McDonnells’ Trial Kicks-Off With Bombshells

During the opening arguments in the trial of former Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife Maureen, it was disclosed (or at least claimed by the defense) that the McDonnells were barely on speaking terms and she had an “inappropriate” relationship with businessman Jonnie Williams who showered the first couple with lavish gifts. OUCH!!!

At first blush, it appeared that they would be throwing each other under the bus, but now it looks to me more like Maureen McDonnell is falling on her own sword — or at least being pushed onto it.

Just wait until it is disclosed Bob had a crush on Jonnie, too. Well, at least Jonnie’s wallet.

Or maybe Bob McDonnell was just happy to have Jonnie get Maureen off his back? As in – Take my wife . . . Please!

http://ira1942.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/rodney-dangerfield.jpg?w=157&h=225

I don’t get no respect!

Maureen is being painted more and more as an airhead former Redskinette.  I do not think it’s unintentional, but rather part of the former first couple’s trial strategy — portray her as estranged from the Governor (who was busy working 16 hours a day for the people to the neglect of his own wife) so there’s distance from his official actions; write-off all the gifts as being part of the “inappropriate” relationship (still not defined as whether it was an unrequited “crush” or something physical) between her and Williams instead of any quid pro quo; get off (with maybe a fine for the failure to report on the banking issues); and finally “reconcile” at some point following the trial.

This whole sordid chapter in Virginia’s history makes me sick. McDonnell was supposed to save the Virginia GOP. Instead, he sundered it — for bad policy and for corruption.

Do let the door hit you in the ass on the way out. Bye! Don’t come back, y’all, ya hear?

Those two did more damage to the party, and by extension the rest of the state, than we can tally. We have two blue senators, executives and frankly, this just should not be.

We have taxes galore.

I have no sympathy.

I hope Bolling gets splattered with all the toxins, too.

I hope it is so bad, McDonnell has to get a dye job, grow a beard and go into hiding.

I remember reading an article in 2009 about how the McDonnell-Bolling team was the Establishment’s Last Stand. That may just turn out to be right.

Cuccinelli Gave $25K to RPV Yesterday; Why Is Bolling Still Sitting On $334K?

From an email sent out today by RPV Chairman Pat Mullins:

[New RPV Exec. Dir. Shaun Kenney] had a pretty good first day on the job, too. Ken Cuccinelli stepped up to the plate and gave us $25,000 to help us put all of our attention on Mark Warner going into the fall! Ken hasn’t stopped fighting Obamacare yet, and I’m grateful that he’s staying in the fight!

So, why is former LG Bill Bolling still sitting on more than $334,000 in his campaign account? (Even he couldn’t eat that many sandwiches.)

BOLLINGHow about donating a chunk of that to the party that you professed to love? Perhaps he isn’t done throwing his temper tantrum yet or maybe he’s planning to be the next John Chichester / Russ Potts and become the “Republican” that seeks attention by endorsing Democratic candidates.

We’ll be watching to see which path Bolling chooses to follow.

The Rinos Can Keep the GOP

When you realize that the RNC is a mess, stuck technologically in the 1990’s, maybe even the late 1980’s, and with hopelessly inaccurate voter rolls you begin to wonder, “Why are we putting up with these clowns?”  In VA Bolling, May, and others lead the charge from within the Republican party to undermine the ticket. This is a clear case of someone cutting their nose in order to spite their face.  They prefer to see Democrats win over conservative Republicans when they do not get their way in the primary.

According to an article from the American Thinker, Christie got four times the money Cuccinelli did from the RNC and he was never in need of the help Ken was since the local papers did not smear Christie the way the WashPo smeared Ken.  In fact they were having a love-in with Christie, similar to the one they had with McCain prior to his failed presidential run in 2008.  Ken was slandered in the WashPo – got retractions – and then the WashPo would later reissue the same lies in a different articles.  The RNC never came to his aid with this.  Priebus tramped about in NJ, in a safe race.  Cuccinelli, Obenshain and Jackson were thrown under the bus.

Ken lost by a two points while facing a WashPo resolutely in the team blue camp no matter what, with a pseudo phony baloney libertarian candidate in the race – funded by a Texas Democrat, and with inaccurate polls showing Ken behind by 17 points. All this killed Ken’s chances of raising out of state money for his campaign.  Ken was outspent by $14M.  It was calculated and the likes of Bolling did not help.

