ICYMI: Bearing Drift’s Weekend Roundup

It’s the weekend and time to catch up with all the great Bearing Drift posts you may have missed. Pour yourself a cup of coffee and enjoy the weekend roundup:

“The Score: 2018 General Assembly, Medicaid Expansion, Aftermath of Parkland, FL, Shooting” podcast with guest host J.R. Hoeft

Mountains, Maple Syrup, Sheep … 2018 Highland Maple Festival by Lynn R. Mitchell

McGuire: The Trump Trade War Begins Op-Ed by D.J. McGuire

Speaker Cox Announces House Select Committee on School Safety by Lynn R. Mitchell

Bert Mizusawa to Challenge Tim Kaine for U.S. Senate by Lynn R. Mitchell

Godbey: Convention or Silenced Majority by Chris Godbey

Former RNC Chair Michael Steele Bashed at CPAC, Not Invited to GOP’s ‘Black Republican Trailblazers’ Award Dinner by Lynn R. Mitchell

Daily U.S. House schedules are also listed when they are in session. For all the latest posts all the time check out Bearing Drift Latest News.

  • old_redneck

    Here’s something else you may have missed: The GOP-controlled General Assembly session was a TOTAL FAIL, complete bust. Did nothing of any consequence, yet, tried to blame it on Democrats. Won’t work.

    Republicans can pretend all they want that the 2018 Virginia General Assembly session was a success, but of course we know that it was, in fact, a nearly complete failure.

    Let’s look at a list of necessary legislation that’s been around for years and see how we did.

    In sum, this session was almost a complete debacle, with a few exceptions (e.g., Metro funding) — no progressive or environmental legislation to speak of, no Medicaid expansion so far, no budget so far.

    Medicaid expansion, obviously. In fact, there are at least 400,000 reasons to do so, with essentially none not to do so. NOTHING YET…DUE TO GOP OPPOSITION

    No-excuse absentee voting, such as Sen. Janet Howell’s bill that “Allows qualified voters to vote absentee in person without providing an excuse for not being able to vote in person on election day.” Also see Sen. Adam Ebbin’s SB 1002 on this subject. FAILED DUE TO GOP OPPOSITION

    Make it a lot easier to vote, NOT harder to vote. For instance, see this bill by Del. Rip Sullivan, which “Adds to the list of acceptable forms of voter identification a valid student photo identification card issued by any institution of higher education located in any other state or territory of the United States.” FAILED DUE TO GOP OPPOSITION

    Raise the minimum wage, as in this bill by Del. Sam Rasoul, “from its current federally mandated level of $7.25 per hour to $10.00 per hour effective July 1, 201[8], to $12.50 per hour effective July 1, 20[20], and to $15.00 per hour effective July 1, 20[22].” Also see Sen. Rosalyn Dance’s SB 978 on this subject. FAILED DUE TO GOP OPPOSITION

    Limit firearms “magazines” to 10 rounds; see this bill by Sen. Dave Marsden,
    which “Prohibits any person from selling, bartering, or transferring a firearms magazine designed to hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition.” FAILED DUE TO GOP OPPPOSITION

    Enact universal background checks for gun purchases in Virginia. FAILED DUE TO GOP OPPOSITION

    Do what Massachusetts did recently and ban so-called “bump stocks.” FAILED DUE TO GOP OPPOSITION

    Reinstate “one handgun a month” limits, as per this bill by Del. Marcus Simon (” Prohibits individuals who are not licensed firearms dealers from purchasing more than one handgun in a 30-day period and establishes such an offense as a Class 1 misdemeanor.”) FAILED DUE TO GOP OPPOSITION

    Raise Virginia’s pathetically low (50th in the nation) cigarette tax of just 30 cents per pack to at least the national average ($1.72 per pack). DIDN’T GET ANYWHERE IN THE GOP-CONTROLLED GENERAL ASSEMBLY.

    Raise the felony threshold for “amount of money taken or value of goods or chattel taken at which the crime rises from petit larceny to grand larceny” from the ridiculously low $200 to $1,000 or more. THE FELONY THRESHOLD WAS RAISED, BUT ONLY TO $500 THANKS TO GOP OBSTINANCE

    Restrict predatory lending; Sen. Scott Surovell introduced four bills that would “protect financially vulnerable Virginians from predatory lending practices by capping interest rates on largely unregulated consumer finance loans, close a loophole that title lenders could use to make predatory loans, prohibit car title and consumer finance lenders from co-locating, and enhancing reporting requirements for consumer finance lenders that co-locate with car title lenders.” FAILED DUE TO GOP OPPOSITION

    Take the lead on the booming business of energy storage; see Del. Patrick Hope’s bill, for instance, that “Establishes the Virginia Energy Storage Consortium as a political subdivision of the Commonwealth for the purpose of
    positioning the Commonwealth as a leader in research, development,
    commercialization, manufacturing, and deployment of energy storage
    technology.” NO PROGRESS ON THIS ONE.

    And there are easily another 25 – 30 examples of reasonable legislation that the ALEC-, big-money-, Koch-brothers controlled Republicans killed.

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