Virginia State Senator Bryce Reeves Seeking Congressional Nomination to Challenge Rep. Abigail Spanberger

State Senator Bryce Reeves (R-Spotsylvania) is running for the GOP nomination for Virginia’s seventh congressional district. The region is considered a swing district and Republicans nationally expect to do well in the 2022 midterm congressional elections. The nominee will likely challenge incumbent Representative Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07), who has warned her party about the risks to moderates caused by progressive messaging and policy.

“Under President Trump our economy was humming, people were working, and government did not dominate or intrude in our lives and livelihood. But under Joe Biden and Abigail Spanberger, an intrusive, progressive government is failing us, badly. Spanberger has failed to make the Seventh District what it should be – the best place to work, live, and raise a family,” Reeves said in a Friday press release.

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Exclusive: Loudoun County Superintendent Not Planning to Resign After More Details Emerge in Alleged Rape Coverup

Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) and the communications office for Loudoun County Superintendent Scott Ziegler ignored The Virginia Star’s comment requests Friday, as more evidence emerged that the district covered up the alleged rape of a teenaged girl. 

WTOP reported Thursday that Ziegler sent an email to the Loudoun County School Board (LCSB) on May 28, the day when a male student in a skirt allegedly raped a ninth-grade girl in the bathroom at Stone Bridge High School.

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Lawsuit Filed Against Fairfax County over Absentee and Mail-In Ballots

An election integrity group has filed a lawsuit and motion for an injunction against members of the Fairfax County Board of Elections and the Fairfax County General Registrar.

“The case is brought on behalf of the Virginia Institute for Public Policy, a local organization that promotes election integrity,” the Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) said in a press release. “The lawsuit explains that Fairfax County is violating Virginia law by accepting and approving applications for absentee and mail-in ballots that do not include the last four digits of the applicant’s Social Security number, as required under Virginia statues.”

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Virginia Supreme Court Dismisses Petition to Appeal in McAuliffe Signature Lawsuit

The Virginia Supreme Court refused a petition to appeal the dismissal of a lawsuit over the missing signature on Terry McAuliffe’s election paperwork. On Wednesday, attorney Peter Hansen argued in a writ panel that the Court should take up the appeal, saying that McAuliffe failed to file a valid declaration of candidacy, and that when the City of Richmond Circuit Court dismissed the case, it did so based on speculation.

“Unfortunately, the trial court effectually made up facts. There’s nothing in the evidence, nothing in the record that suggested that Mr. McAuliffe was present when he didn’t sign the declaration. There’s nothing in evidence that suggests he raised his hand as if taking an oath, and that’s what ‘sworn to under my hand’ means,” Hansen told the panel.

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Exclusive: Loudoun County Superintendent Not Planning to Resign After More Details Emerge in Alleged Rape Coverup

Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) and the communications office for Loudoun County Superintendent Scott Ziegler ignored The Virginia Star’s comment requests Friday, as more evidence emerged that the district covered up the alleged rape of a teenaged girl. 

WTOP reported Thursday that Ziegler sent an email to the Loudoun County School Board (LCSB) on May 28, the day when a male student in a skirt allegedly raped a ninth-grade girl in the bathroom at Stone Bridge High School.

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Virginia’s Educational Policy Debates Rattle Isle of Wight County Public Schools

The Isle of Wight County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Jim Thornton has received multiple death threats, and two members of the school board have announced their departure within the past month. The board and district leaders have come under fire from some parents for decisions about masks, transgender policy, and library books — issues that are being debated in school board public comment periods across Virginia. Thornton told Wavy.com the district is introducing cultural awareness training for teachers this year as part of several equity initiatives.

“We’re not telling them what to believe. We’re sharing information for them to process,” Thornton said.

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Richmond Public Schools Taking Whole Week Off for Teachers’ Mental Health

Citing teacher burnout, Richmond Public Schools (RPS) has decided to take an entire week off at the beginning of November. 