It is time to cut the cord. The Bollings can keep the label. Conservatives should look elsewhere.  I do not know where conservatives should go, but they should never again bang doors for the kind of Republican that Bolling represents.  Conservatives are not welcome in ‘the big tent.’  What is so radical about fiscally prudent policies?  What is ‘crazy’ about a balanced budget?  What wrong with seeking to pass laws that do not reward self destructive and irresponsible behavior?  For this conservatives are pilloried and their character assassinated not only by Democrats but by the Bollings and Roves of the party.

At this point, according to the US Census Bureau the number of households that receive benefits exceed the number that pay for those benefits.  This is a cause for great alarm.  This is unsustainable.  This sad state is the result of the progressive Democrat and Republican policies going back to Woodrow Wilson and Teddy Roosevelt.  Conservatives, not the GOP, are trying to stop the coming fiscal Armageddon.  The Bush wing of the party is part of the problem. Only the deluded would think a Mitch McConnell is part of the solution.  Only the insane would think the Democrats will reign in spending.

Rockefeller Republicans lose far more elections than they win yet conservatives are unelectable?  Lets look at the stellar track record of recent Presidential elections:

  • Ford in 1976 lost to Carter. Reagan was considered to be too far right for America
  • Bush Sr. got elected only because the country wanted four more years of Reagan.  America realized Bush was no Reagan and we got Bill Clinton.
  • Bob Dole a left-wing experiment that never stood a chance. Did we hear about how such left-wing Rockefeller wannabes are too far left for the country?  No.
  • W ran as a conservative, which is why he won.  W was no conservative
  • John McCain lost so big he had reverse coat tails
  • Romney who was another left-wing Republican. He managed to lose to a president highest unemployment in the past 40 years.

The lesson?  Rinos lose nationally.  I will repeat for the intellectually impaired: Rinos. Lose. Nationally.  The electorate is 40% conservative according to Gallop.  So why is the establishment GOP running always away from them?  It is personal that is why, we are a threat to their gravy train.  From here on out, when the GOP establishment fields a Bolling, we take him out in a primary, and is he survives that, we help the Democrats.  Why?  That is what the Bollings do to conservatives.  It is war on conservatives.

Conservatives typically accept the results of a primary contest, campaigning for Democrat-lite in the general election.  Rinos like Bolling never return the courtesy.  Locally in Loudoun Co., Clint Good, a ‘Republican’ was out campaigning for the Democrat candidate Mary Daniels against David LaRock, a conservative Republican in the VA33rd HOD — Clint called it, “Republicans for Daniels”.   Joe May the big spending, tax hiking Republican lost the primary against LaRock 57%-43%.  He did much to harm LaRock in the general election, refusing to endorse David, and not renouncing a mailer from Daniels that implied that May endorsed Daniels.  As the national party leadership is lousy with this sort of Republican, conservatives should strongly consider looking for greener pastures.

Currently the chief difference is that the Democrats lie to the public and pretend to be more centrist than they rule.  The GOP tells its base, “I am conservative” but rules in a way indistinguishable from the Democrats most of the time.  While there are people in the GOP worthy of consideration — they days of calling the GOP a conservative party are over.

Bill Bolling and the Sabotage Republicans

In this article from ‘The Amercican Spectator‘ Jeffrey Lord provides some great analysis of what is, and has been taking place within the Republican Party where so-called ‘Good Republicans’ like Bill Bolling have worked for decades to insure the failure of Conservative candidates like Ken Cuccinelli.

RINOs – The Enemy Within

From Fauquier Free Citizen comes this article, “RINOs Victorious on November 5th – Or The Enemy Within“.

The battle lines were drawn long ago, and now it’s time to take the gloves off.

For years Conservatives have been told we have to support the candidates chosen by the GOP establishment, and we have faithfully done so. So why didn’t they support our candidates?

Ken Cuccinelli could have won this election, but the establishment did not want it to happen; witness the fact that Bill Bolling would not endorse Cuccinelli, and the GOP would not spend the money on this very important race.

It’s time Bolling and others like him leave the Party.

Why Election 2013 Was Like 2001 (And 2014 Will Be Like 2006)

A Republican Attorney General popular with the social conservative movement bests a Republican Lt. Gov. rooted in the business community for the GOP gubernatorial nomination.  A multi-millionaire Democrat nominee for governor with no elected experience and a questionable history about how he made his money.  An unexpected Republican nominee for Lt. Governor popular with the grassroots, but woefully underfunded.  A major national event that freezes the race for weeks.

