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Video: Warner-Gillespie "People's Debate" Starting at 7 pm

by: lowkell

Mon Oct 13, 2014 at 16:57:22 PM EDT

UPDATE 7:52 pm: Warner's closing statement emphasizes that he took a deficit and turned it into a surplus; Gillespie worked for an administration that did the exact opposite. Enron Ed basically repeats his b.s. talking points. I have no patience to listen to this liar anymore. Utterly insufferable.

UPDATE 7:44 pm: Question on sequestration. Gillespie says the House passed a replacement for sequestration, but of course doesn't mention the horrendous details of that bill (see The Hill, which says: "Democrats blasted the proposal as one that would spare defense programs but apply deeper cuts to needed social programs, and avoided ending tax breaks for oil companies. Democrats proposed a motion to take up their proposals, but the GOP House rejected them.") Warner says we didn't hear anything from Gillespie about making hard choices. Says he got the Navy's highest civilian award for fighting sequestration cuts. Says the way to get rid of sequestration is to stop "punting." Says you need BOTH tax reform and entitlement reform, "both sides of the balance sheet." Gillespie laughs, says just because Warner keeps saying he's signed a pledge by Grover Norquist doesn't make it true. Uh....here's the letter (June 4, 2014), in which Norquist says: "I will share with taxpayers in Virginia and the nation your statement and commitment to oppose and vote against any and all tax increases. You go further and commit to making the reduction of wasteful, inefficient, and duplicative federal government spending a priority once in office."

UPDATE 7:40 pm: Question about Ebola and should Virginians be concerned. Warner says he's concerned like all Americans are, says the administration should have acted quicker to increase screaning ("which they've finally started to do"), spot signs of Ebola, etc. May be time to consider in countries like Liberia to restrict flights. Warner says that cuts to public health and sequestration, not to mention "stupid pledges," hurt our ability to fight diseases like Ebola. Gillespie says it's time to impose a flight ban from Ebola-affected places in Africa. Of course he doesn't address the fact that his party has cut funding to NIH, CDC, etc. Warner says Gillespie's last charge "really takes the cake." Says sequestration is "stupidity on steroids," but the alternative was for the nation to default, so he assumes Gillespie supports our nation defaulting. Says he advocated the Simpson-Bowles plan, but "too many people had taken pledges."

UPDATE 7:38 pm: Warner says Gillespie has taken "extreme positions." Says Warner is "factually inaccurate" about Norquist pledge. Gillespie says he won't be a blank check for the president, which is laughable -- did anyone think that Ed Gillespie would be a blank check for Barack Obama?!? LOL

UPDATE 7:35 pm: Question on Medicare. Gillespie claims we need to save it, but that is  NOT what his party would do. See for instance the Ryan plan, which would be an absolute disaster. Gillespie also keeps throwing out the Big Lie from the 2012 campaign about the supposed money taken out of Medicare. Warner correctly states that Gillespie's claim is "totally false." Don't believe him? See FactCheck.org, which states: "The GOP talking point is misleading for several reasons: The Affordable Care Act doesn't slash $700 billion from the current Medicare budget; instead, this is a cut in the future growth of spending over a decade. Furthermore, the reductions apply to payments made to hospitals and other non-physician providers, and it remains to be seen whether those would translate into reduced services. Finally - and most ironic - that same $700 billion in 'cuts' is part of the Ryan budget plan that McConnell voted to consider." Yep, "ironic" is one word for it.

UPDATE 7:30 pm: Question on energy policy. To summarize, I disagree with both Warner and Gillespie on this one, but I disagree a lot more with Gillespie. At least Warner is supportive of renewable energy and believes in the science of climate change. Gillespie? Who knows. Oh, now Gillespie's throwing out the wildly misleading comment about gasoline prices increasing since the depths of the Bush Great Recession. What a jerk. Warner says Gillespie lobbied against increasing fuel efficiency standards and was the largest lobbyist for Enron, where 20,000 folks lost their jobs and pensions. Gillespie says Enron was a client 13 years ago, was considered one of the best companies in America, and Warner was an investor. Gillespie and Warner really going at it on this, Gillespie says this is a "personal attack." Gillespie says he had no idea of the fraudulent practices of Enron, noone did.

