Is It Amateur Hour? Or Worse?


t was such a strange scene, I had to pinch myself. Here at Virginia Commonwealth University, in the middle of Richmond, that “hotbed of civil rest” about a thousand students held signs touting “Keep Your Gospel Off My Gonads” and other slogans as they listened to a professor note how the father of computer science was openly gay.

How did sleepy VCU in staid old Richmond become a 60s flashback so quickly?
The immediate reason, of course, was Ken Cuccinelli, Virginia’s new and highly volatile attorney general, who seized upon the failure of a state Senate bill to expand protection to state gay workers and issued a sweeping legal opinion to public colleges that their anti-discrimination policies regarding sexual orientation were no longer valid.
Very quickly, Virginia became the object of derision nationally, not to mention a farce on “the Daily Show” national TV comedy, Gov. Bob McDonnell, the state’s new governor who put gays on the same level as “fornicators” in a master’s thesis he wrote in the 1980s, quickly backpedaled. He overrode Cuccinelli at a dramatic press conference and issued a toothless “declaration” that the state would not tolerate discrimination against gay state workers.
Of course, McDonnell could have put such a declaration in an executive order as former Govs. Mark Warner and Time Kaine, both moderate Democrats, did. Then it would have actually had some bite. But McDonnell touched off the controversy by kicking the anti-gay matter to the General Assembly, knowing it would die quickly.
Such antics smack of “Amateur Hour.” Even the Richmond Times-Dispatch, which predictably ran a front page photo of McDonnell at his press conference in a phony, dramatic pose reminiscent of George Washington or other brave American patriot, editorialized that this whole mess is a shame.
To me, it raises two big questions:
(1) Don’t Cuccinelli and McDonnell understand what damage they have done to Virginia with this half-assed grandstanding? Most state colleges have anti-discrimination policies protecting gays. There are good reasons to do so. To accomplish their missions, colleges must be open and diverse. Plus, if they don’t have such anti-discrimination policies, they won’t qualify for untold thousands of dollars in private foundation and grant money which state clearly that the money won’t go to homophobic college systems. The American Association of University Professors says that Cuccinelli’s opinion is “outrageous” and “chilling” since it would make the state college system a pariah when it tries to recruit top academic talent. And after Virginia has added some luster to its reputation as a good place to live and do business, the Old Dominion suddenly is the butt of jokes on the Comedy Channel, which carries a hell of a lot of weight in terms of national image.
(2) Who’s running the store? Both McDonnell and Cuccinelli are cut from the same cloth. They are die-hard, right wing social conservatives who want to cash in on the backlash against Barack Obama as he struggles to chart a course after the disastrous George W. Bush years. McDonnell ran a smart campaign by downplaying the extreme views of his political past. The rumor was that he was trying to keep Cuccinelli on a tight leash. But what’s the real deal here? Are we looking at Good Cop, Bad Cop? Do we really buy McDonnell’s excuse that he has had to rein in
“Cooch” when he was the one that set the whole thing up in the first place?
Meanwhile, McDonnell has extended lots of corporate welfare offers to get Northrop Grumman to locate in Virginia, even though he has trashed the firm for its trouble technology contract with the state and has threatened to drive the defense contractor away with these homophobic policies.
With the General Assembly nearly over, what do we have to show for it? Millions of dollars for education and many jobs have been cut. But we spent a lot of time arguing over whether some pistol-toting cowboy can bring his loaded .44 into a bar. State parks closed. Highway bathrooms opened. Offshore oil OK, if any when it is explored and even if no major oil firm has expressed any interest in it. I don’t know where putting toll booths on the southern entrances to Interstates 85 and 95 went, but it reminds me of Mel Brooks erecting a toll booth in the middle of the desert in the comedy “Blazing Saddles.” As Slim Pickens says, “Any of you guys got any quarters?”
So, we are left with two rather frightening questions. Is the McDonnell gang simply incompetent? Or is there a much broader agenda?
Take heart, though. I was truly impressed with the kids at VCU. With people like them, we’ll survive this.
Peter Galuszka

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32 responses to “Is It Amateur Hour? Or Worse?”

