• Del. Jason Miyares: Improving the Economy is Job One for the House GOP

    Remarks as prepared for delivery:

    “Hi, I’m Delegate Jason Miyares from Virginia Beach, and it is an honor to represent her citizens in the Virginia House of Delegates.

    As Virginians we are heirs to one of the noblest experiment in self-government known to man and on January 13th we continued that tradition with the beginning of another Session of the Virginia General Assembly.

    It’s tough times economically for Virginia, and we are falling further and further behind in the creation of good paying jobs for working families. Too many Virginians feel that they are being left behind; stagnant wages, a disappearing middle class, and an economy that works against them rather than for them.

    It is clear the policies of the Obama Administration of too much taxation, too much litigation and too much regulation are choking the life out of Virginia small business owners, entrepreneurs and families. Governor McAuliffe likes to say that our economy is booming. I wish that were true.. In 2014, Virginia’s economy registered zero economic growth, which put us 48th in the United States.

    Here is the good news, Republicans are leading the charge in providing common-sense, real solutions to help Virginians and get our economy moving again. Here is an update of some of the priorities that Republicans will be working on this year.  Our #1 focus is creating the policies that will unleash the greatest job creating engine the world has ever seen…. The American Entrepreneur.

    That’s why we’re working hard to encourage job growth, protect small businesses, continue to reform our regulatory process, and focus on workforce development.

    Majority Leader Kirk Cox has introduced innovative legislation to create Go Virginia, a regional economic development collaborative that will bring all of the leaders in regions across Virginia together to focus on economic development. Our efforts are stronger when business and community leaders work with our localities to recruit and retain jobs in the Commonwealth.

    Small businesses are the backbone of our economy. That is why several measures have been introduced to help protect them. Delegate Richard Bell has introduced a resolution to enshrine our right to work status in the Constitution. Delegate Chris Head has introduced a bill that would protect franchises from big labor trying to unionize their employees. And Delegate Kathy Byron has introduced a measure that would allow small employers to keep their current health plans, and not face drastic hikes from Obamacare.

    We continue to make progress on reforming our regulatory process. Far too many are affected by burdensome regulations that end up costing thousands of dollars. This year, Delegates Ransone, Head, and Leftwich have all introduced measures that would bring much needed change to the regulatory process in Virginia, which includes requiring cumulative economic statements on all new proposed regulations.

    In the area of workforce development, Del. Byron has a proposal to credential workforce training programs, making it easier for individuals looking for work to obtain the skills necessary for the 21st century job market.

    We are also focusing on creating new opportunities for all of our citizens. I have introduced legislation that would create a commission to study aspiring and diverse communities. As a Cuban-American, I understand the need to make sure all of our citizens have the means necessary for economic success in our great Commonwealth.

    Over the next 60 days, Republicans in the General Assembly will be working hard to make life easier for Virginia families. But we can’t do it alone. We need to hear from you, so please don’t hesitate to reach out to your representatives and share your thoughts on important issues to you.

    On behalf of the Republican caucus, thanks for watching and have a great weekend.”
  • Memo: Hillary Clinton’s Virginia Email Problem

    MEMO

    To: Interested Parties
    From: John Findlay, Executive Director
    Re: Hillary’s Virginia Email Problem
    Date: January 20, 2016

    By now you’ve all seen the latest report from the Inspector General – Hillary Clinton’s insecure home-brew email account at one time contained materials that were part of Special Access Programs, the most secret of all top secret U.S. intelligence programs.

    Handling these highly-sensitive materials in such an insecure way is a massive problem for Hillary in Virginia, and not just because of the likely Federal charges that will be levied against her.

    Virginia is home to more military retirees than any other state in the union, all of whom have had the urgency of operational security drilled into them from their first weeks at boot camp.

    Said simply, Virginia veterans who have spent their entire lives handling classified information with care – and with the legal consequences of failure drilled into them – will not take kindly to Hillary’s lackadaisical attitude toward national security.

    It’s a disqualifying failure on her part, according to Del. Rich Anderson, R-Woodbridge, an Air Force veteran:

    “With today’s disclosure that federal investigators found ‘Special Access Program’ (SAP) material on the unsecured private email server of Hillary Clinton, the former Secretary of State has demonstrated a fatal character flaw that renders her permanently ineligible for any position of public trust or responsibility. Because SAP material is beyond the classification level of Top Secret, Ms. Clinton’s misconduct has caused, in the words of federal classification rules, “exceptionally grave damage to the national security of the United States.”

    “As a retired senior Air Force officer who in recent years had access to SAP-level documents and information, I cannot over-emphasize the lasting damage that Ms. Clinton’s misconduct has had on national security. Uniformed members of America’s armed forces who have access to sensitive and classified national security information know full well their responsibilities for protecting the nation’s secrets. No excuse or explanation offered by Ms. Clinton or her apologists can lessen the risk that she has caused to methods and sources of national intelligence or to the lives of American patriots who risk all to defend our nation.”