There's More... :: (4 Comments, 799 words in story)

What on Earth is a "Tax Raising Obama Democrat?"

by: lowkell

Mon Oct 13, 2014 at 17:54:03 PM EDT

Ethically and factually-challenged Republican 10th CD nominee Barbara Comstock is known for her struggles with the truth. She's so truth-challenge that one of her Republican opponents last spring point blank said, "Barbara, YOU LIE!" for her ever-changing story about why she voted for Barack Obama in the 2008 Virginia Democratic primary. To put it mildly, she's a real piece of work when it comes to facts, accuracy, honesty, and even the internal consistency of her lies.

Well, now Comstock's at it again, this time criticizing 10th CD Democratic nominee John Foust for being - are you sitting down? - a "tax raising Obama Democrat!" Yeah, the same Obama who Comstock voted for in 2008. But we'll leave that aside for now. The question is whether Comstock's in any way, shape or form telling the truth on this one. Hint: the answer has two letters, the first of which is an "n" and the second of which is an "o." Heh.

OK, so how about a few facts, those crazy things that Barbara Comstock doesn't seem to have any familiarity with?

1. According to CBS News' "What's Obama Doing to Your Taxes?" (April 2010), which reported on the fact that the 2009 Recovery Act (supported pretty much exclusively by Democrats, I'd point out) CUT TAXES for 98 percent of Americans. The CBS News report added that as of April 2010, "taxes are at their lowest levels in 60 years, according to William Gale, co-director of the Tax Policy Center and director of the Retirement Security Project at the Brookings Institution."

2. Just to reiterate that previous point, see President Obama Cut Taxes for 98%
of Working Families in 2009
.

3. What about since 2009/2010? Well, you may have noticed that since 2010, Republicans have controlled the U.S. House of Representatives, so keep that in mind when you hear loose-with-the-truth people like Barbara Comstock criticize President Obama for raising taxes. Last I checked, Congress was the branch of government that voted on tax rates and the like. But whatever, details details.

There's More... :: (15 Comments, 372 words in story)

Video: New Ad Hits Barbara Comstock's Ethical Problems

by: lowkell

Mon Oct 13, 2014 at 08:29:13 AM EDT

From the Foust campaign: "The spot highlights Barbara Comstock's abuse of her role as a delegate in Richmond by pushing the agenda of her clients, while hiding it from Virginians. ā€ˇPreviously, the Washington Post reported that Comstock also failed to disclose $85,000 in payments from clients, 'an apparent breach of congressional ethics rules.' While Comstock's right-wing agenda fits in with the Republican Congress, it's out of touch with Northern Virginia's values."
Discuss :: (6 Comments)

Virginia News Headlines: Monday Morning

by: lowkell

Mon Oct 13, 2014 at 06:45:09 AM EDT

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines for Monday, October 13. As for today's holiday, I'd far prefer that we remember, recognize and celebrate Native American culture prior to the disastrous (e.g., 90% of Native Americans dead due to disease alone) European invasion.

*The Big Lie Behind Voter ID Laws
*Turkey Will Allow U.S. Troops to Use Bases to Fight ISIS
*'Citizens United' is turning more Americans into bystanders (This ruling should be priority #1 for overturning as soon as Democrats are able to take back the Supreme Court from the current gang of far-right wingnuts.)
*Late GOP ad blitz shows hesitation by big donors
*Paul Krugman: Revenge of the Unforgiven ("How Righteousness Killed the World Economy")
*11 questions that will decide the Senate
*How Republicans Lost the Culture War (We'll see if the theocrats give up, let alone easily...)
*Worries lessen for Virginia gay immigrants, who can now marry
*Most in Virginia say jail McDonnell
*Our view: Who mopped up whom? ("Gillespie shows no signs of being anything other than a predictable Republican vote on things that matter, such as health care (which, for Republican partisans, is exactly the point).")
*Across region, same-sex couples seize chance to marry
*Re-elect Rigell in the 2nd (This is a bizarre editorial, in which the Virginian-Pilot rips Scott Rigell on a number of his positions - immigration, the Paycheck Fairness Act, offshore oil drilling - and praises Democrat Suzanne Patrick, saying she "would be an asset in the House," yet endorses...Rigell? Well, alrighty then.)
*Disgraced, Soon-To-Be-Former Navajo Nation President Attends 'Skins Game (The guy's a total slimeball, "charged with fraud, conspiracy and theft in connection with allegations that he had dipped into slush funds to benefit himself and family members." No wonder why he's sitting next to Snyder.)
*Native Americans plan to mount largest-ever 'Skins protest at Vikings game
*Damp and cool today, but much warmer on Tuesday, Wednesday

