Mullins op-ed: Challenging Warner

By Pat Mullins

We’re not quite done with Election 2013 yet, but November 2014 is just 11 months away. And if it’s election season, it’s time for the Virginia press corps to begin asking hard questions about Republican candidates, or people who might become candidates.

schapiro_hairThe venerable Jeff Schapiro is the first out of the gate this cycle. Recently, he penned a missive that attempted to paint Ed Gillespie (who isn’t even a declared candidate) as the second coming of Terry McAuliffe.

Given the kid glove treatment the former GreenTech money man has received, that’s more than a little rich. I haven’t been a practicing journalist for several decades, but it seems to me that perhaps, just perhaps, the time to talk about Terry McAuliffe’s negative qualities was before Election Day.

But like I said, I’m not a professional journalist.

ed_gillespieEd Gillespie would make a great candidate if he decides to get in the race — which explains Jeff’s nascent obsession with fault-finding. I have no doubt that our two declared candidates, Howie Lind and Shak Hill — both of whom would make a far better U.S. Senator than Mark Warner — will get their turn in the media’s barrel as well in the not too distant future.

Negative press for GOP candidates is to be expected. As a fellow Republican told me just the other day, “Never expect to get covered like the home team. Republicans are always the visitors.”

But it does strike me as odd that not one Virginia journalist has yet to ask serious questions of Mark Warner about his record. What exactly has Mark Warner done? Other than casting the 60th vote that gave us ObamaCare — after promising that he wouldn’t vote for a health care law that would take away health insurance you liked — not much.

Unless you count his votes against allowing Virginia to drill offshore, or his votes to allow the EPA to move forward with damaging anti-global warming rules that will drive up the cost of electricity and further damage Virginia’s coal industry. Or his vote for the sequester, which he then promptly began to denounce as a bad idea.

There are countless stories of people in Virginia who have lost their insurance under Obamacare. Mothers who can’t take their children to the pediatricians they’ve come to know and trust, cancer patients who are losing access to lifesaving specialist treatments because their old plan didn’t meet Barack Obama’s standard. All of this, and more, can clearly and cleanly be laid at Mark Warner’s feet.

smugwarnerMark Warner could have stopped ObamaCare, but he chose not to. And when Republicans tried to change the rules to let people keep their existing insurance if they liked it, Mark Warner voted no. This is Mark Warner’s legacy — tens of thousands of Virginians who have lost their insurance, and many, many more who will wind up paying through the nose.

We hear stories from people like this all the time. They’re not hard to find. And yet their stories rarely show up in the Virginia press, and certainly never in the context of asking Mark Warner about how his vote cost them their insurance. But it’s early. Maybe Jeff and his colleagues just haven’t gotten around to it yet.

I eagerly look forward to Jeff Schapiro’s conversation with Mark Warner about the Affordable Care Act, and the subsequent column where Mark Warner is held to account for his repeated pronouncement that he wouldn’t vote for a bill that would take away health insurance that Virginians liked.

I’m not going to hold my breath. But I might double-check for Jeff’s name on Mark Warner’s in-kind contribution statements.

Pat Mullins is chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia

  • Since Ed is not in the race, why doesn’t he turn on his money machine for those that are in? Host an event for both Mr. Gillespie now so we can generate some press for either Howie or Shak or both.

    • C. Richard

      I don’t think it’s a good idea to pay much attention to Shank & Howie — GOP needs to focus next month and a half on getting an electable candidate with name ID not start funding attention for the two with no chance in winning.

  • Don Marco Jawsario

    Liberal Jews control the media. I am half Jewish myself, so I feel I have some leeway in making this controversial statement. But it is true. The facts are this (based on my 2009 research of five of the top national level media outlets): Jews are a mere 1.5% of the population, but are nearly 3/4 of the national level media top decision makers at NBC/CBS/ABC News and Time and Newsweek. Jews also lean left – heavily. And as liberals, they preach diversity, but never walk that walk when it comes to the areas they dominate. We allow them to make fun of the GOP for being a party of “old white men” but we never put the media moguls under the microscope. Of the 32 key figures I looked at, all were white, 28 were male, and AT LEAST 23 were Jewish. .

    • This is racist.

