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Results tagged “Ken Cuccinelli”

November 1, 2013

The Virginian-Pilot reports, "A Virginian-Pilot analysis of Cuccinelli's office and campaign schedules for July, August and part of September suggests he has spent more time on the trail than behind his desk while earning a $150,000 annual state salary, plus health benefits for his nine-member family. According to the schedules, he was in his office seven of 22 work days in July, four of 22 days in August, and just three of nine the first two weeks of September. That equates to roughly 26 percent of the total work days over that period."

Progressive Point: Virginia's Attorney General should be focused on his job: protecting our families, enforcing the law, and advocating for consumers. Instead, Ken Cuccinelli has used the office to pursue ideological crusades, advise his big corporate donors in lawsuits against Virginia families, or to campaign for Governor. Cuccinelli's use of the Attorney General's office for political gain is as unethical as it is a waste of our taxpayer dollars.

Ken Cuccinelli's pursuit of an extreme ideological agenda has been at the expense of Virginia families. He's abused his power as Attorney General and misinterpreted the law to further his crusades against women's reproductive freedom, climate science, equal workplace protections, and much more. His office actively worked on behalf of one of his mega coal donors in a legal battle against Virginians. There's a reason Virginia has a tradition of Attorneys General resigning to run for Governor: using the office to wage a political campaign is unethical and a waste of taxpayer resources. Ken Cuccinelli hasn't worked for us as Attorney General, and its clear he won't work for Virginia in the future.

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  • Ken Cuccinelli's office has been helping a coal company in their court case against several Virginians. The coal company's parent company, Consol Energy, has given $100,000 to Attorney General Cuccinelli's campaign for governor. (WVTF, June 10, 2013)

  • The Virginia Board of Health bowed to pressure from Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli and reversed their decsision to grandfather in Virginia's 20 existing women's health clinics from the Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers Cuccinelli pushed. (Richmond Times-Dispatch, January 3, 2013)

  • In the summer of last year, Ken Cuccinelli compared his battle "to ban abortion rights to the battle to end slavery." (WJLA - VIDEO, March 19, 2013)

  • On Martin Luther King Day, Ken Cuccinelli compared "his fight against the federal requirement that birth control be offered with no copay by insurance plans to King's fight for equal rights for African Americans." (Talking Points Memo, Jan. 22, 2013)

  • "Cuccinelli suggested in a meeting of the Republican Attorney General Association that it would be difficult for the federal government to compel states to obey the ACA if they decided to ignore it as an act of civil disobedience. He cited state resistance to the Alien And Sedition Acts and the fugitive slave laws as a model." (Talking Points Memo, Mar. 27, 2013)

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Cuccinelli part time.jpg

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October 29, 2013

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports, "A hearing is set in Harrisonburg today on the lawsuit challenging Virginia's same-sex marriage ban. Lawyers for the two Shenandoah Valley couples who filed the lawsuit are asking a federal judge to certify the case as a class action representing all same-sex couples in the state... The plaintiffs claim Virginia's constitutional amendment prohibiting gay marriage and denying recognition of such unions sanctioned by other states violates the equal protection and due process clauses of the Constitution."

Progressive Point: Couples who make a commitment to care for each other for a lifetime should be treated equally under the law everywhere in America. Conservative politicians, like Ken Cuccinelli, are using the power of the state government to deny loving families equal rights and benefits. We need leaders who support an open and affirming Commonwealth where every Virginian is supported and protected regardless of whom they love.

All committed couples should be able to make a public pledge to take care of each other for a lifetime. All Virginians should be protected from workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Ken Cuccinelli's reprehensible use of the Attorney General's office, and our taxpayer dollars, to defend discrimination and regulate private behavior is downright offensive. He has placed his extreme ideology and political ambitions above ending workplace discrimination and ahead of Virginia families. We need leaders who support an open and affirming Commonwealth where every committed Virginia family is supported and protected regardless of whom they love.

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  • Ken Cuccinelli's Record on Equality:
    • Cuccinelli has done little to hide his animosity to Virginia's LGBT community, telling the Virginian Pilot, "homosexual acts..." are "intrinsically wrong. And I think in a natural law-based country it's appropriate to have policies that reflect that... They don't comport with natural law. I happen to think that it represents (to put it politely; I need my thesaurus to be polite) behavior that is not healthy to an individual and in aggregate is not healthy to society."

    • In 2010, "his most aggressive initiative on conservative social issues since taking office," Cuccinelli demanded state colleges and universities immediately rescind policies offering workplace protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation.

    • In another example of interference with independent boards and commissions, Cuccinelli has repeatedly pressured the Virginia Board of Juvenile Justice to eliminate protections for LGBT youth. The Board has thus far refused.


  • The Senate of Virginia has twice passed bills to end LGBT discrimination of state employees, but both times the bills have been defeated by conservatives in the House of Delegates. (Washington Blade, November 29, 2012)

  • "Eighty percent of the state's 25 largest private employers have added sexual orientation to their non-discrimination policies, while 60 percent of them also include gender identity and expression. Eighteen of the 29 Virginia-based companies listed on the 2013 Human Rights Campaign Corporate Index include LGBT-specific protections in their non-discrimination policies." (Washington Blade, November 29, 2012)

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October 25, 2013

The News & Advance reports, "Very quietly this week, Ken Cuccinelli, the Republican candidate for governor, released his transportation plan. With one exception... it is more of the same we've seen from many Republicans in Richmond during the past decade. And that makes it a bad deal for the commonwealth, localities who would be harmed, the business community and residents... [A]s attorney general, Cuccinelli did his best to sabotage that plan at the last minute. Now he wants to 'devolve' the responsibilities of the state upon localities, all 'without imposing a statewide tax increase'? Pardon us if we don't buy this line yet again."

Progressive Point: We all know Virginia's roads and transportation system is still a mess. Fixing its failures means focusing on making--not waiting for--things to get better. However, earlier this year Ken Cuccinelli actively campaigned against the new transportation legislation he is now legally required to defend in his job as Attorney General. Now, Cuccinelli's "plan" to pass the buck on state transportation duties down to localities is no plan at all.

Businesses and families alike know that investment is vital to the economic success of our communities--not passing the buck on fixing roads, refusing to find revenue to pay for it, and taking a cuts-only approach that stymies economic growth. Last year, Virginia dropped from 10th to 33rd place in CNBC's ranking on state infrastructures and transportation because of failed policies like the one Cuccinelli is proposing. Virginia families deserve leaders that fight for us and for our priorities: investment in our economy, infrastructure, and future growth. Instead, Cuccinelli's record is a cuts-only budget approach that gets us nowhere.

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  • The center of Ken Cuccinelli's transportation plan is "devolution," or shucking state transportation duties down onto localities. "Since 2001, no county has embraced devolution for one reason: They do not trust Richmond to be there with the dollars when push comes to shove. Richmond doesn't have the best of reputations when it comes to such matters as unfunded mandates imposed on local governments and schools or reimbursing localities for lost tax revenue as when the General Assembly abolished the so-called car tax in the late 1990s." (News & Advance, October 25, 2013)

  • The Washington Post shared Ken Cuccinelli's own words in opposition to the 2013 transportation plan in an editorial, "Mr. Cuccinelli, a darling of the tea party and an unyielding conservative, opposed the [transportation] bill because it raises taxes. It's unfortunate, and irresponsible, that he attacked a bill that he now may be called on to defend. 'In these tough economic times,' he said, 'I do not believe Virginia's middle-class families can afford massive tax increases, and I cannot support legislation that would ask the taxpayers to shoulder an even heavier burden than they are already carrying, especially when the government proposes to do so little belt-tightening in other areas of the budget.'"

