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Today's Opinions

  • House rejects earmark reform effort

    One of the big issues that is currently before Congress is earmark reform. An earmark occurs when a member of the House of Representatives or the Senate specifies how a certain amount of money in an agency?s budget is to be spent, most often in the member?s own district or state. In the past, a few of these earmarks had been entered in a conference report and were never included in the floor discussions of the bills.

  • One hundred years in Iraq?

    Several weeks ago, long before Sen. John McCain enjoyed his current status as the Republican Party’s “presumptive nominee” for president, he was holding a campaign rally somewhere.

    With him was pro-Iraqi war Senator Joe Lieberman, a “Democrat” (if I may borrow Dr. Barnhart’s quotation marks) who has endorsed McCain almost exclusively because of their shared passion for “victory” in Iraq.

  • Shortfall leaves General Assembly scrambling for answers

    House Republicans saw the economic downturn coming last year and in January asked Gov. Tim Kaine and his staff for an update to budget revenue projections. That update didn't come until this past week.

    And the outlook wasn't good (a $1.4 billion shortfall) and the timing was late (just days before budget proposals were to be finalized).

    Now significant changes must be made. And they won't be easy.

  • McCain will need a conservative Veep

    Last week I mentioned a fellow at my church as an example of an evangelical Christian who supported Mitt Romney. After Romney dropped out of the race, I asked this guy who he planned to vote for in the Virginia primary. He said that he planned to vote for Mike Huckabee and explained why.

    He was convinced that John McCain will be the Republican Party's nominee for president. However, he felt that it would be good if Huckabee shows up at the Republican National Convention with enough support to have an influence.

  • Letters

    Not happy with policies

    Forty three years ago I came to Bedford County and fell in love with this small town. I remember how billboards dominated every inch of Tidewater in the 1960s, a real culture shock from Europe. Bedford, however, was full of only mountains and fresh air. This area has changed quite a bit since then, but it still retains its charm ....

  • Major tax hikes, by default, will hit if Congress doesn't act

    If Congress fails to act, we Americans will pay the price. Unless Congress acts, the following tax increases will automatically occur for the following tax-years:

    2008:

    ...The exemption for the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) will decrease from $44,350 to $33,750 for single filers and from $66,250 to $45,000 for married couples filing jointly.

    ...Taxpayers will not be allowed to deduct their state and federal general sales taxes from their federal income tax.

  • House of Delegates honors Rev. Jerry Falwell

    In last week’s column, I mentioned how many bills we have to process before the February 12 midpoint of the General Assembly session, commonly referred to as “crossover.” In just one day, Monday, February 11, the House will consider more than 200 bills.

  • Are the GOP moderates back?

    With Mitt Romney’s sudden departure from the Republican presidential race, Sen. John McCain has reached “presumptive nominee” status.

    We know McCain will be the candidate, but in a party that everyone thought was dominated by right-wingers, both religious and secular, it may not be clear just yet how he got there.