  1. Groveton Avatar


    You and I agree on the symptoms of the disease but not the root cause. Most notably, you see McDonnell as a villain. I do not. Gov. McDonnell quite correctly wants the elected General Assembly to decide what situations, beyond those enshrines in federal law, constitute discrimination against state employees. This is their job. In fact, they are doing their job (albeit poorly in my opinion). They have considered this matter 25 times over the past 20 years and have either voted down the concept of protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation or have let the matter die in committee. In the 2010 session the matter came up again. Once again, it was allowed to die in committee.

    Here are the real villians ….

    This bill would have added "sexual orientation" to the list of discriminatory practices. It was referred by the House of Delegates to the Laws Committee where it was put on indefinite hold by a vote of 5 – 3….

    The 5 who voted to kill the bill in committee were all Republicans:

    Cosgrave – Chespapeake
    Carrico – Galax
    Scott, ET – Culpeper
    Gilbert – Woodstock
    Anderson – Woodbridge

    The 3 who voted to move the bill forward were all Democratic

    Ward – Newport News
    Carr – Norfolk
    Torian – Prince William County

    With one exception (Anderson) the bill was killed by Republican representatives from rural Virginia.

    All delegates come up for re-election in 2011. While you can only vote in your district you are free to contribute to any campaign.

    I seriously question how you can paint the governor as the problem when the General Assembly has been clear for twenty years on this matter. Our elected officials in the General Assembly (aka the Clown Show) in representation of their constituencies DO NOT believe that sexual orientation is a category of discrimination from which state employees should be protected.

    I believe your rightous venom would be better spent on the 5 Republican Delegates who, in a systematic show of cowardice, killed the bill in committee rather than alowing it to be voted upon by the full House.

    As for Cuccinelli – he reminds me of the kid in 5th grade who just couldn't stop himself from acting out in class. If a plane was visible through the window he prentended he was shooting it down using his hands to hold an invisible .50 cal machine gun. If the teacher said "pianist" he laughed out loud. Nobody quite understood the kid and nobody really liked him. Eventually, the teacher had to verbally slap him down. Oddly, everybody respected the teacher a bit more afer the verbal slap down. I think it's kine of that way with Cooch the Pooch. In a strange way, he make McDonnell look more moderate and reasonable.

    Maybe that's the plan.

  2. Anonymous Avatar

    Backlash cuts both ways.

  3. Groveton Avatar

    Anon – agree with the backlash comment. However, in fairness, Eric Holder was appointed by Obama while Cuccinelli was elected by the voters. Obama can fire Holder for his bungling of the terrorist trials. McDonnell can't fire Cuccinelli. At least, I don't think he can.

  4. Anonymous Avatar

    Groveton – well stated. Pass a law. Or change the constitution to alter the powers of local government.

    If I were in the General Assembly, I would vote to advance a bill that prohibited discrimination in the work place because of sexual orientation. I do not believe that a person's status as gay, straight or something in between has any relationship to one's ability to perform on a job. But I do think we need to follow the system and the rules or change them.


  5. Gooze Views Avatar
    Gooze Views

    I love my righteous venom. Gets me moving in the morning.
    You are right,however, that the spotlight should be put on the legislators who would rather kill the bill spinelessly in committee rather than put it forward for a full vote.
    Unfortunately, Virginia does have a bad record on rights issues. The GA in the 1950s backed segregation and Massive Resistance, which is why it took civil rights legisltion on the federal level in the 1960s to make the Constitution apply equally. The questions is whether you leave such critical issues up to some yahoo backwater types or you press on other ways. The beauty of U.S. law is that it protects the minority. You just can't give somethings up to a legislature and expect them to do the job.
    You, as I, have some association with the Jesuits and on moral grounds, the ends sometimes justify the means.

    Peter Galuszka

  6. Anonymous Avatar

    Peter – the problem with the view that the ends justifies the means is, IMO, those who make the decisions change from time to time. What happens when those who you (or I) don't like have control of the levers of government? Don't they get use the same tools that you (or I) do? If they cannot, revolution seems a reasonable next step.

    We need a set of procedural rules that apply to everyone, be they liberal or conservative, gay or straight, Republican or Democrat, female or male, etc. But that means, sometimes you (or I) lose.