If you guessed these were Ken Cuccinelli, Bill Bolling, Terry McAuliffe, E.W Jackson, and the government shutdown, you’d be right.

If you guessed these were Mark Earley, John Hager, Mark Warner, Jay Katzen, and 9/11, you’d be right, too.

Everything old is new again in politics.  Everything is cyclical.  In retrospect, the dynamics at work in 2013 were extremely similar to what happened 12 years ago in so many ways.  About the only difference was in the Attorney General’s race which more resembled the 2005 election where a Republican member of the General Assembly, Bob McDonnell, narrowly defeated a Democrat state senator, Creigh Deeds, by just a few hundred votes.  (Even there, we had a Mark vs. Mark race like in the 2001 gubernatorial election.)

So, what forces are at work now and what past election year will 2014 be like?

A president in his second term.  A deeply unpopular policy considered to be the signature one of his presidency.  A popular Virginia U.S. senator (and former governor) from the same party as the president considered a major contender for president himself in the next election who voted for that policy.  No big name contenders from the other party in the race against said senator.

If you guessed George W. Bush, the Iraq War, George Allen, and Jim Webb / Harris Miller, you’d be right.

The 2014 election is tracking to be almost exactly like 2006 with Barack Obama, Obamacare, Mark Warner, and a still evolving GOP field as the players this time around.  Something to consider for any Republican with an interest in jumping in the senate race next year.  My advice to whoever may be on the fence — get in the race.  You don’t want to wind up kicking yourself for passing on it the way so many Democrats did after Jim Webb beat Allen.  Just make sure that you hammer Warner continuously for having cast the 60th and deciding vote to enact Obamacare and how that decision has hurt the American economy and destroyed full-time job creation in this country.  At the same time, have a message of your own about what you want to accomplish as one of Virginia’s U.S. senators.  If you do those two things, you can win.

UPDATE:  Virtucon friend Ben Marchi has floated the name of Brig. Gen. Bert Mizusawa (USAR) to play the Jim Webb role in ’14 against Warner’s Allen.  Very interesting indeed.

Governor McDonnell to Resign on Monday

So says the well connected Mike Belefski.   Mike was the Northern Virginia Field Director for Bill Bolling during his run for Governor.   Much more about Mike on Google.   Mike has posted today on his Twitter account and on his Facebook page that Governor McDonnell will resign on Monday.

Watchdog.org is reporting that the Governor has cleared his schedule for next week, to vacation at the Virginia Military base, Camp Pendleton.  It looks like a good place to hide from the press.

Bill Bolling’s lifelong dream to become Governor is about to come true.  It also appears that Willie Deutsch was right.

UPDATE:  More on the Governor’s troubles here.  We simply cannot have a trial begin just before the November elections.  It will sink our republican candidates.

UPDATE part Deux:  Mike Belefski is reporting on Facebook that the mainstream media will be covering the story this weekend.

The Richmonder has confirmed that the Governor has been in negotiation with the federal authorities.  He says the First Couple is “now trying to avoid a felony conviction in exchange for a quick and clean exit from Virginia’s Governor’s Mansion.”  How sad that is.   Story here. 

Saturday UPDATE:  Rumors abound in Richmond that there will be a special meeting/conference call on Sunday for the House of Delegates, prior to the Governor’s big announcement.  I assume that means a republican caucus call and not the full HOD.

Anyone else find it odd that the Governor’s spokesman is in San Diego “for work”?  And without comment about the Governor’s impending resignation?  https://twitter.com/jtuckermartin

Finally, a denial, sorta, http://dailycaller.com/2013/07/13/mcdonnell-aides-deny-resignation-rumors-are-true/  So he won’t resign Monday?  Will it be Tuesday?  Friday?   Nothing on his twitter account,https://twitter.com/paulshanks

Much more coming on Sunday.

Early Sunday Update:  The Governor’s resignation tied to the Travyon Martin verdict?  So says TooConservative.  Seems unlikely but the verdict is now behind us.

Second Sunday Update:  The above link no longer works.  It seems all posts and comments critical of the Governor have been scrubbed from TooConservative.

An excellent post by Delegate Scott Surovell on the behavior of our Governor here.

Late Sunday Update:  HOD conference call for tonight was cancelled.  I have no idea what that might mean.

If Governor McDonnell does not resign tomorrow, he needs to make a statement of some kind about the allegations against him.  This has gone on long enough.

Governor McDonnell to Resign?

