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Saturday, February 28, 2009

John Brownlee Talks About His Faith

John discusses the role faith plays in his life as a prosecutor. His honesty is touching and impressive to me and shows yet another reason why I am supporting him for Attorney General. He stands towering above the other candidates on courtroom experience and the toll that places on a mans heart and soul.

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Arguing Abortion Laws on the State Level

Every year in Sweet Home Virginia and neighboring Tennessee we see legislation introduced aimed at stopping the horrible act of abortion. Most of the bills never make it to the floor and like the aborted baby die in some committee room. they never stood a chance of passing and most would be illegal on the federal level. So why does this happen? The Kingsport Times offers this reason - "Sparring over abortion is mostly political theater." This editorial may make some people mad, but you cant deny the truth that it contains.

Sparring over abortion is mostly political theater

Before the bill was pulled yesterday, the Tennessee House of Representatives was considering legislation to amend the state’s constitution to say that nothing secures or protects a woman’s right to abortion or requires funding for the procedure.

For all the controversy attendant upon it, the amendment is largely political theater. Its effect would be relatively marginal absent a change in abortion law on the federal level.

Even if a Tennessee abortion resolution passes this session, it must subsequently pass the General Assembly after the 2010 elections by a two-thirds majority in both chambers. Only then would it be placed on the ballot in the 2014 gubernatorial election. At least 50 percent of voters, plus one, would have to approve it before it became a part of the state constitution.

But even then, the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision on Roe, which essentially allows unrestricted access to an abortion in the first trimester of a pregnancy, would stand. At most, the amendment would allow state lawmakers to require women seeking abortions in the second trimester to sign an informed consent statement and submit to a brief waiting period — usually 48 hours.

The two versions of the abortion amendments which had been competing for Tennessee lawmakers’ votes — and might well again this session — could not have been more different. The Republican proposal does not provide for exceptions in cases of rape, incest or to protect the health of the mother. The Democratic version provides for these exceptions.

The Republican version of this constitutional amendment has passed the Senate four times, but it has always been blocked on the House side, which has been controlled by Democrats until this year.

House Speaker Kent Williams, a former Republican who was elected to his post with 49 Democrat votes and his own, has said he is prepared to be the tie-breaking vote to bring the measure to a full chamber vote. The question is, which version of the constitutional amendment — the Republican or the Democratic — will emerge from the Public Health and Family Assistance Committee? That eight-member committee, appointed by Williams, is evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats. Since those members will presumably split along party lines, that leaves Williams, in his capacity as speaker, to cast the deciding vote.

The Republican version of the amendment seeks to change the state’s constitution. The Democratic version, which includes a provision to protect the health (mental as well as physical) of the mother, does not. The Democratic version gives the appearance of change while actually preserving the status quo.

The irony in this debate is that, even as passions flare on both sides, abortion has continued to decline. In 1980, total abortions among Tennessee residents both in and out of the state, reached an historic high of 20,124. In 2006, the latest comprehensive figures available, the number of abortions had declined to 12,733.

Given that trend, a generation hence, perhaps abortion will have ceased to be an object of public controversy and political interest.

I have come to accept that for the most part, fighting abortion on the state level is very weak at best, and political theater at worst. It is a sad but true fact. On the federal level we fight to over turn Roe/Wade. That would put the legality of abortion in the states hands. While many states would outlaw the practice, many would not. I think there are poll numbers now showing that most Americans support the right to choose.

It is becoming clear that we cant legislate abortion out of the picture, but as the declining numbers in TN show we are making advances by education and personal responsibility. As Duncan Hunter said the key is changing hearts and minds. For me on a personal level...I will never support the act of abortion. I do find some comfort knowing that I am not responsible for the act and in the end it will be between the woman and God.

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Celebrating Coal

H/T to Ron.

Celebrate Coal! Rally Announced for Monday

Demonstration Will Counter Negative Propaganda of Capitol Power Plant Protesters

A rally to Celebrate Coal! and Keep Energy Affordable will be held in front of the Capitol Power Plant on Monday, March 2nd, from 1 to 3 PM, the Competitive Enterprise Institute announced today.  Celebrate Coal! and Keep Energy Affordable is designed to counter the negative propaganda of Capitol Climate Protection’s protest scheduled for the same time in a park near the Longworth and Rayburn House Office Buildings.
CEI has applied to the U. S. Capitol Police for a permit to hold the rally in front of the Capitol Power Plant on the south side of E Street, S. E., between South Capitol Street and New Jersey Avenue, S. E.  The District of Columbia Metropolitan Police have also been notified that the rally will be held on the north side of E Street if the Capitol Police deny the permit.  The anti-coal protest group, Capitol Climate Protection, has apparently not applied for a permit to protest around the Capitol Power Plant.
“The goal of Celebrate Coal! is to publicize the colossal benefits of coal-fired power and the need for access to affordable energy.  If the anti-coal zealots are allowed to prevail politically, electric rates will skyrocket for most Americans and many jobs will be lost in energy-intensive industries as a result of higher power prices,” said Myron Ebell, Director of Energy and Global Warming Policy at CEI and one of the event’s organizers.
CEI invites supporters of affordable energy to attend the rally to Celebrate Coal! and Keep Energy Affordable.  For further information, contact Myron Ebell at
mebell@cei.org or (202) 320-6685 (cell phone).
When: 1-3 PM, Monday, March 2nd.
Where: E Street, S. E., between South Capitol Street and New Jersey Avenue, S. E.
Metro: Capitol South on the Orange and Blue Lines. From the Metro Station exit at C Street and First Street, S. E., walk two blocks south on First Street (away from the House Office Buildings and Capitol), then turn right on to E Street, S. E. and walk one block west, then cross New Jersey Ave, S. E.  The rally will be on the south side or the north side of the street.

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Friday, February 27, 2009

Shannon Valentine - Hypocrite of the Year?