    Look at the Clowns in Congress. Either the filibuster or budget reconciliation is good or it isn't. But if it's good, Democrats and Republicans can use it. If it's not, neither can.


  7. Anonymous Avatar


    "But if it's good, Democrats and Republicans can use it. If it's not, neither can."

    If it's not, neither can the other side.


  8. Jon Braun Avatar
    Jon Braun

    McDonnell went to Pat Robertson's university? And you people voted for the guy? What a joke.

  9. Groveton Avatar


    The election wasn't between Bob McDonnell and perfection. It was between Bob McDonnell and Creigh Deeds. I stand by my vote.

    In the end, McDonnell muzzled Cuccinelli. Maybe Peter thinks the muzziling was too watered down but it seems to have the same effect as the moves made by Warner and Kaine – discrimination against state employees on the basis of sexual orientation will not be permitted.

    McDonnell had an interesting political decision. If he says he believes in discrimination against gay people he runs against the prevailing sentiment of the electorate. If he pushes back against the General Assembly (which is what I might have done) he opens the door to the very legitmate criticism that it was 5 Republicans who killed the bill again this year. He could have done nothing (which, I'd guess, was his preference). However, "Denis the Menace" Cuccinelli prevented that by writing his silly letter. My understanding is that state employees cannot be discriminated against based on sexual orientation based on McDonnell's decision.

    Do I have this wrong?

  10. Anonymous Avatar

    Creigh Deeds' purpose in life seems to be to obtain more tax dollars from Fairfax County to be spread around much of the rest of the Commonwealth.

    McDonnell overturned Kaine's proposed freeze of the Local Composite Index that would have stole $61 million belonging to Fairfax County Public Schools and taxpayers. He also is frustrating the devil out of Fred Hiatt!!! I like those two results.

    Since social issues are fairly low on my list of priorities, I'm still happy with my choice last November. And I, like Groveton, do not believe McDonnell is perfect by any means. But he was and is a lot better than the alternative.


  11. E M Risse Avatar
    E M Risse


    for the reasons spelled out by Peter, Groveton and TMT, there will NEVER be a better choice until there is Fundamenatal Transformation of governace structure.


  12. E M Risse Avatar
    E M Risse

    One other thing:

    TMT said, "Creigh Deeds' purpose in life seems to be…"

    The key words are "seems to be." That was the result of what Deeds' handlers thought was the message (or non-message) that would get Deeds elected. That is not the view of those who know Deeds well.

    This is another problem with the current political clan dominated governace structure.

    At least he was honest — he had no idea what needed to be done about Mobility and Access. The winner said he had a 'plan.'

    He said he had a plan for 'jobs' too. That 'plan' appears to be to wait until the economy "returns" (it never will) and then pretend it was "my parties actions."

    Peter has done a nice job of pointing out that most of what he has done will drive away the 'traditional' new jobs and so far there is nothing on what to do about Fundamental Transformation of the economic system.

    Is lying a grounds for impeachment yet?

    Rbt McCartney had a nice column on this topic in today's WaPo.

    AntiPartisianism anyone? ANYONE?


  13. Anonymous Avatar

    AntiPartisianism anyone? ANYONE?


    Hey, sign me up.

    While you are at it sign me up for Fundamental Transformation AntiPartisanism.


  14. Anonymous Avatar

    "AUSTIN, Tex. — After three days of turbulent meetings, the Texas Board of Education on Friday voted to approve a social studies curriculum that will put a conservative stamp on history and economics textbooks, stressing the superiority of American capitalism, questioning the Founding Father’s commitment to a purely secular government and presenting Republican political philosophies in a more positive light. "

    Is Virginia next?

  15. Groveton Avatar

    American capitalism HAS proven superior to other economic models. One could certainly argue over the collateral damage from American style capitalism but, as a method of increasing the wealth of its citizens, it has no parallel. Even in 2009 the US had the greatest per capita GDP among populous countries … by far.

    The Founding Fathers never envisioned a purely secular government. Jefferson and Madison, each while president, attended church services in the House of Representatives.