  • Last year, Virginia dropped from 10th to 33rd place in CNBC's ranking on state infrastructures and transportation, causing Virginia to lose it's position as the best state in the country to do business. "Infrastructure -- specifically the state's perpetually clogged highways -- has long been an issue in fast-growing Virginia, CNBC said." (Richmond Times-Dispatch, July 10, 2012)

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October 24, 2013

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports, "The two major-party candidates for governor will meet face-to-face this evening on the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg for the third and final debate of a long and contentious campaign... Victims of the Virginia Tech shooting massacre are expected to rally for gun control regulations prior to the debate. McAuliffe has said he supports universal background checks for firearms purchases. Cuccinelli, meanwhile, opposes universal background checks for gun buys."

Progressive Point: Virginia voters demand accountability from our elected officials. However, Ken Cuccinelli wants to keep his positions on gun laws and public safety hidden. Virginia families deserve to know what Ken Cuccinelli is privately telling special interest groups, especially on any issue as serious as public safety.

We need to have all the information before we go to the polls. If an extreme group, that describes itself as to the right of the NRA, can ask Cuccinelli for and get his positions on allowing guns in K-12 schools and on campus, then so should we. Virginians overwhelmingly support commonsense gun violence prevention measures, including comprehensive background checks. The only reason for Ken Cuccinelli to keep his survey confidential is in order to hide his extreme positions from Virginia voters.  Thousands of citizens have demanded the truth about Cuccinelli's positions on public safety and we deserve to hear it now.

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  • Via the Center for American Progress: "Over the course of the past decade, nobody has done more to undermine the safeguards in Virginia's concealed carry system than Cuccinelli:
    • 2003: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have eliminated the requirement that out-of-state permit holders meet Virginia requirements for issuance if they want to carry in the commonwealth. This would have effectively nullified Virginia state gun laws that require a certain threshold of training and clearance in order to carry a concealed gun in public.
    • 2004: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have forced privately owned restaurants and clubs to allow guns in the door, including establishments that serve alcohol.
    • 2005: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have eliminated law enforcement discretion in the concealed carry permit process. Thus, if law enforcement officers have reasonable suspicion that an applicant should not receive a permit, the law would still require them to issue one.
    • 2006: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation eliminating the ability of localities to require fingerprints as part of an application for a concealed carry permit.
    • 2008: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation that would have permitted individuals who do not have a concealed carry permit to carry a firearm in a private vehicle, as long as it was in a locked container or compartment. This would have allowed citizens without the training and clearance required to get a concealed carry permit to have guns in public places.
    • 2009: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation, which became law, that restricts public access to information regarding concealed carry permit holders and therefore impedes legitimate efforts by law enforcement and other agencies to use this information.
    • 2009: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation, which became law, that weakens the requirement that applicants for a concealed carry license complete a handgun safety course by allowing that requirement to be met with an online course. (That's like letting somebody get a driver's license without first getting behind the wheel to learn how to drive.)
    • ...
    • 2011: Cuccinelli issued an advisory opinion stating that individuals with concealed carry permits could legally carry firearms in places of worship, despite a state law to the contrary, as long as they believed it was necessary for "personal protection."
    • 2011: Cuccinelli issued an advisory opinion stating that a University of Virginia policy prohibiting the possession of firearms inside university buildings did not function to prevent concealed carry permit holders from carrying concealed firearms into those buildings.
    • 2012: Cuccinelli filed an amicus brief in federal court urging that a Maryland state law that gives law enforcement the ability to apply a "good and substantial reason" test prior to issuing a concealed carry permit be struck down, despite the lack of any connection between the litigation and the state of Virginia."


  • Bipartisan research conducted on behalf of Mayors Against Illegal Guns found broad support in Virginia for stronger violence prevention measures. (Mayors Against Illegal Guns, 11/30/12)
    • 88% of Virginians support requiring gun owners to pass a background check.

    • 91% of Virginia gun households support requiring gun owners to pass a background check.

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October 23, 2013

Mother Jones reports, "Ken Cuccinelli, the conservative attorney general of Virginia and the Republican candidate for governor in this November's election, has filed a summary of his tax returns showing that he donated thousands of dollars in the past four years to crisis pregnancy centers, the controversial facilities that counsel pregnant women against abortions. Abortion rights advocates have criticized crisis pregnancy centers for showing women graphic simulations of abortions, providing medical misinformation, and opening offices near abortion providers in the hopes that women will confuse the two."

Progressive Point: No matter your political stance, we can all agree that women seeking health care and advice should be given medically accurate information. However, Ken Cuccinelli has been donating thousands of dollars to controversial "crisis pregnancy centers" that lie to and deceive women. Anyone seeking health-care services should receive comprehensive, unbiased, and medically accurate information. Women facing unintended pregnancy deserve no less.

Ken Cuccinelli's support of crisis pregnancy centers is simply one more example of prioritizing his extreme ideology over the health of Virginia women. Despite his continued efforts to distort his record, the truth is that Cuccinelli has consistently supported extreme measures to ban forms of birth control, radical restrictions designed to shut down women's health centers, and extreme personhood legislation. On top of that, donating to centers that lie to and deceive women about their health care options is absolutely shameful. Virginia should be focusing on expanding affordable health care access, not denying women access to reproductive care.

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  • Via NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia:
    • The following is what Virginia CPCs are actually saying to women, as told their investigator during two undercover visits:
      • Condoms are "naturally porous" and do not protect against STDs (5:15)

      • Women who have taken the birth control pill for four years prior to their first pregnancy have a 46% increased risk of breast cancer (7:00, 12:55)

      • Having an abortion will damage all of your future relationships (38:00)

      • If you have an abortion, you will see that child's soul again in the future: "At the end of the world you're gonna know that was my child that I choose to kill." (47:30)


    • 40 CPCs shared medically erroneous information that abortion causes long-term psychological damage, including suggesting that women who have abortions can "get eating disorders, become alcoholic, or become drug addicts," and that "the sound of a vacuum would always bring back flashbacks of the abortion."

    • 18 CPCs shared medically inaccurate information that abortion causes breast cancer, including several that issued the following warning on their respective websites: "A number of reliable studies have demonstrated a connection between abortion and later development of breast cancer."

    • 25 CPCs falsely reported a link between abortion, infertility, and later pregnancy complications. One in-person investigator reported: "The counselor said that if I was a certain blood type, an abortion could cause my body to create antibodies that would attack my baby the next time I got pregnant."


  • Since 2008, Ken Cuccinelli donated $4,038 to crisis pregnancy centers and one affiliated group, "roughly 13 percent of his overall charitable giving for those years." (Mother Jones, October 22, 2013)

  • Ken Cuccinelli's own website previously stated that he "opposes abortions that are not for the purpose of saving the mother's life." (American Bridge, October 10, 2013)

  • Cuccinelli was forthright, last year, about the true intent of his TRAP restrictions: to "make abortion disappear in America." (YouTube, 5/7/12)

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October 22, 2013

In case you missed it, Mother Jones reported this morning that gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli donated thousands of dollars to controverisal "crisis pregnancy centers" that lie to and deceive women. According to an undercover investigation conducted by NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, one clinic to which Cuccinelli donated distributes medically inaccurate information to women, including the outrageous and easily disproven claim that abortion causes breast cancer. The NARAL investigation found 71% of Virginia crisis pregnancy centers lie to women, including falsehoods that condoms do not prevent the spread of STDs and birth control causes breast cancer.

"It's no secret than Ken Cuccinelli has long crusaded against Virginia women's access to comprehensive reproductive health care,"" said ProgressVA executive director Anna Scholl. "But donating to centers that lie to and deceive women about their health care options is simply shameful. No matter your political stance, we can all agree that women seeking health care and advice should be given medically accurate information. Cuccinelli's support of crisis pregnancy centers is simply one more example of prioritizing his extreme ideology over the health of Virginia women."

Mother Jones: Cuccinelli Donated to Groups That Tell Women Abortion Causes Breast Cancer

By  | Tue Oct. 22, 2013 

Ken Cuccinelli, the conservative attorney general of Virginia and the Republican candidate for governor in this November's election, has filed a summary of his tax returns showing that he donated thousands of dollars in the past four years to crisis pregnancy centers, the controversial facilities that counsel pregnant women against abortions. Abortion rights advocates have criticized crisis pregnancy centers for showing women graphic simulations of abortions, providing medical misinformation, and opening offices near abortion providers in the hopes that women will confuse the two. At one of the centers Cuccinelli supported, staff told women that abortion increases their chance of breast cancer and that abortion will "haunt" them for the rest of their lives. At another Cuccinelli-backed center, employees falsely told a New York Times reporter that Margaret Sanger, an early advocate for legal abortion, was a Nazi sympathizer.