She makes the top ten at least. PW Conservative has the story on video. The lady gave a speech on the Sudan calling for the USA to refrain from using  "company's that are complicit in the genocide in Sudan"....Only to find out she is invested in the same companies she condemns our govt from using... Check this out-

According to savedarfur.org the main offenders are

  • Franklin Templeton
  • JP Morgan Chase
  • Capital Group/American Funds
  • Fidelity
  • Vanguard

According to the Virginia Public Access Project, Del. Valentine owns;
$70,000 to $350,000 in Vanguard
$110,000 to $550,000 in American Funds
$50,000 to $250,000 in Franklin Templeton

PWC makes the point - "This is the types of politician that is responsible for destroying the peoples trust in Government."  I say Valintine must go!

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Democrats In Control - Get Ready For Real Stimulus

WORST MONTH SINCE 1933


Grab Your Ankles....

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Thursday, February 26, 2009

Another Blogger for Brownlee

If you want to read one of the best written endorsements amongst us bloggers, go check out what Greg has over at RVR - Why I'm Supporting John Brownlee For Attorney General.

"Second, I want to challenge each person who has already committed to a candidate (regardless of who). Ask yourself why you're supporting him. Are you supporting him because he was the first to ask you for support? Are you supporting him because he's the only one you've met? I'm shocked by the number of people who tell me "I really like candidate A the most but candidate B asked for my support first and I said yes." Let me be blunt - to me that is nothing short of stupid. We need to pick the best, not the first."

Like I said it is one of the best! Greg covers all the bases well and I agree with him 100%. So go check it out and support John Brownlee.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Cuccinelli - Death Penalty Bill Opposed

From the WAPO:

RICHMOND, Feb. 24 -- The General Assembly once again passed a bill that would eliminate the triggerman rule, making criminals who participate in a murder eligible for the death penalty even if they didn't actually commit the killing.

And once again the governor has pledged to veto it.

But the vote on Tuesday has cast a spotlight on an unlikely opponent of expanding the use of the death penalty: Sen. Ken Cuccinelli II, a conservative law-and-order Republican from Fairfax County who hopes to become attorney general..............But Cuccinelli was the only Republican senator to vote against eliminating the triggerman rule.

This is very troubling to me because Cooch wants to be AG. The Virginia Sheriffs Association, the Virginia Association of Commonwealth's Attorneys, Virginia's Crime Commission, the Attorney General's Office, Attorney General Bob McDonnell, and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling all supported this repeal. I guess a patent attorney thinks he is smarter than those supporters listed above.

Spanky wonders -  Prosecutor vs. Patent Attorney: Who's Best for GOP Attorney General?

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Time for a Cartoon


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Senator Ken Cuccinelli - A Democrats Best Friend..Or is it Cooch and Kaine Sitting in a Tree...

And he wants to be Virginia's Top Cop?

STATEMENT FROM ATTORNEY GENERAL CANDIDATE JOHN BROWNLEE ON SENATE PASSAGE OF HB2358, REPEALING THE TRIGGERMAN RULE

“This afternoon the Senate of Virginia once again passed a law repealing Virginia’s so-called “Triggerman Rule.” HB2358, which has already passed the house by a vote of 73-25, passed the Senate today by a 24-13 margin.

“I applaud all of those Senators, both Republican and Democrat, who stood with law enforcement and for justice and voted for this bill.  The Virginia Sheriffs Association, the Virginia Association of Commonwealth's Attorneys, Virginia's Crime Commission, the Attorney General's Office, Attorney General Bob McDonnell, and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling all support repeal of the Triggerman Rule.  They know that this rule is a detriment to the cause of justice in Virginia; today’s vote in the Senate moves us ever closer to its ultimate elimination from Virginia’s courts.

“I am deeply disappointed to see that, yet again, Senator Ken Cuccinelli was the lone Republican legislator in either the House or the Senate to oppose repeal of the Triggerman Rule.  Senator Cuccinelli continues to stand with Governor Tim Kaine and against law enforcement on this critical public safety issue.”

So once again Cooch slaps the Virginia Sheriffs Association, the Virginia Association of Commonwealth's Attorneys, Virginia's Crime Commission, the Attorney General's Office, Attorney General Bob McDonnell, and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling in the face.

Maybe when Cooch attends the RPV convention, He and Tim Kaine can stand hand in hand and address law enforcement on this issue.

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Sunday, February 22, 2009

Is a Chemical Jihad Coming?

TERROR chiefs plan to flood our streets with heroin in a terrifying plot to wage "chemical jihad" on Britain.
And they have been using hate-filled
Muslim gangs as their UK dealers.
Pakistani and Afghan-based al-Qaida and Taliban warlords are sitting on a £6billion stash of deadly heroin.
And they have ordered
their dealers to sell it only to non-Muslims.(Read it All)

Britain today, here tomorrow. One can only imagine the death toll this would inflict on our cities and the money heading to the terrorists....

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Snow Snow Snow

The snow started last night and has lingered all day.


I would take a nap but sense it is 19 degrees outside.....my napping place is occupied.




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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Saturday Night Video - Shutting Detroit Down


Yep....I'm drinkin

My daddy taught me in this country everyone's the same.
You work hard for your dollar and you never pass the blame,
When it don't go your way.
Now I see all these big shots whining on my evening news,
About how their losing billions and it's up to me and you
To come running to the rescue.
Well pardon me if I don't shed a tear.
There selling make believe and we don't buy that here.
Because in the real world their shuttin' Detroit down,
While the boss man takes his bonus paid jets on out of town.
DC's bailing out them bankers as the farmers auction ground.
Yeah while there living up on Wall Street in that New York City town,
Here in the real world their shuttin' Detroit down.
Here in the real world their shuttin' Detroit down.
Well that old man's been working in that plant most all his life,
Now his pension plan's been cut in half and he can't afford to die
And it's a crying shame, cus he ain't the one to Blame.
When I looked down to see his calloused hands,
Well let me tell you friend it gets me fightin' mad.
Cause in the real world their shuttin' Detroit down,
While the boss man takes his bonus paid jets on out of town.
DC's bailing out them bankers as the farmers auction ground.
Yeah while there living up on Wall Street in that New York City town,
Here in the real world their shuttin' Detroit down.
Yeah while there living up on Wall Street in that New York City town,
Here in the real world their shuttin' Detroit down.
Here in the real world their shuttin; Detroit down,
In the real world their shuttin' Detroit down.
Their shuttin' Detroit down.