Discuss :: (6 Comments)

Video: Meet the Press Panel Rips Candidates, Media for Irresponsible Fear Mongering on Ebola

by: lowkell

Sun Oct 12, 2014 at 15:05:32 PM EDT

There's not doubt that Republicans Mike Huckabee, Thom Tillis and Scott Brown are fear-mongering nutjobs, preying on the absolute worst in human nature for political purposes. But still, claiming that some poor person from Africa, dying of Ebola, is going to a) have enough money to buy a plane ticket to Mexico; b) even think about doing that while they're poor, sick and possibly dying of Ebola; c) walk from Mexico, while sick with/dying from Ebola, into the U.S., after implausibly flying from Africa; d) go around intentionally smearing their bodily fluids on people in order to infect them with Ebola; is beyond stupid, beyond insane, into truly evil, loony-tunes territory.

Sad to say, we're getting some of this rhetoric here in Virginia, and I have yet to see a SINGLE editorial board call it out. For instance, just a few days ago, Republican (of course) U.S. Senate nominee Ed Gillespie stated made the insane (if he actually believes it) comment that "the fact that we have a porous southern border today is not just an immigration concern, it is a...public health threat...with the growing concerns about Ebola." Frankly, that statement right there should eliminate Gillespie from ever being considered for public office of any kind, as it shows him to be a wildly irresponsible demagogue who should not be taken in any way, shape or form seriously by anyone (just like Huckabee, Tillis, etc.). It's truly maddening that the corporate/"both sides" media DOES take them seriously, treats them as reasonable players in the "game," and almost NEVER calls them out. Argh.

Anyway, that's why I was pleasantly surprised (shocked actually) to see Chuck Todd and his panelists on Meet the Press this morning nail this fear-mongering bull**** for what it is: "irresponsible" and "wrong." Good to see, now we need a LOT more of this from the corporate media.

Discuss :: (5 Comments)

So Which of These Points Would You Disagree With?

by: Andy Schmookler

Sun Oct 12, 2014 at 09:17:26 AM EDT

On my piece, Sorry Mr. Krugman: Obama Came to Office Holding a Royal Flush, Then Declared His Hand "Ace High", I have taken a bit of a beating. Given the "if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen" principle, I accept that this goes with the territory.

But there's something about all the objections I don't get. My critique of Obama rests on a handful of points. Many of the criticisms directed my way seem to me irrelevant to these points, as if they are attacking an argument different from the one I'm making.

For example, some people seem to think I don't realize just how bad -- how determined to thwart Obama -- these Republicans have been.

On the contrary, my whole "Press the Battle" campaign is an attempt to convey that what's animating these Republicans is much worse than too many people in Liberal America recognize. If there is one point I want to convey in my whole enterprise, it is this: "That the Republican Party has become the instrument of a destructive -- I would say "evil" -- force.

What Obama has been up against is not just an "extreme" party, not just the unscrupulous plutocrats who bankroll their scandalous political strategies, not just some rogues who got elected to office. Obama -- and the rest of us -- are up against a rather pure case of the kind of thing that creates historical nightmares.

