• The Real McAuliffe Record on Jobs: Abysmal

    Governor McAuliffe talks a great deal about how his administration is bringing jobs to Virginia.

    The reality, though, is something quite different.  From January 2014 through January 2016 – the last month for which state statistics are available, Virginia added just 50,598 jobs. During the same period four years ago, Virginia added nearly 148,000 new jobs.

    As the Richmond Times Dispatch noted last week, Governor McAuliffe is taking credit where credit isn’t due. From the editorial:

    “…If governors should take the credit for new jobs created, then they also should bear the blame for old jobs destroyed. The past few months have witnessed several large layoff announcements: 190 at Owens & Minor, more than 200 at Altria, several hundred more at Newport News Shipbuilding, and so on.”

    “The other day The Winchester Star even reported that “a human resources company (TalentWise) that plans to close a local operations center received more than $45,000 in state funds months before announcing the shutdown.”

    “Funny: The governor’s press office hasn’t said a peep about any of that.”

    RPV Chairman John Whitbeck issued the following statement:

    “It’s what we’ve come to expect from the McAuliffe-Clinton-Northam team: lots of talk and  raft of celebratory press releases, but very little substance. For many announcements made by the McAuliffe Administration, there’s also an unheralded layoff notice filed. Virginia’s economy, like the rest of the nation, has been hobbled by President Obama’s liberal policies – the same policies Hillary Clinton says she’ll continue if elected president.”

    “We need economic development with substance, not unfulfilled promises. Virginians want an economy that can travel faster than 35 miles per hour and isn’t held together with glue, so to speak. That’s why Virginians are going to elect a Republican president in November.”

  • Chairman Whitbeck: Americans Deserve a Voice in SCOTUS Appointment

    RPV Chairman John Whitbeck issued the following statement:

    “I’m disappointed that President Obama, Sen. Mark Warner and Sen. Tim Kaine are working to deny the American people a voice in the direction the Supreme Court. When voters head to the polls in just a few months, they will have a unique opportunity to determine the direction the court will take for the foreseeable future.”

    “Obama, Warner, Kaine, and other Democrats seek to disregard 80 years of precedent by attempting to nominate and confirm a Supreme Court justice during a presidential election year. Democrats should observe the Biden Rule, and let the voters have their say. Our fellow citizens deserve no less.”
  • Statement from Chairman John Whitbeck in response to quotes in The Virginian-Pilot

    The Republican Party of Virginia strongly condemns the use of quotes from Joseph Stalin to describe anything having to do with the 2016 presidential campaign. Stalin is one of the most deviant and evil men in world history and his statements have no place in American political discourse.

    Let’s be realistic though, the Republican process to nominate our presidential candidate is transparent and fair compared to that of the Democrat Party who essentially rig every presidential nomination by subverting the will of the voters using Super Delegates.John Whitbeck, RPV Chairman

  • Virginia GOP Announces Gov. Jim Gilmore as Chairman of 2016 ‘Team Virginia’ Field Program

    The Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) announced today that Governor Jim Gilmore will be the Chairman of its 2016 “Team Virginia” field program. Team Virginia is the Party’s grassroots efforts in partnership with the Republican National Committee, formerly known as the “Victory” program.

    Team Virginia isn’t the traditional GOP field effort. We’ve learned that it takes relationships with people voters know and trust to get them out to the polls. Team Virginia will see neighborhood-based, Republican teams talking to their own friends and neighbors in every corner of the Commonwealth. Whether it’s Lee County or Alexandria, Winchester or Virginia Beach, we’re building groups of local volunteers to reach out to their own communities.

    Republicans already have a historic number of people on the ground working to win in 2016. Over the coming weeks, those numbers will grow rapidly as we build out regional teams into neighborhood teams.

    But Team Virginia isn’t just about identifying, persuading and turning out voters, it is also a communications and social media plan and an aggressive voter registration effort – building the long-term, neighborhood-level infrastructure we need to win in 2016, 2017, and beyond.

    “We are very pleased that Gov. Gilmore has agreed to be the Chairman of our field program,” said RPV Chairman John Whitbeck. “Team Virginia is the largest and most aggressive plan in the history of the RPV. We will have hundreds of staffers across the Commonwealth working out of an unprecedented number of field offices.”

    “We are also very proud that almost all of the staff we employ will have been hired from Virginia. Nobody knows better how to win in our Commonwealth than the local activists in the various geographic regions around our state. Having a former Governor who has won multiple state-wide races is a big boost to Team Virginia. We really appreciate the Governor’s willingness to serve.”

