“I tried the middle of the road once; I got hit by traffic in both directions.” – The Rt. Hon. Harry Perkins, A Very British Coup
Ken Cuccinelli sent an op-ed to the Washington Post on transportation…and in the process, revealed that he had unlearned the lessons of the last six years.
His attempt to plant one foot on each side of the fence regarding Plan ’13 From Outer Space was bad enough. Reminding everyone that he backed the Newman tax increase plan was worse. However, it was this sentence that made it clear he is not the man low-tax, limited-government Republicans hoped he was:
Similarly, in 2007, I voted in favor of a bipartisan transportation package that allowed congestion-prone localities in Hampton Roads and Northern Virginia to collect taxes — independently of Richmond — to fund congestion relief.
For the uninitiated, that “package” was the infamous HB3202, in all its abusive-driver-fees, putting-a-gun-to-local-governments-to-raise-their-taxes, and land-use-rules-that-set-off-exurban-county-revolts glory. It was the *one* vote that angered so many of Ken’s backers that he nearly lost re-election in 2007. It was the one vote so many of us thought Ken recognized as a mistake.
Now, he takes pride in that vote once more. He has, once again, become a “squish” (which, for the uninitiated, is what we used to call Republicans who went weak on tax and spending issues before “RINO” – truth be told, I prefer the older term, as it’s more accurate and less incendiary at the same time, but that’s for another post).
In the meantime, he has also opened himself up for a slew of McAuliffe ads bringing back the horrors of 3202, which at the time cut the GOP’s House majority in half and ended its Senate majority in November 2007 (all of the losses were concentrated in the 3202-affected areas, Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads). Then again, the rest of the party seemed to forget 2007 when Plan ’13 From Outer Space was enacted. Now Ken has made it clear he’s forgotten, too.
HB3202 was born out of an effort to straddle the divide on “taxes for roads.” It only succeeded in upsetting both sides. Ken’s newfound love for his 2007 “Aye” was just part of an entire op-ed dedicated to standing in the middle of the road (pun intended). Harry Perkins’ lesson is coming…