If you bop over to Ben’s joint. You will find a link for the NLS/RK blog talk radio, and in the latest section Ben and the RK boys take great pleasure noting that Ken Cuccinnelli voted for the GOP transportation package, that this legislation includes fee increases, which equate to tax increases…and that Janet Oleszek, the Cooch’s most likely opposition, is bashing him for violating his no new taxes pledge. Ben and the RK boys think this is a riot, and apparently that this is a great issue for her.
If this is the best she has, we may as well call this election for Cuccinelli right now as this attack brings into question whether Janet O. is a serious candidate. If this type of gotcha politics is the best the Democrats have, then new Minority Leader and blog basher Ward Armstrong will have a long night on election night.
The Senate Democrats voted against the package, and Governor Kaine thinks the funding in said legislation is flawed…because more and different money is needed! Janet O. is complaining because The Cooch violated a no tax pledge by voting for a funding package that her party thinks does not raise taxes enough! And had he voted against the package she would be attacking him for failing to address transportation issues. Gotcha politics devoid of substance already-and the snow has not completely melted away! How marvelous!
As some of you recall I currently plan on voting for the Cooch. However, that does not mean that I am averse to a reasoned debate of the issues facing the Commonwealth. But attacks like this are just “gotcha” efforts that make little sense and ultimately lessen those making the charges and enhance those being attacked.
It is reminiscent of the Judy Feder attack on Frank Wolf when he voted against a proposed legislation that would assign a representatives name to an earmark. Congressman Wolf voted against the bill as it was fig leaf legislation that does not really address the matter of lobbying reform. Feder criticized Wolf for his vote…until it was pointed out that the bill was (a) a rule, not a law, (b) would cease to be in effect when that congress ended, (c) was truly a piece of fig leaf legislation to provide GOP cover in the 11/2006 voting, and-perhaps most important (d) almost every democratic representative voted against it also.
Suddenly, the wrong headed and foolish attack was dropped. Perhaps the same will happen here.
Nonetheless, the Janet O. comments are unfortunately typical of how the Virginia Democrats have approached this legislative session. While the GOP is hamstrung by its inability or unwillingness to create a unified message and vision for the Commonwealth, the Democrats are equally hamstrung by a desire to regain power coupled with an unwillingness to actually lead. The primary concern facing the Commonwealth is still transportation…but what did we get? The GOP cobbled together a plan that is at best a stop gap plan, but it is a plan that it created and mobilized its people to vote for. The Democrats did not offer a plan, instead hiding behind the shadow and ego of GOP state Senator John Chichester and his monstrous plan to apply the sales tax to gasoline.
The only thing Janet O. should be beating up on the Cooch about here is whether she thinks he should have voted for the Chichester plan or for the democratic plan. People in Northern Virginia want more money spent on transportation, and voting for a plan that puts more money into the transportation pot-even if a no new taxed pledge was broken, and I am not sure technically that it was-is not going to get folks so angry as to toss out an incumbent.
..oh, wait, there was no real democratic plan…sorry, forgot about that. There was not even a plan from Governor Kaine, just the use of profanities to demean the GOP plan.
I hope it gets better than this in all the legislative campaign this fall…but I will not be holding my breath!