    As for presenting Republican philosophies in a more positive light – that's going way too far. Is it the philosophy of excessive polarization of wealth? The philosophy of creating enormous defecits? The philosophy of invading countries in search of invisible weapons of mass destruction?

    Neither America's strengths nor her weaknesses are the province of any one political party. Rather, they are both the amalgamation of hundreds of millions of Americans' blood, sweat, tears, greed, love, hate, fear, lothing and charity. Any textbook which systamatically attributes either good or bad to one political party is a work of fiction.

    However, I would be quite happy to attribute the recent decline in American stature, status, wealth, health and happiness entirely to the modern political class – of both parties.

  16. Tobias Jodter Avatar
    Tobias Jodter

    Why do so many of PG's posts have to be so stridently partisan? I thought this was supposed to be a policy blog – I can get the intemperate red meat politics on a thousand other blogs. Serious policy blogging is not so common.

  17. Gooze Views Avatar
    Gooze Views

    Tobias Jodter
    "Serious" policy wonking is your description. I personally find it hard (and wrong) to wonder off into the stratosphere of wonkdom when there are some real issues afoot, such as serious challenges to human rights. If you find me partisan, well, gee, that's just too bad. Wonkdom has its place, but not when there are more important issues in front of us. Maybe you should find another blog.
    No apologies, Tobias.
    Peter Galuszka

  18. Groveton Avatar

    Cooch the Pooch breaks his silence on his ill-conceived letter to the universities…

    "Universities, he said, "don't have any more authority than the General Assembly gives them, which is a similar position as the localities. And until the General Assembly gives them more authority, they're quarantined by what they've got."

    Meanwhile, 5 Republican knuckleheads (out of 140 General Assembly "members") have blocked a bill which, in my opinion, a large majority of Virginians endorse.

    I believe that Bob McDonnell is doing a fairly good job as governor. However, he is doing a very poor job as the de-facto leader of Virginia's Republican Party. He should have pushed for the re-introduction of legislation designed to make discrimination against people based on sexual orientation illegal in Virginia. Then, if the same 5 knuckleheads (or a different set of Republican knuckleheads) blocked his legislation he should have gone actively against them in this November's election.

    Meanwhile, the Attorney General's quote (above) is legally accurate. Neither the universities nor the localities can do much of anything without asking, "Mother, May I?" from the clown show in Richmond before asking permission. I am 100% sure that a referendum asking the residents of Fairfax County to forbid discrimination based on "sexual orientation" would pass. However, there is nothing the residents of Fairfax County can do to implement this small but important step forward. We are "quarantined" by 5 mostly rural Republican "members" of the House of Delegates who decided that our elected officials shouldn't even vote on the matter.

    Virginia's governance process is badly broken. Hopefully, the ship will be righted before it sinks.

  19. Groveton Avatar

    This is the kind of leadership Virginia desperately needs … Part I (of III)


    The Attorney General’s recent opinion to presidents, rectors and visitors of Virginia’s public colleges and universities has, unfortunately, created something of a political “firestorm” in the Commonwealth and generated unflattering impressions across the country about Virginia’s treatment of all of its citizens.

    The opinion correctly states as, a matter of law, that only the General Assembly can create “legislatively protected classes” for purposes of nondiscrimination, and he cites, somewhat conveniently, a 1982 opinion that I authored as Attorney General regarding whether a local government could enlarge upon the statutorily created list of persons affected by the law for a “local government” in Northern Virginia.1

    Under the long established “Dillon Rule,” Virginia’s local governments possess “only those powers which are granted expressly by statute, or which exist by necessary implication, and any doubt as to the existence of a power must be resolved against the existence of a power.” Tabler v. Board of Supervisors of Fairfax County, 221 VA. 200,269 S.E. 2nd 358 (1980): Commonwealth v. Arlington County Board, 217 VA., 558, 232, S.E. 2nd 30 (1977). (Much of the legislature’s time, by the way, is consumed with myriad requests by local governments seeking to undertake some new or different activity, although many of these legislative requests are clarifying in nature and relatively noncontroversial.)

    The Attorney General’s opinion, in my judgment, erroneously attempts to place colleges and universities into the same category as “local governments,” and therefore, subject to the Dillon Rule’s requirement of operating only within specific enumerated grants of power from the General Assembly.