    “This campaign makes me – and all of us – aware of the challenges and opportunities that are ahead for our country,” said Governor Gilmore. “I look forward to working with Chairman Whitbeck and the entire GOP team to defeat Hilliary Clinton and Bernie Sanders and to delivering the vote for our Republican ticket in November.”

    Team Virginia staffers were already on the ground in the 2015 elections and were a big part of the RPV’s success in help hold the Republican majorities in the State Senate and House of Delegates.

  • Sen. Amanda Chase: Engaged Citizens are the Key to Good Government

    Sen. Amanda Chase, R-Chesterfield, delivered this week’s Virginia Republican Address.

    Remarks as prepared for delivery:

    “Hello, I’m Senator Amanda Chase, of Virginia’s 11th Senatorial District, which includes most of Chesterfield County, all of Amelia County and the City of Colonial Heights.

    This is my first session as a State Senator and my two top priorities are to be accessible and approachable to my constituents. In an effort to be accessible, I co-founded the Virginia Transparency Caucus this session. The purpose of this caucus is to focus on bringing the government to the people and making it more accessible.

    I know before I got into politics, one of my frustrations, as a mom of 4 children and a small business owner, was that I was very busy and didn’t have time to go to the General Assembly and lobby on issues that were important to me, and that left me feeling disconnected from my government.

    The Virginia Transparency Caucus encourages its members to agree to record the committee and subcommittee meetings where their bills are heard as a means of providing more information to constituents. Many times, the majority of work on legislation is done in committee, not on the Senate floor. I believe that by providing this perspective to constituents, it not only keeps them better informed but encourages their participating in the process.

    My desire is to create an atmosphere of transparency where citizens can easily see what goes on in all committee and subcommittee meetings during session and even access past archives of meetings, so that the everyday average citizen can come home after a hard day at work and see what happened to a bill that they are interested in and follow that bill through the legislative process.

    Also, in an effort to provide a three-dimensional perspective as to what’s going on in the Senate, I regularly post on my Facebook page to let constituents know what issues we are considering in committee and on the floor. I have often asked for their feedback as I’m preparing to vote on legislation and I love to interact with constituents in this way.

    I encourage you to follow your elected officials on Facebook and engage with us through emails, phone calls and visits. You the people elected us to represent you in the General Assembly, and I believe that needs to be an ongoing conversation. So please reach out to us with your concerns, and we will do our best to keep you as informed as possible.

    I’m Senator Amanda Chase. Thank you for watching and have a great weekend.”

  • More than 1,000,000 Virginia GOP Voters Smash Record

    RPV Chairman John Whitbeck issued the following statement following the GOP Super Tuesday Primary in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

    This was a truly amazing night in Virginia. We smashed our previous GOP record and the Democrats in 2008 for primary turnout. With votes still being counted, we have surpassed 1,000,000 GOP voters. The enthusiasm for the GOP in Virginia is overshadowing the Democrats here and across the Country.

    We congratulate Donald Trump on his victory tonight, as well as Senator Rubio, Senator Cruz, Governor Kasich and Dr. Carson for running great campaigns in the Commonwealth.

    We are another step closer to finding out who our eventual nominee will be. As with the other Super Tuesday states, Virginia has proportional distribution of our delegates, subject to change, as of 9:30 pm election night we project the following:

    Donald Trump           17 delegates
    Marco Rubio              16 delegates
    Ted Cruz                       8 delegates
    John Kasich                   5 delegates
    Ben Carson                   3 delegates

    Virginia is the key to winning the White House and our candidates showed tonight that whomever is our nominee has what it takes to win our Commonwealth in November.John Whitbeck, RPV Chairman


  • Statement from Chairman John Whitbeck on Clinton’s victory in Virginia:

    It is not surprising that Hillary Clinton has prevailed in the Commonwealth. The battle with Bernie Sanders was significantly more difficult than anticipated and the amount of money and effort put into Virginia by Clinton and her leading cheerleader Terry McAuliffe proves that she has real problems convincing voters she is trustworthy and the right leader for this Country. John Whitbeck, RPV Chairman
  • Del. Chris Stolle: Republicans Propose a Conservative, Responsible Biennial Budget

    Del. Chris Stolle, R-Virginia Beach, delivered this week’s Virginia Republican Address.

    Remarks as prepared for delivery:

    “Hello, I am Delegate Chris Stolle and I represent the 83rd District in the Virginia House of Delegates. It is a privilege to serve as a member of the oldest continuing operating legislature in the western hemisphere.

    As you know, this is the year that the General Assembly adopts a two year state budget. As a member of the House Appropriations Committee, we have been hard at work on finalizing our proposal to fund the government.