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Toby Keith Fights with a Fan - Welcome to Pikeville, KY

Video of Toby Keith and a beer throwing fan. That looks like assault to me. I know the guy in the video. I went to High School with him and he is a good guy.

My thought is ole Toby would have never made it at concerts I attended in my youth at Freedom Hall in Johnson City, Tn.

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Thursday, February 19, 2009

AG Debate-Roanoke Valley Republicans - "I don't see how you can say anyone other than Brownlee won."

The RVR has the story. The post pretty much hits the points a couple of my friends (Shout out to Adams Construction) have relayed to me about the debate. The reason could be this

9. Brownlee pushed his themes hard and well. Electability, experience, prosecutor, others are regional candidates, etc. Certainly the Roanoke Times was swayed by Brownlee's themes as they headlined their article "Debate for Top Prosecutor."

And for Cooch to venture to SWVA for the first time and leave them with this impression.

10. Cuccinelli had 2 awkward moments. One was when Brownlee challenged his education funding legislature and Cuccinelli snapped at Brownlee to learn to read Code. Brownlee responded by pointing to Cuccinelli's own press release on the legislation and clearly won the issue.

11. The second awkward moment for Cuccinelli (and strangest of the Debate) was when a question was directed to someone else and Cuccinelli interupted Jay Warren and said "I'm sorry to act like a lawyer Jay but it's my turn." Couple problems. First, who cares whose turn it is? Second, Cuccinelli, was wrong, it was not his turn. There were 7 exact copies of the script, each campaign had one and Cuccinelli was misreading his. More importantly though it just made Cuccinelli look small and was incredibly awkward. Other than Foster's abortion answer, it was the moment that I've heard discussed most and was universally viewed very poorly for Cuccinelli. I still can't imagine what he was thinking.

Devastating first impression. I want to thank the RVR for this recap. Now go read it all!

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Sen Jim Webb Visits UVA-Wise, Stimulus a 'calculated gamble'

Well Jim, will it work?  “I don’t know.”

Well why Jim why?

“Was that the right thing to do?” he asked. Republicans overwhelmingly said no, “but the advisers we had told us, ‘Go back to the Great Depression. The way to fix that better would have been to inject money into the system immediately." Link

Besides Webb's honesty about how this stimulus is a crap shoot he was wishy washy at best on other issues.

Webb fielded several questions from the audience, some dealing with energy issues and others social matters. A questioner asked if he was prepared to stop the destruction of the mountains due to surface coal mining, and Webb said he was prepared to see if environmental laws could be strengthened.

Asked if he thought wind power could supplement coal as an energy producer, the senator said the short answer is “that any valid source of energy should be pursued.”

I don't like answers like I'm prepared to see.....any valid source.....Webb goes out out a limb about the stimulus saying “We all better hope it does work”  Hope...Change...I need a drink.

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Monday, February 16, 2009

Roanoke Area Law Enforcement Officials Endorse John Brownlee

The Honorable Randy Leach
Commonwealth’s Attorney for Roanoke County

The Honorable Octavia Johnson
Sheriff, Roanoke City

The Honorable Michael Brown
Sheriff, Bedford County

The Honorable Ronnie Sprinkle
Sheriff, Botetourt County

The Honorable Randy Krantz
Commonwealth’s Attorney for Bedford County

The Honorable Sheriff Ewell Hunt
Sheriff, Franklin County

Read more here.

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Sunday, February 15, 2009

"The Case for John Brownlee" a Must Read

The Roanoke Valley Republican Blog has a great series of posts, each making the case for the GOP Attorney General Candidates. The case for John Brownlee is a must read. Remember this - The blog's goal was to "lay out the POSITIVE case for each candidate." Great job guys! Ok, back to the article and Brownlee.

My first comment about John Brownlee may seem a little strange but here goes. When you're around him he just seems like an Attorney General. He has a presence and mannerisms that seems perfectly suited to the job. I don't know if it's upbringing, education, Army Ranger school or something else but Brownlee just seems like an Attorney General. Brownlee is just as conservative as the other candidates but is able to present himself in a way that seems palatable across the political spectrum.
Beyond that though, he has extremely impressive credentials. The man was one of the youngest US Attorneys in the country and he performed his job with distinction. For the non-attorneys out there let me just say this is an amazing feat. That job is so high profile you have to expect a few controversial cases but the net result of his years in the position were top notch. From fighting illegal immigration, to internet predators, to violent criminals to corporate abusers - John always put the citizens of the Western District of Virginia ahead of politics.(
READ it ALL)

Indeed.  His experience trumps anything his competition offers. John Brownlee is a life long public servant. The other candidates? John Brownlee has tried capital punishment cases. The other candidates? John Brownlee has a record that allows him to say more than I am "pro life", that is all the other candidate offers. The AG position is unique when compared to the other seats and the blogger makes this well known.

As a lawyer, it is disappointing to me that many people treat the AG race as just another political race - it is a race to be the Commonwealth's top attorney. If you are applying the same logic to the AG race that you're applying to Gov and LG then you're missing the point. This is a very unique job. It requires running a law office, dealing with state and federal agencies, pushing a legislative agenda, dealing with the media and representing the citizens of the Commonwealth. This is exactly what Brownlee has done as US Attorney. Ask yourself - who is best suited to be the Commonwealth's top attorney and the managing partner of the 3rd largest law firm in the state?

The clear choice for AG is John Brownlee. The other candidates have zero courtroom experience on the big issues. John is a career public servant. While the other candidates enjoyed the good life, Brownlee pledged to give his life for me and you protecting our country. While the others practiced partisan politics, Brownlee represented everyone -  And Justice for All.

