Senate audio of debate on Potts

Courtesy of the Sic Semper Tyrannis blog, you can listen to the audio

file of the Senate debate on ousting Potts from his committee chairmanship.

Listen to Senator’s Sasslaw and Norment coming to the rescue of their embattled breathern, the “Independent Republican.” I can understand Sasslaw, who is an unabashed liberal. But Norment ran as a conservative Republican and has spoken against Potts’ independent run.

Obviously, Kaine, the Democrats, and the RINOs must be convinced that Potts’ candidacy will detract votes from the Republican candidate in November. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be going out of their way to protect Potts…

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  1. Laszlo Avatar

    If Senator’s Saslaw and Norment will stand up in public for the rights of Senator Potts it tells me it is more about respect than just politics. Look at the Senate vote. They were not alone.

  2. La Orilla Avatar
    La Orilla

    Now that’s spin. Black & Decker style.

  3. Steven Avatar

    laszlo: ‘a FOOL and his tax dollars are soon parted’

    puss rotts: ‘there is a FOOL born every minute’

    His ‘Excellency the Mollycoddle’ say it best, “One would be a FOOL to underestimate Russ Potts.”

    The Democratic Governor and the pro-tax GOP lobby are in cahoots together with the Russ Potts independent election fiasco. How much more proof do we need?

    How about a nifty tune to ease the brain pain?

    Please sing along with the Blue Dog …

    “Mollycoddle comes to town
    A-riding on a pony
    Stuck some taxes in his budget
    For his pro-tax cronies

    Mollycoddle, keep it up
    Mollycoddle dandy
    Mind the Dems and those liberal steps
    And with the ‘Pubs be handy”

    After all, Chichester, Norment and other pro-tax ‘Pubs were pretty-darn handy during the 2004 tax-budget debacle, and please don’t forget about the Valley’s flip-flopping version of Democrat John Kerry …

    Because Emmett ‘the Lt. Revenator’ Hanger has endeared himself even more with fiscally conservative valley residents, when mincing his ‘Anti-Potts rhetoric’ with his ‘Pro-Potts vote’ in the State Senate this week.

    In the end, the State Senate high-drama only proved that birdbrains of a feather vote together.

    That’s a no-spin statement!

    And it’s more than obvious, both of these pro-taxers – Senator Potts and Hanger – would rather spend their time and money running for statewide office then continue to represent the interests and residents of the ‘fiscally conservative’ Shenandoah Valley.

    Next question?

  4. victoria Avatar

    One way to appear more palatable at home is to create an illusion of statewide support, or they suffer under the delusion that
    people actually respect them versus just paying them lip service. Egos are odd things…

  5. victoria is right — It’s illusion and ego.

    Potts and Hanger are philosophical allies that border on the incestuous — They’re twin sons of different pro-tax mothers who are beating that poor fiscally conservative Elephant to near death.

    But for Hanger, there’s not enough pro-tax (country club) republicans voting to effect the GOP primaries.

    Besides Hanger is driving a red Mercedes convertible these days … Not a pickup truck with a gun rack and NRA sticker like most of us good ole valley boys.

    Exactly what is the definition of arrogance may I inquire?

    How about that Rusty Potts?

    Recently, the Red Dog told the Blue Dog: “The problem with Potts is that no one likes him. He has no statewide following that is not already in Kaine’s camp. Potts voted for a tax increase FOUR times larger then Warner’s — so fiscally he is to Warner’s (presumably Kaine’s) left and he is pretty liberal on most social issues. He will still need money and that will be the tough part for Potts.”

    Hey! Next week, I’ve been invited to the fiscally conservative Tuesday Morning Group meeting at the Bull & Bear Club in Richmond.

    It’s the Killer Bs — the bull, the bear and the blue.

    The Anti-tax ‘Pubs are conducting what is being called a Commonwealth-shaking event with a Senator Ken Cuccinelli and Delegate Scott Lingamfelter press conference.

    It’s an opportunity for the Blue Dog to enter ‘the belly of the GOP beast’ sort of speak.

    Maybe I’ll send some cliff notes to Hanger and Potts.

  6. A true Virginian parts with his/her tax dollars to fund eduaction, health, safety and transportation issues in order to make our state better. Others just complain but take the benefits. You folks can ridicle Potts, Fitch, Kaine and Warner all you want but they are the clear thinkers and Virginia will be better because of them.

  7. victoria Avatar

    A “true” Virginian gets his/her money’s worth. Sadly, the budget is NOT transparent and until the powers that be in Richmond quit listening to the wishes of the self serving bureaucrats tax RATES will increase. Rates matter. Transparency matters. Raising tax rates to increase revenue for the sake of raising revenue so that one can spend more money and claim the altar of caring is the problem. To paraphrase Carville,
    “It’s the spending, stupid”.

    When the budget is finally transparent, then you can adequately discuss how my money is spent. Until then, caring for others means taking my money without measurable results.
    That is not the Virginia way, that is the Soviet way.

  8. Wow! The soViet way. Right here in River City. That’s touble with a Capitol T. Next Tailgunner Joe will be coming back to save us. “I have here in my hand the names……”

  9. Phil Rodokanakis Avatar
    Phil Rodokanakis

    Budget transparacy would be nice. What would be nicer though, is a Taxpayer Bill Of Rights (TABOR) that would limit government spending to the growth of population plus inflation.

  10. victoria Avatar

    Great limit spending… whoopee… if you don’t know what it does at the TABOR levels, how do you know if TABOR + or – 1% or 2% is the appropriate level of expenditure.

    Measure by output not input (expenditure). If you think succeeding is simply fixing revenue to a formula that is better, then you are probably correct. The goal should be production for those monies rather than simply the monies….

