March, 2013

Cuccinelli Did Not Disclose Stock Holdings

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) “failed to disclose for nearly a year that he had substantial stock holdings in a company, even though disclosure is required by law and his office was defending the state in a tax lawsuit filed by the company,” the Washington Post reports.

“Cuccinelli, the presumptive Republican nominee for governor, said through a campaign consultant that the attorney general did not disclose his interest in Star Scientific because he didn’t realize that his holdings exceeded $10,000, the threshold for disclosure under state law.”

Donor Picked Up Tab for Wedding of Governor’s Daughter

A political donor paid for the $15,000 wedding reception for the daughter of Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell (R) and his wife, Maureen, attended by about 200 guests at the governor’s mansion, the Washington Post reports.

The gift from Jonnie R. Williams Sr., the chief executive of a company that has made major contributions to McDonnell’s campaigns and that is the subject of a federal securities investigation, was not disclosed by McDonnell.

It’s “just one element of the McDonnells’ close relationship with Williams and his company, a relationship that has included rides on Williams’s corporate jet, personal gifts to the first family and efforts by the governor and his wife to promote the company.”

Minister Blasts the Religious Right at Easter Service

“With President Obama and his family in the pews for Easter Sunday worship, the Rev. Luis Leon at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Washington’s Lafayette Square took the opportunity to take a shot at political conservatives, arguing from the pulpit that some conservative positions are holding people back,” the Washington Post reports.

Said Leon: “It drives me crazy when the captains of the religious right are always calling us back … for blacks to be back in the back of the bus … for women to be back in the kitchen … for immigrants to be back on their side of the border.”

Conservatives Need to Take Obama Seriously

John Podhoretz: “Barack Obama is a serious man. Yes, he likes to golf, and yes, he ran a campaign with cutesy Facebook pictures and seemingly inane Flash slideshows like ‘Life of Julia.’ No, he does not seem interested in the mechanics of legislation, nor does he seem adept at negotiation. But the weird condescension his opponents display toward him is ludicrously wrongheaded. They seem eager to believe he is a lightweight, and he is not. Obama is very possibly a world-historical political figure, and until those who oppose him come to grips with this fact, they will get him wrong every time.”

Clinton Has Donors and Rivals Frozen in Place

New York Times: “Hillary Clinton left the State Department nearly two months ago, but she still needs a staff to keep up with the considerable business of being Hillary Clinton. A half-dozen people now work for the former secretary of state and Democratic presidential candidate in a tiny corporate space on Connecticut Avenue in Washington, in what is called her ‘transition office.'”

“Transition to what, Mrs. Clinton and her aides have not yet said. But the question hovers over her every move and has frozen in place the very early — but for some potential candidates, very important — presidential maneuvering on the Democratic side.”

Waiting for Another Bubble to Burst

David Stockman: “Over the last 13 years, the stock market has twice crashed and touched off a recession: American households lost $5 trillion in the 2000 dot-com bust and more than $7 trillion in the 2007 housing crash. Sooner or later — within a few years, I predict — this latest Wall Street bubble, inflated by an egregious flood of phony money from the Federal Reserve rather than real economic gains, will explode, too.”

Fraud Committed to Get Obama on Indiana Ballot in 2008

An Indiana woman plead guilty to forgery and fraud in a successful attempt to get Barack Obama on the presidential primary ballot in 2008, WISH-TV reports.

“At the center of this story is Butch Morgan, a longtime Democratic Party leader who lost his post as St. Joseph County chair when the scandal broke. Morgan is accused of telling three people to forge names on a ballot petition including Bev Shelton who pleaded guilty to forgery and fraud. She has agreed to testify against the others.”

Deal Close on Immigration Reform

“Labor and business groups have agreed on the details of a new guest-worker program, likely removing a major hurdle to an immigration deal in the Senate,” Roll Call reports.

“The framework for a guest-worker program has long vexed an immigration overhaul, as labor feared a flood of low-wage workers undercutting American workers, while the Chamber of Commerce has led the push for a steady supply of workers.”

Politico: “The agreement marks a major breakthrough and significantly improves
the odds of passing a larger immigration bill because it brings two
powerful Washington interests on board on an issue that contributed to
the defeat of past reform efforts.”

North Carolina Lawmakers Seek to Make Divorce Difficult

Republican lawmakers in North Carolina want to make it harder to get a divorce, the Raleigh News & Observer reports.

The proposed law “would extend to two years the current one-year waiting period in order for a divorce to be finalized. During that time, the couple would have to complete courses on improving their communications skills and conflict resolution. If the couple has children, they would have to take at least a four-hour class on the impact of divorce on children.”