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Posts Tagged ‘Economy’

MSM Coverage of McDonnell’s Winchester Stop

I wasn’t the only one in Winchester for Bob McDonnell’s appearance. Drew Houff of The Winchester Star kicked off his article rather poetically by mentioning McDonnell’s 2004 kickoff, which McDonnell recalled in his speech:

Speaking from the steps of the Old Court House Civil War Museum, where George Washington began his successful campaign for the House of Burgesses in 1758, McDonnell said the experience gave him chills.

Until there are bloggers who are actually interested in prose, the print media will always have a place in my heart. But Houff also covered issues of greater importance:

“I also think this ought to be the best state for tourism and film production,” McDonnell said. “We’ve got natural beauty — we’ve got mountains, oceans, lakes and rivers, history, and rural vistas. And we ought to be able to bring all of that out-of-state money here to be able to create those kinds of jobs in Virginia. We can do a lot more to promote tourism.

“I also think it is important we make government work better,” he said. “We need a government that is more transparent, that’s more efficient, that’s more efficacious, that’s more frugal, and that’s more open to you.”

McDonnell said Virginia’s state government and its budget have each doubled in the past 10 years.

“We spend [nearly] $8 billion … of your tax money every two years in the budget, and the more you know about where it is going, the more you will be able to hold all of us accountable on how it is spent,” he said.

Also present: the more no-nonsense but always knowledgeable Garren Shipley of the Northern Virginia Daily:

Bob McDonnell’s gubernatorial campaign launch came to the Northern Shenandoah Valley on Wednesday, and the theme was hard to miss.

Jobs, jobs, jobs.

The former state attorney general spoke to Winchester-area Republicans early Wednesday, promising at the northernmost stop in his rollout tour to make economic issues his top priority.

Bringing more jobs to the state and reviving the economy “will have the top claim on my time during my term as governor,” McDonnell said. Economic success begins with keeping the commonwealth’s business-friendly tax and environmental regulations intact, he said.

One core area for growth: the energy industry. 

Jobs from off-shore oil and natural gas production are also in 
McDonnell’s vision of Virginia’s future.

“This ought to be the state of choice for the energy industry,” he said. Coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear power all stand to create jobs in the Old Dominion.

That’s one reason the state should cut “down on bureaucracy and the time it takes for permitting a clean coal-fired plant and new nuclear power plants.”

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In the Wilderness

January 29, 2009 Leave a comment

This article is a few days old (which is ancient in new media terms) but it still gives an important insight into the challenge facing Congressional Republicans: Pleasing grassroots activists while winning back the suburban moderates that fueled wins in 2000 and 2004 but abandoned the party after 2005. From the WSJ:

The November elections were widely seen as a rebuke to Republicans, and Mr. Obama has claimed the economic crisis as a mandate for action, leaving Messrs. Boehner and McConnell groping for the right blend of cooperation and defiance.

Republicans can’t simply be “the party of ‘no,’ ” Mr. Boehner, of Ohio, said in an interview this month, but must offer solutions to voters’ problems. “We have to give the American people reasons to take a look at us,” he said. Tuesday, Mr. Boehner issued a statement congratulating Mr. Obama on his inauguration, vowing to find “common ground with the President on solutions to rebuild our economy, strengthen American families, and keep our country safe.”

Similarly positioned opposition parties have taken various paths. In 1993, Republicans fought Bill Clinton on almost everything. Eight years later, many Democrats cooperated with George W. Bush on certain items, such as tax cuts and education overhaul.

With likely minorities of 41-59 in the Senate and 178-257 in the House, Republicans — who just four years ago seemed on the cusp of long-term dominance — have less leverage than any minority in recent memory.

“I think it’s important not to be in a hurry,” Mr. McConnell, of Kentucky, said in an interview in his office in the U.S. Capitol last week. “The new president has high approval ratings. Polls indicate that both Republicans and Democrats want him to be successful. We want to be a respectful, loyal opposition.”

The opening of the article best summed up the dueling faces of the party as it stands:

House Minority Leader John Boehner recently attacked the potential “wasteful spending” and “mountains of debt” in President Barack Obama’s stimulus plan. A few days later, he warmly invited Mr. Obama to address House Republicans, saying, “We do not want partisan differences to stall achievement.”

Yesterday the party won a major victory (at least internally) by unanimously opposing the House Stimulus package. They also managed to offer an alternative proposal which, while imperfect and somewhat slapped together, was still an alternative. Can they keep this up?

We’re in the wilderness. Now all we need is a leader. Will it be from Congress?

Statehouse Republicans Roll Out Stimulus Package

January 28, 2009 Leave a comment

Speaker Howell and others released a comprehensive package designed to stimulate Virginia’s economy. However, rather than relying on indiscriminate spending and allowing pork to slip in like SOME stimulus packages *cough*U.S. House Democrats*cough*, the package is focused on enhancing the economy through commonsense reform and focused spending projects. As the Speaker put it:

“As Republicans, we believe in advancing innovative solutions, strong management and fiscal responsibility,” Speaker Howell. “Like we have on so many pressing issues people care about, House Republicans are offering a compelling vision for a better future and a convincing way to help lead our Commonwealth out of the current financial and budget turmoil. “These initiatives will result in more jobs, stronger economic development potential and a faster return to prosperity for Virginia‟s families, businesses and taxpayers. I am proud that our strong majority caucus has built a sensible and broad-based economic package for Virginia. We will hard to ensure its passage because I am confident it will deliver a very positive and lasting impact.” 

Read more…

Goodlatte Gets it Right

January 28, 2009 Leave a comment

The House Republicans from Virginia (newly having a minority of the state’s seats after a narrow loss in the 5th) were among those who met with Obama, and even those who voted for the $700 billion TARP package this fall seemed to hae little enthusiasim for the new proposal. However, leading the pack was my congressman, Bob Goodlatte, who said, courtesy the WashTimes:

“My biggest concern is the enormous size of it and the fact it is a big government stimulus and not a stimulus of our economy,” Goodlatte said. 

After looking at  my post below, I think its hard not to feel the same way.

Slogan Showdown

January 27, 2009 Leave a comment

While the state government continues to cut aid for local government and many localities are facing epic shortfalls, New Market is keeping things light by focusing on a town slogan.  From the NVDaily:

Through Feb. 18, residents can vote for one of 28 slogans to describe their town. The options on the ballot were all submitted by residents as part of a contest created by Mayor Larry Smith.

“We want something to characterize the town, something that will capture the essence of New Market,” he said.

Smith said after visiting towns in Northern Virginia that had slogans, he wanted to apply the same concept to New Market. The response from the community was as positive as he could have wanted, he said.

…..

Smith said he has no preference on which motto wins. The winner — the names of those who submitted each idea are not on the ballot — will get his or her water bill paid for a month, not to exceed $75, and the slogan might be placed at the bottom of the gateway signs at the edges of town.

While the contest certainly seems like fun and there are some great submissions, is this the sort of effort that the town government should really be focusing on during an ever deepening recession? Even if it is just the time of the town clerks to count ballots, the $75 for a water bill, and new signs, this sets a bad precedent and underscores the belief that, somehow, pretty words and sights will bring business to a town. 

Here’s my suggestion for a slogan: “New Market-Where government waste lives on”