There's More... :: (39 Comments, 648 words in story)

Virginia News Headlines: Sunday Morning

by: lowkell

Sun Oct 12, 2014 at 07:30:48 AM EDT

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Sunday, October 12. Also, check out that photo of right-wing craziness. From the far, far right, there's the anti-Semitic "joke" guy (John Whitbeck); Mark "Criminalize Miscarriages" Obenshain; soon-to-be-overwhelmingly-defeated 8th CD Republican nominee Micah Edmond, who's buddies with these guys; "Agenda 21" conspiracy theorist and all-around extremist nutjob Del. Scott Lingamfelter; and Frank Luntz protege Pete Snyder. Yep, that sums up today's Virginia Republican Party! LOL

*Climate change, Benghazi, the Fed: The science behind the right's irrational obsession with conspiracies ("No matter the topic, a conservative fringe views it through a conspiratorial lens. New research explains why")
*Sen. Elizabeth Warren: "The system is rigged" ("'There has not been nearly enough change,' she tells Salon, taking on Obama failures, D.C. lobbyists, tuition costs")
*Specter of Cantor loss haunts Republicans
*Republicans go to great lengths to keep some people from the ballot box (Republicans: the party of fear, ignorance, anger, intolerance, greed and...voter suppression. Lovely.)
*Asset seizures fuel millions in police spending (This seems crazy to me.)
*Gov. McAuliffe: Hillary Still Undecided, Midterms Will Be Rough ("I think the idea of communicating what you get done when you have Democrats in office and growing and diversifying the economy, I think they need to do a better job of that.")
*Schapiro: Issues may aid McAuliffe ("Ethics is an issue on which lawmakers are being squeezed by their parties and their broader constituencies. The former worries that continuing inaction by the General Assembly will leave politicians vulnerable. The latter won't hesitate to confirm those fears on primary or Election Day.")
*Virginian-Pilot: Warner for U.S. Senate (Gillespie's "support for the Bush administration's profligate spending, proposal to privatize Social Security and use of widespread surveillance provides ample reasons for voters in a broad swath of the electorate to pause over his candidacy.")
*Our view: When Virginia took away rights ("There is precedent in Virginia for the large-scale usurpation of rights, one that requires a little history lesson about the infamous Constitution of 1902 that disenfranchised half the state's voters.")
*Virginia governor: I was 'disappointed' that Cantor lost (Uh huh.)
*Wasteful highway project was McDonnell's other debacle (I still can't figure out why anyone things McDonnell was a decent governor.)
*Congressional redistricting could give governor leverage
*Landowners state their case on fracking
*With Virginia's congressional map struck down, what might a replacement look like?
*Sunday Politifact, story on Senate candidates' position on gay marriage
*Casey: A tangled web of would-be trade-offs ("Phil, it's Terry Kilgore. I want to make sure we're clear on our deal. You resign from the Senate and you'll get a job with the tobacco commission and your daughter will get confirmed as a judge. Then the GOP can shoot down McAuliffe's Medicaid expansion plan.")
*Southwest Virginia hospitals feel pinch from Medicare readmission penalties
*Ovechkin tallies twice against Bruins; Trotz notches first win as Caps' coach
*Showers tease from the south; gradually warmer into midweek

Discuss :: (3 Comments)

The Force Is Not With Us: We Identify with Our Fantasy Heroes -- Why Don't We Emulate Them?

by: Andy Schmookler

Fri Oct 10, 2014 at 11:48:01 AM EDT

Summary: We all know how to respond to evil. Again and again, our popular stories and mythology take us vicariously and gratifyingly through the process -- e.g. in films like "Avatar," "Star Wars," "Lord of the Rings," where our heroes put themselves on the line to defeat an evil force in defense of sacred values. Why is it, then, that as we face that same essential situation in America's contemporary reality, we fail to respond as our heroes do?

The the destructive force that has arisen on the right is only one side of America's present national crisis. The other side is the weakness of the response from Liberal America to this profound threat to our nation's well-being.

I've described President Obama's failure to wage the battle that must be waged. But the problem of liberal weakness - and of its blindness - is not confined to the president. These defects were evident among Democratic leaders before Mr. Obama assumed the presidency, and they are manifested, I would assert, by Liberal America taken as a whole.

It is important that we understand the sources of this weakness.

It's not that we don't know how to respond to an "evil force," for this is something our society's culture (popular and otherwise) has taught us well.