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Saturday, February 14, 2009

Terry Kilgore and The Smoking Ban

Kilgore has the Bristol Herald Courier Editorial Boobs Board choking on smoke.

Published: February 13, 2009

Delegate Terry Kilgore, a Republican from Gate City, is the chief architect of amendments that burned holes in legislation for a statewide smoking ban in Virginia.

Kilgore says the original version chips away at business owners’ freedom. We say what started as an imperfect compromise between the House of Delegates leadership and the governor is becoming a joke.

For four years, House Speaker William Howell and Republicans in the House of Delegates have stopped any effort to enact a statewide smoking ban in Virginia’s restaurants. Last week, Howell said they were supporting a compromise – all restaurants in Virginia would be smoke-free, except private clubs and any restaurant that provides a separate smoking room with a separate ventilation system. Read it All.

While I am not happy with the bill, I do applaud Kilgore for tearing some holes in it.

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I Have Really Gone and Done It This Time.....

 
I know I said I would never join a party....Look for some changes to Spark it Up coming soon.

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A Valentines Day Tradition?

I don't know if Wise Girl enjoys this as much as I do....Cornbread Salad.

It Begins.

The final product.

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Longest Serving Sheriff in the State Endorses John Brownlee

Another pillar of law enforcement endorses John Brownlee!

BROWNLEE HONORED BY ENDORSEMENT FROM CHESAPEAKE SHERIFF

Yesterday John traveled to Chesapeake, where he was extremely honored to win the endorsement of Sheriff John R. Newhart.  Sheriff Newhart is the "Dean" of Virginia Sheriffs; he is currently the longest-serving Sheriff in the Commonwealth.

In endorsing John, Sheriff Newhart said, "John Brownlee has an impressive record of service.  He has served his nation in the Army, and he has served the citizens of Virginia as United States Attorney.  John has proven himself a true friend of the law enforcement community, and as Attorney General he will strengthen ties between that office and local law enforcement."

Sheriff Newhart joins nearly 100 other law enforcement leaders from around the Commonwealth in endorsing John and his campaign for Attorney General.

There is a reason nearly 100 law enforcement officials have already endorsed John Brownlee. They know John's record as a prosecutor. His opponents have no such experience. More likely than not, these law enforcement officials have worked with John on cases. It is very important that our next AG be " a true friend of the law enforcement community."

It is becoming clear that true friend is John Brownlee.

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Friday, February 13, 2009

I Might Be A Redneck


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Thursday, February 12, 2009

The ABC's of the GOP Attorney General Race

Loudoun Insider has a good post up explaining why John Brownlee is a better candidate than the Cooch. The title of LI's post - The ABCs of the 2009 Election ~ As in Anybody But Cuccinelli.

Cuccinelli’s surrogates have been playing the abortion issue to the hilt, and while it may appeal to certain portions of the social conservative base, it has nothing to do with the Attorney General position.  Just because he is some kind of hero to social conservatives is not a reason to nominate this guy to try to retain the Attorney General position in what will be a pivotal and very tough election.  If Cuccinelli wants to continue to champion causes like this, his best position to do that from is to remain in the Senate.  If Republicans want to win, they must reject hardline idealogues who will not be able to convince a majority of the electorate to vote for them.  Open your eyes and be realistic.  Cuccinelli not only loses us the AG slot, he likely brings down McDonnell and Bolling with him.  It will be far far too easy for the opposition to paint the ticket as a bunch of out of touch social conservatives intent on invading your bedrooms.

One comment on the post comes from Anne. She writes

"For Attorney General and for Commonwealth Attorney positions, I tend to pick the lawyer I’d choose to hire to be my lawyer. That’s my main “test” - the resume comparison test - but I appreciate that is not how most people vote. (It may just be a quirk related to the fact that I, myself, am a lawyer.)"

I feel the same way as Anne does and that is where Brownlee trumps all comers. That is why he can dominate the Ninth District drawing many a conservative Democrat's vote here in the coalfields. The two other GOP candidates cannot do that even if they spend the summer here in SWVA campaigning.

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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Tornado Warning in Wise?

I didn't see a twister but the sky was awesome! Click the pic to embiggen.

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Cuccinelli Stands With the Tim Kaine and Democrats on Capital Punishment and the Triggerman Rule

I first blogged about this back in January - Brownlee & Cuccinelli - Capital Punishment. I said then this would be a huge issue and it is becoming one. Cuccinelli issued a statement, see Mason Conservative, complaining that his record is being held up to him. Brownlee has issued the following statement - Emphasis mine.

As John Brownlee has travelled across our Commonwealth, he has been very clear that he believes in Ronald Reagan's 11th Commandment: "Thou shall speak no ill of a fellow Republican." The Brownlee campaign for Attorney General highlights the strengths of our outstanding candidate and focuses on the issues that are important to Virginia voters.

We also believe it is important to respectfully and factually inform our fellow Republicans about genuine issue disagreements among the candidates, and especially about issues that will affect our chances to succeed in November. One such issue occurred on January 27, when Senator Ken Cuccinelli once again voted against repeal of the "Triggerman Rule."

The Triggerman Rule is an anti-justice rule, and its repeal has been called necessary "...for prosecutors in the commonwealth to bring co-conspirators in murder cases to justice." The Triggerman Rule prevents prosecutors from seeking the death penalty against an accomplice to a violent murder - even though the accomplice has the same intent as the person who pulled the trigger and may be more criminally responsible for the killing. The Triggerman Rule complicated Virginia's effort to try Washington area sniper John Allen Muhammad on a capital offense because it was in dispute whether he or his juvenile accomplice, Lee Boyd Malvo, fired the Bushmaster .223 caliber rifle during their 2002 killing spree. Muhammad was the mastermind of a plot who murdered ten people and critically wounded three others in Northern Virginia and along Interstate 95 in Virginia. Because of the Triggerman Rule, prosecutors were forced to use our terrorism statutes to bring Muhammad to justice.

