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Virginia News Headlines: Wednesday Morning

by: lowkell

Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 06:59:28 AM EST

Here are a few Virginia (and national) news headlines, political and otherwise, for Wednesday, February 20. Also check out the video of Rep. Bobby Scott's forum on sequestration in Newport News.

*Kathleen Parker: RINOs need to take back the Republican Party ("...what has become glaringly clear is that RINOs need to stop being so normal and grant their better angels a sabbatical. Forget taking back the country. Start by taking back your party. Do it for your country."
*Congress' leaders have failed U.S. (Replace the word "Congress" with "Congressional Republican" and you've got it right.)
*Area leaders demand that President Obama, Congress act to avoid deep federal cuts
*Poll: McAuliffe, Cuccinelli Tied in Va. Governor's Race
*With session's end, Bolling has scant time to raise cash, boost polling by decision deadline
*Bill Clinton to host fundraiser for McAuliffe
*A commission on voting issues is a good start
*U.S. signals agreement with Va. on Medicaid reforms
*Virginia lawmakers inch toward transportation funding deal (I don't like the looks of this at all. For one thing, the absurd $100 fee singling out hybrid and other alternative fuel vehicles is back. For another, why on earth would we lower the gas tax, when the #1 problem facing humanity, by far, is climate change cause by fossil fuel combustion? It's nuts.)
*As sequester nears Kaine visits shipyard
*Schapiro: McDonnell legacy limited by term limit

lowkell :: Virginia News Headlines: Wednesday Morning
*Bill to allow smoking bans on public beaches is snuffed out
*Crackdown on texting while driving heads to governor
*Kerry makes foreign policy speech today at U.Va.
*Former congressman backs Chopra for LG
*Lawmakers propose fewer signatures for access to presidential ballot in Va. ("Bill reduces required signatures from 10,000 to 5,000 to qualify.")
*Va. Assembly approves ban on welfare benefits to buy booze, tattoos (That's fine, as long as they also ban such expenditures for recipients of corporate welfare or welfare for rich people.)
*In General Assembly, no love for cyclists (Change "In General Assembly" to "Among General Assembly Republicans" and you've got it right.)
*Goodlatte's willing to talk sequestration alternatives (Yeah, as long as it's "my way or the highway," which means "not one penny in new revenues, all cuts." No thanks.)
*Former Del. Chip Woodrum dies
*House passes bill to inform patients about Lyme disease testing
*Gun owners get discount at Va. Beach pizza shop
*Fairfax County board, workers push back on proposed pay plan
*The Murder Charges Against Oscar Pistorius And The Financial Interests Of The Olympics  
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Q-Poll: McAuliffe 38%-Cuccinelli 38%; McAuliffe 34%-Cuccinelli 31%-Bolling 13% (0.00 / 0)
A new Q-Poll of Virginia, for what it's worth at this point (I don't think the vast majority of people have tuned in yet).
Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican State Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli are in a 38 - 38 percent dead heat in their race to become Virginia's next governor. Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling, running as an independent candidate, leaves the race a statistical tie, with McAuliffe at 34 percent, Cuccinelli at 31 percent and Bolling at 13 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Bolling, elected as a Republican, said he will make a major announcement next month, presumably about the governor's race.

Today's 38 - 38 percent horse race is almost identical to the findings from a January 9 survey by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University, showing 40 percent for McAuliffe and 39 percent for Cuccinelli. In a three-way race measured January 9, McAuliffe and Cuccinelli had 34 percent each, with 13 percent for Bolling.

"Although the folks in Richmond are paying close attention to the political maneuvering around the governor's race, most Virginians have not yet begun focusing on it," said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"When asked about the candidates, most voters don't know enough about Terry McAuliffe or Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling to have an opinion and barely half know enough about Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli to form an opinion. This despite the fact that Bolling and Cuccinelli have been elected to statewide office and McAuliffe ran for governor four years ago."

Cuccinelli has a 30 - 25 percent favorability rating. McAuliffe gets a 23 - 16 percent score, with 60 percent who don't know enough about him to form an opinion. Bolling has an 18 - 10 percent favorability, with 72 percent who don't know enough about him.

Virginia voters give Bolling a 36 - 18 percent job approval, while Cuccinelli gets a 41 - 32 percent approval rating.

"Bolling probably has the greatest growth potential of the candidates but he also has the farthest to go to become a major contender. At this point - although it certainly could change - the data indicates that Bolling's GOP critics who say he can't win as an independent but might tilt the result to McAuliffe could be on to something," said Brown.

In a two-way race, McAuliffe wins Democrats 83 - 4 percent. Cuccinelli takes Republicans 87 - 2 percent. Independent voters go 33 percent for Cuccinelli and 29 percent for McAuliffe. Women go to the Democrat 42 - 33 percent, while men go Republican 44 - 34 percent. Cuccinelli wins white voters 47 - 31 percent, while black voters go to McAuliffe 64 - 11 percent.

In a three-way race, Bolling gets 10 percent of Republicans, but just 5 percent of Democrats.

Interestingly, voters are split evenly, 44 - 43 percent, on whether Cuccinelli should resign as attorney general while he runs for governor. These same voters say 48 - 36 percent that Bolling should remain lieutenant governor if he runs for governor. The difference between the public view of the two men stems from Democrats saying Bolling should remain in office even if he runs by 42 - 39 percent, but think Cuccinelli should resign by 55 - 30 percent.

As he enters the fourth year of his term, Gov. Bob McDonnell remains popular with voters. He has a 53 - 28 percent job approval with voters, including 77 - 11 percent among Republicans and 55 - 22 percent among independent voters. Even his 47 - 32 percent disapproval among Democrats is better than many governors in the view of the opposition party.

Virginia lawmakers, however, do not fare as well with voters. The State Legislature gets a 46 - 38 disapproval compared to a 43 - 39 percent approval in early January before the legislative session was in full swing.

From February 14 - 18, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,112 registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.9 percentage points. Live interviewers call land lines and cell phones. The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia and the nation as a public service and for research.

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Video: John McCain gets a taste of his own anti-immigrant demagoguery (0.00 / 0)

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Chip, We Miss You Already (0.00 / 0)
Today, the Roanoke Valley lost a fine member of the community and an exemplary public servant: Clifton "Chip" Woodrum, who served in the House of Delegates for more than twenty years until gerrymandered out of his seat after Republicans took control of the House in 2000. Woodrum was responsible for legislation that saved the Hotel Roanoke, created the Virginia Birth-Related Neurological Injury Compensation Program to cover medical bills and expenses for children who suffer neurological damage at birth, as well as working for more open government in the Commonwealth.

Those of us who knew Chip knew him best as a gentle soul with a kind word for all he met. We are poorer today for his passing.  


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