During that week, students were already set to have three days off: Nov. 2 for Election Day, Nov. 4 for Diwali, a Hindu holiday and Nov. 5 for parent/teacher conferences, according to a letter sent to the RPS community by Superintendent Jason Kamras. 

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Education Group Launches Million Dollar Ad Campaign Against Virginia Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate McAuliffe

Free to Learn Action, an advocacy group intent on removing politics from the classroom in America’s public schools, launched a one million dollar ad campaign against Virginia’s Democrat gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe Thursday.

“The ad highlights the devastating consequences of allowing partisan political agendas to seep into schools while also undermining parents’ roles in their child’s education,” the organization said in an email. 

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Virginia Redistricting Commission Adjourns Indefinitely Without Completing Any Maps

Virginia may have seen the last of its Redistricting Commission. After multiple perfect ties split along party lines on votes held over the past months, the Commission reached consensus on Wednesday to adjourn until the two co-chairs decide to reconvene the commission. The commission’s one remaining  scheduled meeting on Monday and a public hearing for Friday are canceled. The co-chairs said they would reconvene the commission if two commissioners, one from each party, were able to jointly propose a way to redistrict Virginia’s congressional maps.

Co-chair Mackenzie Babichenko (R) said, “That would give us kind of a better basis, so if Senator Barker finds someone that likes something also on the other side they can bring it to the co-chairs attention, and then we can call a meeting for us to all come and consider it. But I think the issue is that if we say that there is some place for consensus and that we can still keep working, but is that going to happen at another meeting just like this?”

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Youngkin Campaign on Offense After McAuliffe Exits Interview When Asked About Critical Race Theory

In the ever-tightening race for Virginia’s governor’s mansion, one candidate appeared to let the pressure boil over.

Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D), running for his second non-consecutive term in office, exited an unfinished interview with WJLA-TV’s Nick Minock after scolding the reporter.

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IRS Rule Appears to be Flouted in Pro-McAuliffe Video Starring Kamala Harris Played at Virginia Churches

Hundreds of churches across the state of Virginia have been airing a political ad featuring Vice President Kamala Harris encouraging churchgoers to vote for Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia gubernatorial race, for which early voting has begun.

The video is raising questions about the legality of the ad being shown in houses of worship. The vice president calls upon Virginians to “raise your voice through your vote,” specifically, a vote for Democrat McAuliffe, whom Harris refers to as “the leader Virginia needs at this moment.”

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Monmouth Poll: Youngkin and McAuliffe Tied Among Registered Voters

Virginia’s gubernatorial race is a tie among registered voters, according to a new Monmouth University poll, which found that Republican Glenn Youngkin has made gains against Terry McAuliffe since the university’s September poll.

“Youngkin (46 percent) and McAuliffe (46 percent) hold identical levels of support among all registered voters. This marks a shift from prior Monmouth polls where the Democrat held a five-point lead (48 percent to 43 percent in September and 47 percent to 42 percent in August),” the poll’s press release states.

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COVID-19, Supply Chain Issues Slowing Virginia’s Economic Recovery

Virginia’s financial position continues to improve after COVID-19’s impacts in 2020, but the fast-paced recovery seen earlier in the year is slowing, Secretary of Finance Joe Flores told legislators in an update on Monday and Tuesday.

“The bottom line is that we’ve hit a few roadblocks in the past month or so with the resurgence of the virus, especially the Delta variant, and some supply chain issues. But you’re going to see from this report, as you mentioned Madam Chair, that the current revenue performance continues to just chug along. We’re doing actually very well, and it’s suggestive of a recovering economy,” Flores told the Senate Finance and Appropriations Committee on Tuesday.

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Delegate Wendy Gooditis Facing Serious Challenge from Republican Newcomer Nick Clemente

Virginia House District 10 is one of Republicans’ best chances to flip a House seat in the election; Republicans hope to retake the majority by winning a net six seats. The district includes part of Loudoun County, where the local school board has become a battleground and a national bellweather for the GOP’s new messaging on education. Statewide politicians have made repeated stops in the area, and GOP challenger Nick Clemente and Delegate Wendy Gooditis (D-Clarke) have together raised over $2 million, placing the district number one among the 100 House seats for fundraising, according to The Virginia Public Access Project.