  20. Groveton Avatar

    Part II

    For years – decades, even -public colleges and universities have operated pursuant to their “own charters.” In the Educational Institutions title of the Virginia Code, the specific statutes creating the Commonwealth’s public colleges and universities, and amended over the years, including recent restructuring legislation, grant very broad powers to presidents and boards of visitors to “make all needful rules and regulations” concerning their operations and to “generally direct the affairs of their institutions.” Thus, unless the General Assembly affirmatively revokes such powers, Virginia’s public colleges and universities may continue to engage in adopting rules and regulations necessary to their operations, including standards of conduct.

    Therefore, whether a college or university, acting through its president and board of visitors, chooses to specify codes of conduct, including honor systems and nondiscriminatory policies, such decisions would be made within the general powers of a college or university’s “statutory charter.”

    Indeed, the Governor has just announced the code of conduct for his own administration that clearly states that any discriminatory conduct is impermissible and prohibited, thus continuing the protection, in different terms, but with similar effect, as his two most recent predecessors, against discrimination for those employed in the executive branch of government.

    Gerald L. Baliles

    1 The 1982 opinion was based upon a 1980 Virginia Supreme Court decision, Tabler v. Board of Supervisors of Fairfax County, 221 VA., 269, S.E. 2nd 358 (1980); Commonwealth v. Arlington County Board, 217 VA., 232, 558, S.E. 2nd 30 (1977), as well as prior rulings of Attorneys General serving before 1982. The 1982 opinion addressed the validity of certain amendments to Fairfax County’s specific authority to address discriminatory practices in housing, employment, access to and use of public accommodations, the availability of credit or credit-related services, the provision of educational services and retaliatory actions against those asserting their rights under local law. The opinion held that the County, under its specifically delegated authority from the General Assembly, could create a Human Rights Commission, give it investigatory and related powers but could not enlarge upon the definitions or declare particular acts to be unlawful or provide separate penalties from those specified and delegated to Fairfax County by the General Assembly.

    Thus, the current Attorney General’s opinion did not involve the pending factual question regarding colleges and universities as implied in the opinion.

  21. Groveton Avatar

    Part III

    "Baliles served as the 65th Governor of Virginia from 1986 to 1990, and ushered in a period of economic development for Virginia.".

    "Improving Virginia's transportation infrastructure and increasing its revenues was one of his signature accomplishments. Recognized by colleagues for his emphasis on strategic planning and preparation, Baliles was known as Virginia's "transportation governor" because of the premium he placed on improving transportation in the state. In 1986, Baliles guided a $422 million-a-year revenue package through a special session of the General Assembly to improve Virginia's transportation system, and observers still credit him with the foresight of that effort. Another key priority was ensuring the state's ability to participate and compete in world markets, and during his administration Virginia’s international trade grew substantially.".

    "During Baliles' administration, the state boasted the highest per-capita income in the South, and the ninth highest in the nation. He appointed the first woman, Elizabeth B. Lacy, to the Virginia Supreme Court, expanded the state prison system, and sought to strengthen the state's environmental protections, including cleaning the Chesapeake Bay. In 2004 he served as chair of a blue-ribbon panel to raise money for the Bay cleanup, and in 2005 the Chesapeake Bay Foundation named him conservationist of the year."

    What the heck … I'll end up quoting the whole article … just read it…

  22. Anonymous Avatar

    Interesting posts, Groveton. I agree that a referendum to protect gay, bi-sexual and transgendered people from employment discrimination would pass in Fairfax County.

    Logically, I would think state colleges and universities are probably just like local governments, creatures of the state that have only the powers given to them. And, in Virginia, those are only enumerated ones, with a judicial doctrine — the Dillon Rule — construing those powers narrowly.

    I don't think that the average resident of Fairfax County (or most other places in NoVA) would really want more freedom from state control for these colleges and universities. Oh, I don't think a majority would oppose allowing these schools to adopt policies protecting sexual minorities from employment discrimination. But would they support giving them more power to avoid taking Virginia high school graduates in favor of out-of-state students? Or power to continue to raise tuition much faster than increases in inflation or enrollment? I don't think so. I think that just the opposite is true.