In response to the Sniper case, Republicans in the Virginia House and Senate, as well as a few right-minded Democrats, voted in 2007 to abolish the Triggerman Rule. The Virginia Sheriffs Association, the Virginia Association of Commonwealth's Attorneys, Virginia's Crime Commission, the Attorney General's Office, Attorney General Bob McDonnell, and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling all supported repeal of the Triggerman Rule. They know that this rule is a detriment to the cause of justice in Virginia. Despite this overwhelming support for its repeal, Cuccinelli voted against the bill.

Unfortunately, Gov. Kaine vetoed the bill. Gov. Kaine is opposed to the death penalty. Nevertheless, the Republicans attempted to override the veto and every Republican in the House and Senate but Sen. Cuccinelli voted to override the veto. A majority of the Democrats and Cuccinelli prevailed, and the Triggerman Rule remains the law in Virginia.

The most troubling aspect of this case is Sen. Cuccinelli's comments after his vote. A Washington Post reporter asked Sen. Cuccinelli why he voted against all other Republicans and with the Democrats on this important criminal justice bill. Cuccinelli responded, "We're killing enough people in Virginia." Cuccinelli's comment in the media gives the appearance of equating murder - the killing of the innocent - to the legal application of the death penalty. John Brownlee would never suggest such a moral equivalency.

How far outside the mainstream is Cuccinelli on this issue? Consider the following, as reported by the Washington Post's Marc Fisher: "Interestingly, all four of Virginia's gubernatorial candidates, Democrat and Republican alike, this year not only favor the death penalty, but would approve its expansion. Republican Bob McDonnell and Democrats Brian Moran and Creigh Deeds favor expanding capital punishment by scrapping the triggerman rule; Democrat Terry McAuliffe would "not oppose" such a move, according to his spokesman."

Cuccinelli has been consistent over the years in his opposition to this important bill. Both in committee and on the floor of the Senate, Senator Cuccinelli has been the sole Republican vote against the measure. He has opposed this bill every time it has come forward, and even voted to sustain Governor Tim Kaine's veto of the measure.

We sincerely believe that Cuccinelli, a patent lawyer, is a talented and capable attorney who will deserve the support of all Republicans should he win the nomination for Attorney General. However, Democrat Steve Shannon - his party's almost certain nominee for Attorney General -- is a former prosecutor. Shannon also stands with law enforcement - and most of our fellow Republicans - on the triggerman issue. Against a Republican nominee who - alone among Republican legislators -- agrees with Tim Kaine on this death penalty vote, Steve Shannon is well-positioned to cross-pressure our base, as well as law enforcement and independent voters who care about criminal justice issues. This is simply a fact that Republicans must take into account as they choose their nominee for Attorney General.

As you have undoubtedly heard us say before, the voters of Virginia vote for prosecutors for their Attorney General. Mary Sue Terry, Jim Gilmore, Jerry Kilgore and Bob McDonnell all had prosecutorial experience. Every time during the last 25 years that a prosecutor has faced a non-prosecutor for Attorney General, the prosecutor has won. John Brownlee is the only prosecutor running for the Republican nomination.

Please take a look at some of the following links. We believe you will agree that this is a real and relevant difference between the campaigns, and we hope you will take it into consideration as you decide who to support for our Party's nomination:

State Legislative Information System: SB 961 History

Capital News Service Report on this year's Senate Vote

Washington Times Report on this year's Senate Vote

Washington Post Report on the 2007 Bill

Here is the story from Brownlee himself.

The bottom line here is - The Virginia Sheriffs Association, the Virginia Association of Commonwealth's Attorneys, Virginia's Crime Commission, the Attorney General's Office, Attorney General Bob McDonnell, and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling all supported repeal of the Triggerman Rule. Ken Cuccinelli stood with Tim Kaine and the democrats. I find it amusing Ken left that part out of his statement.

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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

It Happens Sometimes...

Not often can I say I agree with anything the Bristol Herald Courier Editorial Board writes. On the subject of former St Paul, Va Mayor Jack Kiser (my previous post about Kiser) I totally agree with the BHC Edt board-

Real Punishment Is Ban On Holding Public Office

By Bristol Herald Courier Editorial Board
Published: February 8, 2009

On Tuesday, former St. Paul, Va., Mayor Jack Kiser pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of obstruction of justice and destruction of records.

He admitted to telling police not to patrol certain areas and to instructing them to release people who had been arrested. He admitted to destroying court summonses, denying police officers access to the town hall, trying to stop a state police investigation and telling town police officers to divert traffic around state and county road checks.

He received little punishment for an admitted pattern of abuse of power that went on for years.

In a plea deal from Wise County Commonwealth Attorney Ron Elkins, Kiser agreed to 12 months of suspended jail time, six months of probation and a $1,000 fine for each of the misdemeanor offenses.

Elkins said his office took action after receiving complaints from St. Paul residents. “I just felt like we had a duty to check them out,” he said. A special grand jury investigation led to the charges against Kiser and four others.

Kudos to Elkins for taking action. “I know it goes on probably in places other than Wise County, but we just don’t put up with it,” he told the Herald Courier.

Yet St. Paul residents did put up with this malfeasance for many years. Kiser admitted this abuse of power occurred over four terms of office as town mayor and he alternated that service with terms spent as a Wise County supervisor.

How many police officers were bullied? How many summonses were “lost?” How many complaints were made to others who wouldn’t listen or were afraid to act?

There’s really no way to know.

And for some unexplainable reason, Kiser, 70, never seems to lose his following. Even after being charged last year, he lost his most recent re-election bid by only three votes. Many supporters insist he was framed and have posted their words of support for him online at the end of our story announcing his guilty plea. Others celebrate his admission of guilt.

But following his plea, Kiser can no longer hold elected office. That is his real punishment.

The suspended jail time and $2,000 total fine are a pittance. Keeping Kiser from a position of public trust in the future is the best news for St. Paul, which, like any town, needs credible leaders who follow the law.