“I think Gooditis is probably the second most likely Democrat to lose in the House,” CNalysis Executive Director Chaz Nuttycombe said. “I think Nick Clemente is definitely the strongest recruit that the GOP has going up against the Democrats.”

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Virginia’s Gubernatorial Hopeful Youngkin Campaign Responds to Stacey Abrams Campaigning for McAuliffe

The campaign for Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin blasted its Democrat opponent Terry McAuliffe for campaigning with failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams. 

“Terry McAuliffe said he was proud to be endorsed by radical ‘defund the police’ groups, and now he’s campaigning with the radical Stacey Abrams, who said the election was stolen from her, compared law enforcement officers to terrorists, opposed enforcing our immigration laws, and supported defunding the police,” Youngkin spokesperson Macauley Porter told The Virginia Star. “Virginians are seeing that Terry McAuliffe is too extreme for Virginia and will reject his anti-police, liberal agenda at the polls.”

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Despite Soft-on-Crime Approach, Progressive Prosecutor Wanted to Throw Loudoun County Dad in Jail for Disorderly Conduct

A Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney, known for her soft-on-crime approach to prosecuting, reportedly want to throw Scott Smith in jail for two misdemeanors after he was arrested at a June 22 Loudoun County School Board (LCSB) meeting. 

Smith, who was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, was protesting anti-transgender bathroom policies in the Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS).

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Virginia Gubernatorial Race Still Close with Two Weeks to Go

Former President Obama is coming to Virginia to campaign for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, one of several Democratic heavyweights to stump for the once and would-be future governor. However, the de-facto leader of the Republican Party, former President Donald Trump, hasn’t made a stop in Virginia to support GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin. Since the nominating convention, Youngkin has pivoted away from Trump and hard-line Republicans and successfully pulled some independents away from McAuliffe, who is turning to souls-to-the-polls events and big names like Obama, first Lady Jill Biden, Stacey Abrams, and Vice President Kamala Harris to boost turnout among the Democratic faithful.

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Virginia Receives $5 Million Grant to Train Shipbuilding Workers

Virginia received a $5 million federal grant to fund a K-12 to university training pipeline intended to produce shipbuilding workers for the Navy, Gov. Ralph Northam announced Friday.

The money, which the Department of Defense awarded to the Virginia Defense Manufacturing Community, will be used to teach skills to students in the Danville and Norfolk areas that would prepare them to work for defense manufacturing industries. It is designed to boost the local workforce in those industries with local people.

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With a Week Left, Virginia Redistricting Commission Far from Consensus on Congressional District Maps

With no quorum, the Virginia Redistricting Commission couldn’t take any votes in its Monday meeting, but the commissioners heard legal discussion of the definition of fairness, and heard public comment on a recent draft map of congressional district that combined Republican proposal for southwest Virginia with the Democratic proposal for northern Virginia. One of the commenters was Sam Shirazi — a member of the public who highlighted links between parts of the draft and maps submitted through public comment by former Virginia Congressman Tom Davis (R-VA-11).

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Commentary: Virginia Likely to Reinstate Parole for Even Murderers

man in handcuffs

Senator Joe Morrissey (D-Richmond) predicts that Virginia’s senate will vote to bring back parole in 2022 — “across the board,” meaning for even the most serious crimes, such as murder. Restoring parole could increase the number of murders, rapes, and robberies in Virginia. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports:

A movement to reinstate parole in Virginia could hinge on the outcome of election results next month. Democratic gubernatorial nominee Terry McAuliffe has indicated willingness to support expanded parole….While many Democrats support reinstating parole broadly in Virginia, Republicans generally oppose it. The Democrats hold a 55-45 seat edge in the House of Delegates…the issue will be debated in next year’s General Assembly session.