    This past week, the House unveiled its budget proposal. Our budget is a conservative, responsible, and structurally balanced budget that invests in the core functions of government while protecting precious taxpayer resources. Our budget does not include any tax or fee increases, and when adjusted for population and inflation, general fund spending has decreased by 5 percent over the last ten years. Our budget deposits 605 million dollars in the state’s rainy day fund, saving our taxpayers resources should times get tough again.

    Our budget makes significant investments into K-12 education. The proposed funding exceeds the Governor’s recommendations by nearly $70 million. We have proposed a 2 percent pay raise for teachers. Most notably though, is our plan to send $272 million of lottery proceeds back to the localities with no local match required and no mandate on how the money must be spent. Our K-12 education budget provides localities with much needed flexibility and relief in providing for our children’s education.

    We also make significant investments into higher education. Our budget builds on our efforts to make college more affordable for Virginia students and families. We increase support for in-state students and hold tuition increases at no more than 3 percent.

    We recognize that Virginia’s economic growth still lags behind the national average. The importance of good paying, private sector jobs remains our primary focus. That is why our budget funds strategic and targeted investments in economic development, while promoting increased accountability and legislative oversight. One of the new initiatives that will help us do this is GO Virginia, a regional economic development initiative that brings business and education leaders together to help vet economic development projects.

    We continue to look for conservative solutions and make key investments into strengthening our healthcare safety net. We understand the importance of taking care of our neighbors, and that is why our budget includes $28.9 dollars in new funding for substance abuse treatment, increasing eligibility for the mentally ill, and creating additional developmental disability waiver slots to address the critical waiting list for our most vulnerable citizens.

    While we may have completed work on our budget and have passed the House version, we still have a long way to go. Now, House and Senate negotiators go in to conference to work out the differences between the two budgets. I encourage you to stay connected with your representatives throughout this process to have your voice heard. Government works best when its citizens are actively engaged and involved.

    I’m Delegate Chris Stolle. Thanks for watching, and have a great weekend.”

  • Sen. Bill DeSteph: Virginia Republicans are Paving the Way for the Future of Driving.

    Remarks as prepared for delivery:

    “Hi, I’m Senator Bill DeSteph, and I represent the 8th Senatorial District, which includes the majority of Virginia Beach.During this General Assembly session, we’re working on significant issues facing the Commonwealth, including the budget, education, and the Second Amendment.

    But we’re also working on legislation that will pave the way for the future of transportation in Virginia.Senate Bill 286 ensures that Virginia consumers can purchase and have access to engaged driving technologies that promote advanced safety standard.

    Autonomous vehicles mean jobs to Virginia. Virginia is the first state to allow the testing and acceptance of autonomous vehicles on the road today.This is an evolutionary technology, not revolutionary technology, reflecting the steady improvement of automotive safety.

    In the 1970s, we had cruise control. Next came lane assist, and then collision detection. Then came dynamic cruise control, a great technology that lets you drive from Virginia Beach to Richmond without touching the gas or the brakes. When the car in front of you starts, you start. When it stops, you stop.

    All of these technologies allow for increased safety and help prevent distracted driving.Some of the questions surrounding these technologies are “Who will be held liable with an accident?” This is handled like insurance. Coverage is on the car not on the driver.

    Higher education institutions like Virginia Tech and technology companies all around the Commonwealth are working together to make this future a reality. We should see the roll out of these vehicles in late 2017 or early 2018. We’re creating the laws to allow this technology in Virginia over the next 20 years.

    Virginia has always been at the vanguard of technology. Just a few years ago the Internet was a novelty. Now 70 percent of the world’s data flows through Northern Virginia every second of every day.

    With bills like SB 286, Virginia will continue to be a global leader by allowing evolutionary technologies. Thanks to our efforts, the Commonwealth is prepared to accept these vehicles.

    I’m Senator Bill DeSteph. Thanks for watching, and have a great weekend.”
  • Chairman Whitbeck: “Justice Scalia’s Legacy Will Last Forever”

    RPV Chairman John Whitbeck issued the following statement on the passing of Justice Antonin Scalia:
    Many Americans have come and gone from the Supreme Court bench, but few have left a legacy as rich and important as Justice Scalia. A staunch defender of the Constitution, Justice Scalia’s opinions often served as the bright line marking the edge where erosion of our rights would be allowed to progress no further. Even in cases where he was not a member of the majority, Justice Scalia’s powerful dissents planted the seeds for future generations to discover the clear voice of limited government. His legacy will last forever.

    Our thoughts and prayers are with his family. Justice Scalia will be sorely missed.John Whitbeck, RPV Chairman

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