Subject: Merry Christmas from your friends at Bearing Drift
To all our Democrat Friends:
Please accept with no obligation, implied or implicit, our best wishes for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low-stress, non-addictive, gender-neutral celebration of the winter solstice holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the religious persuasion of your choice, or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasion and/or traditions of others, or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all. We also wish you a fiscally successful, personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year 2010, but not without due respect for the calendars of choice of other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make America great. Not to imply that America is necessarily greater than any other country nor the only America in the Western Hemisphere.
Also, this wish is made without regard to the race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith or sexual preference of the wishee.
To our Republican Friends:
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Posts Tagged ‘Republicans’
Annotations & Elucidations
Bringing Back The Car Tax?
Governor Tim Kaine is yanking the commonwealth’s collective chain on whether he will propose re-instituting the car tax in his last budget. Will he or won’t he? We’ll know Friday when he releases it. Republicans, from Governor-elect Bob McDonnell on down, say they will not go along. Meanwhile, the GOP’s sixth House of Delegates seat pickup is official as Ron Villanueva maintained his 16 vote lead in a recount. Speaking of the House, the pre-filing deadline for legislation has brought in a pile of bills and the Washington Times has a preview of some early newsworthy favorites come January. Over in the national House, the Washington Post reports that Dems are fretting over another crush — a crush of retirements that may throw up into the air the issue of control of the House of Representatives in the 2010 elections.
Kaine coy about plans for car tax (Northern Virginia Daily)
Dems on McDonnell advisers list: I’m doing what now? (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)
Pre-filing allowing avalanche of new bills (Washington Times)
It’s official: Villanueva wins close election in Virginia Beach (The Daily Press)
Villanueva winner of 21st District seat in Va. Beach recount (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)
Conservatives launch PACs to grab for Tea Party cash (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)
State fines disappearing candidate (WVEC.com/WVEC-TV)
House Democrats lose fourth member to retirement (Washington Post)
When ‘real world data’ fails (OneNewsNow.com)
Family group uneasy with FCC appointee (OneNewsNow.com)
FAIR to fight ‘ridiculous’ amnesty bill (OneNewsNow.com)
Obama to work to solidify support for health bill (AP/OneNewsNow.com)
Chinese official pushes ‘one child’ policy in Copenhagen (Matt Friedeman/Rightly Concerned Blog)
‘Religious Test’ — Belong to a Particular Denomination (Bryan Fischer/Focal Point, Rightly Concerned Blog)
Muslim followers of Jesus? (Matt Friedeman/Rightly Concerned Blog)
It may be December, and it may be a one month campaign, but it’s already a hot one in the 37th Senate District special election (to be held January 12) to fill the seat of Attorney General-elect Ken Cuccinelli. It was guaranteed to be so from the beginning: The Dems think the seat belongs to them because of they way Fairfax County has trended recently.
As the number one targeted Republican in 2007, they thought they had Cuccinelli dead in their sights, but he escaped with a victory of less than 100 votes. (Now, he’s attorney general, surely to endless liberal heartburn, mental anguish, knashing of teeth and sleepless nights.) But a Democrat victory now would be a welcome buttress to its current one seat firewall against GOP policy initiatives.
However, the climate is much different now. The GOP did very well in Fairfax in November and has momentum and the weight of landslide victors Governor-elect Bob McDonnell and re-elected Lt. Governor Bill Bolling as well as Cuccinelli behind its nominee, Stephen Hunt. Hunt has been elected county wide before (to the Fairfax County School Board), while the best the Demscould come up with is Delegate Dave Marsden (D-41, Fairfax), who barely won re-election in November to his House seat, which partially overlaps the Senate district.
But it’s not only a matter of a changed political atmosphere, but also Marsden’s residency, at least for now. He doesn’t live in the district, but a couple of weeks ago took up in a room in a friend’s house that is in the district (see Washington Times).
But political climate and residency aren’t the only things that have changed. Now, Delegate Marsden claims to be a low-tax guy. Talk about reading political tea leaves, or at least election results. In a recent direct mail piece, Delegate Marsden stakes out the low-tax mantle, claiming he will “Hold the line on taxes,” although he has consistently voted for numerous tax increases in the House of Delegates, including this $2 billion increase (click here) in 2008. It would have raised taxes on car and home purchases (just what we need in a recession) and encouraged a Northern Virginia sales tax increase.
