February 2008

BREAKING NEWS! NVTA Declared Null and Void by State Supremes!

By Loudoun Insider

Luckily I got this inside tip just before I left for the day. The Virginia Supreme Court has unanimously declared the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority unconstitutional. I don’t have any details, but apparently this will throw the General Assembly into a meltdown in its last week. This is going to be a mess!

INOVA and the GOBN

By Loudoun Insider

As the court case between HCA and INOVA approaches, the Good Old Boy Network (GOBN) is getting hysterical. It may seem a little far fetched to believe that a local hospital is so tied into the local GOBN, but trust me it is an integral cog in the local machine. If you recall, INOVA was right at the heart of the Dulles South and Ridgewater Park rezoning controversies (as was George Mason University by the way). INOVA sees ongoing rapid growth as a pathway to ongoing rapid growth in revenues and profits, taxpayers be damned, and the hell if they’re going to share any of it with evil HCA.

I know HCA has its share of corporate problems, but INOVA is no saint either. I can tell you one thing, from my perspective any non-profit that has Larry Beerman and John Ryan (puppet master father of Jack) on its board can’t be too squeaky clean. Apparently INOVA is no longer using lawyer Doug Fleming for its local lobbying efforts, now that his long-time friend Bruce Tulloch is no longer on the board of supervisors. I’ve now heard that INOVA’s efforts have gone bipartisan, with Mark Herring at the helm, who apparently has done legal work for them as well.

The simple fact that the past BOS approved 86 out of 87 Special Exceptions filed, with HCA mysteriously being the only one denied, speaks volumes about the reach of INOVA. Their ad this past weekend in the WaPo Loudoun Extra raised my eyebrows, and Ric James at Hooda Thunk dissects it here. I though Republicans are all for open markets and competition? Loudoun’s healthcare system will absolutely not collapse should HCA enter the marketplace. To insinuate otherwise is shameful to the extreme.

UPDATE:Â Excellent column on the monopoly-mongering of INOVA in today’s WaPo by Steve Pearlstein (link here).

Right On, Frank Holtz

By Loudoun Insider

Frank Holtz, who is running for Leesburg Town Council (see Leesburg Today article about kick-off), wrote a great letter to the editor printed in yesterday’s Washington Post Loudoun Extra (link here). For all those who say that all illegal immigrants are perfect hard working law abiding citizens, Holtz recounts several recent notable crimes committed in the Leesburg-Loudoun community by illegals, including murder, prostitution, and large-scale drug trafficking. That drug case involved drugs disguised as candy of all things!Â

I realize that the vast majority of illegal immigrants are basically good hearted people, but this points out all too well why we absolutely must have control over our borders. We must know who is coming into this country and have some kind of record of those who remain. Allowing the bad apples to roam unencumbered and unregistered makes us all less safe – legal and illegal citizens. Frank Holtz definitely deserves a seat on the Leesburg council, and will certainly be a voice for law and order.

The “L” Word

By VA Blogger

Though the McCain campaign’s response to the embarrassing thin attempted NYT hit piece was perfect–and may have actually allowed McCain to gain ground instead of lose ground–McCain’s connection to several lobbyists was dramatically exposed as blatant hypocrisy from a man who decries lobbying and special interests.

Except that it wasn’t.

(more…)

Blogging and Ethics Panel

By Too Conservative

Ben at NLS and Charles from Two Conservatives were on a panel last week that discussed ethics.

Check it out here. It’s worth a watch.

Tate Defense Shaking Things Up

By Loudoun Insider

Ed MacMahon, Mark Tate’s attorney, filed a bunch of attention grabbing motions in Tate’s defense yesterday, as reported by Garren Shipley at Northern Virginia Daily (link here). I’ve heard that Shipley has been under big time pressure from connected folks to drop his pursuit of this information, but apparently he is undeterred. Good for him.

