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Columns

  • The Virginia Republican train wreck

    Currently, the Virginia Republican Party is in the sorriest shape it’s been since the late 1960s, when a handful of GOP stalwarts began to build the party into something that could compete with Virginia Democrats.
        In the wake of the Democratic sweep of this November’s elections, and hampered by the right-wing extremists who have just about ruined it, the state GOP is sorely in need of a return to the drawing board.

  • An invitation to connect on LinkedIn

    I was amazed when I read Rick Howell’s  Liberal Agenda last week. I never thought I was important enough to become the object of a political activist’s dirty tricks. It seems I was wrong, and I must say I’m very flattered. I came to that conclusion when Mr. Howell wrote that I had been “snooping around” on one of his social media accounts.

  • Remembering a great liberal journalist

    2014 is a year of profound anniversaries of events that changed America for the better during the Civil Rights movement.
        It's the 50th anniversary of “Freedom Summer” in Mississippi, a brave and successful effort where young people from across the nation descended upon a primitive and dangerous place to help black residents achieve their right to vote.
        Their work did not end without tragedy, as three civil rights workers were murdered by local rednecks.

  • Promoting STEM education

    Whether it’s a computer at the office, streaming movies at home, or a navigation system in the car, technology plays a major role in many of our lives these days. The demand for students educated in engineering and technology continues to rise in the United States, but part of the challenge is how to engage students in these subjects and further their understanding of these valuable skills.

     

  • Deciding the future of Medicaid in Va.

    By Delegate Terry Austin
    19th District

    Budget
        Debate on the budget began this week in the General Assembly. Many important issues will be decided through the budget this year. Perhaps the most important topic that we will discuss as a part of the budget is the future of Medicaid. The budget will eventually go into a conference with six members of both the House and the Senate who will help to find a compromise. I encourage you to follow along as we continue to discuss amendments to the budget.

    Important Bills

  • Potential for budget stalemate exists

        Capitol Square was busy this week, with both the House and the Senate unveiling – and ultimately approving – their respective versions of Virginia’s biennial budget.  In even-numbered years, the General Assembly is responsible for approving a two-year spending plan for the Commonwealth.

  • Because of Medicaid expansion, I didn’t support the Senate budget

    Senator Steve Newman
    23rd District

        Virginia’s Capitol enjoyed warmer temperatures this week, while inside the Capitol the Senate of Virginia and the House of Delegates unveiled their respective plans to the Commonwealth’s two-year budget. 

  • Waste, fraud and abuse...really?

    I have tremendous respect for the Virginia General Assembly, given that it is the oldest deliberative body in the history of the world, and that I am a native Virginian.
        Having said that, it is almost always a disappointment for those who hold a progressive political philosophy. That’s because of its resemblance to the Congress in Washington.

  • Forest Fire Department to hold first fundraiser of the year

        January was a very busy month for Forest Vol. Fire Department.
        The department answered 54 calls for service during the month with an average of an hour spent on each call. The new officers have been installed and are hard at work on their various assignments.

  • Crossover week arrives

    Senator Steve Newman
    23rd District

        This week will be the most intense week here at the Capitol. The week is called “Crossover” or when all of the Senate bills must crossover to the House of Delegates before Wednesday. Inside the Capitol, Senate committees and the full Senate are reviewing many of the most important and controversial bills of this Session.