    Most people in NoVA (and probably RoVA too) want results. Oh there are political fiends on both sides, but most people want to see government work well. And as institutions (including business and nonprofits) mature, they tend to operate for their own benefit, rather than for the benefit of their customers, members, clients, etc. It takes a conscious effort to manage to the contrary. Therefore, I think people turn to government to force institutions to focus on their original job. Hence, I don't believe most people would like state colleges & universities to have more autonomy.


  23. Groveton Avatar


    I agree with you (to a point). I think the public colleges and universities in Virginia have sufficient autonomy. For example, according to former Gov and AG Baliles, they already have the authority (granted by their charters) to adopt anti-discrimination language to protect their employees. That authority was granted in their charters and represents power already given by the General Assembly. It could be revoked by the General Assembly but, for now, it has been granted and remains in force. At least, that's Mr. Baliles perspective.

    Contrast that with counties in Virginia. They have no charters. They have no right to create language to protect their citizens from discrimination based on "sexual orientation". So, a county like Fairfax with 1/7th of the state's entire population, has less political power (at least in this case) than Christopher Newport University.

    Does that sound like a a reasonable approach to governance?

  24. Anonymous Avatar

    Home rule. What if Fairfax County were to propose legislation that would give it home rule powers?

    I suspect a plurality, if not a majority, of county residents would support that approach. I also believe that the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce would fight the bill, largely because a home rule charter would give Fairfax County much more authority over land use decisions, including the ability to levy cost-based development impact fees. (Peter, I'm not talking about land use here, but rather raw politics.)

    Even if the BoS fought for home rule power, it would never come to be because of the impacts on real estate development. And either home rule is home rule or it's not.

    It would be easier to get a bill through the general assembly that protected employment rights for gay, bi-sexual and transgendered individuals on a statewide basis than it would be to enable local governments to regulate land use as is done in most states. The former only flies in the face of some individuals' moral and religious beliefs, whereas the latter would disestablish the official state religion and elminate government by campaign contribution. Never happen!


  25. Groveton Avatar

    Continuing coverage of The Clown Show in Richmond …

    I won't comment on the wisdom of repealing the one gun a month restriction presently a part of Virginia law.

    I will however comment yet again on the bizarre antics of The Clown Show in Richmond. A law proposed by Scott Lingamfelter (R-Prince William) to repeal the one gun a month exemption was put forward in this session of teh General Assembly. As per Virginia Senate rules, the proposed bill was referred to the Courts of Justice Committee for review and commentary. Despite the fact that these committees are really meant to advise the full Senate on pending legislation they often simply kill a bill they don't like. That's an unfortunate bad habit of The Clown Show but also an historical reality.

    Enter Dick Saslaw (D-Fairfax) and Henry Marsh (D-Richmond). This dynamic duo of democracy was not staisfied to hope the bill would be killed in the full committee (thereby avoiding a minimally courageous vote of the full Senate). No siree. Instead, they formed a special sub-committee of hand picked Senators to "pre-review" the bill. Besides being even more cowardly than usual this also broke Senate rules. Two interesting outcomes arose from this "illegal" and anti-democratic stunt. First, the five hand picked Senators (4 Democrats and 1 moderate Republican) predictably killed the bill. Second, after Bill Bolling's rejoinder that the sub-committe broke Senate rules, it became obvious that there was nothing anybody could do about this wanton disregard of both democracy and protocol.

    How would your State Senator have voted on this important bill? Unless you live the the Senate district of one of the 5 Senators on the sub-committee (there are 40 State Senate districts) you'll never know.

    There is a mis-perception that the Virginia General Assembly represents some form of reasonable democracy. It is this mis-conception which lets some people think that centralizing all power in The Clown Show in Richmond is OK. It is not. In this case, Senators Saslaw and Marsh effectively coronated themselves co-Kings of Virginia.

    If either Saslaw or Marsh were elected to office in a statewide election then the people could vote them out of office in the next election. However, unlike US Senators, State Senators are elected by district within the state. Therefore, only the voters in those two Senate districts can vote the two out of office. Therefore, roughly 5% of Virginia's electorate effectively controls the entire state on the extremely important topic of gun rights / regulation.

