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VaNews for Todd Gilbert

Looking harder at House votes

By DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 1 article a month)

Maybe it’s the sunshine in House of Delegates subcommittees and committees, where votes on bills are now recorded on electronic voting machines, or maybe it’s just what happens in a 51-49 Republican-Democratic split, but there’s plenty of attention paid these days to where legislators stand. “Whew,” said Del. Gordon Helsel, R-Poquoson, “Did you see that vote on sanctuary cities? I really sweated that.”

VaNews February 19, 2018

After thrills of wave election, freshmen Democrats see most of their bills die in GOP-controlled House

By GRAHAM MOOMAW, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 7 articles a month)

As a star of Virginia’s 2017 elections, all cameras seemed to be on Del. Danica Roem, D-Prince William, earlier this year when she made history as the first transgender lawmaker sworn in to the General Assembly. When the focus turned to the arduous work of taking up the 1,610 bills filed in the House of Delegates, Roem’s national profile didn’t easily translate to personal legislative victories.

VaNews February 19, 2018

Bipartisanship in Virginia does not extend to gun legislation

By GREGORY S. SCHNEIDER, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

Virginia’s legislature prides itself on moderation and civility, but there’s at least one issue where one side would rather fight than give an inch of compromise: guns. Even in a year when Republicans have shown a willingness to consider the long-taboo topic of Medicaid expansion. Even as leadership has welcomed the first transgender delegate, the first Latinas, the first open lesbian.

VaNews February 16, 2018

Senior GOP legislator breaks with party on Medicaid expansion

By DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 1 article a month)

A senior House of Delegates Republican has broken with his caucus’s staunch opposition to Medicaid expansion, but after a two-hour closed-door meeting, his colleagues were tight-lipped about their reaction or whether they would join him. Del. Terry Kilgore, R-Gate City, chairman of the powerful Commerce and Labor Committee, says he would support expanding Medicaid by using Affordable Care Act dollars, with one key change not normally allowed by Washington.

VaNews February 16, 2018

New Virginia lawmakers have little luck making laws


Democrats from around the country cheered last year when a bumper crop of new candidates in Virginia surpassed all expectations, winning 15 seats previously held by Republicans in the Virginia House of Delegates. Powered largely by voter dislike of President Donald Trump, the new class’ success presented a potential model for how Democrats could make similar gains in Congress and statehouses around the country in this year’s midterm elections. Many of the newly elected were new to politics, and as a group they brought a sweeping new diversity to Virginia’s legislature. But the thrill of victory in Virginia has given way to frustration,

VaNews February 16, 2018

Interstate 81 Bills Make It Past Crossover

By ELLIE POTTER AND NOLAN STOUT, Daily News Record (Metered Paywall - 5 articles a month)

Local lawmakers just barely succeeded in getting two bills past the General Assembly’s “crossover day” targeting an issue that’s been getting more attention lately: traffic on Interstate 81.

VaNews February 15, 2018

Fuel tax hike for area likely to face House opposition

By ALEX BRIDGES, Northern Virginia Daily

Drivers would pay more at the gas pumps under a bill making its way through the General Assembly. But the legislation to increase the fuel tax in Western Virginia to help pay for projects such as Interstate 81 improvements already faces opposition in the House of Delegates, where the bill goes next.

VaNews February 15, 2018

After November’s tumult, Va.’s new speaker seeks footing in remade House

By LAURA VOZZELLA, Washington Post (Metered Paywall - 3 articles a month)

Republican Del. M. Kirkland Cox spent nearly 30 years making a methodical climb to one of the highest perches in Virginia politics. The high school teacher and coach mastered state budget arcana, shepherded conservative bills into law and built personal relationships within the legislature — all in the understated, reserved style of the Old Dominion.

VaNews February 12, 2018

GOP-led Va. House approves 'Stop Gun Violence' license plate, but not without a fight

By GRAHAM MOOMAW , Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 7 articles a month)

Virginia drivers can already get a state-issued license plate to show their support for the National Rifle Association, but a push for a “Stop Gun Violence” specialty plate took a contentious turn this week in the House of Delegates. The House voted 89-8-1 to approve the bill Friday, with eight Republicans dissenting after House Majority Leader Todd Gilbert, R-Shenandoah, criticized the plate for singling out a particular type of violence.

VaNews February 3, 2018

Push for new sexual harassment policy leads to parliamentary clash in Virginia House

By GRAHAM MOOMAW , Richmond Times-Dispatch (Metered Paywall - 7 articles a month)

Republicans and Democrats in the Virginia House of Delegates agree that the General Assembly should pass a stronger sexual harassment policy, but disagreements over how to do it sparked a partisan standoff Wednesday on the House floor. Democrats, led by Del. Vivian Watts, D-Fairfax, pressed for amendments that they said would strengthen a Republican-sponsored bill. Republicans rejected the changes on a series of 50-49 party-line votes, saying Democrats were playing a “gotcha game” by picking a 30-minute fight over small details.

VaNews February 1, 2018