So says Bearingdrift.com.  It’s not exactly a surprise after the Washington Post’s steady drumbeat of scandal, after scandal,after scandal, after scandal involving the Governor.

My concern is, how do these scandals effect Ken Cuccinelli?   It’s hard to believe that his staff kept the knowledge of these scandals involving Star Scientific secret from the Attorney General.    The Washington Post’s timeline of the Attorney General’s involvement with Star Scientific doesn’t look good.

It’s hard to believe that Governor McDonnell, our former Attorney General, was so careless with these ‘gifts’ from a major donor with business before the state.  How could he throw away his political future like this?  Over a Rolex watch and chance to drive a Masserati and some new clothes for the wife?

Bill Bolling’s dream of being Governor may soon be realized.  And then what?  Will he run in November? And what happens to Ken Cuccinelli’s candidacy?

More on the resignation rumor here. 

The Virginian-Pilot editorial on the subject here.  They’re calling it a crisis.

UPDATES on this story include the phrase “swirling the drain” when referring to McDonnell. More   here and here.

Yet another UPDATE here.   An interview with the Bearingdrift author here.   This one is very hard on McDonnell and his spokesman.  And the drumbeat continues……..

Top 7 Ways that E.W. Jackson is Better than Bill Bolling

Cry-baby Bill Bolling (RINO) is now running to the media to badmouth Bishop E.W. Jackson, the man that Republicans nominated as his successor on Saturday.  In (dis)honor of Bolling’s incessant whining, we present to you the Top 7 Ways that Jackson is better than Bolling

  1. Jackson cries out of compassion, love, pain, or sorrow. Bolling cries because he isn’t handed what he wants on a silver platter.
  2. Jackson stands for something bigger than himself. Bolling stands for Bolling.
  3. Jackson never supported a tax increase. Bolling has done so twice (HB3202 and Plan ’13 From Outer Space).
  4. Jackson walked into a fight with the odds stacked against him and won. Bolling walks away from fights unless the odds are fixed in his favor.
  5. Jackson has had more of a positive influence on the Commonwealth by personally helping people over the years than Bolling could ever dream of having.
  6. Jackson has had his life turned upside down by regulations. Bolling supported turning your life upside down with Plan ’13 From Outer Space.
  7. Jackson can inspire with his rhetoric. Bolling demoralizes with his whimpering.

Someone please tell Bill Bolling that the only time we want to see him with his mouth open ever again is when he is stuffing a sandwich in his pie hole.

BOLLINGNow GTFO…

Bolling Announces New Initiative Promoting Mediocrity and Simple Mindedness; Virtucon Honors His Service As LG To The GOP

BOLLING ANNOUNCES FORMATION OF THE VIRGINIA MAINSTREAM PROJECT

-Virginia Mainstream Project will focus on electing mainstream, conservative Republicans to public office and promote responsible policy solutions to the most important challenges facing the Commonwealth-

RICHMOND – Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling today announced the formation of the Virginia Mainstream Project.  The Virginia Mainstream Project is a state-based political action committee that will focus on electing mainstream Republicans to public office and promote responsible policy solutions to the most important challenges facing the Commonwealth.

Lieutenant Governor Bolling stated, “I’m proud to announce the creation of the Virginia Mainstream Project.  As I’ve said many times over the past several months, there is a growing need in the Republican Party in Virginia to recruit and elect mainstream, conservative candidates to state and local office and promote responsible policy solutions to the most important challenges facing Virginia. The Virginia Mainstream Project will work to address these issues while encouraging bipartisan cooperation and compromise on the major issues facing the Commonwealth.  I am excited about this opportunity to continue to serve Virginia and remain actively involved in the public debate.”

The primary missions of the Virginia Mainstream Project include:

  1. Recruit, advise and support mainstream Republican candidates for state and local office, with particular emphasis on the House of Delegates in 2013 and the State Senate in 2015.
  2. Provide a platform to continue discussing the need for mainstream approaches to governing in Virginia that put policy ahead of politics and seek to promote compromise and bipartisan cooperation to solve the most important challenges facing the Commonwealth.
  3. Develop and promote responsible conservative policy solutions to the most important issues facing Virginia, with an emphasis on fiscal policy, economic development, tax reform, education reform, transportation and health care.

Paperwork to create the Virginia Mainstream Project was filed with the State Board of Elections yesterday.

Additionally, Bolling has transferred the remaining assets from his campaign committee to the Virginia Mainstream Project and will be raising additional funds to help support the important work of this new initiative.