From 2008 to 2012, Cuccinelli gave two crisis pregnancy centers and one affiliated group a total of $4,038--roughly 13 percent of his overall charitable giving for those years.

Over $1,300 of that total went to AAA Women for Choice, a Manassas-area crisis pregnancy center. Organizers of an annual event to support AAA Women for Choice also raffled off a Cuccinelli-autographed Gadsden flag in April 2012, which helped raise another $3,860 for the clinic.

Volunteers and employees of NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, the state affiliate of the national abortion rights group, visited the Manassas clinic run by AAA Women for Choice in November 2012 as part of a comprehensive investigation into the states crisis pregnancy centers. There, they reported, AAA Women for Choice staff showed the researcher a video depicting "a graphic model of a surgical abortion. It showed a doctor scraping out a fully formed baby, and then scraping off some of the uterine lining, which [the video] said could cause infertility or problems with a later pregnancy." (According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), fewer than 1 percent of abortions end with major complications like infertility. Some studies show that abortion is markedly safer than pregnancy.)

The NARAL researcher also reported that an AAA Women for Choice staffer told her that having an abortion would "haunt" her. "She said, 'Even if you have kids later on, every time you watch them growing up you will think about your abortion and the baby you could have had.'" The researcher said staff showed her a video that claimed that women who have a family history of breast cancer and who have abortions when they are younger than 18 or older than 32 "are virtually guaranteed to get breast cancer at some point." The American Cancer Society, the National Cancer Institute, and ACOG have all dismissed the notion that there is any link between breast cancer and abortion.

2006 Washington Post article that surveyed the tactics of crisis pregnancy centers featured a pregnant 24-year-old college student who walked into AAA Women for Choice thinking it was the abortion clinic where she had an appointment. That student, Allyson Kirk, told thePost that clinic staff questioned her about her religious beliefs and told her that women who have abortions suffer from high rates of depression, infection, and even death. Kirk said she walked out after clinic staff showed her a video depicting a surgical abortion where the provider severed a fetus's head.

The AAA Women for Choice website, however, does not reflect its anti-choice practices. A section of the website labeled "consider your choices" lists abortion as one of three options for pregnant women and describes several types of abortions. But the group's facility does not offer abortions and has lobbied to make them harder to obtain. AAA Women for Choice staff have spoken in favor laws that impose new, hard-to-meet regulatory burdens on abortion clinics with an eye towards forcing them to shut down. AAA Women director Patricia Lohman, and Darden Brock, a board member, did not reply to multiple emails asking for comments about Cuccinelli's donations and NARAL and Post reports.

AAA Women for Choice wasn't the only crisis pregnancy center-aligned group to earn Cuccinelli's support. Between 2008 and 2012, Cuccinelli donated $2,678 to Divine Mercy Care, the fundraising arm of a pro-life medical practice known as the Tepeyac Family Center. Located in Fairfax, Va., Tepeyac offers neonatal services to pregnant women referred by local crisis pregnancy centers. Tepeyac also offers a sonogram course aimed at crisis pregnancy center employees. Having an employee on staff who can perform sonograms has proven valuable for Virginia crisis pregnancy centers looking to attract women who are seeking abortions. In Virginia, a woman who wants an abortion is required by law to first undergo an ultrasound. Crisis pregnancy centers have taken to advertising free sonograms. In fact, as of this summer, the only facilities that the Virginia Department of Health listed as offering free ultrasounds were crisis pregnancy centers. However, the NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia investigation found that some crisis pregnancy center staffs will refuse to provide women with documentation of their ultrasounds to present to abortion providers.

Cuccinelli also gave $20 to EMC Frontline Pregnancy Centers, an organization that operates several crisis pregnancy centers in New York City. A NARAL Pro-Choice New York investigation found that workers at EMC Frontline Pregnancy Centers routinely tell womenthat abortion is linked to higher rates of breast cancer. When New York Times reporter Ariel Kaminer visited the Brooklyn location of EMC in 2010, she found it in the same building as an abortion provider. "It's easy to imagine someone spotting the generic-sounding Expectant Mother Care in the lobby directory and assuming it was a general source for reproductive information, perhaps even a medical office," she wrote. After she received a sonogram from EMC staff, Kaminer wrote, the center's director told her, "almost as an afterthought ... that Margaret Sanger, the hero of the reproductive rights movement, had ties to the Third Reich."

Chris Slattery, EMC's president, defended his group's work. Crisis pregnancy centers don't open offices near Planned Parenthood facilities to trick women, he says. "We're just following Planned Parenthood into the neighborhoods that they targeted." He accused Kaminer of pushing the employee in question to talk about Sanger. "That's irrelevant to our clients," he says, "If a New York Times reporter wants to goad us into discussing issues, that's another thing." But EMC does tell women, Slattery says, that there is a link between abortion and higher rates of breast cancer. "We do tell them that, but not that women are going toabsolutely get breast cancer from abortion. Nor could someone who smoked cigarettes be told they absolutely will get lung cancer," he said. "But that information," about a breast-cancer abortion link, "is not a determinate factor for women who are deciding whether to abort or not."

Cuccinelli's support for Virginia's crisis pregnancy centers isn't limited to his charitable choices. In 2009, as a state senator, he amended a bill to direct the Department of Motor Vehicles to offer "Choose Life" license plates to Virginia drivers. "These centers, and the volunteers that work there, are on the front lines of the fight for life, trying to help women at the very moment when they are most desperate," Cuccinelli wrote after the legislation became law. Crisis pregnancy centers now receive $15 for every "Choose Life" license plate purchased. NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia reported that the license plates have raised some $223,000 for Virginia crisis pregnancy centers since they became available. But crisis pregnancy centers are appreciative of Cuccinelli's personal generosity, too. "Helping crisis pregnancy centers would be a natural outreach of [Cuccinelli's] pro-life commitment," Slattery says. "I'm glad he's a supporter."

October 22, 2013

The Washington Post reports, "Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli II said Monday he was uncertain whether he would have voted for the bipartisan measure on Capitol Hill that brought the 16-day federal shutdown to an end. 'I don't know whether I would have voted for it,' Cuccinelli told reporters in response to a question."

Progressive Point: We need leaders who care about the real life problems facing middle class Virginians, despite the priorities of Tea Party shutdown extremists. Across the Commonwealth, blue-collar workers, families, and veterans were stuck struggling with the consequences of the GOP shutdown that Ken Cuccinelli now says he's not sure he would have even voted to end. Our families deserve a government that works, and leaders who denounce extreme antics that kept thousands of Virginians from their jobs.

The Tea Party shutdown caused serious economic harm to hundreds of thousands of federal workers and their families, many right here in our Commonwealth. But conservatives like Cuccinelli would still rather hurt their own constituents than see health care reform succeed. We count on public workers to keep our country and our Commonwealth running -- to inspect airplanes and food, run parks and treat sick kids. But for far-right conservatives, the less our government does, the better. While many Virginia families suffered because of the senseless shutdown, Tea Party Republicans like Cuccinelli don't seem to regret it and can't wait to do it again.

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  • The cost of the shutdown according to ABC News:
    • $3.1 billion in lost government services. Although furloughed workers will get their back pay, taxpayers won't see the products. (Source: I.H.S.)

    • According to the U.S. Travel Association: There has been $152 million per day in all spending related to travel lost because of the shutdown. As many as 450,000 American workers supported by travel may be affected.

    • According to the National Park Service: They welcome more than 700,000 people per day usually in October and visitors spend an estimated $32 million per day impact in communities near national parks and contribute $76 million each day to the national economy. Those revenues were lost.