“I will be introducing a bill that will reintroduce parole across the board,” said Sen. Joe Morrissey, D-Richmond. “I think it will pass [the] Senate Judiciary [Committee] and … the full body.” Democrats control the Senate 21-19. Senators are not up for election until 2023. But Morrissey said he predicts a possible roadblock to parole expansion in the House, where he thinks Republicans will make gains in the Nov. 2 election….Virginia created parole in 1942 and abolished it in 1995, passing a “truth in sentencing” law among other criminal justice measures in an effort to reduce high crime rates….

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Trafalgar Poll Shows Tied Gubernatorial Race, Fox Poll Shows Widening McAuliffe Lead

A Fox News poll released Thursday found 51 percent support for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe and 46 percent support for GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin among likely voters. A Trafalgar Group poll released the same day found Youngkin and McAuliffe practically tied among likely voters, with 48.4 percent support for Youngkin, and 47.5 percent support for McAuliffe. Real Clear Politics’ (RCP) polling average still places McAuliffe slightly ahead by 2.2 points.

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Virginia Gubernatorial Candidate McAuliffe Endorses Richmond Casino Proposal

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe has endorsed the ONE Casino + Resort proposal that Richmond voters are currently considering.

“I mean, think about what’s going to happen here in Richmond,” McAuliffe said in a Twitter video Thursday. “Construction: 3,000 jobs. 15,000 permanent jobs. $50 million in revenue that will help schools, hospitals, everything else. I’m so excited.”

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In Surprise Win for Recall Proponents, Loudoun School Board Member Beth Barts Announces Resignation

Loudoun County School Board Member Beth Barts announced her resignation, effective November 2, on Friday. Barts is facing a recall effort, and a judge recently declined to dismiss the recall petitions.

“This was not an easy decision, or a decision made in haste,” Barts wrote to the board and school officials. “After much thought and careful consideration, it is the right decision for me and my family.”

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Senator Stanley Representing Family Against Loudoun County Public Schools in Alleged Assault

Senator Bill Stanley’s (R-Franklin) legal practice is representing the Smith family in their lawsuit against Loudoun County Public Schools over the school’s failures in an alleged sexual assault.

“The facts are that a male student claiming to be ‘gender fluid’ was permitted to enter the girls’ bathroom on May 28 and sexually assault our daughter. Making matters worse, the school system repeatedly failed to protect her thereafter. Then, they concealed the sexual assault from the public while considering formalizing a bathroom access policy that would have – and now has – increased the likelihood of sexual assaults like these. As a result, our daughter and our family has suffered, and continue to suffer, from the very real consequences of a policy that endangers the safety of every student,” the victim’s parents said in a Thursday press release.

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Virginia ACLU Insists Trans Kids ‘Not a Threat’, Dodges Questions on Loudoun County Scandal

The Virginia American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Wednesday insisted that transgender students are “not a threat,” amid the bombshell report that a ninth-grade girl in Loudoun County was allegedly raped by a transgender girl – biologically male – in the bathroom at Stone Bridge High School.

“TRANS KIDS ARE NOT A THREAT,” the group said nine times in one tweet.

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Moving on to Congressional Maps, Virginia Redistricting Commission Still Haunted by Questions About Fairness

The Virginia Redistricting Commission has moved on to full consideration of the congressional map without making any decisions about the General Assembly maps and using a two-week extension period. In advance of a meeting Thursday, the co-chairs had asked the Republican map-drawing team to draft a proposal for the Republican-voting southwest region of Virginia, and the Democratic team to draw a proposal for Democratic-voting northern Virginia, while both map drawers roughly followed the existing court-drawn districts three and four. Those districts have the most significant minority voter populations, which require extra protection by law.

Debate over the preliminary proposals again focused how to protect minority voters, but by the end of the meeting, there seemed to be a shaky consensus to leave district three and four mostly intact, with support from both Democratic and Republican legal teams. The commission returned to the question of what fair maps are: do they reflect Virginia’s blue-leaning voter base, or do they give an even split to each party? How important is compactness versus regional identity?

