Why the Abuser Fee Issue is Fizzling

What role will outrage over Abuser Fees play in the fall General Assembly elections? Some interesting clues emerge from the latest opinion poll conducted by Christopher Newport University’s Quentin Kidd….

Republicans got more agitated about the Abuser Fees than either Democrats or independents. While a majority of all three political groupings expressed dissatisfaction with the driving penalties, Republicans and independents were the most distressed. Negative Dems outnumbered positive Dems by a mere eight-percentage point margin. By contrast, independents responded negatively by a 23-percentage point margin and Republicans by a 28-percentage point margin.

Hard pressed as it is to hang on to its majorities in the House and Senate, however, the Elephant Clan has no motive to turn the issue against candidates who supported the fees. The GOP would simply like to see the issue disappear. Meanwhile, given the relative ambivalence that Democrats feel about the fees — and the fact that the Governor, a Democrat, supported them — Donkey Clan candidates haven’t pushed the issue as hard as they might.

Another reason the issue has stopped simmering may be that voters don’t know whom to blame for the fees. Statewide, eight percent said Gov. Timothy M. Kaine was the most responsible, nine percent blamed Republicans, and two percent blamed Democrats. Seventy percent said it was a mix, and 12 percent said they didn’t know. With legislators promising to fix the most egregious aspects of the Abuser Fees, the issue seems to be fast sinking out of sight and out of mind.

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2 responses to “Why the Abuser Fee Issue is Fizzling”

  1. Darrell -- Chesapeake Avatar
    Darrell — Chesapeake

    The Gobs may have succeeded in getting this issue off the front page, but it is definately not out of mind.

    Everytime it’s brought up in the papers or talk radio, the response by the public is heavy. They want this abusive law repealed. Not modified, not softened, not promised to be looked at after the election, REPEALED!

    This is not merely a matter of bad law, but of Principle. The Gobs of both parties should be very worried, because the former Republican voters and independents have formed their own coalition. It’s called Re-elect No One.

  2. Larry Gross Avatar
    Larry Gross

    yeah.. but in the end…

    if you don’t like either candidate.. you can either hold your nose for the least worst of the two (or more) or stay home…

    … but the next day one of them WILL represent you anyhow…

    .. that’s the problem – The Donkeys and the Elephants “own” the voting process and, in effect,
    control the choices of who to vote for – unless someone can mount an effective 3rd party run.

    .. and the two entrenched parties can easily outspend you from the booty they get from those who glady pay to influence the process.

    .. Take the seat vacated by Chichester and go to VPAP and look at the money they got to run their campaigns…

    Pollard, Albert Jr (D) $343,153
    Stuart, Richard (R) $384,861

    neither one of these guys has that kind of money – they got it from their respective political pacs.

    A 3rd party person.. could not hope to compete with these two so the outcome is preordained no matter whether you like either of them or not…

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