    • According to Destination D.C., the official tourism corporation of D.C.: There is a 9 percent decrease in hotel occupancy from the last week in September before the shutdown to the first week of October during the shutdown. This year, hotel occupancy was down 74.4 percent for the week Sept. 29 to Oct. 5 compared to the 2012 numbers. (Source: Smith Travel Research, Inc.) In 2012, an estimated $6.2 billion of visitor spending supported more than 75,300 jobs.


  • The hit to Washington, D.C. has been especially hard, according to Mayor Vince Gray's office:
    • Regional (D.C./Maryland/Virginia) impact: $217 million a day (17.6 percent of the region's economy) from lost/deferred federal and contractor wages.

    • Washington, D.C. economic activity impact: $44 million a week decrease

    • Washington, D.C. tax revenue impact: $6 million a week decrease

    • Hospitality sector observations: 7 percent decrease in restaurant traffic in the first week in October compared to 2012 and 13,000 fewer hotel bookings (8.3 percent decrease) and $2 million less room revenue in the first week in October compared to 2012.

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October 18, 2013

The Loudoun Times ;reports, "Attorney general and Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli last week reiterated his belief that there wouldn't be the current transportation funding reform law if it weren't for him... Cuccinelli bucked Republican leaders -- including Gov. Bob McDonnell and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling -- by denouncing the transportation bill near the end of the 2013 General Assembly session. The attorney general ripped the proposal for the tax hikes involved, and he recently said he doubts the new revenue will go far in relieving congestion."

Progressive Point: Virginia voters know campaign rhetoric when they see it. Ken Cuccinelli saying anything other than he tried to torpedo this year's transportation bill is clearly playing politics and blatantly misrepresenting his record on the campaign trail. From our roads to our reproductive rights, trying to hide his record is the only thing Cuccinelli has been consistent about.

Earlier this year, Ken Cuccinelli actively campaigned against the transportation legislation he is now legally required to defend in his job as Attorney General.  Cuccinelli may want us to forget it, and his support for extreme measures to ban abortion and some forms of birth control, but Virginia voters aren't that easily confused. Virginia families deserve leaders that fight for us and for our priorities: investment in our economy, infrastructure, and future growth. Instead, Cuccinelli's record is a cuts-only budget approach while playing a hypocrite on TV.

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  • The Washington Post shares Ken Cuccinelli's own words in opposition to the transportation plan in an editorial, "Mr. Cuccinelli, a darling of the tea party and an unyielding conservative, opposed the [transportation] bill because it raises taxes. It's unfortunate, and irresponsible, that he attacked a bill that he now may be called on to defend. 'In these tough economic times,' he said, 'I do not believe Virginia's middle-class families can afford massive tax increases, and I cannot support legislation that would ask the taxpayers to shoulder an even heavier burden than they are already carrying, especially when the government proposes to do so little belt-tightening in other areas of the budget.'"

  • "Republican Ken Cuccinelli says if he's elected governor, he won't push for strategic bills that could be used to challenge the U.S. Supreme Court's 1973 Roe v Wade decision that established abortion rights... We wondered whether every bill that Cuccinelli has backed granting personhood to fetuses has contained language saying the legislation is not intended to challenge high court rulings. We found two clear occasions when he supported such legislation during his career as a state senator from 2002 to 2009 and attorney general starting in 2010." (Richmond Times-Dispatch PolitiFact Virginia, August 10, 2013)

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October 15, 2013

Ken Cuccinelli's outrageous view that he expects divine punishment against the United States of America because of women being able to make their own health care decisions puts in him on the dangerous fringe. There are only a few extreme public figures that share Cuccinelli's view that there will or should be action taken against America for allowing women to make their own health care decisions.

However, the big difference is that these divisive fringe figures are not running for Governor - or any office.

 

Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson on the September 11th attack:
FALWELL: And, I know that I'll hear from them for this. But, throwing God out successfully with the help of the federal court system, throwing God out of the public square, out of the schools. The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked. And when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way--all of them who have tried to secularize America--I point the finger in their face and say "you helped this happen."

ROBERTSON: Well, I totally concur. [700 Club, 9/13/12]

Tony Perkins on A Pro-Choice President: "We can't simply wash our hands and say 'oh just because we have a pro-abortion president, a Democratic president, we don't have anything to do with that.' No my friends, we do. When only fifty percent of the church-going population is registered to vote and only half of them are actually voting, I have some really somber news: I believe God is going to hold us accountable for the death, the destructive policies of this country that have devalued human life and are redefining marriage." [Right Wing Watch, 9/14/11]

Anti-Abortion Activists After Hurricane Katrina. "Steve Lefemine, an anti-abortion activist in Columbia, S.C., was looking at a full-color satellite map of Hurricane Katrina when something in the swirls jumped out at him: the image of an 8-week-old fetus. "In my belief, God judged New Orleans for the sin of shedding innocent blood through abortion," said Lefemine, who e-mailed the flesh-toned weather map to fellow activists across the country and put a stark message on the answering machine of his organization, Columbia Christians for Life." [Washington Post, 9/4/05]

Pat Robertson After Hurricane Katrina. "That -- you look at your -- you look at the book of Leviticus and see what it says there. And this author of this said, "well 'vomit out' means you are not able to defend yourself." But have we found we are unable somehow to defend ourselves against some of the attacks that are coming against us, either by terrorists or now by natural disaster? Could they be connected in some way?" [NBC News, 1/13/10]

October 14, 2013

The Washington Post reports tonight, "Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli II (R) is scheduled to hold an Alexandria fundraiser...co-hosted by an NRA consultant whose hunting show was canceled last month after he killed an elephant on safari and then compared the hunt's critics to Hitler.... Terry McAuliffe, the Democratic nominee, has described himself as a supporter of the Second Amendment who also believes in the need for universal background checks. Cuccinelli, who is the state's attorney general, has a long record as a proponent of gun-rights."

Progressive Point: Not only do 9 in 10 Virginians support basic, common sense measures like expanded background checks, but three-quarters of NRA members across the country do too. Only extremists like Ken Cuccinelli and those filling his campaign coffers disagree. Virginia needs leaders that listen to responsible gun owners and law enforcement, not lobbyists and the gun industry.

When we send our kids to school and go to work, we shouldn't have to worry about whether everyone will make it home safely. That's why we need common sense gun laws that keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of people we know are dangerous. Ken Cuccinelli changed Virginia's concealed-carry laws to eliminate gun safety requirements and voted against requiring background checks for every gun sale, keeping our families in danger. Our leaders should have the backbone and the integrity to do the right thing, but Cuccinelli keeps choosing to stand with NRA lobbyists.

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  • Via the Center for American Progress: "Over the course of the past decade, nobody has done more to undermine the safeguards in Virginia's concealed carry system than Cuccinelli:
    • 2003: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have eliminated the requirement that out-of-state permit holders meet Virginia requirements for issuance if they want to carry in the commonwealth. This would have effectively nullified Virginia state gun laws that require a certain threshold of training and clearance in order to carry a concealed gun in public.
    • 2004: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have forced privately owned restaurants and clubs to allow guns in the door, including establishments that serve alcohol.
    • 2005: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have eliminated law enforcement discretion in the concealed carry permit process. Thus, if law enforcement officers have reasonable suspicion that an applicant should not receive a permit, the law would still require them to issue one.
    • 2006: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation eliminating the ability of localities to require fingerprints as part of an application for a concealed carry permit.
    • 2008: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation that would have permitted individuals who do not have a concealed carry permit to carry a firearm in a private vehicle, as long as it was in a locked container or compartment. This would have allowed citizens without the training and clearance required to get a concealed carry permit to have guns in public places.
    • 2009: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation, which became law, that restricts public access to information regarding concealed carry permit holders and therefore impedes legitimate efforts by law enforcement and other agencies to use this information.
    • 2009: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation, which became law, that weakens the requirement that applicants for a concealed carry license complete a handgun safety course by allowing that requirement to be met with an online course. (That's like letting somebody get a driver's license without first getting behind the wheel to learn how to drive.)
    • ...
    • 2011: Cuccinelli issued an advisory opinion stating that individuals with concealed carry permits could legally carry firearms in places of worship, despite a state law to the contrary, as long as they believed it was necessary for "personal protection."
    • 2011: Cuccinelli issued an advisory opinion stating that a University of Virginia policy prohibiting the possession of firearms inside university buildings did not function to prevent concealed carry permit holders from carrying concealed firearms into those buildings.
    • 2012: Cuccinelli filed an amicus brief in federal court urging that a Maryland state law that gives law enforcement the ability to apply a "good and substantial reason" test prior to issuing a concealed carry permit be struck down, despite the lack of any connection between the litigation and the state of Virginia."


