascent Obama Administration has struggled to realize a few of their key agenda issues. Cap and Trade, legislation that was long overdue to help sustain the environmental integrity of this great nation, was met with trouble by the members of this coalition. My own representative in Congress, Glenn Nye (VA-02) voted against this bill. This was after he campaigned as a friend to the environment. This was met with dismay by many progressives in the district, the same bunch of folks that walked hours in the hot summer sun to get him elected, (and will probably think twice about it when the Congressman is up for re-election in 2010).

Now, the Blue Dogs are giving the current administration more headaches than a brain tumor. Health care reform is long overdue in this country. Many of the progressives in this country fought long and hard during the last campaign cycle with health care reform in mind. I consider myself to be a health care voter. I was ecstatic to learn that Al Franken had finally won his Senate seat, knowing that he is also an advocate of single-payer health care. I thought that my dream would finally come true. This has not been the case, and once again, the biggest opposition is still the Blue Dog Coalition. When single-payer no longer was an option, the progressives began to realize they would have to settle with a public option. Thanks to the same coalition, the public optioned has been extensively weakened.

The other day, my congressman, Glenn Nye, posted an op-ed in Politico. ( He cited the need for health care reform and wanted it to be fiscally responsible. He stated that he cares greatly for our veteran's and their issues, and did not want reform to hurt the integrity of TRICARE, a very popular government administered health care given to veterans. (See, the government CAN effictively administer health care) but stated that he did not want a public option that would compete unfairly against insurance companies. Really Congressman, don't you represent people, I was confused because it appears as though you care more about the well-being of corporations rather than your constituents. I immediately called his office to ask why Nye wasn't advocating TRICARE as a public option, I received no reply from his staffers, and have yet to hear anything back.

Essentially, the Blue Dog Coalition is preventing any REAL reform in health care. If health care reform is deemed a failure, it is Obama and the Democrats that will be blamed by the public. The Democrats will lose big in the 2010 midterms if this happens. Mike Lux, a progressive political strategist, was reported of saying to the Huffington Post "The reason we lost so badly in '94, was that working class voters of medium and low incomes -- who turned out in big numbers in 1992 -- were incredibly discouraged by us not delivering on health care." You see Congressman Nye, its you who will also suffer if you don't deliver.

In my opinion, Blue Dogs are those Democrats who won by a slim margin, and they court that centrist vote (the vote most likely to be the first to abandom them). What they fail to realize is that its also the progressive wing of the party that helped them to get elected. Progressives are mostly driven by the issues, and more likely to volunteer their time for a candidate. If a candidate fails to deliver on those promises, those folks stay home. It's your choice, I'm just hoping the Democrats get their act together soon, or the whole country will continue to suffer.

Will Bob McDonnell Be Able To Fool Enough of the People Enough of the Time To Get Elected?

The sole question in this campaign seems to be whether Bob McDonnell will be able to pull the wool over Virginians’ eyes long enough to convince enough people to vote for him.

Based on his recent debate with Creigh, he might be able to pull it off. Take McDonnell’s extremist stances on two significant social issues, abortion and gay rights. In the debate, McDonnell was successfully able to paint himself as a moderate on these issues.

Bob McDonnell is no moderate on these issues.

The fact is that McDonnell’s election potentially endangers the life and health of every woman in Virginia. McDonnell’s record shows that as a legislator, he tried at every turn to limit a woman’s right to choose, effectively seeking to prevent women in Virginia from deciding upon their own health care in consultation with their doctors.

Similarly, Bob McDonnell has a record as a repeat offender of bigotry toward homosexuals. As I have previously written, he tried to prevent the reappointment of a judge in Virginia Beach based solely on the fact that she was allegedly gay. And according to Virginia Beach blogger Michael in Norfolk, McDonnell is on record saying that Govs. Warner and Kaine’s non-discrimination orders with respect to sexual orientation are invalid. “Moreover,” according to Michael-in-Norfolk, “in a recent case involving a gay man fired by the Virginia Museum of Natural History, McDonnell's AG office successfully sought to have the Executive Orders ruled a nullity - that case is now on appeal.”

So, when McDonnell says he never discriminated in hiring in the AG’s office, and would not do so as Governor, well, I don’t believe him.

I can’t help but wonder where Bob McDonnell, a graduate of Pat Robertson’s law school, stands on the issue of evolution. Does Bob McDonnell believe that evolution is a valid scientific theory, or is he, like his mentor, Rev. Robertson, a Biblical literalist? If he is, I think that is fine – I am a religious person, myself -- but to the extent that one’s embrace of faith forces the exclusion of scientific fact from his worldview, voters have the right to know.

Does Bob McDonnell favor the teaching of crackpot theories like Intelligent Design in public school?

So, three takeaways:

1. When Bob McDonnell soft-pedals his positions on choice and gay rights, shouldn't he explain why his record is inconsistent with his rhetoric?
2. Bob McDonnell holds principled positions on the issues of choice and gay rights that he claims are informed by his religious beliefs. As a religious person, I disagree with him. But the question is why does he feel the need to run away from his principles?
3. Given that religion figures so heavily in McDonnell’s stances on other social issues, where does he stand on the issue of evolution and teaching Intelligent Design in our public schools?

Shannon Campaign: Why Won't Cooch Stand Up to Crabill's Craziness?

From Steve Shannon's campaign manager Mike Henry:
Public safety should be an Attorney General’s top priority, and Virginians want an Attorney General who will focus on keeping Virginia a safe place to work, live, raise a child, and run a business. They don’t want someone who spends his time chasing a personal political agenda.