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Virginia House District 66 Profile: With No Incumbent, Mike Cherry Must Keep Katie Sponsler from Flipping the District

Virginia Republicans only need to flip six seats to retake the majority in the House of Delegates, but to do that, they must protect a handful of vulnerable Republican districts like House District 66. Former Speaker of the House Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights) is retiring after assuming office in 199o, and the urban, suburban, and rural district leans Democratic. It’s one of a handful of seats that survived Trump-era Democratic waves in greater Richmond in 2017 and 2019. GOP candidate Mike Cherry is running against Democrat Katie Sponsler in a battle of turnout and name recognition.

“This is an open seat so for the first time in decades, voters have the opportunity to learn about and choose between two new candidates, without the weight of incumbency skewing the election,” Chesterfield County Democratic Committee Chair Sara Gaborik told The Virginia Star.

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Prominent Virginia Dems Silent on Alleged Loudoun County Rape Coverup

Virginia’s most prominent Democrat Party leaders aren’t talking after the nationwide scandal involving the Loudoun County School District exploded earlier this week.

The Daily Wire reported earlier this week that Scott Smith, the man who was arrested for protesting transgender bathroom policies at a June 22 Loudoun County School Board (LCSB) meeting, has a ninth-grade daughter who was allegedly raped in school bathroom less than one month prior. The girl was allegedly raped by a transgender girl – a biological male – in a school bathroom at Stone Bridge High School.

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Dr. Shiva Ayyadurai to Hold Forum on Arizona Audit Findings

Dr. Shiva Ayyadurai, who wrote the portion of the Maricopa County ballot audit addressing the signatures on the return envelopes of mail-in ballots, is holding a forum on Thursday to discuss findings of the Arizona election audit.

When addressing the findings, Ayyadurai invited members of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors to answer any concerns over the procedures.

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Virginia Teacher Fired for Refusing to Wear Mask

The Chesterfield County School Board agreed to fire government and history teacher Stephen Roszell for insubordination after he declined to comply with a state-wide mask mandate for teachers. Roszell told The Virginia Star that he would have complied with a local mask mandate from his employer since Virginia is a right-to-work state. However, he sees Governor Ralph Northam’s public health order as an overreach of executive power. He’s also concerned about federal stimulus funds sent to school districts influencing their policy.

“I teach about federalism in history and government, and this is a direct payment essentially from the federal government through the Virginia Department of Education to [Local Education Agencies (LEA)],” Roszell said. “This money is coming directly from the federal government, and localities must follow all the CDC guidelines through 2023.”

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Former President Trump Calls In to Bannon-Headlined ‘Take Back Virginia’ Rally

Steve Bannon headlined a get-out-the-vote rally for the MAGA base in Henrico on Wednesday evening, where speakers included Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield) and Arizona State House Representative Mark Finchem, who is using 2020 election audits in that state in his campaign for Arizona Secretary of State. But the biggest reaction from the crowd came when former President Donald Trump called in for about five minutes.

“Glenn Youngkin is a great gentleman,” Trump said. “You have a chance to get one of the most successful businessmen in the country, and he did it in a quiet professional way, in Glenn Youngkin. I hope — he and others by the way — but I hope Glenn gets in there  and he’ll straighten out Virginia, and he’ll lower taxes, all of the things that we want a governor to do, and I really believe that Virginia is very, very, winnable.”

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Virginia Court Denies Demurrer, Allows Sadler’s Skill Games Ban Lawsuit to Go Forward

A Greensville County Circuit Court judge declined to dismiss NASCAR driver Hermie Sadler’s lawsuit over Virginia’s recent skill games ban. In a hearing Tuesday, the court denied a demurrer from the Office of the Attorney General and ordered an expedited discovery process so that a hearing on an emergency injunction can be held in early December.