      • Alex70

        Well…I’d call it extraordinarily anti-Semitic, not racist.

        Now my comment:

        I’m not sure that Mr. Schapiro gave Governor-elect McAuliffe a free pass, Chairman Mulllins. Check out these excerpts from this lambasting Mr. Schapiro entitled, “McAuliffe’s biggest obstacle seems to be himself”:

        “T-Mac is the Big Mac of Virginia politics. Like junk food, Terry McAuliffe is a lot of flash and sizzle; a shock to the palate; filling, not satisfying. Too much is bad for you.”

        Pretty scorching! And this, too:

        “McAuliffe isn’t a very good politician. Insiders such as McAuliffe have difficulty adjusting to the outside game that is the modern campaign. A slick staff and newfangled technology don’t make up for that. Nor can they change the subject when the subject is the candidate. This time, it’s an investigation of McAuliffe’s electric car company in Mississippi by the U.S. Securities and
        Exchange Commission. The agency is suspicious about how GreenTech, from which McAuliffe quietly resigned as chairman in December, uses a federal visas-for-jobs program to lure foreign investors.” (RTD, 7 Aug 2013.)

        I wouldn’t bash the press for inducing the GOP’s severe illness. The cure, in my opinion, is pretty evident: stop alienating women, blacks, Hispanics, gays, and young people. And if the party wants to succeed in a statewide election never, ever, ever run an extremist slate like you did in November and never, ever, ever try to ram through the General Assembly legislation like the personhood and ultrasound bills and the sham legislation intended to shut down abortion providers.

        And, sir, instead of railing against Heritage Foundation-inspired Obamacare (aka Romneycare), which mandates that patients with pre-existing conditions be covered, that insurance companies can’t drop sick people, that we get free preventative healthcare, that young people up to 26 get to stay on their parents’ plans, that mental health care coverage is provided,
        that insurance companies face limits on marketing and overhead, and so on–PROPOSE
        SOMETHING MEANINGFUL. (Hint: it can’t be “allowing competition from insurance providers across state lines.” That’s code for abetting minimally regulated companies in foisting dubious policies on consumers.

        Best wishes,
        Alex Leidholdt

        • Turbocohen

          Show me where Jeff Shapiro took Mark Warner into the sunlight regarding his deciding vote for ACA..

          • Alex70

            Senator Warner and virtually every other Democratic Senator in office at the time of the ACA’s passage voted for it. That’s common knowledge. So what?

            Good luck rolling the legislation back. Three years from now you’ll face intense opposition from the folks whose lives are powerfully improved by the tangible reforms I listed above. I’m glad we’re joining the civilized world. In time–and with inevitable modifications–the ACA, I predict, will be regarded along with Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid (all of which Republicans demagogued) as a vital component in our social safety net. It’s far from perfect, but it’s a vast improvement over the wretched and inhumane “system” we previously had.

            Senator Warner has nothing to apologize for.

          • Jim Portugul

            I agree!

        • Anti-semitism = racism. You start throwing around complaints about Jews, you might as well be throwing them around about every other race. It’s ridiculous.

          • Jim Portugul

            I ain’t going there. However I would like to see someone substantiate the claims of the Right. that the media is tilted to the Left.

            I think the media is tilted toward green, or, the profit. Right or Left, they are not in business to lose money.

          • Alex70

            Brian, we agree that it’s odious.

            My point simply is that Jews aren’t a separate race. As you and the other BD directors know, there’s a long, long history of anti-Catholicism in this country: the Know Nothings, the American Protective Association, the anti-Catholic Journalist Movement at the turn of the 20th century (been working on an article on this for two years now), the Klan, and so on. [One of my favorite moments is when Notre Dame students in the 1920s beat the shit (sorry for the vulgarity–it won’t happen again, I promise) out of Klansmen assembling in South Bend to intimidate the Catholic community.]

            I wouldn’t call an anti-Catholic a racist. Hair splitting, perhaps. I certainly agree with your sentiment. I’ve said too much on this posting. Have a nice evening. BW, A.

          • Turbocohen

            Brian, that is offensive.

          • What’s offensive? That I don’t like it when folks bring race and religion into things?