Recently, Catherine Crabill, a Republican Delegate candidate and Ken Cuccinelli’s ticket mate in the 99th House District, told an audience at a public event that they “have a chance to fight this battle at the ballot box, before we have to resort to the bullet box.” And, when she was asked by a reporter at The Washington Post to clarify what she meant, she stood by her remarks and called the President and his administration “domestic terrorists.”

In these tough economic times, when so many people are concerned about their futures and their safety, the last thing we need is people running for office who are inciting others to violence just because they don’t like how an election turned out.

Steve Shannon knows that. He stood up and condemned those remarks and he called on Ken Cuccinelli to join him. Ken’s campaign responded by calling concerns about those reckless threats “stupid.”

If Ken Cuccinelli wants to be Virginia’s next Attorney General, he should have no problem standing up and rejecting Catherine Crabill’s reckless language.

That is why our campaign launched our first web ad Monday to question Ken’s refusal to condemn these threats of violence. Virginians deserve to know where he stands.


At a time when people are concerned about our economy and keeping our communities safe, Ms. Crabill’s incendiary remarks have no place in our politics. Ken Cuccinelli has a chance to stand up and join Steve Shannon in condemning this reckless rhetoric. While the differences between Steve and Ken on the issues are stark, we should all agree that violence is never a solution to any political dispute.

Tom Davis: Republicans Have Become Rural, Southern, Lack-of-Education Party

The part where Tom Davis says - with a straight face, no less! - that Abraham Lincoln would join the party of Mitch McConnell and not the party of Barack Obama if he (Lincoln) were alive today is completely laughable, but the rest of this interview is fascinating. Interesting quotes by Tom Davis:

*"Politics has been defined by culture over the last several cycles, and we've become a rural party and a Southern party..."

*"...Obama carried 78 of the 100 counties with the highest education, McCain carried 88 of the 100 counties with the lowest education. As we've moved to cultural politics, that's been the shift." Asked if that's a smart move by Republicans, Davis says, "no, it's a terrible move."

*On the far right like Tony Perkins and Rush Limbaugh, Tom Davis says "they don't think we've gone far enough...they want a private club with an admissions test, they don't want a party which is by definition a coalition." Davis also agrees that those guys would "rather lose."

Good stuff, thanks to Tom Davis for saying what many of us in the Democratic Party (and, like myself, former northeastern Republicans who left that party when it moved to the Jerry Falwell/Pat Robertson/know-nothing right) have been saying for years.

h/t Political Wire

John O'Bannnon gets "caught in a huge lie"

This does not look good for Del. John O'Bannon (R-73).
...O’Bannon opposed grant money for the Henrico branch of computer chip manufacturer Qimonda. Several months later Qimonda laid off 1,500 workers. Eventually the branch was shut down, costing Virginia 1,200 more jobs. 2,700 total.

O’Bannon claimed, how could he know? O’Bannon says he had NO IDEA that Qimonda would lose jobs!

Except as we now know, that’s not true at all. As the video [above] clearly shows, the House of Delegates was notified in late 2008 that the plant was in danger of closing and would cost significant numbers of jobs. Democrat Joe Morrissey helpfully pointed that out for him.

John O’Bannon got caught in a huge lie. Well, maybe it’s not a lie. Perhaps he wasn’t there the day the future of 2,700 Virginia workers was decided...
John O'Bannnon really needs to go. If you want to help his Democratic opponent, Tom Shields, please click here. Thanks.

Whipple Clip Dozen: Thursday Morning

Another day of Whipple Clips, thanks to Tom!


The Case for Creigh Deeds

I want to passionately make the case for campaigning, blogging, and fund-raising for Creigh Deeds. After spending a good portion of the day delving into Deeds's and McDonnell's websites, I have something to report: There are broad and deep differences between the two. At the most basic level, Deeds is about taking Virginia forward, helping the middle-class and poor. Whereas McDonnell is about taking Virginia back to the Bush economy where the rich get richer and the poor poorer, while the middle class shrinks. Of course, Deeds is not as progressive as I would like, but to say that there are no stark differences simply ignores the issues. Let's look at a few of the major ones:

Economy - Obviously both candidates are all about creating jobs, but Deeds intends to get there by supporting a comprehensive transportation plan and investing in green jobs. McDonnell's plan? Block unions from organizing (anti-employee free choice act) and more tax cuts for the rich; building a bridge back to the Bush economy.

Environment - Deeds is a big fan of high speed rail (and has a detailed plan), he opposes off-shore drilling for oil (although, not for natural gas), and includes a mandatory Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) of 22% by 2025. McDonnell, well... Palin may be gone, but "Drill baby Drill" is here to stay with Bob. RPS? Nope. And rail gets no priority over highways (pave baby pave, anyone?)

Education - Throughout the primary all Democratic candidates agreed on these three things: 1) Universal Pre-K. 2) Raise teacher salaries to the national average 3) Make college more affordable. Deeds's plan has become more detailed but the overall themes have remained the same. McDonnell - more charter schools (which numerous studies have concluded tend to slightly underperform public schools) and nothing about pre-K and teacher pay.

Transportation - Again, Deeds is a fan of high speed rail and in his first year as governor wants to pass a comprehensive plan. With McDonnell's plan, no new taxes yet more funding for highways, which naturally comes at the expense of education. The rest is a hodge-podge of commissions and new appointed officials. Seriously, read his plan and see if you can make sense of this muddle:

Health Care - Deeds has a plan for expanding health insurance to the unemployed and assisting families with elderly loved-ones living with them. McDonnell, the issue isn't listed.