Thunderous Applause to Foster and crew! To be honest...It feels good to agree with the BHC...Even if it only happens twice a year.

Anyway, the real winners in this story are the residents of St Paul. Kiser was a black mark on the town and his law breaking went on for 8 years. Kiser still has his fans as the op-ed above states, but years from now when they look back at those * years under Kiser's rule, one word will sum it up ~ Wasted.

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Monday, February 09, 2009

As True Now As It Was Then

"For many years now, you and I have been shushed like children and told there are no simple answers to the complex problems which are beyond our comprehension. Well, the truth is, there are simple answers -- they just are not easy ones. The time has come for us to decide whether collectively we can afford everything and anything we think of simply because we think of it. The time has come to run a check to see if all the services government provides were in answer to demands or were just goodies dreamed up for our supposed betterment. The time has come to match outgo to income, instead of always doing it the other way around." --Ronald Reagan

I am in a stimulus rage....

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Friday, February 06, 2009

Friday Night Video

Counting Crows - Daylight Fading

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Bud Shootout - Racing Tomorrow Night!!!

BUD SHOOTOUT!!

DAYTONA BEACH , Fla. (Feb. 5, 2009) – Paul Menard was the driver with the hot hand on a chilly night at the 2009 Budweiser Shootout Draw Party on Thursday night at Daytona International Speedway.

For his first career Budweiser Shootout start, Menard, the driver of the No. 98 Menard’s Ford, picked the Budweiser bottle with the pole position flag inside.

“I had my eye on the bottle on the far right for a while and it worked out,” Menard said. “We’ll get a good, clean start and just try to hold them off.”

Other notable starters for the Budweiser Shootout, which is featuring a new format in 2009, include Tony Stewart (sixth), two-time defending Budweiser Shootout champion Dale Earnhardt Jr. (ninth), Kafast cars in the back of the field so I look for it to be a great race. Go Jeff Burton! I also am looking forward to Tony Stewart and his new team.sey Kahne (14th), three-time defending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson (21st) and Jeff Gordon (28th).

The Budweiser Shootout will feature a star-studded lineup in a new format. The field will consist of the top six teams from each manufacturer based on the final 2008 car owner's points. Eligibility is based on owners competing in this event with the same manufacturer as 2008. In addition, each manufacturer will be able to enter a seventh car or "wild card" entry.

The race distance has also been increased from 70 laps to 75 (187.5 miles) on the 2.5-mile tri-oval. The race will have two segments, of 25 and 50 laps. Both green- and yellow-flag laps will count.

Between segments, there will be a 10-minute pit stop at which time teams will pit and may elect to change tires, add fuel and make normal chassis adjustments.

There are a lot of fast cars in the back so it will be a great race. Tony Stewart and his new team....Menard on the pole....My boy Burton in the back...Oh how I love this !

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Happy Birthday President Reagan

The Speech

1964

I am going to talk of controversial things. I make no apology for this.

It's time we asked ourselves if we still know the freedoms intended for us by the Founding Fathers. James Madison said, "We base all our experiments on the capacity of mankind for self government."

Reagan as Governor

This idea -- that government was beholden to the people, that it had no other source of power -- is still the newest, most unique idea in all the long history of man's relation to man. This is the issue of this election: Whether we believe in our capacity for self-government or whether we abandon the American Revolution and confess that a little intellectual elite in a far-distant capital can plan our lives for us better than we can plan them ourselves.

You and I are told we must choose between a left or right, but I suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down. Up to man's age-old dream--the maximum of individual freedom consistent with order -- or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. Regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would sacrifice freedom for security have embarked on this downward path. Plutarch warned, "The real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits."

The Founding Fathers knew a government can't control the economy without controlling people. And they knew when a government sets out to do that, it must use force and coercion to achieve its purpose. So we have come to a time for choosing.

Public servants say, always with the best of intentions, "What greater service we could render if only we had a little more money and a little more power." But the truth is that outside of its legitimate function, government does nothing as well or as economically as the private sector.

Yet any time you and I question the schemes of the do-gooders, we're denounced as being opposed to their humanitarian goals. It seems impossible to legitimately debate their solutions with the assumption that all of us share the desire to help the less fortunate. They tell us we're always "against," never "for" anything.

We are for a provision that destitution should not follow unemployment by reason of old age, and to that end we have accepted Social Security as a step toward meeting the problem. However, we are against those entrusted with this program when they practice deception regarding its fiscal shortcomings, when they charge that any criticism of the program means that we want to end payments....

We are for aiding our allies by sharing our material blessings with nations which share our fundamental beliefs, but we are against doling out money government to government, creating bureaucracy, if not socialism, all over the world.

We need true tax reform that will at least make a start toward restoring for our children the American Dream that wealth is denied to no one, that each individual has the right to fly as high as his strength and ability will take him.... But we cannot have such reform while our tax policy is engineered by people who view the tax as a means of achieving changes in our social structure....

Have we the courage and the will to face up to the immorality and discrimination of the progressive tax, and demand a return to traditional proportionate taxation? . . . Today in our country the tax collector's share is 37 cents of every dollar earned. Freedom has never been so fragile, so close to slipping from our grasp.

Are you willing to spend time studying the issues, making yourself aware, and then conveying that information to family and friends? Will you resist the temptation to get a government handout for your community? Realize that the doctor's fight against socialized medicine is your fight. We can't socialize the doctors without socializing the patients. Recognize that government invasion of public power is eventually an assault upon your own business. If some among you fear taking a stand because you are afraid of reprisals from customers, clients, or even government, recognize that you are just feeding the crocodile hoping he'll eat you last.

If all of this seems like a great deal of trouble, think what's at stake. We are faced with the most evil enemy mankind has known in his long climb from the swamp to the stars. There can be no security anywhere in the free world if there is no fiscal and economic stability within the United States. Those who ask us to trade our freedom for the soup kitchen of the welfare state are architects of a policy of accommodation.