“We are grateful the Court was able to see through the Attorney General’s latest and last-ditch attempt to avoid a trial in this case,” said Senator Bill Stanley (R-Franklin), attorney for Sadler and Sadler Brothers Oil Company.  “Mr. Sadler’s lawsuit seeks to protect his constitutional rights and the rights of hundreds of Virginia’s small and family-owned businesses.  We’re looking forward to December 6, when we hope the injustice and inequity of the skill games ban will be seen by the Court for what it is.”

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Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) Says He Has No Knowledge of Loudoun County Schools Rape Coverup Allegations

The Virginia Star Wednesday asked Virginia Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) at Reagan International Airport in Washington, D.C., about the recent rape coverup allegations in Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS). 

Warner claimed he had no knowledge of what has become a bombshell national news story.

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Virginia Lawsuit to Force Multiple House of Delegates Elections in a Row Survives Challenge from the Attorney General

A lawsuit that could force House of Delegates candidates to run multiple years in a row had a win Tuesday. Paul Goldman’s lawsuit lists multiple Virginia officials and agencies as defendants, but the Office of the Attorney General argued that they were protected by sovereign immunity. U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia Judge David Novak ruled that while defendants including Governor Ralph Northam are protected, the lawsuit can proceed against the State Board of Elections and Virginia Department of Elections Commissioner Christopher Piper.

“That’s fine with me because I’ve still got four defendants left, you only need one,” Goldman told The Virginia Star.

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Witness Signature Will Be Required for Virginia Absentee Ballots, but Some Dems Oppose

A witness signature will be required for absentee ballots cast in Virginia in the gubernatorial election next month, but some Democrats are asking Gov. Ralph Northam to waive the requirement.

Until last year, all absentee ballots were required to be signed by a witness who confirmed the authenticity of the voter. The rule was temporarily suspended during the 2020 election as a COVID-19 precaution, but is currently in place for the 2021 elections, in which Virginians will select their next governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and state house delegates.

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Youngkin Campaign Responds to McAuliffe’s Denial of CRT in Virginia Schools

Terry McAuliffe and Glenn Youngkin

The gubernatorial campaign for Republican Glenn Youngkin responded to former Gov. Terry McAuliffe, running for his second nonconsecutive term in that office, who once again denied that Critical Race Theory (CRT) is being taught in schools in Virginia. 

“Virginians know that Terry McAuliffe doesn’t have the best interests of parents and students in mind,” Youngkin spokesman Christian Martinez told The Virginia Star. “McAuliffe wants to keep parents out of the classroom so his special interest allies can force their radical political agenda into classrooms and tell children what to think instead of teaching them how to think. As governor, Glenn Youngkin will empower parents, ban critical race theory, restore excellence in our public schools, and raise teacher pay.”

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After Legislative Map Failure, Virginia Redistricting Commission Has Airing of Grievances, Thinks About Congressional Maps

Tennessee Capitol building

The Virginia Redistricting Commission hasn’t made a formal decision, but it seems to be moving on after missing a Sunday deadline to complete General Assembly maps. In a virtual meeting Monday, commissioners couldn’t take any votes, but they heard preliminary presentations from the partisan legal teams about redistricting Virginia’s congressional maps. When Co-Chair Mackenzie Babichenko (R) tried to wrap up the meeting with a summary of action items for a meeting later this week, Delegate Les Adams (R-Chatham) questioned Co-Chair Greta Harris (D) status on the commission, launching what Babichencko called an “airing of grievances” from frustrated commissioners.

On Friday, Harris and two other citizen members broke quorum, ending a fraught meeting. At the time, she said, “At this point I don’t feel as though all members on the commission are sincere in their willingness to compromise and to create fair maps for the Commonwealth of Virginia. And so at that point, if I can’t believe that the people I’m supposed to work with are true and sincere, regrettably, I am done. So thank you very much for the opportunity to serve, but I will remove myself from the commission at this point.”