Three attorneys are subjects of motions to subpoena them - Jim Plowman, Jill Vogel, and Whit Robinson. Others include Laurie Letourneau and Robin DeJarnette, and a bunch of candidates who also had mistakes on their campaign finance filings but faced no prosecution, including Patricia Phillips, Chuck Caputo, Bruce Roemmelt and others. I’m surprised none of the Loudoun supervisor candidates weren’t on that list, since we all know how many mistakes were made there.

I am thoroughly convinced that this was a political hit job and a clear case of selective prosecution, as alleged by the Tate defense. I still give Jill Vogel the benefit of the doubt as to her direct involvement in it, but there is no doubt that her supporters sought to damage Tate just before the primary, in decidedly unsavory ways.Â

Republican State Central Committee member Kate Gunter filed an affadavit that says it all in my opinion. In describing a call from Robin DeJarnette, director of VPAC, who leaked the news of Tate’s imminent indictment, she says “I asked her why they were trying to harm Mr. Tate. Ms. DeJarnette stated as follows: “We took the soft approach at first and had people Mark trusts ask him to step down and he refused. Now, Mark will be indicted for embezzlement and perjury in the next two weeks. Then Mark is going to jail.” I was shocked by these comments”.

This really really stinks. As I’ve said many times, if Tate has done anything illegal he certainly needs to suffer the consequences, but those consequences must be evenly applied across the board. As we all know, those associated with the GOBN in Loudoun County NEVER have to face these types of consequences. This case demonstrates all too well what happens to those who buck the powers that be.

Mainstream Media Bias

By Loudoun Insider

As much as John McCain is liked by many in the MSM, there can be no doubt that they are largely in love with Barack Obama. McCain will be fighting an uphill battle for the hearts and minds of the MSM reporters and editors.

The current NY Times episode is symbolic of what McCain will be facing. The front page of the WaPo this morning was full of McCain criticism. The front page placement of these stories is absolutely not warranted by their subject matter, especially since Obama has not had anything close to the same treatment. At least it appears that this has brought many of the right wing pundits such as Limbaugh and Hannity back into defending instead of attacking McCain.

I’m also fascinated by the media attention placed on McCain’s wife. What’s the deal? The WaPo front page article is accompanied by a marginal profile of John with a straight on focus on his wife. The WaPo Style section has a front page feature on her as well. It appears they want to keep her in the limelight to bolster the unseemly insinuations of the NY Times hit job – “look at McCain’s wife -did he cheat on her with that evil lobbyist?” Obama’s wife has caused some controversy lately, but she’s invisible compared to Mrs. McCain. Let’s see how this plays out, but I’m not very optimistic. The Obama wave is going to be very difficult to hold back.

Predictions: Obama, Huckabee Win Texas

By Too Conservative

It will seal the deal for Obama and prolong Huckabee through North Carolina.

Thoughts?

Hillary is Done

By Loudoun Insider

Stick a fork in her, as they say. Obama has won ten in a row, almost all by huge margins. Even Not Larry Sabato, Hillary groupie extraordinaire, is now calling for Hillary to drop out of the race (link to post here). The most frightening comment in that thread was someone pitching Hillary for a Supreme Court slot – no way Obama would pull that trigger! Hillary may still think she has a chance at Ohio and Texas, but her poll numbers are plumetting nationwide and super delegate are moving en masse to Obama. The only way she makes any progress is to tear down Obama beyond repair. Thank God, we may finally be done with the Clintons in national politics, but I still wouldn’t put the selfish nuclear option past either of them. We’ll just have to wait and see.

On the Republican side, I know TC himself has worked very hard for Huckabee, but he has no chance to wrest the nomination away from McCain. If Hillary drops out soon, Huckabee needs to do the same to help McCain conserve energy and cash for the general.

Loudoun Town Elections Open Thread

By Loudoun Insider

I really don’t follow local town politics too much, although I know the contests can be quite spirited. Town elections will be held May 6, 2008. Leesburg of course is the biggest and most high profile venue, but Purcellville’s battle between Mayor Bob Lazarro and challenger Karl Phillips should get pretty testy. Feel free to put up your thoughts.