A compilation of newspaper articles
about state government and politics.
VaNews - May 21, 2013
Compiled by Sue Lindsey
The business executive who gave $35,000 in gifts to Gov. Bob McDonnell and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli did talk about his company's state tax problems with Cuccinelli before eventually suing the state. "I never talked to him about the lawsuit," Cuccinelli said, after a campaign stop in Roanoke Monday. "Before, yes he groused about the taxes."
Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has told his staff to stop suggesting to people seeking public records that he isn’t subject to the Freedom of Information Act. His office has been responding to FOIA requests saying a Virginia Supreme Court ruling that the act didn’t apply to the State Corporation Commission “could be similarly extended to include the Attorney General.”
Virginia Attorney Gen. Ken Cuccinelli II is dropping his assertion that the Office of the Attorney General is exempt from state public records laws, indicating in a statement Monday that he had asked staff attorneys to stop including the claim in their responses to requests for records from his office. The office has never stopped responding to requests for documents, which a spokesman said Friday number in the hundreds each year.
Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli says he will no longer routinely advance the contention that his office is not subject to the state Freedom of Information Act. Cuccinelli had included a disclaimer in recent FOIA responses stating that a 2011 Supreme Court of Virginia opinion could be interpreted to exclude his office from the public records law.
Opponents of uranium mining in Virginia met with Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe on the issue and they said he’s solidly in their corner, while a meeting with Republican nominee Ken Cuccinelli has yet to be arranged.
Del. David Ramadan (R-87th) announced Monday afternoon he'll amend his financial disclosure form in order to report a 2012 trip to Taiwan that has brought scrutiny to the first-term lawmaker who represents portions of Loudoun and Prince William counties. Ramadan estimated he'll expense the trip, paid for by the Taiwanese government, at more than $7,500.
Virginia Democrats tried to shift the focus Monday away from their own embattled gubernatorial candidate to newly minted Republican lieutenant governor nominee E.W. Jackson, whose controversial remarks on abortion and gay rights have quickly landed the fiery Chesapeake minister in the national spotlight. Mr. Jackson, a Harvard Law School graduate who is extremely well received by the tea party in Virginia, won the nomination over the weekend after an impassioned convention speech that excited many of his followers and propelled him past six other candidates.
Within hours of E.W. Jackson’s nomination as the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor, many Republicans and Democrats alike began to wonder whether the political newcomer who took the convention by storm will help Ken Cuccinelli’s ticket — or damage it. The Chesapeake pastor and attorney, who last year unsuccessfully ran for the U.S. Senate, has linked homosexuality to pedophilia.
Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling on Monday sharply criticized his party’s selection of E. W. Jackson as its nominee for lieutenant governor, saying it will “feed the image of extremism” in the party. Jackson, a Chesapeake minister, emerged as the surprise winner Saturday in a seven-way race decided at a party convention in Richmond. Bolling, who is not seeking re-election, said the man party activists chose to replace him has made “simply indefensible” statements.
Republican gubernatorial nominee Ken Cuccinelli defended his conservative record Sunday in an interview along with fellow GOP statewide ticket members E.W. Jackson and State Sen. Mark Obenshain, R-Harrisonburg. ..."When we explain to people how my view of government helps drive job creation…that's where we get votes," Cuccinelli said.
Democrats sought on Monday to frame Virginia’s bellwether races for governor and other statewide offices as a referendum on a conservative GOP ticket with particular attention to past comments by GOP lieutenant governor nominee E.W. Jackson likening Planned Parenthood to the Ku Klux Klan. At the top of the ticket, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, the party’s nominee for governor, disassociated his campaign from Jackson’s remarks.
Until Saturday, E.W. Jackson was known primarily in political circles as a preacher noteworthy for his conservative activism and controversial rhetoric about abortion, gay people, Muslims and Barack Obama. That changed the instant he claimed the Virginia Republican nomination for lieutenant governor from a field of seven candidates, becoming just the second African American picked by the party to run for statewide office.
The newly selected Republican candidates for the statewide ticket stumped in Abingdon Monday afternoon, drumming up support from local party members and encouraging the fight against big government and regulations. Gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli appeared at the local GOP headquarters in Abingdon along with E.W. Jackson, candidate for lieutenant governor, and Mark Obenshain, who is running for state attorney general.
There sure was a lot of talk about Washington when the newly-minted GOP swung by Roanoke Regional Airport today. midway through a three-day statewide tour. Besides the candidates, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Roanoke County, and Republican party chair Pat Mullins also reminded the Republican-leaning crowd that Virginia could send a strong signal to the rest of the nation by voting for the ticket.
The 15 debates Republican Ken Cuccinelli challenged his rival to in the governor's race before the Nov. 5 election is three time as many as Democrat Terry McAuliffe proposed early last month. Cuccinelli Monday clarified the call he made over the weekend in his speech to the Virginia GOP nominating convention during which he first suggested the series of debates.