          • Turbocohen

            Religion vs race or ethnicity..

          • That’s not my point – it’s not that being Jewish is a race, I just view all of these forms of discrimination to be effectively the same.

          • Daniel Cortez

            Fascinating Brian we did not read your displeasure over race in the posting of J.R. Hoeft’s, “Coleman commits major gaffe on race”…especially his last blatantly insensitive paragraph. Selective outrage or journalistic patronage?

          • Not even remotely similar.

          • Daniel Cortez

            I’ll take that as selective outrage….which is your prerogative.

          • billbo_66

            Brian, Its your party. That’s just the way they are. This is the reason I left the GOP in 92. Ive never looked back. I know the DNC isn’t much better but they welcome all walks of life,

          • billbo_66

            Pat Mullins is a lunatic that talks about the president getting assassinated and everything under the sun is communist. The party leaders rage about gays, latinos, muslims, other minorities, poor people are just lazy, birthcontrol, Now the pope? Like I said, Brian it’s your party. Enjoy.

      • Turbocohen

        Racist? I’ll say it.. liberal jewish democrats, and I mean far left liberal, not reasonable liberal, pretty much have an overzealous agenda with regards to MSM left-stream media influence. I wish this was not the case but it is and it misrepresents me and the 20-40% of jewish conservatives and moderates who are more often these days independents and of that group maybe 15-20% republicans at best. This is not going to change, even with tokens like Eric Cantor who do not make the case for conservative jews to see the GOP favorably. So, Don has his information off a bit me thinks, a few very Liberal jews have an awful lot of influence and control much of the left-stream media.

        This jew is sick of this ugly left stream media BS targeting conservatives.. and I aint alone. Jeff Schapiro’s conversation with Mark Warner about the Affordable Care Act is dishonest and sadly will demonstrate that the media cannot be trusted in our time to report the facts in an unbiased manner.

        • Turbo, why are you even going down this road? It doesn’t matter what your race or religion is, and bringing that up in this context is beyond distasteful. As soon as I hear nonsense like “X type of person controls too much of Y” my eyes glaze over, because nobody with a thinking brain should ever start a discussion that way.

    • Not Harry F. Byrd

      Holy hell WTF?

    • Britt Howard

      Race baiter! Go troll somewhere else.

    • David McKissack

      Well, Shapiro’s hands aren’t visible in that photo, so we can’t see if he’s wearing the secret Jew Media decoder ring (they keep the scoops among themselves!) but we’ll keep a careful watch, Don.

    • C. Richard

      What on earth is the point of this post

  • Jim Portugul

    This post looks like a Campaign ad to re-elect Sen. Warner, at least me,

    First off Sen. Warner did vote for for sequester. But didn’t the majority of the Republican Congressmen in Virginia?

    Rep. Rob Wittman did, and then has spent over 2 years telling us how bad the bill he voted for in 2011 is????i I have yet to receive an answer about why he was for S365, before he was against it???

    So did Cantor, Boehner, McConnell, Issa, Ryan, all vote for S365. In fact if I remember right, some called it the Boehner Sequester? Why is it that you only want to hold this again Sen. Warner?

    I personally wanted another sequester. The majority of Republicans and their leadership did not???? I could get no help from the Tea Party or Republican Party, or hate radio, in my efforts to get more sequestration?

    The Republicans could have stopped ObamaCare. All they had to do is come up with a plan of their own? My highly Conservative ranked Republican state Del. tells me about the rising cost of Medi-Caid and how we cannot afford Medi-Caid expansion. If that us true, why do the Republicans not develop a plan of their own and pass it in the House that they control ?

    Where is your plan to control health care costs? Projected before OC, 2009-2019 to be 166%, or 16.6 per year with cost of living running at less than 1%????

    What responsibly do you accept for the rule change that cost the Republicans the Governors race? What responsibly do you accept for the November 5 Republican Statewide purge?

    Or, as Republican Party Chairman do you feel that you do not have to be accountable for anything?

    I eagerly await your answer to my questions about what responsibilities your position assumes?

    You go right ahead and run against ObamaCare, with no plan of your own.
    Why do you do this? Simple. The Republicans have nothing of their own to run on, nothing.

    See you in November!

