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Cross posted from Blue Virginia. Is this great stuff or WHAT?!? It's like Lieutenant Governor Bolling, now that he's decided not to run as an "independent Republican" and has largely burned his bridges with the Teahadists, is totally liberated to say whatever he feels like saying. And in this interview...boy does he ever! :)

After stating (at 3:45 into the audio) that he will NOT be endorsing Ken Cuccinelli in this year's gubernatorial campaign, Virginia Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling (R) talks (starting at around 4:45) about his relationship with Virginia Republicans and conservatives since he started considering a run for governor. Pop up some popcorn, because this is good! :)

As far as [RPV] Chairman Pat Mullins is concerned, I haven't heard from him, I haven't heard from the Attorney General, frankly I haven't heard from any of these folks, which doesn't particularly surprise me. But look, the only heat that I took during this entire process, to be perfectly honest, came from the more, I'll just call them passionate elements in our party, who do represent more of the more extreme views within our party. But as far as mainstream Republicans, people that I've known and worked with for years, I think almost every one of them that I talked to was totally understanding of the position we were in...many of them frankly were supportive.

I will tell you, I'm not alone in the concerns that I have about the current direction of the Republican Party. There are a lot of other Republican elected officials and party leaders out there who share these exact same concerns, they're just not in a position to voice them...At this particular point in time...I think I've been put in a position...to speak out on the need for a more mainstream approach to governing in Virginia...and the other is to speak out candidly to my fellow Republicans and talk about the need to get our party back to a more mainstream approach.

Great stuff.

In other news, Bolling says that Terry McAuliffe has not offered him any position in his administration if he's elected governor. Bolling also says that most moderate and independent Virginia voters see Ken Cuccinelli as "too extreme...too ideologically driven...too confrontational and combative...too focused on the incredibly controversial and divisive issues of the day." The question is, Bollins says, can Cuccinelli redefine himself, and does he even "want to do that, or is [Cuccinelli] gonna double down on the conservative ideology of the farthest right wings of the Republican Party?"  

Finally, Bolling agrees with the RNC assessment that the GOP is now viewed as "scary, out of touch and simply too extreme," and "I think that is an accurate assessment." For instance, on the issue of abortion, the GOP is "by and large" a "pro-life party," but that doesn't mean the GOP should focus on "controversial and divisive issues like fetal ultrasound." Instead, "why aren't we the party that's championing efforts to reduce teen pregnancy in Virginia...support for crisis pregnancy centers...adoption as an option to abortion?" In Bolling (100% correct) view, "these are positive pro-life alternatives that would be supported not just by pro-life Virginians but by most pro-choice Virginians, and at the end of the day they'd probably do more to reduce the number of abortions being performed in our state than the fetal ultrasound will ever do." As Bolling puts it, that's all part of the Republican Party not being the "stupid party," as Bobby Jindal put it. I couldn't agree more with every word Bill Bolling said here!

Originally posted to lowkell on Sat Mar 30, 2013 at 08:59 AM PDT.

Also republished by Virginia Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  People like Bolling used to represent mainstream (8+ / 0-)

    Republican thinking. There've always been different segments in the GOP, including a very conservative wing, but up until about 2000 the GOP mainstream was represented by guys like Bob Dole, Richard Lugar, and Chuck Hagel, and it was the dominant wing of the party. While they were reliably conservative on a wide range of issues, it was not impossible for Democrats to work with them because they weren't stone crazy ideologues. Today that branch of pragmatic, reality-based Republicans is dead as a power center within the party, and the GOP is run from top to bottom at all levels of local, state, and federal governance by its TeaBircher base. What's changed is that Evangelical Christianists have completed their ideological takeover of the Republican Party, and with the funding of reactionary billionaires like the Kochs, there is no room for politicians like Bill Bolling any more.

    •  What's Changed is We've Transferred Enough of (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MadGeorgiaDem, x, semiot, Words In Action

      the peoples' wealth to the .01% that they're able to power the evangelicals to take over the populist side and the extreme libertarians to take over the economics side. The party is not easily able to stand up to the money.

      The party's extremism is the inevitable result of mainstream conservatism since just after Nixon.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sat Mar 30, 2013 at 09:53:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Bill Boling should be placed under (5+ / 0-)

    protection; he is after all an endangered species known as a sane Republican. There used to be Republicans like this in parts of the South before the ex-Dixiecrats and religious nuts took over the party. Get out of the GOP while you can, Bill.  

    Guns are never the principle in the commission of a crime, but they are usually an accomplice

    by MadGeorgiaDem on Sat Mar 30, 2013 at 10:20:42 AM PDT

  •  Thanks for this, lowkell (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wary, semiot, Eyesbright

    Don't know whether to laugh or cry.  If Dems sit out the gubernatorial election this fall, we're going to be stuck with the Kook for governor.  And that's going to be an even worse hell than we've had with McDonnell.

    McDonnell, who was supposed to be so "moderate," is the guy who signed in more restrictive voter ID measures as well as a bill that will ensure Virginia is home to only one women's clinic that provides abortions.

    Moderate "Republic" legislators are not really moderate at all.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Sat Mar 30, 2013 at 02:29:54 PM PDT

    •  Terry McAuliffe's campaign is already ramping up (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Diana in NoVa

      This is going to be a very tight race and turning out the Democratic vote will be key ('cause the TeaBaggers will be out in force).  

      I'm on the west coast but I can put you in touch with a field coordinator for McAuliffe's campaign if you'd like to volunteer to help keep Virginia out of Cuccinelli's hands.

      Everyone interested, either reply here or send me private Kos mail.

      To stand in silence when they should be protesting makes cowards out of men. -Abraham Lincoln

      by Eyesbright on Sat Mar 30, 2013 at 05:22:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks, eyesbright! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Eyesbright

        I'm already volunteering for a local candidate who wants to be the delegate in my district.  She'll probably have contacts with the McAuliffe campaign too.  One of our own Kossacks, JamieGinMD, is also volunteering for McAuliffe.

        Right now we've got to get our candidate, Jennifer, through the June primary.  We need a pro-choice legislature here in the Damned Old Dominion.  :)

        "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

        by Diana in NoVa on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 07:18:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Some poisonous politics happen, when intra-state, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eyesbright, VaBreeze

    intra-party blood get bad. Bolling is a good old boy, and he got where he is on something other than brains, as far as I can tell.

    But he represents a strong tradition of old-school conservatives. In Virginia, many of this type were converts to the GOP made by Mills Godwin's turn. Before that, the Harry Bird machine dominated state politics. And those guys didn't mind public investment, federal investment, in Virginia.

    Mark Warner as governor relied on these old-school conservatives in the state senate to bring some rationality to the budget process - over the proto Tea Party radicals in the house. I must say that Mark Warner did an excellent job in those circumstance.

    Now Ol' Bill may be the last of a dying breed. The Owl of Minerva flies at dusk, or something.

    Courage is contagious. - Daniel Ellsberg

    by semiot on Sat Mar 30, 2013 at 03:45:19 PM PDT

  •  you notice he doesn't mention contraception? (0+ / 0-)

    bolling may not be of tea party GOP, but, when all is said and done, he's still of the "forced birth" variety. he may not go as far as the transvaginal ultrasound, but he's still going to make you have that unwanted birth.

    i'm glad he's speaking out, but he knew what he was getting in bed with, when he ran with mcdonnel and cuccinelli to begin with. i remember the big hoo-ha at the richmond coliseum, and a more obnoxious group i've never seen before, and bolling was right in the thick of it.

  •  Bolling is actually pretty far to the right (0+ / 0-)

    and it is a sign of the times that even HE is not far enough to the right.

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