Consider how three of the most salient narratives of modern American popular culture put us through our paces-- evoking the pain and outrage of seeing injustice done and sacred things destroyed, and instilling in our hearts the will to fight the necessary battle to prevail over evil and set things right.

There's More... :: (0 Comments, 1287 words in story)

Did You Know this is "The Day of the Girl"?

by: Dan Sullivan

Sat Oct 11, 2014 at 10:52:32 AM EDT

Day of the Girl photo 141011DayoftheGirl_zps9d39c4b7.jpgProbably not. Yesterday a 17 year old girl, Malala Yousafzai, shared the Nobel Peace Prize; the winners cited "for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education." How many girls in America struggle?  Far too many.
"Empowerment of and investment in girls are key in breaking the cycle of discrimination and violence and in promoting and protecting the full and effective enjoyment of their human rights" - United Nations Resolution 66/170
A simple truth is that gender inequality begins at conception. Is it simply culture? No, I don't believe so...it is rooted in physiological differences and procreation roles; these are natural facts that have influenced the paths of social Darwinism. Where there has been philosophical advancement, social enlightenment has neglected the value and role of women for the sole purpose of maintaining a dominance that serves the interests of the "haves." Somehow, somewhere, long, long ago, women became chattel. And the luster of that property is diminished by the exercise of "ownership rights" by men.

Women are diminished by patriarchal attempts to protect that ownership. These are clearly manifest in laws restricting women's sovereignty over their own bodies. This would be comical if it were not so tragic. While those who would protect the status quo focus on the emotional issue of abortion, they refuse to effectively ameliorate the more pervasive crimes and trespasses against girls and women, most of which create the circumstances that force the tragic choice they would not allow.

That the abuses of girls and women in other cultures and countries are often far worse than the general condition in America does not excuse their social position and condition here.

There's More... :: (2 Comments, 177 words in story)

Virginia News Headlines: Saturday Morning

by: lowkell

Sat Oct 11, 2014 at 07:08:11 AM EDT

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Saturday, October 11. Also, check out President Obama's weekly address, in which he "makes the case for why it's past time to raise the minimum wage. Increasing the national minimum wage to $10.10 an hour would benefit 28 million Americans, and make our economy stronger."

*Up to 700 trapped in Syrian Kurdish town of Kobane, UN says
*Global shares fall further on economy fears
*Brawling with the Palins: A blow-by-blow (Don't forget, John McCain would have put Sarah Palin and her trashy, violent, crazy family one heartbeat away from being Commander in Chief. That says it all about John McCain, and also about the Sunday shows and others who continue to listen to him.)
*Warner, Gillespie to meet in Danville (The debate will be Tuesday evening.)
*McAuliffe: Gay married couples can now adopt children in Va.
*Virginia governor officiates at lesbian wedding
*U.S. Sen. Mark Warner discussed job for Phillip Puckett's daughter (I'm starting to wonder, who did NOT discuss a freakin' job for Phil Puckett's daughter?!?)
*Republicans cut ad spending in Virginia race
*Richmond left with one less thing to fight over ("Speaker Howell only has power over two of the three McAuliffe appointments he had hoped to block.")
*Eric Cantor's Website Is Now Just a Headshot That Goes Nowhere (Seems appropriate somehow.)
*Gillespie unveils Obamacare alternative (This godawful piece of crap basically demonstrates why national Republicans have NOT released an "Obamacare alternative" - because they don't have anything even half decent, and also because "Obamacare" essentialLy IS the Republican alternative...to "Hillarycare" back in 1993.)
*No room for debate: Forbes won't answer opponent's requests ("Fourth Congressional District candidate Elliott Fausz has repeatedly asked U.S. Rep. Randy Forbes for a debate, but the incumbent's staff says his schedule is 'already packed.'" Riiiight, because Congress is SOOOO busy! LOL)
*Kaine back from India
*VDOT employee wins racial bias case, but VDOT faces second action
*Royals blast past Orioles for 8-6 series opener win in 10 innings
*Not too warm, not very sunny, not that dry. Just kind of a gloomy day.