Equality and Civil Rights - This issue has caused a lot of frustration with Deeds, but he voted against the Marshall-Newman Amendment in November (though not to have it on the ballot), he opposes all forms of employment discrimination, he supports hospital visitation rights and he is pro-choice. McDonnell was a co-sponsor of Marshall-Newman and is fervently pro-life.

Veterans - Deeds focuses on health and education benefits, whereas McDonnell seems more concerned with symbolic gestures such as a memorial wall and honoring the flag.

One last thing, it seems to me McDonnell is trying to run as Bush circa 2000, as the compassionate conservative, moderate Republican. Please let's not help them pull off this charade again.

This adds up to more than enough for me to go happily door-to-door for Creigh. I hope a few of you will join me or continue the fight through other means.

Full Video: Barack Obama at Kroger in Bristol, VA

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Tweet of the Day: Hottest Day in Seattle, Does That Prove Global Warming?

For all the science ignoramuses out there who think they can look out their window and draw conclusions about a complex, long-term, planetary trend that's been more extensively studied than just about any other phenomenon known to man.

Courtesy of's executive editor.

Rees' Ridiculous Comments on the "Schilling Show"

Bradley Rees is running for the Republican nomination in the 5th Congressional District, where Tom Perriello is doing a fantastic job and hopefully will be reelected by a comfortable margin next year. Anyway, earlier today, Mr. Rees was on The Schilling Show (1070 WINA). Keep in mind as you listen (you may not want to, though; it's painful) that Schilling is very right wing and anti-Perriello. Also, keep in mind that there will likely be many other 5th CD Republicans throwing their hats in the ring, and that Bradley Rees probably doesn't have a snowball's chance in you-know-where of winning the nomination. With that, here are a few of the ridiculous comments made on the show by Mr. Rees and/or the host.

Ridiculous comment #1: Rees refers to "career politicians" as one of the reasons why he's running (because "career politicians" are a bad thing, in his opinion). The only problem with that "reasoning" is that Tom Perriello has only been in office for 7 months - not exactly a "career politician." So why replace Perriello then? Got me. (Now, Virgil Goode on the other Also, I wonder if Rees thinks that John Warner was bad because he was in the Senate for 30 years)

Ridiculous comment #2: "I respect Virgil Goode a lot." No further comment necessary, except to point out that Goode is a right-wing extremist, xenophobe, homophobe, and anti-Muslim bigot (among his many fine qualities - ha).

Ridiculous comment #3: "I do want something from the government, I want the government to get the hell out of my way." Typical right-wing Republican blather. Yeah, so you don't want government to defend the country, provide a police force, build and maintain an interstate highway system and other essential infrastructure, protect us from diseases like swine flu, etc? Riiiight...well, good luck to you in your Ayn Rand "libertarian" paradise! :)

Ridiculous comment #4: The host claims Perriello missed 49 votes (8% of the votes that are taken). Rees notes that Perriello missed votes when his father died, but then says he doesn't think there were 49 votes held in that 1 1/2 weeks. So...I checked and, just for the record, Tom Perriello's father died on March 2, 2009. Congressman Perriello left DC in the last week of February to be with his gravely ill dad and his family. Between February 23 and March 6, Tom missed 38 votes, almost all of the 49 votes total that he's missed. Other than that, Tom has missed 11 votes, including 8 on one day (April 29). Wow, that's...uh...well, hardly any votes missed at all, except around the time of his father's illness and death. Horrible, huh? ;)

Ridiculous comment #5: Any and all discussion of the "fair tax." This is one of the worst ideas I've ever heard in my life, to "replace all federal income taxes[1] with a single national retail sales tax." That would be horrendously regressive, among other things. For more on the UNfair tax, see's analysis. It's not pretty.

Ridiculous comment #6: Bashing of lawyers as the ones who - gasp! what a concept! - write the laws. Ha.

Ridiculous comment #7: Says the government has no place in the bedroom, but also that Roe v. Wade should be overturned. Huh? Isn't the point of overturning Roe v. Wade to allow state governments to interfere with a woman's decisions regarding her own body and specifically reproduction?

New SurveyUSA Poll: Big Lead for GOP, But Very Strange "Internals"

I usually like SurveyUSA, but this one is rather odd. First, here are the top-line results.

Bob McDonnell: 55%
Creigh Deeds: 40%

Bill Bolling: 54%
Jody Wagner: 42%

Ken Cuccinelli: 53%
Steve Shannon: 42%

Obviously, from a Democratic perspective, these are not the results we want to be seeing right now. However, before we all get too discouraged, we need to look at some of the "internals" of this poll and compare to the internals of SurveyUSA's last Virginia poll (in early June). For instance:

*SurveyUSA now assumes an electorate that is 52% male and 48% female, compared to 52% female and 48% male back in June. The flip is rather odd. I'd also point out that it's almost always the case that there are more female than male voters. So why isn't that the case here? Strange. Also, keep in mind that women consistently tend to vote more Democratic than men (i.e., the "gender gap"), which means that this flip in "internals" skews the poll "red."

*SurveyUSA now has just 17% of voters aged 18-34, compared to 24% of the sample last time around. That's a big shift; the question is "why?" Also, keep in mind that younger voters tend to be more Democratic, so this sample shift would also tend to make the poll skew less Democratic and more Republican.

*On party affiliation, SurveyUSA now assumes 38% Republicans, 32% Democrats and 29% Independents. This compares to the June "internals," which assumed 34% Republicans, 36% Democrats, and 27% Independents. What's up with that? Again, a significant shift in "internals" towards the Republicans that needs to be explained...

*On ideology, SurveyUSA now assumes 42% conservative, 41% moderate and just 13% liberal. This compares to the June assumptions of 33% conservative, 46% moderate, and 15% liberal. Again, a big shift towards the conservatives (+9) and a shift away from moderates (-5) and liberals (-2). Why?

