Advertising

Blog Roll
Who's My Legislator?

Virginia Blogs
Augusta Free Press
Bacon's Rebellion
Blue Ridge Caucus
Blue Louisa
Coarse Cracked Corn
Crew of 42
DemRulz
Dixie Pig
Equality Loudoun
Greater Greater Washington
Loudoun Progress
Moonhowlings
Ox Road South Blog
Pilot on Politics" blog
Richmonder
Richmond Sunlight
RTD Virginia Politics blog
Roanoke Times blog
Shad Plank
Vivian Paige
Waldo Jaquith


Find more about Weather in Arlington, VA
Click for weather forecast
Search




Advanced Search


Bill Bolling: Compromise Needed on Transportation, Medicaid Expansion; Still 50-50 on Guv Run

by: lowkell

Mon Feb 18, 2013 at 11:29:19 AM EST


According to the increasingly "moderate"-sounding Bill Bolling (although his record is conservative through and through), we need new revenues for transportation (duh!). How do we get those revenues? According to Bolling, "it seems to me the easiest way to do that is to address the fact that the gas tax hasn't been increased since 1986...the regional average is about 27 cents a gallon, we're at about 17 cents a gallon, so we could easily go to 23 or 24 cents a gallon and still be well below the regional average" (also duh!). Seriously, this is the no-brainer of all no brainers: Virginia needs billions of dollars, probably tens of billions of dollars, for transportation, and the only serious way to do that is to raise the gas tax. In addition, it's a no-brainer for environmental and national security reasons, as we  want to be moving away from fossil fuels as rapidly as possible. In fact, if we fully internalized all the pollution, health, national security, and other costs of oil, we'd have gasoline at $10 per gallon or higher, so all this sturm und drang about a few cents is really just silly, as nobody has a serious alternative (and no, raising the sales tax is NOT a serious alternative).

More broadly, Bolling says that all the Republican LG candidates running around saying they oppose any taxes to raise money for transportation are being completely unrealistic. Either that, or they're just good at political pandering. But the fact is, as Bolling points out, "policy is set in the real world, not in some ideological world," and "none of those people [the GOP LG candidates] will solve this problem - none of them." Are you listening, Pete Snyder et al? Key word: "compromise," which sadly is a curse word to the Teapublican'ts.

On Medicaid expansion, Bolling says he's come "full circle," and that the "business case has been made for Medicaid expansion...if we're able to negotiate the flexibility from the federal government to initiate a number of reforms in the way we operate our Medicaid program to make it more efficient, and more effective, and more affordable." Again, where are the 2013 Republican candidates on this issue, of paramount importance to hundreds of thousands of Virginians, and to the state as a whole? Nowhere, as far as I can tell.

Finally, with regard to his possible gubernatorial run, Bolling says he's still 50/50, is convinced he'd be a "credible independent candidate," and that the main question is whether he can raise enough money to run a winning campaign. Stay tuned for March 14, when Bolling says he'll announce his decision.

P.S. I'd point out that Virginia's 17-cents-per-gallon gas tax accounts for only 4% of the price, meaning the remaining 96% goes to the oil companies, the refiners, the gas stations, the federal government, OPEC, etc. In contrast, in most other advanced, industrialized Western nations, taxes make up 70%, 80% of the price. Why is our energy policy so different in the US than in the rest of the developed world? Basically, because oil interests have us by the balls. We need to not-so-gently remove their hands from our cojones, ASAP.

lowkell :: Bill Bolling: Compromise Needed on Transportation, Medicaid Expansion; Still 50-50 on Guv Run
Tags: (All Tags)
Print Friendly View Send As Email

In this day and age (0.00 / 0)
when gas prices gyrate up and down by relatively huge amounts, no one is really going to notice an extra 15-25 cents a gallon.  Gas prices at the gas station closest to me have gone up about 30 cents in the last 5-6 weeks.  Prices will probably drop that same amount two months from now.  Maybe they'll go up another 30 cents by then.  

The point is, this isn't the mid-80s to late 90s, when gas was around a buck to $1.50.  Yeah, you would notice a quarter increase per gallon.  Today, it's not really that much.

I think the literal breaking point for Republicans is that road maintenance is way down. It was one thing when existing roads were well maintained statewide, which they were until 5-10 years ago.  It was just us in NoVA and some in Tidewater that were hurt by the fact that no new roads were being built.  Now, however, everyone is hurting since basic maintenance is barely being done.  Streets, roads and highways across the state are crumbling and in need of paving.  Even hooplehead Republicans from the sticks understand that need.


Menu

Make a New Account

Username:

Password:



Forget your username or password?


Advertising

FOLLOW BLUE VIRGINIA on SOCIAL MEDIA


Donate to Blue Virginia

About
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!

P.S. You can contact us at lowell@raisingkaine.com and you can subscribe to Lowell's Twitter feed here. If you'd like to subscribe to Miles Grant's Twitter feed, click here. For Teacherken, click here. For Kindler, click here.

P.P.S. To see the Blue Virginia archive, please click here. To see the Raising Kaine archive, please click here. To see the Blue Commonwealth archive, please click here.



RSS Feed

Subscribe to Blue Virginia - Front Page


Real Time Web Analytics
Powered by: SoapBlox