    Virginia is not a democracy. The excessive vesting of power in the central government of the state only serves to exacerbate the tyranny of The Clown Show in Richmond.

    Given this, I must question Peter's focus on the governor as the locus of problems in Virginia. While I have had reservations about some former governors (especially the worst governor in Virginia history – Tim Kaine), I strongly believe that Virginia's two biggest problems are an ineffective state constitution and an arrogant and inept General Assembly.

  26. Anonymous Avatar

    Groveton – clearly the General Assembly a/k/a the Clown Show has more authority relative to the Governor. And the Clowns fully intend to keep it that way. You'll never see repeal of the ban on consecutive terms for governors.


  27. Anonymous Avatar


    An alternative response to Tobias is for you to focus on the state of journalism.

    This problem was raised very well by Howell Raines, former exec editor of the New York Times in today’s Wash Post (“Fox News: unfair, unbalanced, unchecked.”)

    Why are real journalists not making clear the need for real news coverage?

    Only when there is reliable information available to citizens will there be any change in the conditions about which you are rightly concerned.


  28. Anonymous Avatar

    I think the substance of this matter has been argued incessently. I am disappointed with the Governor's letter. If he believes that "sexual orientation" is a status that has been shown to suffer from significant discrimination and requires legal protection, he should be lobbying for it in the legislature.

    I believe AG Cuccinelli made this decision only based on the legal question asked and in order to protect the State from potential legal vulnerabilities should law suits be brought. Like his views or not, as a Senator, AG Cuccinelli showed a devotion to the law and Constitution above his own personal views. Remember his position in expanding the death penalty last year? That position was in disagreement with most of the Republican legislature and yet he stood on the principle.

    Bottom line, until the legislature approves this particular protected status, many of you will continue to have a concern. I for one do not as I don't believe there is any significant employment discrimination against homosexuals that would warrant such protection. However, were it to be passed, knowing AG Cuccinelli to be the man of principle that he is, he would defend that statute vigorously.

    As for assuming that taking this position as the legislature has so far being tantamount to "Hatred" or "bigotry", you have to then assume that to oppose non-discrimination protection automatically means bigotry. Do all of you support adding "body mass" to a protected status? How about eye color? How about beauty? How about left-handedness, right-handedness, or ambidexterity? If you oppose adding these or any other defined class, you MUST therefore be bigoted against or hate those types of people right????

    All this aside from the fact that AG Cuccinelli was giving a legal opinion that was requested. He was responding as his job requires. This was not in my opinion an agenda he pushed.

    Finally, Peter, you need to brush up on your Mel Brooks. It was "dimes" not "quarters".

    Og course, leave it to a liberal to multiply a fee by 2.5 times the real truth in order to take more from the taxpayer… 😉

  29. Anonymous Avatar

    Proof positive folks, from yesterday's Op-Ed of AG Cuccinelli's in the RTD:

    "My now well-publicized letter simply stated the current state of Virginia law; it did not advocate for any particular legislative position. Should the General Assembly change the law, my advice will be consistent with it. "


    "Nothing I have said or written authorizes unconstitutional discrimination against any person. My letter in no way addresses the legislative issue of including sexual orientation in non-discrimination policies. I believe that our colleges and universities do not illegally discriminate against any class of persons. Likewise, I do not believe they can or will after my restatement of Virginia law.

    The people of the commonwealth, through their elected representatives, determine Virginia's laws. I cannot bend the law to fit a particular outcome, no matter what a person or group might wish, myself included. I have simply stated what is and is not currently permissible under the laws of Virginia. That is my job as attorney general."


  30. Gooze Views Avatar
    Gooze Views

    Forgive the cliche, but you have nailed me to the Cross.
    Of course it was dimes in Blazing Saddles. It was 1974! Quarters were a lo to fmoney then.

    Peter Galuszka

  31. Anonymous Avatar

    How much Virginia money is Cucinelli going to waste suing the feds now thaqt Obamacare has passed?

  32. Anonymous Avatar

    Alot less than the Dems are costing us by passing it.

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