The three possibilities I can think of for the shifts in "internal" assumptions by SurveyUSA since June are: 1) they simply messed up; 2) they intentionally skewed the sample to favor Republicans; or 3) they are picking up a big gap in enthusiasm that skews towards older, more conservative, more Republican voters. I rule out #2, so that leaves #1 (which is possible, but SurveyUSA is usually pretty good) and #3 (which I definitely think is a possibility, but to this extent?).

The bottom line: until these internals are explained, I'm not sure what to make of these poll results. Having said that, I'm not happy with them: a 15-point lead for Bob McDonnell, a 12-point lead for Bill Bolling, and an 11-point lead for Ken Cuccinelli are NOT what I was hoping to see when I heard a new poll was out. Sigh.

UPDATE: I just heard from SurveyUSA news director Ken Alper, who said, "just saw your post and wanted to make sure you see the poll we released today is of likely voters – previously, during our pre-primary polling, we asked the November matchup questions of registered voters."

UPDATE #2: Also a bit strange, SurveyUSA's assumed electorate says it voted 52%-43% for John McCain last year. As we all know, Barack Obama won Virginia 53%-46%.

UPDATE #3: The more I think about this, I believe it's possible that core Democratic voters - liberals, African Americans, Latinos, women - aren't nearly as motivated this year as they were last year. There's also the issue of "federal voters" not voting in non-federal elections. In short, what we could be seeing is that Virginia '08 was a totally different electorate than Virginia '09 will be.

Scott Surovell Kickoff: Report, Photos

The Surovell for Delegate campaign reports on Scott's kickoff last Saturday (July 25) at Woodlawn Elementary School. According to the press release, there were 75 supporters at the event, including Rep. Jim Moran, State Senator Toddy Puller, State Senator Chap Petersen, Deletate Mark Sickles, School Board Member Dan Storck, and current Delegate Kris Amundson (D-44).
In his speech, Surovell explained his reason for running for Delegate. “I’m running because I think Richmond is largely broken,” he said. “I don’t think Richmond has been working for the people. It certainly hasn’t been working for the people in Northern Virginia.”

Surovell spoke on a range of issues he commonly hears from voters in the district, including transportation, education and senior living. He pointed to the disparity in state revenue from Northern Virginia and state spending in the region and called for a revaluation of funding allocations that largely benefit Virginia’s rural jurisdictions.

Regarding transportation and Richmond Highway, Surovell advocated finding solutions in the long-term and focusing on transportation alternatives such as rail, bicycles and pedestrian travel. “What we need are some real, sustainable, long-term solutions. We need to make sure that whatever money is raised in Northern Virginia stays in Northern Virginia. Long-term, we need to focus on getting some rapid transit down here, bus rapid transit and, long term, we’ve got to get Metro down here.”

Surovell, who attended public elementary, middle and high schools in the Mt. Vernon area, was resolute in his support of the region’s schools. He noted that schools on the west side of Route One especially need more investment and support from the state.

Surovell also addressed the need for available preschool in the Mt. Vernon area and throughout the state. Surovell’s grandparents were one of the founding families of one of the longest operated preschools in Northern Virginia, Tauxemont Cooperative Preschool, in the early 1940’s. “Preschool is where it starts. People need to have preschool available to them.”

Surovell also made clear that higher education will be a priority for his campaign. While his opponent proposes out-of-state enrollment caps for colleges, Surovell argues that more investment from the state is needed to expand our colleges. “To say you’re going to cap out of state students but you’re not going to give the colleges any more money, that’s not a solution.”

Surovell also spoke of the high concentration of seniors living in the Mount Vernon area, believing that they should be allowed to live in their own homes with dignity and respect. He proposes grants for community based organizations and regulating home health care workers, adding that this will minimize taxpayer burdens.
Go Scott!

Colin Powell: GOP Afraid to Take on Rush Limbaugh

Colin Powell: sane Republican.
Rush Limbaugh: all-too-typical Republican.

P.S. Also, see here for Powell's comments on Sarah Palin ("I don't think she was ready to be president of the United States last fall") and here for his comments on the Gates arrest (there should have been "adult supervision" of the Cambridge police department) and on his own history of being racially profiled (including at Reagan National Airport).

Charlie Hall Clears Up a Mystery?

See here for the whole story about what happened with the Providence district school board vote the other day. Thanks to Charlie Hall, who I strongly supported in 2007 for Fairfax County board from Providence district, for his report!

Arjun Jaikumar Voted "Most Beautiful" Person on the Hill

Congratulations (I think) to DSCC new media strategist - and former Daily Kos front pager assigned to cover Virginia politics - on being named the "Readers Choice" winner of the "50 Most Beautiful" on the Hill, 2009. Jaikumar's secret?
When asked how he maintains his look, this humble thespian quips, “I try to shave for work, and I try to get a haircut when people start looking at me funny … I probably need one around now. I didn’t know I had a look. I guess total lack of exercise. I walk a lot, I skip meals to keep my svelte figure, I drink a lot of coffee and probably not enough water. I do everything wrong.”
Words to live by!

Also, congratulations to Arlington's own Maria Espinoza, staff assistant for Rep. Jim Moran who "recently went on a three-and-a-half-day bike trip along the C&O Canal to Harpers Ferry, W.Va." Oh, she's also got "red fingernails and high heels" and had previously "imagined her life center stage singing Latin music."

Last but not least, congrat's to Brooke Boyer of Fairfax Station, who (hard to believe) "says she never gets hit on." Ha.