###

Paid for and Authorized by Virginia Mainstream Project

(We understand that apparently the name “Non-Extremists for Moderate Sameness” was already taken.)

As LG Bolling’s term in office draws to a close, we here at Virginia Virtucon want to extend a “thank you” to him for his service to the party in this office…

BOLLING

BREAKING! BOLLING BAILS ON INDY RUN

BOLLING SAYS NO TO POSSIBLE INDEPENDENT CAMPAIGN FOR GOVERNOR

Lieutenant Governor cites financial, political and personal reasons for decision; pledges to continue working to build a better Virginia

Richmond – Lieutenant Governor Bolling today released the following statement:

“When I suspended my campaign for the Republican Party’s nomination for Governor, I indicated that I wanted to be a more independent voice for Virginia, speaking out more objectively on the important issues facing our state.  Over the past several months, I have done just that.  I have sought to call Virginia to a higher purpose, focusing more on policy than politics and more on the next generation than the next election.

“This more independent approach to governing led to widespread speculation that I was thinking about reviving my campaign for Governor as an Independent candidate.   While that was not my initial intention, the reaction to a possible Independent campaign has been overwhelming, and for the past three months I have been going through a “due diligence” process, trying to objectively assess the feasibility of an Independent campaign.

“Throughout this process my focus has been on one thing – what’s best for Virginia?  I love Virginia and I want to make certain that we have a Governor who is committed to governing our state in a mainstream way; a Governor who will keep his focus on the big issues facing our state and work with Republicans and Democrats to solve problems, get things done and make Virginia a better place.

“I’m confident I could be that kind of Governor.  Throughout my career in public service, I have done my best to stand strong for the conservative values I believe in, while at the same time respecting the views of others and promoting consensus building and results, as opposed to confrontation and gridlock.  That’s the kind of pragmatic, results oriented leadership we need to make certain that Virginia remains on the right track.

“Given the current political dynamics in Virginia, the prospects of an Independent campaign were very appealing to me, and based on the positive feedback I had received from business leaders, community leaders and citizens all across our state, I am confident that I could have run a credible and competitive campaign and made a positive contribution to the public debate.  In many ways I would have enjoyed participating in such a campaign a great deal and I think it could have been good for Virginia.

“However, after a great deal of consideration I have decided that I will not be an Independent candidate for Governor this year.  There were many factors that influenced my decision to forgo such a campaign.

“First, I know how difficult Independent campaigns can be.  The biggest challenge an Independent candidate faces is fundraising.  You can have a winning message, but if you don’t have the resources to effectively communicate that message to voters you cannot win.  To run a winning campaign I would have needed to raise at least $10-$15M.  That’s a very difficult thing to do without the resources of a major political party and national donors at your disposal.  Based on my discussions with key donors over the past three weeks, I was confident I could raise enough money to run a competitive campaign, but I was not confident I could raise enough money to run a winning campaign. While it is possible that these resources could have been secured over time if the campaign progressed as we envisioned, that was an uncertain outcome and it was too big a risk for me to ask my donors to take.

“Second, running as an Independent candidate would have required me to sever my longstanding relationship with the Republican Party.  While I am very concerned about the current direction of the Republican Party, I still have many dear friends in the Republican Party, people who have been incredibly supportive of me over the years.  I have tremendous respect for them and I am very grateful for everything they have done for me.  I value these friendships a great deal and I feel a deep sense of personal obligation to those who have done so much to make my success possible.  I have heard from many of these friends over the past several months.  They have encouraged me to not give up on the Republican Party and continue working to get our party back on a more mainstream course.  Maintaining their friendship and respect means more to me than the prospects of being Governor and I was unwilling to jeopardize these longstanding relationships by embarking on an Independent campaign.

“Finally, my decision was heavily influenced by a growing dissatisfaction with the current political environment in Virginia.  Politics is much different today than it was when I was first elected.  In many ways I fear that the “Virginia way” of doing things is rapidly being replaced by the “Washington way” of doing things and that’s not good for Virginia.  As a result, the political process has become much more ideologically driven, hyper-partisan and mean spirited.  Rigid ideologies and personal political agendas are too often placed ahead of sound public policy and legitimate policy disagreements too quickly degenerate into unwarranted personal attacks.  This makes it more difficult to govern effectively and get things done.  While I still value public service a great deal, the truth is that I just don’t find the political process to be as enjoyable as I once did.  Because of this, I decided that the time has come for me to step away from elected office and look for other ways to serve Virginia.