  11. Scott Hanger Avatar
    Scott Hanger

    I don’t often respond to the things I read about my dad (Emmett Hanger), but there’s a certain liberal Democrat on the loose trying to divide the Republican Party. He enjoys calling himself the Blue Dog, and he fancies himself a political journalist. I don’t believe in disparaging anyone so I’ll state a few truths and then let you folks get back to your Emmett Hanger bashing.

    Emmett Hanger is a socially and fiscally conservative Republican with a history of lowering taxes. Dad feels that fiscal conservatism should be synonymous with fiscal responsibility. He believes in the Republican premise of less government and greater individual accountability and responsibility. The controversy comes from his 2004 tax vote. In 2004, Dad voted to raise the cigarette tax (it was by far the lowest in the country), the sales tax, and the gas tax because our Commonwealth was in dire financial straits. Our AAA bond rating was in jeopardy and if the House’s version of the budget had passed, much of our state government would have shut down and Virginia would have actually been seen as a credit risk. If you’ll remember, the DMV was already only functioning on a part-time basis. Dad’s belief is that when essential services need funding, the bill has got to be paid.

    Much of the 2004 vote goes back to the dot com boom and the revenues the state was pulling in at that time. Money seemed to be flowing in from every corner, and law makers thought it would be a good idea to eliminate the car tax. This wasn’t a bad idea, but it turned out that after significantly cutting that revenue source, the dot com industry dropped. Businesses closed, jobs were lost and the increased revenue that was rolling in at a record pace from capital gains and income tax, slowed to a trickle. Many in the legislature at that time saw the writing on the wall and knew that Virginia would not be able to continue the car tax roll back and still meet its budget requirements. This laid the blue print for many in the legislature, including my dad, to begin the important work of tax reform. Dad’s belief is that we should never be forced to pay more taxes than is absolutely essential, but he also knows we have to meet our state budget requirements. Dad believes in eliminating the estate tax, the death tax, the car tax and the meals tax, but he will only do so when there is another form of revenue in place to replace the lost tax. His purpose is to make Virginia’s tax system fairer for everyone. Let’s face it…nobody wants to pay taxes, but it is the price we pay for living in a civilized society. We should only have to pay for the services we need and we should get value for our dollar. The problem with shortchanging the state budget is the bills still have to be paid. Invariably it will either be paid at the state level, or the burden will be passed down to the local level. The problem with this does not occur in the wealthy counties of the state i.e. Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William…the problem occurs in the inner city and rural parts of the state. The lost revenue can not be subsidized at the local level because the citizens are far less wealthy. This results in a decrease in the quality of state services in these areas, and an unhealthy gap in the level of social stratification between different parts of the state. The problem with anti-tax extremist like Grover Norquist is that the he and the other members of the ATR have candidates sign a pledge that they will never raise taxes. This pledge has no concessions. For instance, if the legislator wants to raise the tax on cigarettes so he can eliminate the meals tax, the candidate will have broken Norquist’s pledge. This could be a “revenue neutral” measure, but it won’t matter. Norquist will attack that individual with all the resources he has at his disposal. By the way, Emmett Hanger never signed Grover Norquist’s pledge and never will. This doesn’t mean he’s a tax and spend liberal. It means he’s a realist with the good of the people he serves held to a higher esteem than the endorsement of a radical political lobbyist.

    Now, on to the topic of Russ Potts. Dad has stated clearly that Russ Potts is no longer a member of the Republican Party. Some of the fire dad has been receiving as of late is due to him not voting to oust Potts from his committee assignments during the Veto Session. Dad has every intention of voting Potts out of his committee chairmanships, but not during the Veto Session. It is against state law to conduct such business during this session. Let’s be real about the situation. The legislature doesn’t go back into session until next January. At that time, I can guarantee you that Potts will be voted out of his leadership roles in the Republican caucus. Dad has said that he will vote to do that, and he will due that…but he will do it at an appropriate time that is in keeping with the laws of the Commonwealth. It would have made him much more popular to vote to take up that business during the Veto Session, but he’s never been one to do something for the sake of political posturing. He did the right thing by understanding the importance of the legislation that was on the table for passage during the Veto Session, and he made that his priority.

    Let me finish off by asking you what you feel it means to be a Republican? Steve Sisson (The Blue Dog) believes in the rights of a woman to have an abortion. He believes in gay unions, and even recently supported a gay and lesbian activities group that was told it could not meet after school at Harrisonburg High School. Prior to his run for Senate in 2003, I found remarks Sisson made supporting former Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone. For those of you who may not remember Senator Wellstone, he made John Kerry look as conservative as Trent Lott.

    Steve Sisson has however signed Grover Norquist’s pledge. So, I again ask you…What does it mean to be a Republican?

    Emmett Hanger strongly opposes abortion and has worked hard for the rights of all life.
    He believes in the rights of gun owners and works hard to protect the second amendment.
    He believes in limiting the size of government and not overtaxing the citizens it represents.
    He believes in updating Virginia’s antiquated tax system so that our government can function efficiently and fairly for everyone.
    He believes in common sense environmental practices to protect one of our greatest resources.
    He believes in updating Virginia’s transportation system and keeping the Transportation Trust Fund in place to pay for the bills it was set up to pay. We should never be forced to raid it in order to make ends meet when forming our state budget.
    He believes in the party of Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan and George Allen. He is a Republican and will always be.

    And by the way…To address an earlier comment: Dad doesn’t drive a red Mercedes. He drives a 1987 Pontiac Sunbird. He swapped cars with me recently when I went in for knee surgery and could no longer drive my stick shift. Have a nice day.

    Scott Hanger

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