  • Bipartisan research conducted on behalf of Mayors Against Illegal Guns found broad support in Virginia for stronger violence prevention measures. (Mayors Against Illegal Guns, 11/30/12)
    • 88% of Virginians support requiring gun owners to pass a background check.

    • 91% of Virginia gun households support requiring gun owners to pass a background check.

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October 11, 2013

American Bridge reports that last night, "a flailing Ken Cuccinelli once again attempted to deceive voters about his extreme social views. During the forum, Cuccinelli claimed to have supported public funding of abortions 'in the case of rape, incest or life of the mother.' That's simply not true. In fact, regardless of whether publicly funded or not, Cuccinelli has opposed any abortion in all instances -- including rape, incest and health of the mother -- that 'are not for the purpose of saving the mother's life.'"

Progressive Point: Virginia voters deserve accountability and to know where candidates actually stand on the issues. Despite Ken Cuccinelli's efforts to distort his record, the truth is that Cuccinelli has consistently supported extreme measures to ban forms of birth control, radical restrictions designed to shut down women's health centers, and extreme personhood legislation. Cuccinelli can't hide his history--we know dishonest campaign rhetoric when we see it.

Virginians have made clear that we don't support a right-wing agenda that interferes in anyone's health care decisions. Playing politics and blatantly misrepresenting their records on women on the campaign trail has become the platform of the Cuccinelli/Jackson/Obenshain ticket. Their efforts to end our reproductive rights would hurt Virginians without means and who need access to affordable health services the most to provide better economic security for their families. Those aren't Virginia values.

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Get the Facts:

  • Ken Cuccinelli's own website previously stated that he "opposes abortions that are not for the purpose of saving the mother's life." (American Bridge, October 10, 2013)

  • Cuccinelli was forthright, last year, about the true intent of his TRAP restrictions: to "make abortion disappear in America." [YouTube, 5/7/12]

  • His politically motivated restrictions ignored the medical advice of Board's own physician experts.
    • The Board of Health ignored the medical advice of physician-experts, choosing instead to promulgate regulations not based in evidence-based medicine. Several members of the physician advisory board subsequently denounced the regulations and requested their names be removed from the draft document. [Associated Press, 12/3/11]


  • When the Board of Health finally heeded the advice of medical professionals and voted to grandfather existing facilities, Cuccinelli bullied the Board into rescinding their decision.
    • Cuccinelli refused to certify draft regulations that exempted existing facilities from expensive, burdensome, and medically unnecessary physical plant requirements that have only ever been applied to new construction. [Virginian Pilot, 9/13/12]

    • Cuccinelli "threatened Board of Health members that they could be denied state legal counsel and have to pay for their own defense if they again disregard his advice about relaxing controversial abortion clinic rules and litigation ensues." [Virginian Pilot, 9/13/12]

    • The Washington Post called the move "classic Cuccinelli: ideological activism masquerading as professional legal "advice." [Washington Post, 7/27/12]


  • Health Commissioner Karen Remley subsequently resigned her position over Cuccinelli's political meddling in the regulatory process.
    • In her resignation letter, Remley explained, "how specific sections of the Virginia Code pertaining to the development and enforcement of these regulations have been and continue to be interpreted has created an environment in which my ability to fulfill my duties is compromised and in good faith I can no longer serve in my role." [Richmond Times Dispatch, 4/10/13]


  • Efforts to limit women's access to comprehensive reproductive health care, including safe and legal abortion, are overwhelmingly opposed by Virginians.


  • Cuccinelli's career-long crusade to limit women's access to health services, including his meddling in this regulatory process, has earned him campaign checks and endorsements from an array of right-wing extremists.
    • Citing his long record in favor of limiting reproductive rights, the anti-women's health Susan B. Anthony List endorsed Cuccinelli's campaign for governor and pledged $1.5M to the effort. [Politico, 2/28/13]

    • The Family Research Council, a Southern Poverty Law Center designated hate group, endorsed Cuccinelli's campaign for governor. [Family Research Council, 3/29/13]

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October 9, 2013

NBC Washington reports, "A judge is allowing a lawsuit filed by a Falls Church abortion clinic over new, stricter regulations to go forward. The Virginia Board of Health, supported by Attorney General and GOP gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli, on Wednesday asked the judge to toss out the lawsuit filed earlier this year by the Falls Church Healthcare Center. But the judge said that he wants the lawsuit to get a full hearing so that appellate courts can ultimately decide the matter. The lawsuit challenges new regulations that subject abortion clinics to many of the same standards imposed on hospitals."

Progressive Point:Virginians from across the Commonwealth overwhelmingly oppose burdensome regulations of our women's health centers. Today's ruling in Arlington is a victory against Ken Cuccinelli's ideologically motivated regulations that will remove access to safe and legal abortion as part of women's health services. While the Virginia Board of Health can be forced to ignore the advice of medical professionals and cave in to the threats and behind-the-scenes bullying of Cuccinelli, our court system is not subject to his political pressure.

It has never been more important to oppose these abhorrent restrictions that single out first trimester abortions providers and are a blatant attempt to limit women's access to comprehensive reproductive care. Virginia's women's health centers across the Commonwealth provide vital health care services like STD screenings, cancer screenings and family planning services, in addition to providing constitutionally protected reproductive health services. While Ken Cuccinelli successfully bullied the Board into approving these restrictions as part of his career-long crusade against women's health, Virginia women can still look forward to our day in court to overturn these medically unnecessary regulations.

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  • Cuccinelli has been forthright about the true intent of these TRAP restrictions: to "make abortion disappear in America." [YouTube, 5/7/12]

  • Politically motivated restrictions ignored the medical advice of Board's own physician experts.
    • The Board of Health ignored the medical advice of physician-experts, choosing instead to promulgate regulations not based in evidence-based medicine. Several members of the physician advisory board subsequently denounced the regulations and requested their names be removed from the draft document. [Associated Press, 12/3/11]


  • When the Board of Health finally heeded the advice of medical professionals and voted to grandfather existing facilities, Cuccinelli bullied the Board into rescinding their decision.
    • Cuccinelli refused to certify draft regulations that exempted existing facilities from expensive, burdensome, and medically unnecessary physical plant requirements that have only ever been applied to new construction. [Virginian Pilot, 9/13/12]

    • Cuccinelli "threatened Board of Health members that they could be denied state legal counsel and have to pay for their own defense if they again disregard his advice about relaxing controversial abortion clinic rules and litigation ensues." [Virginian Pilot, 9/13/12]

    • The Washington Post called the move "classic Cuccinelli: ideological activism masquerading as professional legal "advice." [Washington Post, 7/27/12]


  • Health Commissioner Karen Remley subsequently resigned her position over Cuccinelli's political meddling in the regulatory process.
    • In her resignation letter, Remley explained, "how specific sections of the Virginia Code pertaining to the development and enforcement of these regulations have been and continue to be interpreted has created an environment in which my ability to fulfill my duties is compromised and in good faith I can no longer serve in my role." [Richmond Times Dispatch, 4/10/13]


  • The politicized regulatory process has ignored guidelines issued by Governor McDonnell in a 2010 executive order.
    • Executive Order 14 requires agencies to assess less costly alternatives to regulations, including "the use of information disclosure requirements." [Executive Order 14, Office of the Governor]

    • An economic impact analysis issues by the Virginia Department of Planning and Budget finds the new restrictions will cost women's health centers between $200,000 and $5M in construction and renovation costs. However, the Department also found "no apparent method that both minimizes the adverse impact to small businesses (abortion facilities)" and provided no information disclosure alternative. [Economic Impact Analysis, Virginia Department of Planning and Budget]

    • The order also declares that regulations are to be based on "the best reasonably available reliable scientific, economic, and other information." [Executive Order 14, Office of the Governor]

    • As noted above, the Board ignored the medical advice they solicited from a panel of physician experts. [Associated Press, 12/3/11]


  • Efforts to limit women's access to comprehensive reproductive health care, including safe and legal abortion, are overwhelmingly opposed by Virginians.