“For all of these reasons, I decided that I will not be an Independent candidate for Governor in 2013.  However, I truly appreciate the confidence and support of those who had encouraged me to do so and I hope they will understand and respect my decision.

“There is no higher honor than the privilege of serving one’s fellow citizens in the halls of government.  That privilege has been mine for the past 22 years.  I am very grateful for the confidence the people of Virginia have placed in me.  As a county Supervisor, a State Senator and Lieutenant Governor, I have done my best to serve them well.  I hope I have been able to make a positive contribution to the betterment of our state.

“I look forward to continuing my work with Governor McDonnell and the rest of our great team in the months to come.  We have accomplished a lot over the past three years, but we still have a lot of important work to do before our term of office is over.  After that, I will return to the private sector and look for other ways to serve Virginia.  I love Virginia and I will always be willing to do my part to help make Virginia a better place.

“I wish Mr. McAuliffe and Mr. Cuccinelli well as they begin their campaigns.  One of these two candidates will have the responsibility of leading Virginia into the future.  This is a tremendous responsibility and it should not be taken lightly.  I encourage them to run campaigns that are worthy of Virginia; campaigns that focus on the big issues facing our state and offer a positive vision for the future of Virginia.  That’s the kind of Governor the people of Virginia want and deserve.

“And I encourage the people of Virginia to carefully consider the decision they will make this November.  Our priority should be on electing a Governor who has the ability to effectively and responsibly govern our state and provide the mainstream leadership we need to solve problems, get things done and make Virginia a better place to live.  Nothing less should be acceptable.”

###

Paid for and Authorized by Friends of Bill Bolling

Tan, Rested, and Ready. Is Bill Bolling IN?

We will know the answer to that question in 3 days.  Bill Bolling will announce his decision to run for Governor, or not, on Thursday .  Recently Bolling has lost 45 pounds and has spent the last week vacationing with his wife Jean Ann in the Bahamas while he makes the final decision on an independent run for Governor.

Many people think Bolling won’t run, others think that he will.   Some big republican donors, like McLean lawyer and real estate developer, G. Daniel Clemente, have urged Bolling not to run.  Clemente said, “When I met with Bill Bolling, I said, ‘Please don’t run as an independent. The only thing you’re going to do is hand the election to Terry McAuliffe.’ ”  Like many of us, he has wondered why Bolling didn’t do something when Ken Cuccinelli began to pack the Republican State Central Committee with members who would vote to change the method of nominating the Governor from a primary to a convention, knowing such a change would favor Ken Cuccinelli.  ” ‘Cuccinelli was working out in the open, and Bill was coasting,’ Clemente said.”

Others, like the former CEO of BDM, Earle Williams, will support an independent run by Bolling.
“He would have an enormous appeal to a lot of people who don’t like the extreme left and the extreme right, and that has been the story of Virginia politics.”  In 1993 Williams spent $2 million of his own money in his unsuccessful run for Governor.

While Bolling continues to say that his run depends on his ability to garner financial support, I think it has much more to do with ruining Ken Cuccinelli’s run for Governor.  Bolling’s angry and holding a grudge against Virginia republicans, but most of all, Ken Cuccinelli.  During the general assembly session Bolling prevented many republican bills from becoming law because he refused to support the bills.  He’s angry and bitter. But is he angry and bitter enough to run an exhausting, 8 month, campaign that he can’t possibly win?  I’m hoping that during this week in the Bahamas, Jean Ann will convince Bill of the futility of this campaign and help him explore other options for his future.  We’ll know in three days if she was successful.

More about Bill’s decision here and here.

Bill Bolling Wants Your Advice

Republicans across the Commonwealth on Thursday received an email from Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling asking for their advice on whether he should run for Governor as an “Independent Republican” in November (whatever the heck that is — I read that either as a RINO or as a Sore Loser Opportunist.)  Anyway, it seems that people surfing the web using Firefox or a Mac with Safari can’t participate in the survey as they just get the blank screen you see above.  Oops!

Since we like to think of ourselves as being on the bleeding edge of technology, we thought that we would help the LG out of his predicament and post a survey here for him.

So, without further delay, have at it and give the LG your advice!

ONE MAN’S RESPONSE TO BOLLING

This was sent to me by someone who needed to vent…this was not written by me..but i agree with it 100 percent.