    Ms. Clinton’s disregard for the national security for her own political advantage or gain makes it indisputably clear that she is forever disqualified to serve as President or Commander in Chief.”

    Around Virginia, news of Hillary’s mishandling of classified information is being met with disgust and anger by those who wore the uniform.

    Bob Watson retired from the Army after 25 years of service as intelligence officer at the rank of Colonel. He agrees that Hillary’s lapses are simply inexcusable:

    “The disclosure by Intelligence Community Inspector General Charles McCullough that Hillary Clinton retained information on her personal email server exceeding the Top Secret level disqualifies her to be the next Commander-in-Chief. The potential damage to our national security directly impacts our men and women in uniform, all of whom place their lives on the line every day for our nation. ”

    “Members of the armed forces who handle classified information are taught that their number one priority is to protect that information. Sacrificing the security of classified information for the sake of personal convenience is strictly forbidden. Service members who handled much less sensitive information in far less damaging ways were prosecuted and dishonorably discharged from the military.”

    “Our men and women in uniform do not deserve a leader who flagrantly violated national security regulations for the sake of personal convenience and entitlement. Hillary Clinton does not possess the integrity we demand in a Commander-in-Chief. Our Service Members deserve much better.”

    Hillary can spin all she wants. But the facts are clear, and people who worked with classified information know just how bad Hillary’s transgressions are. Even if Hillary somehow manages to escape an indictment, Virginia veterans know what she did.

    No amount of spin can change that. No claims of a “vast right wing conspiracy” can cover her failure in the eyes of veterans.

    And that is a serious problem.

  • Sen. Mark Obenshain: It’s Time for Charter Schools in Virginia

    Sen. Mark Obenshain, R-Harrisonburg, delivered this week’s Virginia Republican Address.

    Remarks as prepared for delivery:

    “Hello and welcome to the first installment of this year’s weekly Virginia Republican Address.
    I’m Senator Mark Obenshain of Harrisonburg, Co-Chairman of the Senate Republican Caucus.

     

    In his State of the Commonwealth Address this week, Governor McAuliffe said that Virginia ‘should invest in smart, innovative programs that get results for the students.’

     

    I agree with that statement. But, Governor McAuliffe failed to mention that Virginia is under-utilizing a successful, smart, innovative education reform: charter schools.

     

    Charter schools will provide Virginia’s parents with options for where their children attend school.

     

    They provide greater choice for parents and strong value for taxpayers.

     

    And, charter schools are already in working in other states, providing a quality education to over 2 million school-aged Americans.

     

    In Virginia, though, there’s been a lot of resistance to this innovation. As a result, our state consistently ranks near the bottom in both enrollment and in the number of charter schools.

     

    Because of resistance to this reform, Virginia has just nine charter schools in the entire state. For comparison, Maryland has more than five times as many and North Carolina has fourteen times the number of charter schools as Virginia.

     

    Education reform and innovation is flourishing, but Virginia is falling behind.
    We have an opportunity to fix that this year. During this session I am sponsoring legislation that would give you the opportunity to vote to amend the Constitution of Virginia to make it easier to establish public charter schools.

     

    Senate Joint Resolution 6 will put this issue directly to the voters in this November’s election. It would provide a new route to establishing public charter schools that would overcome the current hurdles. As a result, a lot of Virginia’s kids – and their parents – would have access to proven educational reforms that are already working in other states. And it won’t take away local control.

     

    Education is always a top priority of Republican legislators. And as champions of educational reform and innovation, we’ll keep fighting to ensure Virginia’s children get the best education available.

     

    I’m Senator Mark Obenshain, and I thank you for watching.”

     

  • RPV Statement on Congressman Scott Rigell

    Congressmen like Scott Rigell are hard to come by. Throughout his career, Scott Rigell wasn’t just committed to our shared conservative values, he has also been committed to improving our politics, and in so doing, improving our country.

    Scott has been a tireless advocate for Hampton Roads, especially our men and women in uniform. There’s no greater testament to his hard work than the number of Gold Star families who supported him during his 3 campaigns.

    Scott will be sorely missed in Virginia politics and we sincerely thank him for his service to our country and Commonwealth. We wish him all the best in his future endeavors.

  • Federal Court Rules in Favor of RPV and State Board of Elections on Statement of Affiliation

    The Executive Director of the Republican Party of Virginia, John Findlay, issued the following statement in regards to the decision today by the US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia to support the approval of the GOP Statement of Affiliation by the State Board of Elections:

    As we noted earlier yesterday, Political parties have a right to determine how they nominate the candidates who represent them. The Republican Party of Virginia has a duty to defend its First Amendment right to free association and we are very pleased that the Court has denied the preliminary injunction as we expected.