  • Cuccinelli's career-long crusade to limit women's access to health services, including his meddling in this regulatory process, has earned him campaign checks and endorsements from an array of right-wing extremists.
    • Citing his long record in favor of limiting reproductive rights, the anti-women's health Susan B. Anthony List endorsed Cuccinelli's campaign for governor and pledged $1.5M to the effort. [Politico, 2/28/13]

    • The Family Research Council, a Southern Poverty Law Center designated hate group, endorsed Cuccinelli's campaign for governor. [Family Research Council, 3/29/13]

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Kick Cuccinelli out of our bedrooms

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October 8, 2013

ThinkProgress reports, "The U.S. Supreme Court announced Monday that it would not hear Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II's (R) appeal of a lower court ruling that held that the state's sodomy ban is wholly unconstitutional. Cuccinelli had made his defense of the law an issue in his campaign for governor. Virginia's archaic Crimes Against Nature law made oral and anal sex a felony -- even between consenting adults in the privacy of their bedroom. In 2003, the Supreme Court held in Lawrence v. Texas that sodomy bans like Virginia's violated the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment."

Progressive Point: Politicians don't belong in our bedrooms. That hasn't stopped Ken Cuccinelli's right-wing crusade to keep Virginia's unconstitutional anti-sodomy law on the books. His reprehensible use of the Attorney General's office and our taxpayer dollars to attempt regulate our private behavior is downright offensive.

True to his record, Cuccinelli put his extreme ideology and political ambitions ahead of the most personal aspects of our lives. He wasted taxpayer dollars trying to keep this unconstitutional law that governs what Virginians do in the privacy of their bedrooms on the books. Furthermore, when Cuccinelli had the opportunity as a legislator to fix the law, he declined, opting to continue to criminalize consensual sexual relationships between adults. Instead of focusing on homefront investments and fostering economic opportunity, Cuccinelli has spent his career on radical crusades, trying to stick his nose into the bedroom of every Virginian.

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  • In just 2009, Ken Cuccinelli defended the sodomy law stating, "My view is that homosexual acts, not homosexuality, but homosexual acts are wrong. They're intrinsically wrong. And I think in a natural law based country it's appropriate to have policies that reflect that. ... They don't comport with natural law." (ThinkProgress, October 7, 2013)

  • In 2004, Cuccinelli opposed and helped kill a legislative attempt to update the sodomy law that would have eliminated "provisions dealing with consenting adults in private and leaving in place provisions relating to prostitution, public sex, and those other than consenting adults." (ThinkProgress, October 7, 2013)

  • Mark Obenshain and Ken Cuccinelli, on February 11, 2004, voted in the Senate Committee for Courts of Justice against Senate Bill 477, which was a bill to overturn "Virginia's controversial ban on sodomy between consenting adults." At the time of this vote Virginia law prohibited "oral and anal sex both in public and private." (Senate Bill 477, 2004)

  • Senate Bill 477 was a bill to lift "the restrictions on private acts between adults but...[maintain] prohibitions on sex in public."  It would have conformed "the penalties for public sodomy with those for other sexual crimes." (Roanoke Times, 02/12/04)

  • At the time of this vote sodomy was "punishable by up to five years in prison and a $2,500 fine." "Gay rights groups...complained for years that Virginia's anti-sodomy statute...[was] aimed at homosexuals, even though it also...[applied] to heterosexuals - including married couples." (The Associated Press State & Local Wire, 02/11/04)

  • Mark "Obenshain said he didn't know yet whether he had a basis to continue Cuccinelli's defense of the law, which has been used for years to prosecute predatory child abusers." (Virginian-Pilot, October 7, 2013)

  • Ken Cuccinelli's Record on Equality:

    • In 2010, "his most aggressive initiative on conservative social issues since taking office," Cuccinelli demanded state colleges and universities immediately rescind policies offering workplace protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation.

    • In another example of interference with independent boards and commissions, Cuccinelli has repeatedly pressured the Virginia Board of Juvenile Justice to eliminate protections for LGBT youth. The Board has thus far refused.

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October 7, 2013

The Washington Post opines, "We suspect that if [Ken] Cuccinelli or [E.W.] Jackson were in the Senate, rather than on the statewide ballot this year, they would have no trouble siding with Mr. Cruz and the other conservative absolutists who have forced the government to its knees. There is very little in either man's background to suggest they'd embrace pragmatism over what they regard as principle. By contrast, Virginia has benefited from statewide elected officials who have tended to govern from the middle, whatever their ideological preferences."

Progressive Point: Virginians across the Commonwealth want government to get back to work so they can get back to their jobs. The way forward is simple: vote. This is a democracy.  One vote and we're back in action again, because even many House Republicans, including four from Virginia, realize this is madness and are ready to be done.

There is hope since every member of the House on Saturday agreed to ensure hundreds of thousands of furloughed workers receive back pay--but only if Tea Party obstructionists like Ted Cruz get out of the way. Virginia families do not want to be furloughed, see any more kids with cancer denied treatment, veterans denied benefits, or airline safety inspectors kept off the job. But that's what is happening right now because of a minority of extremists. Virginians want government to get back to work now so they can get back to their jobs today.

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  • On Saturday, the House of Represenatives voted unanimously to approve a bipartisan bill, sponsored by Rep. Jim Moran, that guarantees back pay to the hundreds of thousands of federal employees currently furloughed by the government shutdown. (Military Times, October 5, 2013)

  • Meanwhile on Saturday, Sen. Ted Cruz headlined a fundraiser for the "gay-bashing, abortion-hating, home-school-loving" Family Foundation in Richmond where Ken Cuccinelli was also featured. But Cuccinelli "risks infuriating everyday Virginians, to say nothing of the state's 170,000 federal civilian employees, who dislike the government shutdown much more than the health-care law." (Washington Post, October 4, 2013)

  • In addition to the government shutdown's extreme effects on thousands of civilian federal employees in Virginia and the Commonwealth's economy, Senator Mark Warner also said that it "is threatening the country's national security because about 70 percent of the country's intelligence community are civilian, and are subject to being furloughed." (Daily Progress, October 2, 2013)

  • "2,000 workers at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard were sent home on Tuesday, and commissaries in northeast and southeast Virginia, which provide inexpensive groceries to members of the military, closed on Wednesday." (Mother Jones, October 2, 2013)

  • At a conservative rally in Washington, DC just two years ago, E.W. Jackson was even caught on camera chanting "Cut it, or shut it" in support of shutting down the federal government if Tea Party budget demands weren't met. (Washington Post, October 3, 2013)

  • Virginia received more than $38 billion in federal contracts last year - more than any other state in the country. Additionally, almost 175,000 Virginians work for the federal government. (Politico, October 3, 2013)

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October 4, 2013

The Washington Times reports, Ken "Cuccinelli and Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, are scheduled to appear in Richmond on Saturday at an annual fundraising dinner for the Family Foundation. Mr. Cruz has been leading the charge in trying to force the defunding of President Obama's health care overhaul before Congress agrees to approve a temporary spending measure."

Progressive Point: It's simple: when government isn't working it puts Virginians out of work. However, in one of the worst weeks ever for our Commonwealth's economy and when tens of thousands of our families are furloughed, Ken Cuccinelli is choosing to stand with Sen. Ted Cruz and his shutdown. Our families deserve a government that works, and leaders who denounce these extreme antics that are keeping working Virginians from their jobs.