I think that your reaction to the change in the means of selecting the Republican nomination from primary to convention has branded you in the eyes of Virginians as a sore loser who is not measured in his response. Had you stayed in the contest for the Republican nomination you would have given the many Bolling supporters within our party a clear choice. Instead you decided to react with a rash public temper-tantrum that has diminished your brand I fear irreparably. Should you choose to run you will secure your position as the laughing stock of the Democrat party, they will be beside themselves with amazement that you took the bait and ran as an independent. Because, Mr. Bolling they are using you in their effort to destroy everything you have been fighting for for 22 years and not even they believe that you will be foolish enough to actually do it, but they are willing to try anything.2

The gory details on the tax hike “compromise”

The numbers are out on the conference committee’s tax hike plan…and if anything, it’s worse than we thought.

For starters, the plan raises taxes by $682 million annually (once fully implemented) at the state level for transportation, and by another $135.5 million for other stuff. That’s over $817 million in tax hikes, just from Richmond alone.

Moreover, the plan also gives localities in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads the “option” of raising taxes by a total of $475-$550 million annually. UPDATE: The local tax hikes include a 1% sales tax, an increase in the grantor’s tax (that’s right, they’re taxing real estate sales as we’re still trying to recover from the housing slump), and a hotel occupancy tax (which will hit business travel).

I should note that just about every previous “local option” tax increase package has included the financial version of a gun to the head of localities to force them to enact them. I don’t have the language of the conference committee version, so I can’t say for certain if this one includes it, too. That said, odds are the localities will knuckle under, meaning the annual tax increase is likely to be roughly $1.3 billion annually.

Not even Grover Norquist thought it was that high at first.

Yet even that isn’t enough for folks like the Northern Virginia Transportation Alliance, whose leader is looking forward to “being able to build on this in the future” (Washington Post).

In fact, Virginia stands at a crossroads (especially Virginia Republicans). Do we simply shrug our shoulders and do what is easy (raise taxes with the premise that we can do it again)? Or do we recognize the economic damage that would be done by a tax increase, roll up our sleeves, and take a cold, long, hard look at the Virginia budget to determine what is not as high a priority as transportation (as well as determining within transportation what should be a state function and what shouldn’t)?

The House has this tax increase (known as HB2313) on their calendar today. There is still enough time to stop it, enough time for state leaders who have currently been silent – are you reading this, Mr. Cuccinelli? – to stand up for the taxpayer and make themselves heard. UPDATE: Ken has put out a confused statement approving of “localities…given more authority” but opposing tax increases. Given that the bill disguises the latter as the former, I’m not sure where Ken lands on this.

Cross-posted to the right-wing liberal

Quinnipiac confirms: backing a tax increase hurt Cuccinelli

I suspect that most of the discussion on the latest Quinnipiac Poll will be about the effect of Bill Bolling in the race as an independent. However, Quinnipiac had already included Bolling in its January 9 version of the poll. Bolling’s numbers did not change; he’s still at 13%.

What did change was Cuccinelli’s numbers: he dropped 3 points in voter preference (from 34% to 31%); his favorable rating fell 3 points (from 33% to 30%); and his job approval rating fell 7 points (from 48% to 41%), while his job disapproval rose 5 (from 27% to 32%)…

…and what did Cuccinelli do between January 9 and today? He backed Steve Newman’s tax increase.

I’m just sayin’….

Cross-posted to the right-wing liberal

Could the taxpayers be spared by a Richmond train wreck?

If what Steve Contorno (Washington Examiner) hears is correct, Democrats in the State Senate could be so wedded to Frank Wagner’s tax hike that they’ll refuse to support something too close to McDonnell’s tax hike, while Republicans who backed the latter may not like anything to close to the former:

“As long as the [final bill] resembles the Senate plan, we will have a transportation bill this year,” said Senate Minority Leader Dick Saslaw, D-Springfield. “If it varies too widely, we likely will not.”

Senate Democrats allowed $50 million a year to come from the general fund, but that came reluctantly. House Minority Leader David Toscano, D-Charlottesville, said it’s unlikely they’ll budge on that.

Those kinds of lines in the sand are already threatening a compromise as representatives from both parties begin to meet behind closed doors to find a solution that can pass both chambers.

“If we’re going to start ruling out things almost from the beginning,” said House Majority Leader Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, “we’re going to have a lot of trouble getting there.”

The House version takes a lot more road money out of the general fund (pursuant to McDonnell’s tax hike).

My guess is the Republicans are so desperate for anything that they can claim well help “transportation” (remember, all three statewide Republican officeholders are backing different tax hikes) that they’ll agree to anything – meaning the Democrats can probably squeeze as much from the taxpayers as they wish.