They say the world has become too complex for simple answers. They are wrong. There are no easy answers, but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right. Winston Churchill said that "the destiny of man is not measured by material computation. When great forces are on the move in the world, we learn we are spirits--not animals." And he said, "There is something going on in time and space, and beyond time and space, which, whether we like it or not, spells duty."

You and I have a rendezvous with destiny. We will preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we will sentence them to take the first step into a thousand years of darkness. If we fail, at least let our children and our children's children say of us we justified our brief moment here. We did all that could be done.

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Thursday, February 05, 2009

The Old Dominion Blog Alliance Welcomes A New Member

Welcome Fisherville Mike to the ODBA. His profile states

"I was the executive director of the Maryland Federation of College Republicans (for one month in 1984). I worked in newspapers for 11 years and have always been interested in politics."

Mike now lives in the SWAC Land and is running a great blog! Did I mention he was a NASCAR fan? Welcome Mike!

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Smoking Bill Deal

They call it a compromise. I call it bullshit. My fellow ODBA member James Young says it best addressing Speaker Howell -

"Perhaps our estimable Speaker will miss his testicles. Of course, that presumes that he ever had any, a fact not in evidence."

I guess we will wait on the vote to see who the other sell outs are.

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Bob McDonnell Leading all Democrats in Rasmussen Poll

Yes it's early, but they are polling and Bob is leading the field. The poll is here.

McDonnell 39%  Deeds 30% Bob +9

McDonnell 39%  Moran 36%  Bob +3

McDonnell 42%  McAuliffe 35%  Bob +7

Things are looking good for McDonnell and no one can deny that.

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Webloggist Jerry Fuhrman

From on High on healthcare.

"A recent study revealed that the socialization of health care in Britain - with its heart-rending rationing - brought improved services to 15% of the populace. And poorer service to 85%. But all are treated equally now. Except for the well-connected, who can work around the system, are given special dispensation, or fly to the United States where they can expect magnificent care.

Magnificent care at least until Obama brings an end to the best health care delivery system ever devised by man."

Indeed.

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Jim Webb's Baby Bailout

Interesting editorial from the KTN.

Taxpayers shouldn't foot bill for fed workers' leave

Call it the “Baby Bailout.”

U.S. Sen. Jim Webb, D-Virginia, has reintroduced a bill that would give four weeks of paid leave to federal employees for the birth or adoption of a child.

How generous of Sen. Webb to obligate the nation’s taxpayers for the private choices of federal workers.

Webb characterizes his bill as “an issue of fairness for federal employees. It is our goal to ensure that the federal government, the nation’s largest employer, maintain policies that support strong families and set an example for the private sector.”

But what’s fair about giving federal workers — whose wage, health, retirement and other benefits already outpace millions in the private sector — yet another plum?

While the nation’s 2.7 million federal employees are already entitled to the same 12 weeks of unpaid leave guaranteed to all workers by the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Webb argues that many federal workers cannot afford to forego pay to take leave. As it is, he says, these federal workers must use their accrued sick days and vacation days instead — just like most employees in the private sector.

Sen. Webb and other supporters of the Family Leave Act point out that the majority of Fortune 100 companies provide paid maternity benefits. But, then, these private companies aren’t compelling U.S. taxpayers to pick up the tab for that benefit.

Any new parent — including those on the federal payroll — is already entitled to up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave with the guarantee of job protection, and that’s all well and good. But why should federal workers receive a month off — with full pay — simply because they made a personal decision to have or adopt a child?

Shouldn’t all families, no matter what the source of their income, continue to plan for their children and to save their money until they can afford them? Do we want government taking money from us and redistributing it to new parents who happen to work for the federal government, but who didn’t financially prepare for their children?

Where will it end?

Certainly, we’d all like new parents to have every opportunity to properly care for their children. We’d like the children to be born into good homes and have adequate care, food and clothing. But these things carry a cost. And that cost should be borne by the parents, not everybody else. If those parents — one or both of whom happens to work for the federal government — cannot afford that cost, perhaps they should reconsider their choice of having children. It’s called personal responsibility — something that seems lost on liberals like Sen. Webb as they continue to spend, spend, spend our tax dollars.

I fear "Personal responsibility" is a lost cause. Thanks Jim for wanting the responsible people to pay for those that choose not to be. Very sad.

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Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Spanky was watching....

Meanwhile Duncan Hunter Was Ignored in the Presidential Debates

Right on Chris!

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John Brownlee Campaigns in Richlands

RICHLANDS – Former U.S. Attorney John Brownlee brought his campaign for the Republican nomination for attorney general to southwest Virginia Jan. 31.
Brownlee, who is battling Ken Cucinelli for the nomination was upbeat about his chances during a meeting with county Republicans. State Republicans are preparing to select a full slate of candidates at a convention May 30 in Richmond.
Brownlee is no stranger to southwest Virginia having served the western district for seven years during his time with the U.S. Attorney’s office. He resigned that post last May 16 to devote all of his time to the quest for attorney general.
Bob McDonnell, who currently holds the seat, is expected to be the party’s candidate for Governor in the fall. Brownlee may be best known for suing Purdue Pharmaceuticals for fraud in marketing oxycontin.
That case resulted in millions of dollars being paid to the government and a part of that money was given to Tazewell County for use in its war on drugs. Brownlee’s campaign visit came one day after the presentation of $650,000 of the oxycontin settlement money to local officials for use in several drug prevention programs.
He prosecuted a federal inmate from the prison in Lee County for murder and obtained a death penalty verdict. Brownlee’s office also prosecuted several elected officials in Buchanan County for their role in a fraud and corruption scandal known as Big Coondog. The project drew its name from the fact a coon dog was one of the items traded for a construction contract. Brownlee believes his seven years as federal prosecutor in western Virginia coupled with his time as a state prosecutor in northern Virginia and a military background will serve him well in the race. READ ALL

Brownlee's wife campaigned here in Wise over the weekend so it is clear the Brownlee campaign is reaching SWVA. I am not sure the other candidates know where SWVA is located.

