The annual Crab Orchard/Pisgah Independence Day celebration got off with a bang on Friday morning as nine muskets fired into the cloudy sky above the Historic Crab Orchard Museum, and a detail from VFW Post 7136 raised the American flag to officially open the day’s activities.
There are no plans for another trial in the case of a Mercer County man whose 1998 conviction for the 1995 murder of a Bluefield gas station employee was recently overturned by the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia.
Quote of the Day: “Thwarting a Democrat Governor’s policy goal — and making him look stupid in the process — shouldn’t be a Federal offense.” – RPV Chairman Pat Mullins on the Sen. Phil Puckett resignation and Democratic calls for an investigation
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Henry Marsh retires
Longtime Virginia political and civil rights leader, Sen. Henry Marsh, is retiring from the Senate to possibly take a job as the final ABC commissioner. The requisite accolades for a man who has served the public for fifty years are being made, but I thought I’d give you today some of Marsh’s liberal “highlights” from even just the last couple of years…
On the Equal Rights Amendment (something that was introduced in 1923 and passed Congress in 1972):
“Ensuring equal rights for women is a long overdue step on the road to justice for all Americans. I was happy to carry this measure and am pleased that my colleagues supported its passage. I hope that the Senators who voted against the measure and those who did not even have the courage to vote, despite being in the chamber today, consider their actions.”
On year-long schools:
“Year round calendars are an excellent option to help struggling schools and students. This investment will help failing schools determine if the year-round model is right for them and give them a chance to succeed. Giving students the option to return for more instruction means they’re more likely to achieve and a shorter break means they have less time to forget. Considering how much, and how quickly the students improve, we need to make sure more schools know about the option to switch to year-round. I hope that with this program, we can give schools the tools they need to help at-risk students achieve.”
On expanding Medicaid:
“I’m concerned about the amount of federal dollars that we are turning down, that will go to other states. Some of those dollars come from Virginia taxpayers, but they will now wind up going to other states. If this decision stands, it will impact Virginia for years to come.”
On the 2013 Republican agenda:
Today, Democratic Senators and the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus rallied with supporters and civic leaders at the Capitol Bell Tower against the overreaching, radical Republican agenda — from limiting women’s access to health care to opposing expanding Medicaid — in the General Assembly. After the rally, they made the following statements:
Senator Henry L. Marsh (D-Richmond) said, “The Lord hates ugly. We’ve come a long way since local voter registrars could deny black folks the right to vote for arbitrary reasons. We can’t go back. It’s time for us to make our voices heard again.”
On gun control (specifically a bill to limit gun sales at gun shows to licensed firearms dealers only):
“I have been working to close the gun show loophole for many years. It gives me great hope that the committee is working together so well to stop this path for criminals to get dangerous weapons. Closing this loophole won’t stop every crime, but it will make our communities safer.”
On school choice:
“We heard today that Virginia’s public schools still don’t have the money they need to prepare our children for the global economy. At a time like this, I am deeply disappointed that Republicans stand by their decision to give taxpayer dollars to exclusive private academies. We should be investing in our public schools.”
“Public broadcasting’s audience is also very important to note. PBS Kids attracts a higher percentage of viewers from Hispanic, African-American and low-income homes compared with their representation in the general population. This is a heartening statistic to hear as we continue working to ensure the achievement gap is closed and that all Virginia’s children have a bright future regardless of their location, regardless of their race or color. Public broadcasting helps us bridge that gap.”
And I could go on.
Senator Marsh has been a reliable voice for liberals and opposition to pragmatic conservatism for decades. Now he’s moving on to a nice six-figure salary with the ABC board, courtesy of the Virginia taxpayers. So, where’s the investigation for this appointment?
Perhaps RPV put it best:
“Yet another Democrat – Sen. Henry Marsh – has decided to resign and take a job with state Government – a job that I’d note Terry McAuliffe already tried to sell. Still waiting on the U.S. Attorney to get busy on that one…
“Question: does the U.S. Attorney’s Office have enough staff to run all these investigations? And will Virginia Democrats join the chorus, or finally admit that they’re just angry they lost – and were made to look foolish in the process?”
Regarding the politics of the resignation, as Norm Leahy posts, we’re not likely to see many changes in the 16th. If anything, it will be referendum on his legacy…or whether or not someone more “aligned” with Gov.Terry McAuliffe is elected. And, the debate between Del. Rosalyn Dance, Del. Delores McQuinn and Marsh’s daughter, attorney Nadine Marsh-Carter should prove entertaining.