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Gubernatorial Candidates Use Ads and Political Appearances to Boost Enthusiasm

Gubernatorial candidates Glenn Youngkin and Terry McAuliffe have launched competing ads. A McAuliffe ad links Youngkin’s calls for election integrity to Trump’s claims about the 2020 election, while the Youngkin ad fact-checks McAuliffe’s recitation of recent COVID-19 case numbers.

“On at least three separate days – September 28, September 29, and October 7 – McAuliffe claimed there had recently been 8,000 cases in Virginia, a gross inflation that amounts to nearly three to four times the actual number of cases,” a Youngkin press release explains.

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Virginia U.S. Rep Spanberger Co-Introduces Bill to Designate Systemically Important Critical Infrastructure

Representatives Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07), John Katko (R-NY-24), and Andrew Garbarino (R-NY-02) co-introduced a bill directing the designation of systemically important critical infrastructure.

“Earlier this year, Central Virginia families and businesses felt the serious impacts of the cyberattack on the Colonial Pipeline. In our communities, we saw how critical infrastructure — such as the Colonial Pipeline — plays a fundamental role in our daily lives and in the day-to-day success of our regional economy,” Spanberger said in a Thursday press release.

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Virginia Democrats in Fairfax County Block Public Access to Arrest Data to Foil Immigration Enforcement

Pat Herrity

Police in Fairfax County, Va. have erased the names of those arrested or charged with a crime from public crime reports to comply with a policy adopted in January by the Democrat-controlled county board to thwart federal immigration enforcement.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors’ “Trust Policy” prohibits “sharing any information that can be used to distinguish or trace an individual’s citizenship and identify or locate someone” with unlawful immigrant status, according to local reports.

The lone Republican member of the board slammed Democrats for approving the policy leading to the wiping of names from public arrest data.

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Virginia Awards $7.8M in Local Grants for Flood Preparedness

Group of people who work for Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation observing the waterways

Virginia awarded about $7.8 million in state grants for 19 local projects designed to address flooding, sea-level rise and extreme weather, Gov. Ralph Northam announced Tuesday.

Funding for the Virginia Community Flood Preparedness Fund grants is provided through the sale of carbon emission allowances, which began when the state joined the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative in January.

The initiative requires businesses to purchase a certain number of carbon emission allowances depending on how much carbon they emit. The number of carbon emissions allowed is reduced annually. About 45% of the revenues obtained through these sales goes toward the flood preparedness fund.

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CNU/Wason Center Poll: Virginia GOP Statewide Candidates Making Gains Among Independents

Glenn Youngkin and Terry McAuliffe

A new Christopher Newport University Wason Center poll released Friday found GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin slightly behind Terry McAuliffe, 49 percent to 45 percent, which is nearly in line with the Real Clear Politics current polling average placing McAuliffe ahead by 3.5 percentage points. Liberation Party candidate Princess Blanding got one percent, with five percent undecided.

The poll also included the lieutenant governor’s race, which hasn’t seen as much polling, and found that Delegate Hala Ayala (D-Prince William) leads GOP candidate Winsome Sears 48 percent to 44 percent.

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Republican Party of Virginia Files IRS Complaint Against Nonprofit for Allegedly Intervening in Gubernatorial Election

The Republican Party of Virginia is filing a complaint with the IRS alleging that 501(c)(3) nonprofit Virginia Excels had violated tax law by engaging in “overt and unambiguous political campaign intervention” to support Terry McAuliffe.

“On September 7, 2021, only 10 days before early voting began, Virginia Excels issued a press release touting its new ‘report’ on eliminating the income tax. The ‘report’ appears to be one of the first statements the organization has ever issued on taxes,” an RPV press release states.

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Poised to Miss First Deadline, Virginia Redistricting Commission Collapses

The Virginia Redistricting Commission collapsed Friday afternoon while facing a Sunday deadline to complete final maps to present to the General Assembly. The commission failed to break through partisan deadlocks on which drafts to use as a starting point, the latest in weeks of perfect party-line splits in the habitually deadlocked commission. In despair, three citizen members walked out of the meeting breaking quorum and leaving questions about the future of the commission.