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Mike Huckabee - "Together let us make April 15th just another beautiful spring day"

Dear FairTax supporters,
Here's Washington's idea of a stimulus plan: Borrow trillions of dollars from the Chinese—plunging us all in endless debt for years to come—to try and prop up our sagging economy today.
Folks, that's not a stimulus package, it's a shell game, and it's bad news for all of us.
Please join me in convincing President Obama and Members of Congress to support a REAL stimulus package: The FairTax...now!
As a FairTax supporter, you know that April 15th is an absolutely critical time to remind our fellow Americans that there is a better way than our current federal income tax nightmare, which has punished our workers and shackled our economy for far too long.
This year, in our darkest financial hour in generations, we especially need to tell Washington why the FairTax is THE way to stimulate the economy.

  • We need to tell Washington how the FairTax will bring in trillions in capital investment.
  • We need to tell Washington how the FairTax will enable workers to keep their whole paycheck to help cover their bills and mortgages.
  • We need to tell Washington how the FairTax will unleash the American economy--and the timeless American spirit of free enterprise and innovation.


Can you help me spread this FairTax message to Washington for Tax Day?
We have big plans in April for Tax Day, including a major FairTax rally. But these things don't come cheap. The venue, staffing, supplies, equipment: It all takes money to put this together, so we need your help to make it happen during this vital time for the American economy. Can we count on you?
I'm doing my part. I am continuing to work for the FairTax cause on multiple fronts, whether speaking on the road, on television, or on the radio. I also devote a significant portion of my latest book, Do the Right Thing, to the FairTax because I know how important this is.
So please, join me in fighting for the FairTax during this critical time for all of us.
Together let us make April 15th just another beautiful spring day.
Yours in the fight,
Mike Huckabee

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Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Democrat Jack Kiser Pleads Guilty in Wise County Court

Jack Kiser, the former Wise County BOS member and Mayor of St Paul pleads guilty -

Jack Kiser pleaded guilty Tuesday to two misdemeanor charges relating to obstruction of justice and destruction of public records.

The former St. Paul mayor faces no jail time, though, thanks to a plea agreement reached with the Wise County Commonwealth Attorney’s office. For each count, Kiser will receive six months of supervised probation and a $1,000 fine. A sentence of 12 months in jail for each count was suspended under the plea agreement.

Kiser, 70, has served several terms as St. Paul mayor, Wise County supervisor and LENOWISCO Planning District Commission board member.

Kiser agreed to waive indictment and to proceed by “Information,” a legal term that refers to accusations or criminal charges brought by the public prosecutor without a grand jury indictment. According to the plea agreement, Kiser agrees to and pleads guilty to each misdemeanor criminal offense “because I am in fact guilty of the charges. I am stipulating that the Commonwealth has probable cause and substantial evidence of my guilt.”LINK

Commonwealth Attorney Ron Elkins has this -

Under a statement of information Elkins presented to the court, authorities charged that Kiser was guilty of the obstruction of justice charge by committing the following acts:
• Instructing St. Paul police officers not to patrol certain areas of the town;
• Releasing individuals from custody that were lawfully arrested and in the custody of the St. Paul police department;
• Destroying summonses that were written and issued by St. Paul town police officers;
• Attempting to stop a Virginia State Police investigation by offering to have a lawsuit against the town of St. Paul dropped;
• Taking away the keys and denying St. Paul police officers access to the St. Paul town hall and evidence room;
• Instructing town police officers to divert traffic around county and state law enforcement road checks; and
• Instructing town police officers to "stay off the roads and stay in the town hall where they belonged."
The destroying of public documents charge stemmed primarily from Kiser destroying speeding tickets issued by town police, Elkins said.
The prosecutor said Kiser's conviction ended the work done by the St. Paul special grand jury.
“We had a lot of complaints that were just petty things (and not illegal),” said Elkins. “This is it. It’s over with.”
LINK

Indeed, I hope it is over. Kiser has been a dirty spot on the face of Wise County Politics and I wish him good riddance.

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LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR BOLLING ON RESIGNATION OF ATTORNEY GENERAL MCDONNELL

RICHMOND - Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling issued the following statement
on the resignation of Attorney General Bob McDonnell:

"For the past three years Bob McDonnell has served the Commonwealth with
great distinction as our Attorney General. During that time he has worked
across party lines to find realistic, workable solutions to the most
important challenges facing Virginia, and he has developed an impressive
record of accomplishment and results that rivals any other Attorney General
in Virginia history.

"Bob McDonnell is recognized as a national leader in the fight against
sexual predators and the proliferation of gangs. In the wake of the tragic
shootings at Virginia Tech he worked with Governor Kaine and legislative
leaders to reform our mental health laws. Through his Government and
Regulatory Reform Task, which I co-chair, we have eliminated hundreds of
unnecessary regulations to make government more efficient and effective.

"Prior to his service as Attorney General, Bob developed an equally
impressive record as a local prosecutor and as a member of the Virginia
House of Delegates, where he led the fight for some of the most important
legislative accomplishments of the past decade, including the abolition of
parole and welfare reform.

"Bob McDonnell's record extends well beyond his legislative accomplishments.
He has actively supported and promoted the Central Virginia Food Bank, which
provides food to families in need. He helped raise money to keep a private
school open in the City of Petersburg, providing needed educational
alternatives for many children; and he established the Wall of Honor in
recognition of Virginians who have given their lives in the war on terror.

"But more importantly, Bob McDonnell is a good man, a good husband and
father, and a dear friend. I have enjoyed working with him in state
government for the past 14 years. During that time we have developed a
strong personal relationship that is built on trust and respect.

"While I am disappointed to see Bob's tenure as Attorney General end, I
trust that his departure from public service will be brief. Bob McDonnell
has been an exemplary Attorney General and he will make a great Governor for
Virginia. I look forward to joining him on the campaign trail soon as we
carry our message of New Ideas For A Better Virginia to the voters this
November."

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