When voters ask for change, residency and glossing over voting records isn’t what they have in mind. Virginia Democrats won several elections in Virginia prior to November by basically saying, “We’re not Republicans.” Now, facing a statewide catastrophe, they have to say who they are, for once. According to the mailer released by Delegate Marsden, they still aren’t.
Here are more telling details from the education choice polling data and study of which we were a party and released yesterday: Paul DiPerna, research director for The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice, wrote in his study that the research indicates:
a major disconnect between Virginia’s schooling preferences and actual school enrollments. … As in other states where we have surveyed, the implication of these results is that Virginia does not have a sufficient school choice system in place to match parents’ schooling preferences. (See the entire report here.)
The survey polled 1,203 likely voters and was conducted from October 1-4. The margin of error was plus or minus 2.8 percent points. (See today’s Richmond Times-Dispatch for coverage of yesterday’s study release news conference.) The results illustrate the vast support in Virginia for a program of income tax credits for donations to scholarship foundations that, in turn, provide funds to qualifying students to attend a school of their choice instead of an assigned public school.
Of course, common sense and public opinion never guarantee a thing, and this issue is living proof — for years the General Assembly has refused to pass legislation to enable such foundations to fully unleash their potential to provide more students better education options. But the results of this study will be a much needed resupply of ammunition that we and several partner organizations will use this coming session and beyond. For example:
» 65 percent of Virginians support tax-credit scholarships, while only 22 percent oppose.
» 57 percent of Virginians favor school vouchers, while only 35 percent oppose.
Even when broken down by party affiliation, Virginians strongly support tax-credit scholarships and vouchers:
» 64 percent of Democrats, 68 percent of Republicans and 66 percent of independents support tax-credit scholarships.
» 53 percent of Democrats, 67 percent of Republicans and 58 percent of independents support school vouchers.
» 81 percent of Democrats, 79 percent of Republicans and 76 percent of independents support special needs school vouchers.
Additionally, the favor-oppose margins are large among the parties:
» On tax-credit scholarships, it’s +43 among Democrats, +46 among Republicans and +44 among independents.
» On school vouchers, it’s +15 among Democrats, +39 among Republicans and +22 among independents.
» On special needs school vouchers, it’s +67 among Democrats, +64 among Republicans and +60 among independents.
Education reform will be an issue to watch this session. With school choice a major issue in the recent campaign and a new philosophy at the helm of state government, sound ideas, such as those Virginians overwhelmingly support in this study, may have their best chance in years to get a much needed foothold in Virginia’s education system.
We are part of a wide-ranging coalition of organizations that earlier today released results of a statewide poll and a study on education choice in Virginia. Among our release partners are School Choice Virginia, the Virginia Catholic Conference, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, Verizon Virginia, the Black Alliance for Educational Options, the Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy, The Lexington Institute, the Virginia Council for Private Education and Markel Corporation. From corporations to think tanks to religious organizations and minority advocacy groups — all agree: Virginia needs vastly more options in education that it currently provides.
The poll was conducted in October by Braun Research, Inc., and an accompanying study was authored by Paul DiPerna of The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice. While it shows that while Virginians support public schools, it also shows they overwhelmingly support education freedom and choice, something clearly lacking in the commonwealth right now. (For example, Virginia only has four charter schools.)
Survey highlights include:
» Broad support among Democrats, Republicans and Independents for tax-credit scholarship programs and school vouchers.
» 64 percent of Democrats support for tax-credit scholarships.
» 53 percent support school vouchers.
» They are more likely to favor, rather than oppose, these policies by +43 percentage points and +15 percentage points, respectively.
Also, these stats are sure to blow away the educrats:
» While the survey found that 62 percent of Virginians believe the public school system is “good” or “excellent,” when given the choice between sending their child to a public school or an alternative (private, charter or homeschooling) 54 percent said they would choose the alternative.
» Among parents whose children attend Virginia public schools, 40 percent would keep their children there while 39 percent would choose an alternative. (Currently, 90 percent of Virginia’s school children attend public schools.)
Poor educrat monopolists! No one wants to be entrapped by their product. When will government learn that people want choice. Choice is natural and instinctive. It breeds competition and produces better products and services. So when given a choice, people prefer choice to that which is state-run. See the complete survey and study here.