P.S. What ever happened to Jim Webb's spokesperson Jessica Smith, who was one of the most beautiful in 2007? :)

Will the Washington Post Endorse Nobody for Governor?

Based on this editorial, I'm starting to think that the Washington Post - whose endorsement of Creigh Deeds in the Democratic primary this spring is widely believed to have played a major role in Deeds' surprise, come-from-behind victory - will not endorse either Deeds or Bob McDonnell in the general election this fall.
Given that crisis in [Virginia transportation] funding, and the centrality of transportation infrastructure to Virginia's economy, you'd think the candidates for governor would advance serious, plausible proposals -- and that they would include fresh revenue from new taxes or fees. Unfortunately, former attorney general Robert F. McDonnell, the Republican, is pushing a plan that mostly rules out such revenue and that would deliver significant new funds for road-building only at the probable expense of the state's colleges, public schools, police departments, prisons and health programs. And state Sen. R. Creigh Deeds, the Democrat, has not even bothered to formulate much of a plan at all. As a result, the candidates' first face-to-face debate last weekend was deeply unedifying on what each rightly identified as the central issue.

Mr. McDonnell's transportation plan -- all 19 pages of it -- deserves credit for the extent and specificity of its proposals. He acknowledges that current funding sources are inadequate and proposes some new ones. Unfortunately, the new revenue he identifies is one-time-only, many years distant or paltry....


As for Mr. Deeds, his approach to transportation funding is to sidestep the subject, a stance even more irresponsible than Mr. McDonnell's...


If Mr. McDonnell wants to shortchange education, public safety and health to pay for roads, let him say so clearly and honestly. If Mr. Deeds wants to raise taxes for the same purpose, let him level with Virginians. Otherwise, the two are condemned to a fall campaign every bit as sterile as their first debate.
I agree, the first debate - and, for that matter, the entire campaign so far - was utterly "sterile" when it comes to serious proposals for fixing Virginia's transportation mess. The fact is, our current funding model for transportation in Virginia is completely broken. As the Post says, if this were a business, it would be bankrupt. For instance, Virginia's total state taxes on gasoline are just 19.4 cents per gallon, or 9.2 cents per gallon under the national average. That's extremely low. And Virginia's gas tax hasn't been raised in 23 years, which means that it hasn't even come close to keeping up with inflation in every other area - e.g., the cost of labor and materials for repairing and building rail, roads, and bridges. That's completely crazy, and certainly not a "business model" by which to run the Commonwealth (unless we're talking about running it into the ground, that is).

Beyond funding, I also don't hear either gubernatorial candidate talking seriously about dealing with the main root cause of our traffic problems. That would be mindless, unconstrained sprawl, as opposed to "smart growth" and "transit-oriented development," which are the obvious answers here. In the 2005 gubernatorial campaign, I was highly encouraged when Tim Kaine raised the issue of tying land use planning much more closely to transportation development. As Tim Kaine wrote in June of this year, that means things like "better road design standards, traffic impact statements that must be prepared before major land-use decisions are made, authority for local governments to assess impact fees for transportation and forthcoming stormwater regulations that will reduce overpaving." Unfortunately, in the 2009 gubernatorial campaign, I haven't heard much (if any) serious talk about any of this. Instead, we've got Bob McDonnell's deep dishonesty (and, to the extent that he's being honest, deep immorality) and Creigh Deeds' lack of specificity (and faulty comparison to the Gerald Baliles model on transportation; it's a completely different situation today in Virginia than in the late 1980s). That's extremely unfortunate and disappointing.

The bottom line is that the Washington Post is correct on this one: without a serious discussion of raising major revenues for Virginia's transportation system - and, I'd add, an equally serious discussion of dealing with land use - this entire debate is utterly "sterile." Making matters worse, whoever is elected governor in November will face a General Assembly which has demonstrated absolutely no appetite or ability to deal with any of this. So, unless Bob McDonnell and Creigh Deeds run on a robust platform regarding transportation, neither will have a mandate to get things done if and when they become governor. Another four years like the last 3 1/2 years is the last thing Virginia needs, yet that appears to be exactly where we're headed. Argh.

UPDATE: I just wanted to point out that the Deeds campaign does talk, for one paragraph, about connecting transportation planning with land use in its economic plan. I hope to hear Creigh speak about this on the stump at least as much as Tim Kaine did in 2005. Today, the problem's more urgent than ever.

Whipple Clip Dozen: Wednesday Morning

Thanks as always to Tom Whipple for these "clips."


They Broke It

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Republican Party of Virginia Says 21st Century Democrats is "Radical"

Don't these people ever get bored of this crap? Sure guys, everyone who's not a right-wing Republican is now a "radical." Health care reform is "radical." Investing in America's infrastructure is "radical." Unemployment benefits are "radical." Protecting our planet from environmental disaster is "radical." All that's radical, but Catherine Crabill calling for violent, armed revolution against the U.S. government is perfectly alright. Yeah, I think I got it now...
Republican Party of Virginia Chairman Pat Mullins today noted that the radical organization "21st Century Democrats" has endorsed Creigh Deeds in his bid to become Governor of Virginia as the Democratic nominee. The 21st Century Democrats use the so-called Card Check legislation as a measure to gauge their enthusiasm for a candidate. The Card Check bill currently before Congress would do away with secret ballot decisions employees make on unionization and subjects workers to scrutiny and public pressure, while handcuffing employers and stifling job growth.

The 21st Century Democrats endorsed Deeds by press release today, prompting Deeds to gush, "I respect their commitment to grassroots politics and admire their long record of electing progressives across the country." Candidates generally do not receive the endorsements of organizations without completing candidate questionnaires.