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Fairfax Dems Use COVID-19 in Attempt to Eliminate Witness Signatures on Absentee Ballots

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, comprised of nine Democrats and one lone Republican, voted in favor this week of a measure that would end the witness signature requirement on absentee ballots. 

They are now asking Gov. Ralph Northam (D) for permission to ignore the requirement, according to Inside NOVA. 

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Virginia House District 75 Profile: Otto Wachsmann Challenges Senior Delegate Roslyn Tyler

Virginia House of Delegates District 75 is one of the best chances for Republicans to flip a House seat. Delegate Roslyn Tyler (D-Sussex) is a 15-year incumbent, but she faces a repeat challenge from pharmacist Otto Wachsmann, Jr. who nearly beat her in 2019 with 48.89 percent of the vote. The district has been bleeding population in recent years, and the victory will likely depend on whether Roslyn Tyler can mobilize the significant minority presence and overcome dissatisfaction with the local economy. Republicans need to gain six seats in the House to retake the majority. Without Trump on the ballot, Republicans are hoping moderates are more likely to vote Republican, helping them flip some seats.

“If you had to ask me what is the most likely district in the House to flip to Republicans, I would say that one. I still say it’s a toss-up,” CNalysis Director Chaz Nuttycombe told The Virginia Star.

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Recall Effort Against Loudoun School Board Member Beth Barts Clears Initial Hurdles

Fight for Schools PAC had three minor wins in court this week in the effort to recall Loudoun County School Board Member Beth Barts. In a Tuesday hearing, the circuit court judge denied Barts’ motion to dismiss the recall petition, agreed to appoint a special prosecutor, and granted the PAC’s motion to intervene.

“Today was a very good day in court for Fight For Schools and a bad day for Beth Barts and her efforts to silence and criminalize parents in Loudoun County. Beth Barts tried to get all of the signatures that we have collected thrown out, the judge ruled against her and in our favor. The case will proceed,” Fight for Schools said on Facebook.

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Virginia Ranks Among Top States Most Prepared for Public Health Emergencies

Doctor with arms folded, holding stethescope

Virginia’s preparedness for public health emergencies ranks it among the top four in the U.S., according to the 2021 National Health Security Preparedness Index (NHSPI). The index looks at data from 64 sources across the public and private health sectors, creating an overview of health protections in place in each state; the national preparedness level is 6.8, but Virginia scored 7.4 out of ten.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has been a real-world stress test of the readiness of Virginia governmental, health care delivery, and emergency management systems to respond to a major public health threat. Throughout this time, Virginia’s hospitals, public health and emergency management agencies, and other public and private sector stakeholders have effectively navigated this unprecedented crisis while facing many pandemic-related challenges,” states a Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association (VVHHA) press release.

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GOP Governors Ignored by Biden Offer Solutions to Border Crisis Anyway

After a group of 26 Republican governors, spearheaded by Gov. Doug Ducey (R), sent a letter to the Biden Administration requesting to meet and discuss the ongoing crisis at the border, the group is pushing forward with solutions.

That letter, sent in late September, was ignored by the White House. 

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Qualified Immunity Becomes One of the Deciding Factors of 2021 Virginia Elections

The rise in violent crime across Virginia combined with increases in law enforcement officers leaving the field have started to raise questions from voters about the once-popular push from Leftist activists and Democrat lawmakers to “reimagine policing” and essentially end qualified immunity, a legal protection mechanism for law enforcement officers.

Montgomery County Sheriff Hank Partin told The Virginia Star “absolutely, without a doubt” that Democrats’ threats to end qualified immunity are affecting law enforcement’s ability to keep and retain officers. He spoke at length about how law enforcement would be negatively affected if Virginia Democrats were to end qualified immunity. He discussed these protections are in place to protect law enforcement who are trying to follow the law.

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