Annotations & Elucidations
The Slow Time
It’s a slow political news cycle this time of year, especially right after a gangbusters election, as things settle down. Soon, however, it will be special election time in Fairfax and Virginia Beach for two Virginia Senate seats (vacated by the elections of Ken Cuccinelli to attorney general and Ken Stolle to Virginia Beach Sheriff). It’s becoming more likely that the new senator from Virginia Beach will be the Republican nominee since the Democrats can’t seem to find a candidate. Bob McDonnell will show his bipartisan stripes and meet with House Democrats, while Ron Villanueva gains another vote in his bid to keep said Dems one seat fewer.
Nationally, the AP reports 10 states face looming budget disasters, while U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is seeking a huge tax increase to pay for the health care bill. Who thinks things will get better soon? Meanwhile, Walter E. Williams is on target as ever in his column about contempt for the constitution, Christopher Adamo offers the GOP lessons from the New York special Congressional election, and Bobby Eberle tells RNC Chairman Michael Steele to knock off the irresponsible racial talk.
McDonnell to meet with House Democratic Caucus (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Beach electoral board finds extra vote for Villanueva (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)
Two Republicans run for Stolle’s seat; another Democrat out (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)
‘Jane Roe’ honored at LU pro-life conference (Lynchburg News & Advance)
A Year Out, Widespread Anti-Incumbent Sentiment (Pew Research Center for the People & the Press)
Reid eyes payroll tax hike to pay for health care (AP/GOPUSA.com)
Report: 10 states face looming budget disasters (AP/GOPUSA.com)
History Is Calling — Will Obama Answer? (Michael Barone/GOPUSA.com)
Constitutional Contempt (Walter E. Williams/GOPUSA.com)
We Win, They Lose (Lisa Fabrizio/GOPUSA.com)
Blind Diversity Equals Death (Michelle Malkin/GOPUSA.com)
Lessons Learned From New York District 23 (Christopher Adamo/GOPUSA.com)
Bridging the Racial Divide Takes a Bridge, not a Chainsaw (Bobby Eberle/GOPUSA.com)
No More Career Politicians! (Bobby Eberle/GOPUSA.com)
Annotations & Elucidations
“Stylistic” Election Coverage
The Communications Department didn’t come up with much from conventional news sources today, but I dug around and found, in of all places, in-depth election coverage and post mortems from Richmond’s too-old-to-be-hip-anymore weekly freebie, Style Weekly, which now delves into the business of the serious. It’s done a decent job, too. Of particular interest are the hat-tips to Republicans by Democrat guru-strategist Paul Goldman and the whining of Claire Guthrie Gastañaga, Equality Virginia’s lobbyist. University of Richmond Professor Daniel Palazzolo harangues Governor Tim Kaine and Scott Bass gets about half of it right. It’s funny when liberals try to manipulate conservative mandates by telling us what they want the results to mean is fact, and then fratricidally turn on themselves (a sure sign that their interpretation of the results is a disingenuous attempt to water down the victory).
Elsewhere, Republican Ron Villanueva was declared the winner in the closest House of Delegates race, but it’s only one step toward resolution, and will go on still longer, for sure. Attorney General Bill Mims is doing what all former attorneys general do (especially those who fill out a term of an elected one), and that is sign on with a big bucks power law law firm, while Senator Edd Houck (D-17, Spottsylvania) makes the news for the second day on the trot, describing a dour picture of state funding to localities. Nationally, the Washington Post reports that pro-abortion activists are trying to muzzle the free speech rights of pro-life clinics and information centers.
Villanueva declared winner in 21st District race (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)
Houck paints dire budget picture to city and Spotsy (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)
Attorney General to join Hunton and Williams (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Kaine Takes a Hike (Style Weekly)
Disclaimer proposed for anti-abortion clinics (Washington Post)
McDonnell, Picture Perfect (Paul Goldman/Style Weekly)
Presumptive Politics (Paul Goldman/Style Weekly)
McDonnell’s Power Surge (Scott Bass/Style Weekly)
Democratic Downers (Margaret Edds/Style Weekly)
Shilling For Bob (Claire Guthrie Gastañaga/Style Weekly)
Losing Legacy (Daniel Palazzolo/Style Weekly)
“For Whom the Bell Tolls” (Glenn Foden/Townhall.com)
“A Year Later . . .” (Scott Stantis/Townhall.com)
Annotations & Elucidations
Houck Not Going Anywhere
The hot rumor going around was that Senator Edd Houck (D-17, Spottsylvania) would accept a job in the new McDonnell administration, thus opening up a potential re-take of the Senate by Republicans by winning that seat in a special election. Democrats hold a one seat majority in the chamber, but a tie would flip it back to the GOP because of the re-election of Lt. Governor Bill Bolling. However, Senator Houck has dampened that speculation in today’s Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star.