Question number five on the 21st Century Democrats candidate questionnaire reads, in part, "Do you support the Employee Free Choice Act?"

During Saturday's gubernatorial debate hosted by the Virginia Bar Association, Deeds telegraphed his approval of the Act, also known as Card Check, which will hamstring employers, increase the cost of doing business, strangle job creation and expose workers to the strong arm of big labor union bosses. "It's not going to do anything to impugn Virginia's integrity as a business-friendly state," Deeds said in the debate.

"Well, birds of a feather flock together," said Chairman Mullins. "It's pretty obvious that Mr. Deeds would not have gotten their endorsement if he didn't answer the question of card check to their satisfaction. Now that we know where he stands on coerced unionization, we can hopefully get past all of his obfuscation on that idea."

21st Century Democrats was co-founded by Jim Hightower, co-chairman of Ralph Nader's ill-fated presidential campaign in 2000. A well-known liberal commentator and writer, Hightower authored a book entitled "There's Nothing in the Middle of the Road but Yellow Stripes and Dead Armadillos: A Work of Political Subversion."

"My mother taught me that two wrongs don't make a right, but I soon figured out that three left turns do," Hightower once famously wrote.

"Mr. Deeds has tried to fool people into thinking he was some sort of moderate, but that's out the window now," Mullins said. "Clearly, Creigh didn't want to be that dead armadillo, so he wandered off into the left lane of the highway.

"This is quite a remarkable departure from the Creigh Deeds we knew just four years ago - before he decided to seek his party's nomination. He has veered so far to the left that he is now attracting the ‘who's who' of the fringe liberal movement," Mullins said.

White House Video: "The First Lady Visits Caroline Family Practice"

"First Lady Michelle Obama visits Caroline Family Practice Community Health Center, a community clinic in Virginia. In her remarks, she discusses the importance of primary and preventative care, and reforming our health insurance system so that every person has access to quality, affordable care."

National Review Online Denounces the "Birthers"

The conservative Republican National Review weighs in on right wingers who believe that Barack Obama isn't really a U.S. citizen.
Much foolishness has become attached to the question of President Obama’s place of birth, and a few misguided souls among the Right have indulged it. The myth that Barack Obama is ineligible to be president represents the hunt for a magic bullet that will make all the unpleasant complications of his election and presidency disappear. We are used to seeing conspiracy theories from the Left, for instance among the one in three Democrats who believe that 9/11 was an inside job conducted with the foreknowledge of the Bush administration...There is nothing that President Obama’s coterie would enjoy more than to see the responsible Right become a mirror image of the loopy Left circa 2003.
Unfortunately for the National Review Online, I doubt that anything's going to stop the right wingers determined to find the "magic bullet" that will make their nightmare of a Democratic White House - and an African American with a Kenyan father, no less! - and Democratic Congress go away. I also find the NRO's hysteria over Barack Obama to be...well, "hysterical." I mean, how much better is NRO, with its talk about President Obama "truncating our liberties," then its more conspiracy-minded brethren? Sure, the boys (and a few girls) at NRO believe that Obama was born in the United States, but other than that, do they fundamentally disagree with those folks in any significant way? I don't see it.

Virginia OFA Director: "Organizing in Support of the President"

The following is a guest post from Brandyn Keating, Virginia State Director of Organizing for America. Previously, Keating worked with the Coalition for Social Justice/Coalition Against Poverty, and in support of Governor Deval Patrick's historic campaign to be the first African American Governor of Massachusetts. She first joined the Obama campaign as an out-of-state volunteer coordinator for the Rhode Island primary, then she moved to Pennsylvania and worked on the primary there as a Field Organizer before ultimately taking on the role as GOTV Director for the state of Wisconsin during the 2008 general election. Thanks to Brandyn Keating for this post, and if you want to volunteer, please click here.
Like many of you, I worked tirelessly as a part of Barack Obama’s historic campaign last year and celebrated our success on Election Day. But, change in Washington won’t come just because we were able to elect such an amazing President. This is why I’ve answered the President’s call to action and spend every day organizing grassroots support for his agenda as a part of Organizing for America (OFA).

We made a step in the right direction in November, but real change in Washington will take time, and it will also mean that we must continue make our voices heard so our representatives in Congress enact the change we want to see. So I ask you to join me as a part of OFA Virginia and support the President’s vision for America:

There are many ways to get involved:

*Joining grassroots OFA campaigns to support the President's agenda. Online, on the phone, on doorsteps and in town halls in communities across the country, we're building the bottom-up support that makes real change possible.
*Spreading the word to friends and neighbors about the President's approach on the big issues facing our nation, like health care, energy and education. Nothing is more powerful than your voice in your community.
*Serving our community in ways big and small. Rebuilding America starts today.
*Connecting with other supporters to form strong local groups, ready to take on whatever challenges we face.
*Supporting leaders who share our values and are ready to carry forward the fight for change.

As the President travels to Virginia tomorrow to talk about health care, it’s important for me to place an even greater emphasis on the urgent need for health insurance reform in this country, how success of the President’s plan can ONLY happen with your help, and how waiting to reform our broken system is no longer an option.

Across the country, far too many people continue be uninsured, over 45 million in fact. And, in Virginia alone, 14 percent of the population lacks insurance, regardless of their employment status. With the rising cost of health care, more and more people are finding themselves uninsured and businesses, especially small businesses, are finding it harder to offer insurance to their hard working employees.

So I urge you to ACT NOW in support of the Presidents plan for reform that will reduce the costs that are preventing so many from being insured, guarantee choice of plans and doctors, including a public option, and ensure quality affordable care for all. Action on this critical issue can fit into any schedule, just simply sign back into your MyBO account from the campaign and sign a declaration in support of the President’s plan, share your unique health care story, sign up for a health care event, or organize your own event. And, don’t forget to urge your friends to do the same!!