It shouldn't surprise us that the same antics that Ted Cruz has pushed on Congress is the same politics that Ken Cuccinelli has pushed in the past himself. With Virginia's own budget, Cuccinelli also likes threatening to shut things down or not pass a budget if he doesn't get 100% of what he wants. Instead of Ted Cruz fundraisers, we need leaders focused on ending furloughs, putting Virginians back to work, and get government running again now. 

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Tomorrow, please join us in Ricmond to rally against Cruz, Cuccinelli, and their government shutdown:

What: Rally at Cuccinelli/Cruz Family Foundation Gala
When: Saturday, October 5th, 2013
Time: 5:00pm
Where: Greater Richmond Convention Center -- Entrance at the corner of 5th and E. Broad Street

The federal government shutdown is Cruz's creation, and it's keeping tens of thousands of Virginians out of work. It takes a lot of nerve for Ken Cuccinelli to campaign with Ted Cruz in Virginia during the middle of the government shutdown that Cruz is personally responsible for. Make sure you're there with us to greet him.

Get the Facts:

  • In addition to the government shutdown's extreme effects on thousands of civilian federal employees in Virginia and the Commonwealth's economy, Senator Mark Warner also said that it "is threatening the country's national security because about 70 percent of the country's intelligence community are civilian, and are subject to being furloughed." (Daily Progress, October 2, 2013)

  • "2,000 workers at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard were sent home on Tuesday, and commissaries in northeast and southeast Virginia, which provide inexpensive groceries to members of the military, closed on Wednesday." (Mother Jones, October 2, 2013)

  • At a conservative rally in Washington, DC just two years ago, E.W. Jackson was even caught on camera chanting "Cut it, or shut it" in support of shutting down the federal government if Tea Party budget demands weren't met. (Washington Post, October 3, 2013)

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October 2, 2013

The Daily Press reported yesterday, "Chesapeake preacher E.W. Jackson and Norfolk State Sen. Ralph Northam will face off in Norfolk on Tuesday for the second debate of the lieutenant governor's contest... Attorney general hopefuls State Sens. Mark Herring, D-Loudon, and Mark Obenshain, R-Harrisonburg, are set to appear in a debate hosted by the Loudon County Chamber of Commerce in Northern Virginia."

Progressive Point: Virginians can see through political double speak, where partisans like Mark Obenshain say one thing and do another. Despite his attempts to hide it at today's debate, the truth is Obenshain has worked to ban abortion in Virginia, prosecute women at their most vulnerable, and deny LGBT Virginians protection from being fired because of who they love.

Virginia voters deserve accountability and to know where candidates actually stand on the issues. They know campaign rhetoric when they see it - like they did this morning from Obenshain and as they will tonight from E.W. Jackson. Playing politics and blatantly misrepresenting records on the campaign trail has become the platform of the Cuccinelli/Jackson/Obenshain ticket. Those aren't Virginia values. Restoring accountability to our Commonwealth is.

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  • Mark Obenshain and Ken Cuccinelli cosponsored 2007 personhood legislation. (HB2797)

  • The Associated Press described HB2979, sponsored by Obenshain and Cuccinelli, as a "bill that could have banned abortions", explaining "by giving embryos the constitutional protection of personhood from the instant of fertilization, abortions of all types would become illegal." (Associated Press, 2/6/2007)

  • On video, Ken Cuccinelli compared his battle "to ban abortion rights to the battle to end slavery." (WJLA - VIDEO, March 19, 2013)

  • On Martin Luther King Day, Ken Cuccinelli compared "his fight against the federal requirement that birth control be offered with no copay by insurance plans to King's fight for equal rights for African Americans." (Talking Points Memo, Jan. 22, 2013)

  • Republican Lieutenant Governor candidate E.W. Jackson compared Planned Parenthood to the Ku Klux Klan stating, "The Democrat Party has created an unholy alliance between certain so-called civil rights leaders and Planned Parenthood, which has killed unborn black babies by the tens of millions. Planned Parenthood has been far more lethal to black lives than the KKK ever was." (Politico, 5/19/13)

  • A 2009 bill filed by GOP Attorney General candidate State Senator Mark Obenshain would subject women to criminal scrutiny for dealing with the private tragedy of a miscarriage without notifying the police. (ThinkProgress, 5/20/13)

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September 27, 2013

The Washington Post reports, "A liberal think tank's analysis of Ken Cuccinelli II's economic plan for Virginia says the Republican gubernatorial candidate would cut a $1.4 billion hole in the state's budget to shave $6,391 off a millionaire's tax bill, all at a time when the state economy seems less able to withstand such a blow. The tax proposal would also put another $985 in Cuccinelli's own pocket, based on his 2012 salary as attorney general, the report says. That's 10 times higher than the average tax break a middle-class family would receive, the group says."

Progressive Point: We need an economy that works for all Virginians, and budget priorities that get us there. Ken Cuccinelli's tax plan would benefit the already wealthy, giving away thousands of dollars in tax cuts and leaving the middle class behind. Leadership is standing up to campaign donors and for working families, and that's one thing Cuccinelli won't do.

Everybody should get a fair shot in Virginia, but Cuccinelli's plan gives another leg up to those who are already succeeding while leaving behind those hit hardest by the recession. Working families and small business owners pay their taxes so we can invest in Virginia and make everyone better off. If we want to fix Virginia's budget problems asking corporations to pay their fair share is the first step.

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  •  
    • Cuccinelli's tax plan would give millionaires additional tax breaks of more than $6,000, while working-class Virginians get little to no tax relief. A Virginia millionaire will enjoy a $6,391 tax cut, while almost 40 percent of low- and middle-income households in Virginia will see little to no tax breaks from Cuccinelli's proposed tax plan.
    • Cuccinelli's tax plan would mean deeper cuts to investments in education and transportation. Cuccinelli's tax plan would put a $1.4 billion hole in Virginia's budget during a fragile recovery. Because Virginia has a balanced-budget requirement, this loss in revenue must be made up in other areas. Cuccinelli has not stated how he would pay for this costly and unnecessary tax break for millionaires, but the math suggests that critical services and investments that benefit middle-class Virginia families would be at stake.
    • Cuccinelli's record jeopardizes major investments in transportation. ;During his time in public office, Cuccinelli has opposed several measures funding state transportation projects. His history of opposition to transportation funding calls into question his willingness to make needed investments in Virginia's infrastructure.
    • Cuccinelli's continued opposition to increasing Virginia's stagnant minimum wage will hurt Virginia's economy and its workers. Increasing the minimum wage to $10.10 would positively impact wages for 758,000 working Virginians. In 2007, Cuccinelli--then a state senator--opposed a minimum-wage increase, while three-fourths of his colleagues supported raising it. He continues to oppose a real living wage today.
    • Cuccinelli's ideological resistance to Medicaid expansion would cost Virginia jobs, billions in revenue, and health care for working families. Medicaid expansion would help more than 400,000 Virginians access health care coverage and bring $21 billion to the commonwealth, but Cuccinelli has refused the funds, which will instead flow to other states.

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September 25, 2013

NBC Washington reports, "Republican Ken Cuccinelli and Democrat Terry McAuliffe are set to square off in their first prime-time debate... Going into Wednesday's debate, McAuliffe leads Cuccinelli 43-38 percent, with Libertarian candidate Robert Sarvis at 8 percent among likely voters, a new NBC4/NBC News/Marist poll out Monday finds... A big reason for McAuliffe's narrow edge is because he leads with women by 18 points (50-32 percent)."

Progressive Point: At tonight's debate it is important to remember that our leaders are elected to work for us. Ken Cuccinelli office actively worked on behalf of one of his mega coal donors in a legal battle against Virginians. His tax plan would primarily benefit the already wealthy, giving away thousands of dollars in tax cuts and leaving the middle class behind. Ken Cuccinelli hasn't worked for us as Attorney General, and its clear he won't work for Virginia in the future.

