2008 was a year of change for America and for Virginia. Moderate Democrat Mark Warner was elected to the U.S Senate, and Tom Perriello pulled off a huge electoral upset by unseating turncoat Democrat turned Republican Virgil Goode. It was a very close race, Perriello won in the final tally after a recount by little over 700 votes. Since his election, Perriello has voted consistently as a loyal Democrat, some of those votes were tough since his district, Virginia 5th is rated by Cook as a PVI R+5, meaning it leans Republican. The district did go forMcCain over Obama 51% to 48% in 2008. Perriello has six Republicans running against him and an independent challenger that is a pure teabagger. As I'll go into below, Virginia teabaggers are at odds with the national Republican establishment over the establishment's choice in the primary. This could mean more GOP Fail a ala NY-23.
Perriello has an interesting background. Before he was elected to Congress,he worked to bring peace to the West African nations of Sierra Leona and Liberia. He also worked to build faith-based organizations that fight for social justice. Since taking office, Pereillo voted yes to ARRA(the "stimulus" bill), yes to ACES (cap and trade), yes to Health Insurance Reform(and voted for the much better bill the first time around). His vote for Stupak was one of the few times he got it way wrong. Pereillo also introduced H.R 4626, the Health Insurance Industry Fair Competition Act, which would repeal the health insurance industry's anti-trust exemption. It passed the House by over 400 votes. Since he does represent a district that went to McCain, he would have to battle to get re-elected. However, Perriello staying in office proves that the 50 state strategy works.
The conservatives, motivated by spite, racism and "purity" (we are not sure this extends to their precious bodily fluids), have at least six challengers to Congressman Perriello. I will discuss each of the Republicans in running what should be a competitve and interesting primary, and I'll discuss them one by one. The first that I will talk about is Laurence Verga., a "real estate investor" from Albemarle County. Verga has been endorsed by such "intellectual heavyweights" as Laura Ingraham and Samuel Wurzelbacher aka "(Not) Joe the (Non-)Plumber". Verga obviously would be a Tea Party politician with his support for lifting a ban on uranium mining in Southwest Virgina, as well a few health care related gems, where I added bold for emphasis
While I support and have signed The Club for Growth’s "Repeal It" pledge, this couldn’t realistically happen until we have a Republican president and Congress, which at the earliest is 2013. And while I support the State’s Attorneys General’s constitutional challenge to the bill, this can also take years and has no guarantee of success. There is a better and more immediate response to the bill: Stop the Funding!
Laurence personally suffers from polycystic kidney disease, a genetically-linked condition where cysts attack healthy kidneys. He is fortunate that his wife is the same blood type, allowing her to give him a kidney. However, over 4,000 people die every year waiting for a transplant. Laurence hopes his candidacy inspires more individuals to be organ donors and inspires those with physical challenges to never back down and to follow their dreams.
Gee, it sure must be nice to be a "real estate investor" rich enough to pay for an organ transplant when the uninsured would just die and private insurance plans would deny treatment before 2014. His pledge to forego the Congressional health insurance in favor of his private plan shows that he doesn't realize how bad the health insurance companies treat the middle class.
The second of the Circus of FAIL is Michael McPadden, a pilot in North Garden. Among the gems I found on his Issues page, he's a goldbug.
Sound money is gold and silver. If you want a sound economy then you must demand sound money. Without sound money? Well, you get the economy that we have right now. The Constitution is very explicit about money. The Federal Government may only coin money and set the value thereof. They may not print paper money.
Article one section eight and article 3 section one of the Constitution gives Congress the authority to establish the lower federal courts. I believe it is time for Congress to begin the process of abolishing certain lower courts with the purpose of clearing out the activist judges. They can then reestablish those courts with judges that will interpret the law and not redefine it. I believe we should start with the ninth circuit court in San Francisco and work our way up. It is time that "We the people" take back our country from out of touch men and women in black robes.
Proving that some are still "Drill Baby Drill" because we just don't have enough ecological destruction, dagnabit.
We need to open up the Outer Continental Shelf for drilling.
And this one just takes the cake for FAIL
I will move in my first days in Congress to have the Health Care Bill, Cap and Trade, and the stimulus Bill repealed.
The third member of the Circus of FAIL is Albemarle County Supervisor Ken Boyd. Boyd apparently failed at science because he said at a debate:
Boyd said, "There is nothing to prove we have man-made global warming,"
He also failed civics too or is clueless about the law.
Boyd urged everyone to support Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli who intends to sue the federal government if the current reform bill passes.
"Let’s get behind Ken Cuccinelli and get this thing thrown out in the courts," Boyd said.
The fourth member of the circus of FAIL is Fluvanna County biology teacher Feda Morton. The teabag of FAIL on this candidate is very full. A teacher ought to know better than to plagiarize like she did, and during the Danville debate, she was quoted as saying
Morton, a teacher, said, "the Department of Education is one of the worst mistakes we ever made to public education."
I wonder about what her students are learning about empiricism and the scientific method when she says things like
Morton says she believes global climate change is a "socialist plan to level the wealth" and "a pack of lies based on data that wasn’t substantiated."
"These people are out and determined to destroy America, destroy capitalism and destroy jobs," she said. "I don’t believe that global warming is a crisis. I don’t believe that global warming exists. And I don’t believe that carbon dioxide needs to be regulated as a pollutant."
However, the crazy seems to be paying off for her, as she was ranked number one in a straw poll of Republican activists.
The fifth member of the circus of FAIL is Jim McKelvey. As Blue Virginia reported, he likes to regurgitate lies on immigration. He also evotes almost a whole page on auditing the Federal Reserve and cyptically refers to returning to "sound money". So this makes me wonder, is McKelvey another Rand Paul with some Austrian Economics nonsense tossed in? He is increasinly also being trotted out as the alternative for the Tea Party rather than the Republican Establishment candidate. Also he could provide some comedy if he is the nominee as in this quote from a debate:
McKelvey, referring to himself in the third person, pledged to limit himself to four years if elected.
"If Jim McKelvey can’t get it done in four years, he doesn’t deserve to be there," McKelvey said, adding that power corrupts.
He also as recently as March said that he might run as an independent.
He is threatening to run as an independent. In his own words, "I’m not looking to be electable." On the possibility of splitting the conservative vote and keeping Perriello in Congress, "I stand on my principles. I do this because I am scared for the future of the country."
The sixth and final member of the GOP circus of FAIL is State Senator Robert Hurt, who is Eric Cantor's preferred candidate, but described by some teabaggers on various website as a RINO. The RINO of course is nonexistent, as the Republican Party purged out ll the centrists from their party. The Tea Partiers are upset over Hurt's vote for a tax increase in 2004. Lookingat his voting record, he is a typical Republican. This year,he voted against insurance coverage for children with autism. I am often struck at how "pro-life" people can deny medical treatment to young children.
The Republican Primary is on June 8th, and Virginia's "sore loser law" makes it so that any Republican wanting to go third party would have to file as an independnt before the polls close on June 8th. However, a Tea Partier named Jeffrey Clark has said that he will run as an independent if Hurt wins. Whatever the results of the Republican Primary, voters in Virginia 5th have a clear choice: they can stay with the guy who will create jobs and expand medical treatment to millions or they can go with "drill, deny children and deregulation" that we endured for eight years under Bush and his cronies.