Discuss :: (0 Comments)

Top Offshore Oil Drilling Advocate Doesn't Know Where Our Oil Comes From

by: TheGreenMiles

Fri Oct 10, 2014 at 12:38:13 PM EDT

Gov. Pat McCrory (R-NC) is a leader in the fight to drill for oil off Atlantic Coast beaches, yet somehow that position hasn't taught him anything about where the oil in our gas tanks comes from:
A coalition of governors along the Gulf Coast and Southeast who support offshore drilling is chaired by North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory. McCrory said besides the prospect of good jobs and business profits, more states should contribute to building American energy independence from foreign imports by allowing drilling.

"We are hypocrites in North Carolina if we expect to get all our energy from somewhere else and just expect that our hands are clean in this whole thing," he said.

If McCrory is defining "somewhere else" as North Dakota, then he's right. Under President Barack Obama, U.S. oil production is nearing all-time highs. In fact, oil prices have been falling thanks in part to "oversupply from the U.S. because of increasing shale oil production." So why do we need offshore oil drilling, or the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline to bring in oil from Canada, or any of the American Petroleum Institute's other demands? We don't.
There's More... :: (0 Comments, 399 words in story)

Short on Specifics, Voter ID Activism Slogs On

by: Dan Sullivan

Fri Oct 10, 2014 at 12:05:05 PM EDT

Registrar's sign photo 140325RegisterHere_zps202c0c36.jpgTuesday, 14 October is a critical date for Virginia voters. It is the last day to register to vote November 4 if not yet registered. The 14th is also the "cut-off" date for obtaining the actual new state Voter ID; a temporary is available afterwards. And there're other wild cards.

One of the problems arising out of tea party style activism, aka active and passive resistance to good order and conduct of legitimate government functions, is that application of the law may very well be inconsistent jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The guidance being passed by Voter ID activists seems based on single or limited jurisdictional experience and ignores an issue created by the Department of Elections when it mailed erroneous letters to voters telling them they may no longer be eligible to vote.

Activists have been told that the new voter ID cards will be issued "right up until Election Day." Yes and no. The devil is in the details and it depends upon what you mean by "issued" and "until." What may be true is that registered voters, even those registering for the first time, who apply for the Voter ID card through 14 October enjoy a very good assurance that they will be issued and receive the shiny new, wasteful in terms of government spending, and otherwise useless card at the residence where they are registered in time to use it to vote on November 4. However, after that date the receipt of an "issued" Voter ID diminishes exponentially to zero by Election Day.

What applicants can receive after 14 October is a "temporary Voter ID" in the form of a full sheet, printed facsimile of the ID that will later be issued and mailed to their address. A specific written policy to Registrars concerning provision of that "temporary Voter ID" would be risky. Persons applying after the 14th should request one if it is not offered and carry it with them from the Registrar's office. If the application is being made at a remote location and printing is not available, the voter is risking being unable to vote on 4 November.

There's More... :: (0 Comments, 757 words in story)

I Ask Bill "ALEC" Howell a Simple Question. Of Course He Has No Answer.

by: lowkell

Fri Oct 10, 2014 at 11:09:57 AM EDT

This is definitely shaping up as Virginia Republicans' Big Lie of 2014: that supposedly President Obama is responsible for 250,000 health insurance policies being canceled in Virginia. In fact, as Mark Warner spokesperson Kevin Hall correctly points out, "Federal policy allows states to continue to give consumers the option of keeping their existing plans, so this is now a state issue." Hall adds, "Thirty-seven states, including North Carolina, have already done that, and the Virginia General Assembly can and should do the same."

The question, then, is why hasn't the Republican-controlled Virginia General Assembly acted to fix this, since those same Republicans claim it's such a big problem? (My exact question to Howell was: "So why didn't you pass legislation to prevent that? This is 100% a state issue at this point, and many other states have taken action - but not Virginia.") It's not like there wasn't a bill introduced (see SB 5012 Health benefit plans; renewal of nonconforming policies by Sen. George Barker) in the recent special session.