Click here to volunteer for OFA today.

I look forward to working with you in support of the President’s plan for the country as we build OFA in Virginia together. He needs your hands to continue to make positive change happen in this country!

Tim Kaine on "Ask the Governor" Talks Travels, Deeds, Wilder, etc.

Tim Kaine was on WTOP's Ask the Governor this morning. Here are a few highlights.

*On his travels as DNC chair, and specifically his "one day a week" promise, Kaine says "I'm not on a time clock, and everywhere I am I'm doing state work."

*Again, on out-of-state travels, Kaine says "It's not 150 destinations out of the state" if you include DC, and "I have a son in college in DC...I'm a Cap's fan, I'm a Nat's fan, I'm a Wizards fan."

*On the closure of rest stops, Kaine says, "I wish I didn't have to do it, but transportation revenues...are declining." Kaine also blames the House of Delegates hasn't wanted to spend more on roads. Trying to get permission to offer "modest commercial opportunities" at rest stops to keep all of them open.

*On the Supreme Court's recent Melendez-Diaz ruling and the August 19 special session Kaine has called, "the fact that we're going to address it quickly will minimize challenges in the courts." We'll also have to have more forensic experts, they don't just "grow on trees."

*On the Virginia Tech shooter's mental health records being removed and just recently found, Kaine says this is "of significant concern." "I am sure that is not lawfully permitted [to remove records]." The August 2007 report on the Virginia Tech shootings will need to be reopened, looked at again. "These records are critical, they shouldn't have been removed...I want to know why."

*On "life after governor," Kaine says he'll stay in Richmond as "base of operations." Will be doing more work in DC on DNC work.

*On Republican demands for Kaine to resign as governor or step down as DNC chair, Kaine says, "Heck no..."Now, I know Republicans seem to like this governor resigning thing. I think a prominent Republican governor resigned the other day. I'm keeping my four year commitment to the Virginia voters who put me in office." [Gee, I wonder who Kaine could be referring to here...Sarah Palin cough cough...]

*On whether Kaine is "hurting Creigh Deeds" (Mark Plotkin says that Deeds praised Warner but not Kaine at The Homestead debate), Kaine says "No, absolutely not." Virginia is still the best-managed state in the country.

*On Doug Wilder, Kaine says he gets along very well with Gov. Wilder, have chatted about the race in person a number of times, "he really wants to see what the candidates do...his endorsement is not something that [can be] take it for granted because you have a particular letter after your name, you gotta...earn it."

Tim Kaine to La Raza: "Ya es hora ¡Ciudadanía!"

In a little while, Tim Kaine will be speaking to the National Council of La Raza's annual conference. From the Politico article, "Democrats have huge day with Latinos":
Kaine will tell the group he has “a great respect for the Latino community and the values it holds dear – family, dedication to hard-work, and commitment to the community.

“The Latino community is quickly becoming one of the most influential in the entire country,” Kaine says in prepared remarks. “And the demographic is changing. Right now, one in 10 people in Virginia are born outside the U.S. … I think it’s safe to say that President Obama wouldn’t have won Virginia (for the first time since 1964), and wouldn’t have the White House so overwhelmingly without the support of the Latino Community, so I thank you for that.”

Kaine’s text adds: “ya es hora ¡Ciudadanía! (Citizenship, It’s Time!); and ya es hora ¡Ve y Vota! (It’s Time, Go Vote!).”
I'm very glad to see this, especially since it will make the immigrant-bashing right wingers' heads explode. Ha. In all seriousness, though, the Democrats are on the verge of winning over Latino voters for many years to come, as the Republicans alienate them with a combination of immigrant bashing and opposition to the historic Supreme Court nomination of Sonia Sotomayor. Keep up the good work, guys, I'm looking forward to Democrats staying in power for mucho mas anos! :)

UPDATE: The New York Times reports, "BREAKING NEWS 11:59 AM ET: Senate Judiciary Panel Approves Sotomayor With One Republican Vote". The vote was 13-6 in favor (Lindsey Graham was only "R" vote for Sotomayor), nomination now goes to full Senate.

Will Deeds & Wagner Support President Obama's Progressive Agenda?

Here's the first in a recurring series here at Blue Virginia, Unsolicited Advice From an Also-Ran House of Delegates Candidate.

Short version - progressives don't expect Creigh Deeds and Jody Wagner to blindly support paragraph & verse of every bill the president signs. But that shouldn't stop them from letting voters know they're broadly behind President Obama's agenda for real change:

William Shatner Interprets Sarah Palin as Poetry

So that's what it all meant! Thank you, William Shatner.

h/t: Oliver Willis

Chap Nails it on Michael Vick

As usual, I agree with Chap, this time on Michael Vick.
Michael Vick did the crime, then did the time. He's out of the system and back on the street. His livelihood is football and he should pursue his livelihood. That is how he should re-enter society.

Vick will always have a legal legacy in Virginia. As a result of his serious crimes, the Assembly enhanced all kinds of penalties dealing with the abuse of animals. Anyone involved in any way with animal fighting, whether dogs or cocks, now risks a felony. I doubt that we'll ever see someone with that wealth and fame involved again like he was in abusing animals.

As for Vick, he's had many chapters in his young life. The finest natural athlete of his generation to come out of Virginia (take that Allen Iverson!) Took Tech to the national championship game. Picked #1 in the NFL draft.


Michael Vick has a second chance. Let's hope that's the last one he needs.
Exactly, let's hope.

