Sunday Pundit Watch

A few new menu items appear on the pundit table today, along with the standard fare.

Bob Gibson of the Daily Progress gives us the old “special,” a warmed-over discussion of anti-tax Republicans plotting their comeback. The Jim Gilmore is especially spicy.

If you don’t mind a few toxins, Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch serves up sliced Bill Bolling. Schapiro uses every knife in the drawer on the Lieutenant Governor-elect’s prospects of leading the Senate, including this treat:

The electorate’s preference for responsible, workable ideas may force Bolling to reconsider his views that taxes are terrible; that government is greedy; that guns are good; that abortion is an abomination.

Norm Leahy

has a more complete review of this item.

Fortunately, there is something different to choose from.

Melanie Scarborough of the Washington Post goes on a tear about government spending, a dish she serves up better than just about anybody writing today:

On Wednesday Gov. Mark R. Warner (D) announced that the Virginia Department of Social Services had been awarded a $10.7 million bonus from the federal government for exceptional performance in collecting child-support payments. This was treated as good news.

Hardly anyone asked what, if anything, can be gained by giving additional money to an agency that already is adequately funded. No one questioned the purpose of spending millions of taxpayer dollars on rewarding a bureaucracy. (The money goes to the department, not to individual employees.) And apparently no one raised the most obvious issue of all: When children in Virginia are owed a collective $2.2 billion in child support, wouldn’t the money be better spent on their support than on the government’s?

Talk about taking on conventional cooking ….

Also in the Post, Marc Fisher remembers Kerry Donley, the Democratic star who left the political rat race of being mayor for the Athletic Director’s job at T. C. Williams High School in Alexandria:

What got to me was the grind of local government,” he says. “You’re going from 7:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. six, seven days a week. You miss seeing your family and watching your kids grow up.”

Donley still works long hours, but going to volleyball games isn’t the same kind of pressure as fielding calls from taxpayers riled up about police protection, potholes or parking.

Donley is just undergoing a mid-life crisis, so never fear. He says, “I’d like to run for office again.”

Sixth District Richmond City Councilwoman Ellen Robertson, writing in the Times-Dispatch, demands that “affordable housing and inclusionary zoning” get their rightful place on the menu. Trouble is, she’s short on specific ingredients and long on assuming the worst about those who don’t agree with her:

Since I recently introduced legislation to promote affordable housing via inclusionary zoning and to spark conversation about Richmond’s current housing policy or lack thereof, a firestorm of comments has ensued. Those comments range from the dismissive “do we really need this?” to the excusatory “well-to-do people don’t want to live near the working poor” to the status-quo-hugging “build more and improve existing public housing,” further illustrating a lack of understanding of this concept, as well as a deep-seated fear of constructive change.

Finally, it’s a good thing dogs aren’t allowed into restaurants. Kerry Doughterty of the Virginian-Pilot has had it with pit bulls. Sen. Edward Houck (D, Spotsylvania) is planning to “head back to the General Assembly next year with a bill that would stiffen criminal penalties for the owners of dangerous dogs.” That could end up as one of the more contentious issues in teh 2006 General Assembly.

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One response to “Sunday Pundit Watch”

  1. NotGroverNorquist Avatar

    Re: The Gibson story – “Spicy?” You bet. How about shuffling several hundred grand from loyal Virginia donors to Colorado to prop up TABOR, then learning that the money was a transfered from Richmond – to Colorado – to Richmond, all spent on Gilmore’s consultants. And the net result is another defeat. More than “spicy.” And if you think I’m cruel, check out what the Byrds’ Winchester Star had to say: “So now may not be the time for Jim Gilmore to ponder another run at state office — not if he truly has the best interests of himself, his party, and his state at heart.

    “Simply put, Mr. Gilmore is an albatross state Republicans do not need hung around their necks.”


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