How Long Is Tag Willing To Let It Grow?

“No budget, no shave.” Del. Tag Greason gave that quote to the Washington Post, explaining how he will end budget gridlock in Richmond through slovenly appearance.

Here he is, with fellow barbate lawmaker Greg Habeeb:

TagGreg

Not the clean-shaven image Tag usually prefers, but arguably rakish. And yet, one can only imagine how this will work out if the deadlock goes on longer than he expected…

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The War on Women Words Continues

Making this a News Brief because, really, does anyone still care? Did anyone ever? If you do, Del. Barbara Comstock has weighed in with a letter of her own, responding to Sen. Chap Petersen’s letter, which followed Elizabeth Miller’s letter, which deconstructed Mike Turner’s letter, with everyone saying someone else was playing games with legislation.

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Let FirewallNOVA clear this up for you: Comstock is running for Congress as a Republican at a time when Republicans are trying to court more of the women’s vote. She tried to put through some half-baked legislation that would make her look friendly to women, and the Democrats stopped her.

That is all.

Bolger Drops Out of 10th CD Race

The Dranesville District Democrats are reporting on their Facebook page that Richard Bolger has dropped out of the running for the Democratic nomination in the 10th Congressional District race. This leaves John Foust unopposed and, with filing closed, the Democratic nominee. Here’s an excerpt from Bolger’s statement today:

At this point, it has become clear to me that John Foust is our strongest choice with the best chance of helping our party win this seat and change the direction of Congress. That is why I have reached out to John and told him I am suspending my campaign and will be supporting his candidacy.

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UPDATE: Petersen Also Calls Out Turner Mistake

Following last week’s exchange in the press between former Loudoun County Democratic Committee chair Mike Turner and former Democratic nominee for the house of delegates, Liz Miller, state senator Chap Petersen weighs in with a letter of his own. Petersen also corrects Turner, who neglected to look up what a senate committee was actually voting on before condemning the vote.

 

Petersen succinctly confirms that the house vote sent a vanity, do-nothing bill to the senate, where it was properly voted down. The house Democratic minority had its hand forced when the Republican majority passed an in-name-only “anti-trafficking” bill (literally, that’s all it did, was change the name of an existing law). That set a trap for the house Democrats, since no one wants it on their record that they, in any way, voted against an anti-trafficking measure (even one that does nothing whatsoever except, maybe, give its patron a campaign point in her bid to replace Frank Wolf). The house Dems didn’t fall into that trap, and the whole bit of political fakery would have failed, except that Turner fell for it himself, just in a bigger way.

Anyone who ever wonders if there is an up side to having a bicameral legislature can look at this for an example. A grand-stand play–made purely for political gain–that was forced on one party in one half of the legislature got shut down, as it should have, in the other half. As Petersen puts it, “That’s not party politics. It’s just how this business works.”

Bolger Fumbles

The two candidates for the Democratic nomination in the 10th CD race spoke to the Loudoun County Democratic Committee a couple of nights ago. John Foust, with some name-recognition already established in Loudoun, made, they say, an ordinary candidate’s speech. His opponent, Richard Bolger, appears to have fumbled, by speaking favorably of the interests of the real-estate industry.

Everyone hopes that property values will return to healthy levels, of course. But, if you know Loudoun county politics, you know that the LCDC is heavily influenced by its western membership, and that those western members abhor real-estate developers. To win the support of the LCDC, then, one must be cautious to distinguish between the value of a resident’s property, and the welfare of the real-estate industry. Observers say that Bolger came off as treating them as one-and-the-same, a fatal error for a candidate in front of that audience.

The same meeting voted on when and where Democrats can vote for the candidate they prefer as their nominee. Nothing official, however, on the LCDC or 10th CD Democratic Committee‘s Web sites about that. If you know more, please post a comment.

HOA Fining Power Defeated

NoVa state senator Chap Petersen has shepherded HB791 to passage, but without the odious provisions that would have allowed HOAs to impose fines on residents. Petersen was part of the conference committee that reconciled the House and Senate versions of this bill, with the fining power being the point of greatest contention.

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Issa Takes the Fifth
UPDATE: Black Caucus Wants Issa Out
UPDATE 2: Issa Apologizes

“He’s taking the Fifth, Elijah.” Those were Gerry Connolly’s (D-Va.) words as Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) got told alternately to speak and be quiet, about six times, by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), as Issa opened, then closed, a committee meeting for the sole purpose of publicly humiliating former IRS director Lois Lerner. Cummings tried as hard as he could to pose a single question to Issa, but Issa wouldn’t allow it (prompting Connolly’s quip).

For his trouble, Issa made Lerner look victimized, Cummings very slightly humiliated, and Issa himself humiliated to about nine on the Richter Scale.

Look at the video during the exchange between Cummings and Issa and judge for yourself what the body language from Issa adds to the moment.

UPDATE: Seems the Congressional Black Caucus also got the impression Issa was over the line. They are calling for his removal as committee chair. (Issa should know better. He’s been down this road before.)

UPDATE 2: As Rush Limbaugh was devoting his entire program today to saying Issa had done nothing worth caring about, Issa was calling Cummings to apologize. Cummings has accepted. (Yes, I listen to Rush. And I’m a leftie. I’m a leftie who listens to Rush. If you want to know what you’re up against and you’re a leftie, you’ve got to listen to Rush.)

Delgaudio Subpoenas SPLC

Eugene Delgaudio’s attorney is attempting use a subpoena to obtain records from the Southern Poverty Law Center that document their decision to name Delgaudio’s operation, the “Public Advocate of the United States,” a hate group. Read Delgaudio’s press release at, among others (and also others), ChristianNewsWire (a for-hire online service).

This is a questionable move as it risks documenting precisely one of the bases upon which the petitioners seeking Delgaudio’s removal claim he is unfit to remain in office. SPLC may seek to resist the subpoena, but if they don’t (or if that resistance is not successful), Delgaudio may be in for a whole new round of embarrassing revelations.

DCCC Picks John Foust

Fairfax county supervisor John FoustAlthough he doesn’t even have the nomination yet, candidate John Foust has been named, personally, as a “Red to Blue” candidate to win Virginia’s 10th Congressional District in November by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (“DCCC,” or “dee-trip,” as it is known). This is a big deal because DCCC also sometimes names individual districts as Red-to-Blue districts, without backing any candidate in particular. For Foust to gain this support before the caucuses (to be held later this month) that choose the delegates to the Democrats’ nominating convention (yes, it is confusing) means they already have a preference, and it’s Foust.

The other contender, Richard Bolger, is clearly a smart, decent fellow who has every right to seek the nomination for himself. But he also has the right to pick another time to enter politics. His party has a lot of ground to make up in the House of Representatives. DCCC is obviously trying to send him a signal, and it is one he should receive. The smart, decent thing for Mr. Bolger to do now is step aside, endorse John Foust, and be a team player for his party. That would only help him in a future quest for nomination, whereas digging in and forcing a convention would only make him look stubborn and self-serving.

Local Dems should make Bolger’s choices clear to him, and let him know they remember their friends.