As Brian Schoeneman noted in the comments of Norm’s post, this special election will be the first to use Voter ID, as the new law went into effect yesterday and Marsh’s resignation is effective Thursday. Schoeneman recommends that the election not be held August 19, which is when many other special elections are being held, as it will only give the state a few weeks to distribute the new identification cards.
Griffith on Puckett investigation
Kudos to Rep. Morgan Griffith for standing up to the administration and calling it like it is:
“Many instances have occurred at both the federal and the state level involving both Republican and Democrat elected officials in which resignations have been tendered and suitable appointments extended for political purposes, and there have never been any inklings of federal scrutiny. I am stunned by reports that the FBI has opened an inquiry into the circumstances surrounding Senator Puckett’s resignation, and am deeply concerned that this particular investigation is politically motivated.
“If it is not politically motivated, then why isn’t the FBI investigating President Obama, Senator Kaine, Senator Warner, and former Governor Gilmore and their appointees as well?”
Griffith sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) Director James Comey that you can see here.
Americans for Prosperity-Virginia. ”…the nation’s premier grassroots organization of citizen leaders working together at the national, state and local levels to protect and advance the individual right to economic freedom.” Read more about AFP’s latest effort in the defense of fiscal responsibility here.
Morrissey drops an “f” bomb
OMG, Joe! This press conference must have been hacked:
McAuliffe reinstates ciimate change commission
Well, at least the Richmond Times-Dispatch acknowledges that Hampton Roads is sinking and that our troubles are not solely due to climate change, unlike the Virginian-Pilot which completely ignores that fact. What is perhaps most interesting about the “new” commission (it’s being resuscitated from the Kaine administration) is that it gives us the return of “climate scientist” Michael Mann. RTD notes that many of the commission’s 100 recommendations, such as more nuclear power (good) and increased protections for wetlands (at what expense?), were not enacted but are likely to be recommended again.
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Goodlatte photo Yahoo News ran the following photo of a smiling Rep. Bob Goodlatte holding up an issue of Roll Call that blares news of former Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s primary defeat to Dave Brat.
But while a picture may say a thousand words, sometimes it can be taken out of context.
“Congressman Goodlatte was very shocked and disappointed by the loss of Eric Cantor, both on a personal level and for the Commonwealth of Virginia. The photo was taken while interacting with others in the room on a different topic,” said Beth Breeding, Goodlatte’s spokeswoman.
State Sen. Henry L. Marsh III, D-Richmond, will announce his retirement from the Virginia Senate this week.
Sources said the noted civil rights lawyer, who has served in the Virginia Senate since 1992, is expected to be named by Gov. Terry McAuliffe to a full-time, six-figure salaried post as a commissioner on the board of the Department Alcoholic Beverage Control.
The GOP has no chance of taking this seat, so all the election fun will be on the Democratic side:
Del. Delores L. McQuinn, D-Richmond, Del. Rosalyn R. Dance, D-Petersburg and Marsh’s daughter, attorney Nadine Marsh-Carter, president of the Children’s Home Society of Virginia, are among those being considered as possible Democratic successors to fill the remainder of Marsh’s term in a special election.
McQuinn may believe she is the logical candidate to step into the seat, but Marsh’s daughter, if she runs, throws a spanner into those plans. And as for Del. Dance…recall that she was the object of a primary challenge orchestrated by that other guy in the news and missing from the list of potential candidates: Joe Morrissey.
And to those who believe Marsh may have timed his announcement to coincide with Joe’s latest troubles…you wouldn’t be entirely wrong.
For those needing a refesher on all this, here’s a link to the post I wrote back in August of last year about the investigation. But for those who dislike clicking links, here is a local news report on the matter:
And here is Olympia Meola’s write-up of the indictments.
For those looking for a bit of synergy in their Virginia political scandals, consider that Mr. Morrissey has been represented so far in this incident by former Attorney General Tony Troy…who was also advising former Gov. Bob McDonnell, who is currently on trial for corruption.
Richmond Times Dispatch: A series of emails from the interim director of the Virginia Tobacco Commission outline plans hatched by Del. Terry Kilgore, R-Scott, to offer Sen. Phillip P. Puckett, D-Russell, a senior job with the commission once he resigned from the Virginia Senate. The emails, obtained by the Richmond Times-Dispatch, document the overtures […]