So what did Republicans DO with this bill, given that they are supposedly SO concerned (note: they're really not concerned at all, but are simply using this to score cheap political points) about those 250,000 Virginians (even as they are NOT concerned with hundreds of thousands more Virginians who desperately need Medicaid expansion)? Why, of course, they acted on it right away seriously considered it shunted it off to the Committee on Commerce and Labor, where it's currently languishing.

So, bottom line: next time you hear Bill "ALEC" Howell, ethically challenged Barbara Comstock, or any other Republican cry crocodile tears on this issue, just hand them a Kleenex and give them a hug. Either that, or tell them where to shove their Big Lie.

P.S. Also see Virginia GOP Proves Its "250k Losing Healthcare Due to Obamacare" Talking Point is Bull****

Discuss :: (3 Comments)

Virginia News Headlines: Friday Morning

by: lowkell

Fri Oct 10, 2014 at 06:43:18 AM EDT

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, October 10. Happy birthday mom! Also, click to "embiggen" on the winning map (by a team of William and Mary Law School students) in the 2011 Virginia College Redistricting Competition. To see all the winners, click here.

*Christian right's huge dilemma: How social conservatives could doom Republicans (Works for me! LOL)
*Malala Yousafzai, Kailash Satyarthi win Peace Prize (Nice: "Yousafzai, a Pakistani schoolgirl who was shot in the head by the Taliban, and Satyarthi, who has fought against child labor in India for nearly two decades, were honored for their children's rights work.")
*Supreme Court blocks Wisconsin's voter ID law
*Federal Court Blocks Texas Voter ID Law, Calling It A 'Poll Tax' (How about Virginia's voter ID bull****?)
*Ominous math of the Ebola epidemic worries experts
*Our view: How Virginia elections are rigged ("...the way state legislatures - more accurately, the majority parties in state legislatures - redraw district lines effectively amounts to rigging elections." Bingo.)
*UMW Poll shows Warner with 10 point lead (That's among likely voters. It's 20 points amount registered voters, actually).
*Virginia GOP congressmen might appeal ruling on redistricting
*Federal judges deliver blow to racial gerrymandering in Virginia ("The antidote to such brazen manipulations is nonpartisan redistricting...but lawmakers - generally Republicans - have killed it.")

There's More... :: (4 Comments, 147 words in story)

Sorry Mr. Krugman: Obama Came to Office Holding a Royal Flush, Then Declared His Hand "Ace High"

by: Andy Schmookler

Thu Oct 09, 2014 at 12:46:13 PM EDT

 Paul Krugman is a hero of mine . Because of his brilliance, his integrity, his batting average at being right, and the choice piece of journalistic real estate he occupies, Krugman has my vote for MVP among all the pundits of our times.

But regarding the piece Professor Krugman just published in Rolling Stone, arguing that "Obama has emerged as "one of the most ... successful presidents in American history," I must - regretfully, but strongly--disagree.

Our differences here are matters of how we weigh different parts of the picture. Krugman goes through a list of Obama's achievements - such as health care reform, financial reform, and others - and I largely agree about those.

At the same time, Krugman acknowledges that failure of Obama's that's salient for me, when he writes: "He faced scorched-earth Republican opposition from Day One, and it took him years to start dealing with that opposition realistically."

So which should be weighed more heavily, the achievements or that failure to deal rightly with this "scorched-earth Republican opposition"?

I say it's the latter, and here's my case.

There's More... :: (26 Comments, 649 words in story)
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The purpose of Blue Virginia is to cover Virginia politics from a progressive and Democratic perspective. This is a group blog and a community blog. We invite everyone to comment here, but please be aware that profanity, personal attacks, bigotry, insults, rudeness, frequent unsupported or off-point statements, "trolling" (NOTE: that includes outright lies, whether about climate science, or what other people said, or whatever), and "troll ratings abuse" (e.g., "troll" rating someone simply because you disagree with their argument) are not permitted and, if continued, will lead to banning. For more on trolling, see the Daily Kos FAQs. Also note that diaries may be deleted if they do not contain at least 2 solid paragraphs of original text; if not, please use the comments section of a relevant diary. For more on writing diaries, click here. Thanks, and enjoy!

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