    This Statement of Affiliation isn’t about any one campaign or not welcoming more voters to the GOP Big Tent. We welcome all Virginians who want smaller, smarter government and a turn away from excessive government regulation in our tax code and in health care. John Findlay, Executive Director

     

  • McAuliffe’s Real Agenda: Elect Hillary Clinton

    — ‘First Friend’s’ agenda today is to help Hillary Clinton stave off a surging Sanders —

    RPV Chairman John Whitbeck issued the following statement following tonight’s State of the Commonwealth address:

    Terry McAuliffe’s entire agenda for 2016 consists of one item: secure Virgina’s 13 electoral votes for Hillary Clinton. Whether it’s out-of-left field attacks on the Second Amendment to secure Hillary’s left flank or more blatant cheerleading for Obamacare, the McAuliffe agenda is all Hillary, all the time.

    As socialist Bernie Sanders surges in Iowa and New Hampshire, Terry McAuliffe must create a ‘firewall’ for Hillary in Virginia. I look forward to watching Terry McAuliffe, Ralph Northam, Mark Herring and other Virginia Democrats lurch further and further to the left as they try to keep Hillary from feeling the Bern.John Whitbeck, RPV Chairman

  • Virginia GOP Defends Right to Conduct Its Nominating Processes in Court

    –RPV is a party to a lawsuit brought against SBE —

    The Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) issued the following statement from Chris Marston, General Counsel, regarding the pending lawsuit pertaining to the Republican Party of Virginia’s 2016 Nominating Process.

    Political parties have a right to determine how they nominate the candidates who represent them. That is the issue in today’s case and the Republican Party of Virginia has a duty to defend its First Amendment right to free association.

    The legal process is no substitute for the political process in setting the rules for a political party. The duly-constituted authorities of the Republican Party made a decision to require a statement of affiliation as a precondition to voting in the Presidential Primary, consistent with the Rules of the Republican Party adopted at our national convention, our own state party rules, and the laws of the Commonwealth. A court can not substitute the judgment of a few disgruntled litigants for our Party’s rules and process.

    This is not the first time that litigants have sued the Party to attempt to change its rules in court rather than through the Party’s democratic process. And it will not be the last. The Republican Party of Virginia will stand strong in defense of its First Amendment rights. This suit is not just about the March 1 Presidential Primary; it’s about a fundamental constitutional right.

    The State Board of Elections, with its two-to-one Democratic majority, recognizes these rights and, as we join them as defendants in this case, we will work together in bipartisan fashion to defend them.Chris Marston, General Counsel

  • PWC Democratic Chairman Harry Wiggins’ comments sexist and disrespectful

    The Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) and Prince William County Republican Committee (PWCRC) statement on PWC Democratic Party Chair Harry Wiggins’ sexist remarks in today’s Washington Post:

    Republican Party of Virginia Chairman John Whitbeck
    “Prince William County Democrats should be ashamed and outraged by the comments of Prince William Democrat Party Chair Harry Wiggins. Chairman Wiggins’ contention that Ruth Anderson will be a “puppet” for her husband is the most blatantly sexist attack since Democrat John Foust said Barbara Comstock had never had a real job.”

    Prince William County Republican Committee Chairman Bill Card
    “Ruth Anderson’s record of military service and professional accomplishment speaks for itself. Apparently Chairman Wiggins believes that woman with husbands in elected office are not qualified to hold elected office themselves.”

    This could not have come at a worse time for Virginia Democrats, as they attempt to explain away Hillary Clinton’s treatment of woman who were victimized by her husband. Chairman Wiggins should apologize immediately and Democrat Party of Virginia Chair Susan Swecker must condemn his comments publicly at once.

  • Chairman Whitbeck: From Obama to Herring, Democrat Gun Actions are All Politics

    —  No Democratic proposals enacted in past months would have stopped any shootings —
    RPV Chairman John Whitbeck issued the following statement today after President Obama’s remarks:

    It’s no coincidence that President Obama’s actions today would not have prevented a single shooting. Democrats have long since conceded the point that their efforts at gun control have no connection to actual crimes.

    Mark Herring still can’t tell us what crimes were committed by the concealed carry permit holders he has unilaterally decided to turn into criminals later this year, and Terry McAuliffe can’t point to a single crime that would have been prevented by his ’emergency’ gun regulations.
    These actions aren’t designed to stop gun violence. They’re designed to shore up Hillary Clinton’s far left base, and keep the campaign donations from anti-gun zealots like Michael Bloomberg coming. Our  Commonwealth and our country deserve better. But of course, that’s what Democrats like Mark Herring, Terry McAuliffe, and Hillary Clinton want.Chairman John Whitbeck
  • Statement of RPV Chairman John Whitbeck on Herring Concealed Carry Actions

    —  Actions are designed to make it more difficult for Virginians to exercise their rights —

    Chairman John Whitbeck issued the following statement:

    Today’s action is further proof that Democrats in Virginia have declared war on the Second Amendment. Mark Herring’s unilateral action sets the stage for other states to end their recognition of Virginia permits and make it much harder for law abiding citizens to exercise their constitutional rights.

    But of course, that’s what Democrats like Mark Herring, Terry McAuliffe and Hillary Clinton want. Chairman John Whitbeck

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