    • Eric McGrane

      There have been many, multiple GOP alternatives to Obamacare offered. Many.

      The fact that you don’t know this pretty much indicates that you’re not qualified to comment on the subject, and that you consume your “news” only through the filter of leftward-leaning outlets. Free your mind.

      • Jim Portugul

        If the Republicans had an alternative, and they control the House, then why do they not pass their alternative and sent it to the Senate?

        Their only alternative is a continuation of the double digit increases in the cost if health care.

        A link, or a piece of paper is not an alternative, just as OC was nothing until signed by the President.

        • Eric McGrane

          Ok, thanks for admitting that there were GOP alternatives. We’re making progress.

  • Alex70

    friends, apparently you’ve decided to erase Jim Portugal’s contributions from
    your blog. You’re certainly within your rights to do so.

    Portugal had strong views, but they—in my opinion—were in no way as offensive
    as some of the comments right here evoking The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

    And you chose not to ban contributors
    who seemed unhinged enough to commit violence in response to Mr. Kenney’s
    rabble-rousing over the alleged affair at the Fairfax courthouse. Recall this
    gem: “And once again a bottom-feeding lib is defending another
    violent-ass democrat and it wouldn’t have taken a brigade to beat that old
    cocksucker’s ass. I can guarantee you that I wouldn’t have sat by an let some
    liberal prick push me around like that and if anyone thinks he’s a
    “toughguy” it’s this old pussy trying to push around a kid. The
    hypocrisy of the left is beyond parody”.

    I see that you erased not only two of
    Mr. Portugal’s completely innocous comments in response to Chairman Mullins’s
    commentary, but that you chose to expunge ALL of Mr. Portugal’s comments on
    previous BD postings. It sort of reminds me of Stalin writing Trotsky out of
    Soviet history or Kim Jong Un writing his
    uncle out of North Korean history.

    a big fan of the romantic notion of the marketplace of ideas. Every year I
    share with my students this quote from John Milton’s Areopagitica: “Though all the winds of doctrine were let loose to play upon the earth, so
    Truth be in the field, we do injuriously, by licensing and prohibiting, to
    misdoubt her strength. Let her and Falsehood grapple; who ever knew Truth put
    to the worse, in a free and open encounter?”

    I end my participation in your blog.
    You were very generous to have let me air my contrary views on Bearing Drift over the
    past several months. And I appreciate the perspectives you shared with me.

    Have a nice day.

    Best wishes,

    Alex Leidholdt


    • Turbocohen

      Alex, many who blog here have been whacked for daring to comment on Blue Virginia. BD is fat more tolerant of opposing views but when it turns that ugly and someone hides behind ip gimmicks the admins have a responsibility to maintain the character and integrity of their journalism and the comment sections. Wish you well..

  • Doug Brown

    Both Gillespie and Warner are insiders in the Immigration money game being played by both parties in this country. Virginia should be ashamed of itself for who it just elected. I would like to encourage all Republicans and Conservatives to consider a ‘Franciscan’ strategy (Pope Francis) get involved in Democratic politics. Conservatives have no leaders , you are going to have to start from the bottom up. Might as well as have fun and mess with the political charlatans from both parties who only standard of public service is ‘what’s in their wallet.’

  • DavidH

    I know one important credential of Mark Warner’s: he’s one of NSA’s yes-men on the Senate Intelligence Committee.

  • our two declared candidates, Howie Lind and Shak Hill — both of whom would make a far better U.S. Senator than Mark Warner

    The credibility of the rest of this article is now dead.

  • C. Richard

    The GOP field for Senate is so limited it’s difficult to imagine anyone a viable, electable alternative to Warner. The ACA will not be as poignant an issue when it comes time to elect VA’s senior senator next year so I don’t really see it being that decisive of an subject. Gillespie would be a great Republican candidate, but Democrats can and WILL do a much much (read MUCH) better job than Cucc’s campaign did (against TMac) capitalizing on the fact that he is a Washington capitalist insider whose job his entire career has been to further GOP principles – that person will not be elected Senator against Warner, someone with such large crossover appeal. A RNC chairman’s campaign goes to die in Va. against Warner, I’m just not sure how a campaign would be winnable.

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