Still, there may be some hope that political gridlock can leave the taxpayers unscathed.

Cross-posted to the right-wing liberal

Oh the irony…

Well, the Senate passed Frank Wagner’s tax hike plan, as expected…

Not long after, Bill Bolling dropped is support for McDonnell’s tax hike in favor of Wagner’s.

So…all three statewide Republican nominees in 2009 – who ran on platforms opposing tax increases – have different tax increase of their own: Governor McDonnell has his own, Lieutenant Governor Bolling has Frank Wagner’s, and Attorney General Cuccinelli has Steve Newman’s.

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry…

Cross-posted to the right-wing liberal

Bill Bolling, Is he IN for Governor?

More and more it sounds like Lt. Governor Bill Bolling will run for Governor as an independent.  Of course he won’t win, only one independent has ever won the Governorship of Virginia.  Bolling said on Thursday that he will make the decision and the announcement of that decision by March 14th.  Currently, all signs point to a foolish independent run by Bill Bolling.  More here and here.

Is Bill Bolling TRYING To Get Kicked Out Of The Party?

“Bill Bolling continues to insult Cuccinelli (on a book he hasn’t even read!) and lavish praises on the Democrat. Bolling now even supports expanding Medicaid. What a political opportunist; he should be ashamed. Pride goeth before a fall…”
– Jamie Radtke

With Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling’s increasing attacks on A.G. Ken Cuccinelli – the only filed Republican candidate for governor and thus our presumptive nominee – and his leftward lurch on issues, you can be certain that people will soon be calling for Bolling to be kicked out of the party.  What if that is exactly what he wants, though?

Bolling wants to be governor, but he can’t be the GOP nominee (I still say he had a better chance in a convention than in a primary given the primary polls that showed him getting crushed 51%-15%), so the only way he can run is as an independent.  The only way he can run as an independent without looking like a sore loser (too late for that in most people’s eyes, though) is if he is no longer a Republican and that cannot be of his doing.  What better way to do that than to be kicked out of the party?

My suggestion?  Smother him with kindness.  Thank him for his long service in the state senate and his 8 years as LG.  Heck, maybe even do a special tribute to him at the state convention.  That way, if he does bolt, it will show his true stripes.

New Poll: Cuccinelli, McAuliffe Tied (Bolling Irrelevant)

Now THIS is interesting:

McAuliffe gets 40 percent of registered voters to 39 percent for Cuccinelli in a head-to-head matchup, a result relatively unchanged from a November Quinnipiac survey that gave McAuliffe a narrow 4-point lead. A trial heat in the new poll including Bolling gives him 13 percent and McAuliffe and Cuccinelli 34 percent apiece.

. . .

Brown noted that in a three-way matchup, Bolling appears to be taking support away from both McAuliffe and Cuccinelli. In the two-way race, Cuccinelli and McAuliffe both lead among their own party’s voters by massive margins, and Cuccinelli has a slim lead with independents.

Three take-aways here.  First, Ken Cuccinelli has closed the gap with Terry McAuliffe among registered voters from 4-points to 1-point in the last two months.  Second, Bill Bolling running as an independent would essentially be irrelevant, pulling roughly equal numbers of voters from each side.  Finally, Cuccinelli holds a small edge among independents.

The dynamics are there for a Cuccinelli victory just as there were for Bob McDonnell’s win 4 years ago — he just needs to frame the race correctly early on as I wrote in November:

1.) Define McAuliffe the same way Dems defined Mitt Romney. McAuliffe is a super-rich guy who made his money via a very questionable deal with Global Crossing – a company that went belly-up shortly after McAuliffe cashed out. As even Not Larry Sabato put it on Facebook last night, McAuliffe has said he moved thousands of jobs out of Virginia to Mississippi because VA wouldn’t give him a big enough corporate tax break. Turnabout is fairplay, Terry, and payback is a bitch.

2.) Paint this choice for voters:

Ken Cuccinelli = Bob McDonnell’s VA. If you approve of the direction Virginia is going, then Cooch is your man as he’s cut from the same cloth as McDonnell.

Terry McAuliffe = High tax, crime-ridden Maryland.

Most Virginia voters, especially those in NOVA, will immediately get the contrast. One can assume that a majority of NOVA residents could have chosen to live in MD over VA, but did not for some reason, whether it be taxes, the availability of jobs or general quality of life. Basically, it could be a “Don’t Maryland Virginia” theme.