In other news, Senator Robert Hurt (R-19, Chatham) has hired Chris LaCivita as his consultant in the crowded 5th Congressional District Republican nomination campaign. LaCivita, formerly a consultant to former Governor George Allen, is most noted for running the Swift Boat campaign against John Kerry, and is fresh off Attorney General-elect Ken Cuccinelli’s landslide victory. Those who hire LaCivita mean to win. Elsewhere, a Democrat big gun is brought in for the recount in the 21st House of Delegates district election (where Republican Ron Villanueva defeated incumbent Democrat Bobby Mathieson); the effect of the Liberty University student vote is looked at in the 23rd district campaign (where Republican Scott Garrett defeated incumbent Democrat Shannon Valentine); and Public Opinion Strategies offers insights into the Obama affect in the Virginia campaign. But mainly, we’re happy to bring back editorial comics to the News Stand.
Houck: No plan to leave (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)
McDonnell disagrees with study on trimming tax breaks (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Falwell says he’s ‘surprised’ by election results (Lynchburg News & Advance)
Counting in disputed 21st District race to resume at noon (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)
Al Gore’s Attorney helps Mathieson (BearingDrift.com)
Hurt signs up LaCivita (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)
Population, inflation fuel 10-year budget growth in Va. (Washington Post)
Don’t Tell Anyone, But Obama Hurt Deeds in Virginia (Public Opinion Strategies/TQIA Blog)
Are Republicans too giddy? (Julian E. Zelizer/CNN.com)
“Wahtchya doing?” (Eric Allie/Townhall.com)
“DrainO” (Nate Beeler/Townhall.com)
Annotations & Elucidations
Sunday Talk Shows And A Special Time Of Year
Governor-elect Bob McDonnell is still basking in the electoral landslide after glow, already a national figure, as he made the Sunday national talk show circuit yesterday. Meanwhile, the media is busy outlining what it thinks will be his challenges and goals starting in January. But . . . we’re not done with campaigning, yet. Two major special elections are forthcoming: One, in Fairfax, to fill the seat of Attorney General-elect Ken Cuccinelli, and one to fill the seat of Senator Ken Stolle, elected last week as Virginia Beach Sheriff. The Washington Post’s Virginia Politics Blog has much of the scoop on the former.
While there are plenty of Republicans who are seeking the position, the Democrats can’t find one. At least one who lives in the district. Party leaders leaned on Janet Oleszek, who bumblingly opposed Cuccinelli in 2007, not to run again. It looks like Delegate Dave Marsden (D-41, Fairfax) will run, but he doesn’t live in the district, and it’s not like he won so convincingly last week. Voter fatigue may be the biggest factor in both of the special elections.
McDonnell opposes Va. participation in health-care bill’s public option (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Obstacles await McDonnell administration (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Governor-elect McDonnell: Putting his plan in motion (Roanoke Times)
McDonnell on Sunday morning talk shows (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)
McDonnell pegs his win to Va. issues, not national (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot)
Va. unlikely to put charter schools on fast track (Washington Post)
GOP hopes to keep Cuccinelli’s seat (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)
Oleszek and Bulova out for senate, Marsden possibly in for Cuccinelli seat (Washington Post Virginia Politics Blog)
Republicans still hard-pressed for minority support (Washington Post)
After bad fall, Democrats looking to bounce back (Washington Post)
Weakened Virginia Democrats seek strategy for comeback (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Abortion an obstacle to health-care bill (Washington Post)
Governing with 2013 in mind (Jeff Schapiro/Richmond Times-Dispatch)
In the category of original thought, here’s Virginia’s very own Congressman Jim Moran:
The desperation grows. Norm over at Tertium Quids has some fun analysis here.