While he may have forgotten, corporate special interests that donate huge sums to Ken Cuccinelli don't have a vote. Working Virginians do have a vote, and for that we deserve leadership that answers to us. Cuccinelli's conflicts of interest have required him to recuse from court cases and cost Virginians to hire new lawyers. We continue to see new lows in his level of his willingness to use the office of Attorney General to help a mega coal donor in a legal fight against Virginians. Virginia families deserve leaders that don't compromise on ethics, not one that already has.

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  • Ken Cuccinelli is using the Virginia Attorney General's office to help a major campaign contributor in a legal battle against Virginians. A parent company, Consul Energy, of one of the coal corporations being helped by Ken Cuccinelli's office, CNX, against the people of Virginia has given $100,000 to Attorney General Cuccinelli's campaign for governor. (WVTF, June 10, 2013)

  • "A liberal think tank's analysis of Ken Cuccinelli II's economic plan for Virginia says the Republican gubernatorial candidate would cut a $1.4 billion hole in the state's budget to shave $6,391 off a millionaire's tax bill, all at a time when the state economy seems less able to withstand such a blow." (Washington Post, September 22, 2013)

  • Parent Trigger legislation that Ken Cuccinelli is proposing is drawn directly from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). The name he's given, "Parent Empowerment and Choice Act" is the same name as the ALEC model. Additionally, as is discussed in our ALEC V. Kids report, the ALEC model is based on a California law that was proposed by a private charter operator. ALEC actually revised that law to give parents fewer choices, essentially steering them into privatizing public schools. (ProgressVA)

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September 24, 2013

The Center for American Progress reports, "[T]here are reasonable steps that Virginia can take to cut down on this violence: laws that make it harder for convicted felons to get their hands on guns; laws that make it less likely for a bar fight to turn fatal; and laws that protect the law enforcement officers charged with protecting Virginia citizens. Ken Cuccinelli and his caucus have demonstrated that they are against these laws. They would instead choose to continue on the path they have been heading down for more than a decade--a path toward a state that does not distinguish between responsible gun ownership and reckless gun ownership."

Progressive Point: Virginians understand that our protecting our 2nd Amendment rights goes hand in hand with the need to keep dangerous guns out of dangerous hands. Ken Cuccinelli has a long history of opposing common sense gun safety provisions such as requiring a background check for every gun sale - a proposal 91% of our Commonwealth's gun-owning households support. That doesn't protect our rights and in fact makes our families less safe.

Virginia's laws should protect our 2nd Amendment rights and promote gun safety. Making us less safe does not equal more freedom -- it's just about money and fear. Ken Cuccinelli has voted against requiring background checks for every gun sale, keeping our families in danger. Cuccinelli should listen to Virginia's responsible gun owners and law enforcement, not NRA lobbyists and the gun industry.

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  • Via the Center for American Progress: "Over the course of the past decade, nobody has done more to undermine the safeguards in Virginia's concealed carry system than Cuccinelli:
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    • 2003: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have eliminated the requirement that out-of-state permit holders meet Virginia requirements for issuance if they want to carry in the commonwealth. This would have effectively nullified Virginia state gun laws that require a certain threshold of training and clearance in order to carry a concealed gun in public.
    • 2004: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have forced privately owned restaurants and clubs to allow guns in the door, including establishments that serve alcohol.
    • 2005: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation that would have eliminated law enforcement discretion in the concealed carry permit process. Thus, if law enforcement officers have reasonable suspicion that an applicant should not receive a permit, the law would still require them to issue one.
    • 2006: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation eliminating the ability of localities to require fingerprints as part of an application for a concealed carry permit.
    • 2008: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation that would have permitted individuals who do not have a concealed carry permit to carry a firearm in a private vehicle, as long as it was in a locked container or compartment. This would have allowed citizens without the training and clearance required to get a concealed carry permit to have guns in public places.
    • 2009: Cuccinelli voted in favor of legislation, which became law, that restricts public access to information regarding concealed carry permit holders and therefore impedes legitimate efforts by law enforcement and other agencies to use this information.
    • 2009: Cuccinelli sponsored legislation, which became law, that weakens the requirement that applicants for a concealed carry license complete a handgun safety course by allowing that requirement to be met with an online course. (That's like letting somebody get a driver's license without first getting behind the wheel to learn how to drive.)
    ...
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    • 2011: Cuccinelli issued an advisory opinion stating that individuals with concealed carry permits could legally carry firearms in places of worship, despite a state law to the contrary, as long as they believed it was necessary for "personal protection."
    • 2011: Cuccinelli issued an advisory opinion stating that a University of Virginia policy prohibiting the possession of firearms inside university buildings did not function to prevent concealed carry permit holders from carrying concealed firearms into those buildings.
    • 2012: Cuccinelli filed an amicus brief in federal court urging that a Maryland state law that gives law enforcement the ability to apply a "good and substantial reason" test prior to issuing a concealed carry permit be struck down, despite the lack of any connection between the litigation and the state of Virginia."

  • Bipartisan research conducted on behalf of Mayors Against Illegal Guns found broad support in Virginia for stronger violence prevention measures. (Mayors Against Illegal Guns, 11/30/12)
    • 88% of Virginians support requiring gun owners to pass a background check.

    • 91% of Virginia gun households support requiring gun owners to pass a background check.

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September 19, 2013

The Washington Post reports, Ken "Cuccinelli, Virginia's attorney general, championed hard-line immigration policies while rising through the state ranks -- but he has awkwardly sought to play down his record in hopes of not alienating Hispanics and Asians who represent a small but growing part of Virginia's electorate... Immigration advocates said Cuccinelli, who scrubbed a section on immigration from his campaign Web site in the spring, is not fooling anyone with his vague answers. As a state senator, he sponsored legislation aimed at stripping U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants of their right to citizenship, and as attorney general he has embraced policies that would authorize police to check the immigration status of anyone they stop or arrest."

Progressive Point: Americans know our immigration system is broken and want to see common sense solutions now. Virginia's economic future depends on leaders who support a roadmap to citizenship for immigrants who've been part of our communities and families for years. Unfortunately, conservatives like Ken Cuccinelli continue to oppose citizenship for aspiring Americans who contribute to our Commonwealth, pledge allegiance to our country, and desire to be a part of America's greatness.

Instead of Cuccinelli's bullheaded resistance to honest reform, Virginia demands leadership like that of Senator Tim Kaine, who is fighting to make the American Dream possible for more Americans. Creating a real road to citizenship rather than establishing second class of people does more than just reflect our values as Americans. It will create more working families striving for the middle class who contribute to our economy. Virginia needs an immigration system that's fair and practical, not more of Cuccinelli's muddling.

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  • Via Virginia Organizing (August 14, 2013):
    • "Providing earned citizenship for" currently undocumented immigrant "workers would increase their wages and, over 10 years, boost U.S. GDP by $1.4 trillion, increase total income for all Americans by $791 billion, generate $184 billion in additional state and federal tax revenue from currently undocumented immigrants, and add about 2 million jobs to the U.S. economy."

    • "Compared to the benefits of citizenship, providing legal status alone to currently undocumented workers would, over 10 years, result in $568 billion less GDP, and $321 billion less total income. An estimated 820,000 fewer total jobs would be created, and federal and state governments would lose out on $75 billion in additional tax revenue according to outside estimates."

economic-fiscal-benefits-immigration-reform.jpg

  • "88% of all Americans support a path to citizenship as part of immigration reform, including 87% of whites, 83% of conservatives and 83% of conservative whites." (America's Voice, July 15, 2013)

  • Three out of four Americans, or nearly 75%, agree that immigrants in the country who meet certain requirements should have a way to stay legally. (Pew Research, May 9, 2013)

  • Senator Tim Kaine's speech in June of this year was the first in history delivered entirely in Spanish on the Senate floor. In it he said he supports immigration reform because, "our immigration system does not meet the demands of businesses that wish to attract and retain highly qualified immigrants." (Washington Post, June 11, 2013)

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