Stolle Out

For years, Ken Stolle has been a thorn in the side of conservatives, often breaking with Democrats on key budget votes and on some law enforcement issues (i.e. Triggerman). Indeed, he is often considered one of the ring leaders of the great tax hike of 2004. However, it appears that he has decided that perhaps his twilight years are best spent back in law enforcement. From the Virginian-Pilot:

State Sen. Ken Stolle, R-Virginia Beach, a longtime power broker in the General Assembly, declared his candidacy for Beach sheriff Friday, potentially leaving a void in the legislature and creating a political domino effect.

An attorney and former Beach police officer, Stolle explained his decision as a desire to return to law enforcement after years in the halls of government.

“When I initially ran for office, it was on a strict law-and-order platform… and I find myself now fighting other battles,” said Stolle, noting he has “accomplished everything that I had initially set out to accomplish” in 18 years in the legislature.

“I’m a police officer at heart,” he added. “That’s what I want to be in – law enforcement.”

However, he is leaving under less than ideal circumstances:

In an interview with The Virginian-Pilot, Stolle also disclosed that he has Parkinson’s disease, a degenerative neurological disorder that can impair motor skills.

Having dealt with a major health issue myself, I know that it is not an easy task and I wish Mr. Stolle well. Although I strongly disagree with his politics, I will keep him in my thoughts and prayers, and indeed hope he is victorious in November, as I do believe his style is best suited for an administrative spot (though he has pledged to follow his predecessor Paul Latigene in being a loud voice for increased LE spending). 

If Stolle does vacate the seat, it leaves an exciting opportunity for conservatives to pick up an additional seat in the Senate.

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