Whipple Clip Dozen: Tuesday Morning

The top dozen stories from today's "Whipple Clips" by the amazing Tom Whipple.

2. VA. AG: SHANNON AD HITS CUCCINELLI, LINKS HIM TO CRABHILL... (note: it's spelled "Crabill" not "Crabhill")

Video: Michelle Obama in Caroline County, Virginia

Monday, July 27, 2009

For more on Michelle Obama's visit to a health care clinic in Bowling Green (Caroline County), click here and also here.

Scaaaary: Watch Out for Those Evil "Union Militants!"

What boggles my mind is that there are actually people out there - in this case, the outfit known by the Orwellian name, The National Right to Work Committee - who actually believe this garbage ("union militants" forcing workers under "Big Labor control," etc.). Of course, it's the same crazy mentality that also wants us to believe that Barack Obama wasn't really born in the United States, or that health care reform means "socialized medicine," or that efforts to save the planet from global warming are some sort of diabolical liberal scheme to steal our freedom, or that we may need to turn to the "bullet box" against our own government. So, on second thought, I guess it's not that surprising to see ads like this. It's just sad.

P.S. Note to Senators Warner and Webb: please give this add all the consideration that it's due. None.

"Birthers on the Hill": Is the Entire GOP Nuts?

Well, there was at least one Republican Congressman who said he believed Barack Obama's a U.S. citizen, so I guess they're not ALL nuts. But wow, watch this video...simply mind boggling how this can be a major U.S. political party in this day and age.

h/t: OpenLeft

UPDATE: More "birther" hilarity, this time featuring Eric Cantor and Michael Steele! :)

First Shannon Ad Blasts Cooch for Not Condemning Crabill Comments

"Ken Cuccinelli wants to enforce our laws...But won't condemn those who threaten to break them."

Great job by the Shannon campaign on this ad. As far as I'm concerned, this is exactly what all statewide Democratic candidates should be doing: tying the Republicans running in Virginia this year to Crabill's crazy remarks. How can we lose? I mean, either the Republican agree with Crabill, in which case they're as crazy as she is, or they condemn the remarks in which case they piss of their right-wing base. I believe that's called a "win win" situation for Democrats. Also a "no brainer."

P.S. I'm posting the Shannon press release on this ad in the comments section. Go Steve!

Wagner, Bolling to Debate Four Times

From the Jody Wagner for LG campaign:
Today, Democratic Nominee for Lieutenant Governor Jody Wagner announced her acceptance of invitations to four debates and forums with Lt. Governor Bill Bolling in the fall. The campaign accepted invitations from Virginia Votes, the Prince William Committee of 100, the Young Lawyers Bar Association, and the Women's Bar Association. Dates and locations have not been determined.

Said Wagner: "I'm pleased to accept invitations from these groups. These debates and forums will give voters across the Commonwealth the chance to participate in the conversation about Virginia's future, and I sincerely hope Bill Bolling will join me."

In June, Wagner challenged Bolling to a series of monthly debates.

Leslie Byrne on Sarah Palin: "Stupid or Shameless"

Great job Leslie!
What kind of ego does it take to basically say, “Say anything bad about me and hurt a soldier”? This human train wreck who is so devoid of self awareness, who has not served day in the military, who quit the job she ran for and was elected to, who knew that her ethical challenges would come out during her Vice Presidential campaign but ran anyway, who ran on “family values” while the hypocrisy of her own family would be in full view, must be either stupid or shameless. Whoops! I just took out a battalion.

Tom Shields Kickoff Tomorrow in Henrico

From the Tom Shields for Delegate campaign:

Henrico-Tomorrow, Tuesday, July 28th, Tom Shields will focus on the need to build a new generation of independent leadership that puts families above partisanship and special interests in official announcement for 73rd District.

WHO: Tom Shields and Voters
WHAT: Official Announcement of Candidacy for 73rd District
WHEN: Tomorrow, Tuesday, July 28th, 11:00AM
WHERE: Tuckahoe Elementary School
701 Forest Ave.
Henrico, VA 23229
WHY: Whether it's been on the economy, education, or health care, incumbent John O'Bannon has repeatedly voted against the interests of families in the 73rd District. Tom Shields is running for the House of Delegates to bring a new generation of independent leadership that families in the 73rd District deserve.

Goode Bye (and Goode Riddance)!

I'm actually kind of sad about this, because I thought Virgil Goode would be the easiest candidate for Tom Perriello to defeat in 2010.
Former congressman Virgil H. Goode Jr. says he will not seek the Republican nomination for his former seat in the House of Representatives in 2010.

“I have decided not to seek the Republican nomination for Congress in 2010,” Goode said in a prepared statement. “It is my sincere hope and expectation that Republicans will nominate a conservative who will oppose the record deficits and debt of the current administration, will support secure borders and oppose amnesty for illegals, will recognize and reduce the huge threat that terrorists pose for our country, will support pro-life issues, and will support the traditional definition of marriage of one man and one woman.”


Goode did not address the reasons behind his decision, and he declined to elaborate.
Another reason to be bummed that Goode isn't running is the loss of entertainment value. However, I'm fairly confident that will be made up for by whoever the Republicans end up nominating. Ha.

UPDATE: The strongest possible Republican opponent against Tom Perriello appears to be Sen. Robert Hurt (R-19). Another possibility is Del. Rob Bell (R-58), currently busy running for reelection. There's also Bradley Rees, who's clearly the furthest right wing of the three, which means I'm strongly rooting for him. Go Rees! :)

UPDATE #2: According to VPAP, Rob Bell has $582,210 cash on hand, while Hurt is hurtin' right now with just $1,444...