RICHMOND, Virginia – The Senate Privileges and Elections Committee blocked Governor Glenn Youngkin’s nominee for Secretary of Natural Resources, former Trump EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. On Tuesday afternoon, Senator Creigh Deeds (D-Bath) moved to remove Wheeler’s name from a Senate resolution to confirm the nominees.
“We received a letter from 150 former EPA employees, who suggested that Mr. Wheeler had undermined the work of the EPA and worked against the environmental interests in this country. We think that members of the governor’s cabinet ought to be able to unite us as Virginians, and certainly the secretary of natural resources ought to be one that we have confidence in, in terms of working for the preservation and conservation of our natural resources,” Deeds said.
A U.S. Senator from Virginia, known for his far-left anti-police sentiment, finally began supporting police officers Thursday.
“Officer Howie Liebengood and Officer Jeffrey Smith, Virginians who died because of the insurrection, deserve the official officer’s line-of-duty death designation,” Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) said on Twitter, attaching a column from The Washington Post.
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.”
President Biden addressed the nation late Monday afternoon to discuss the ongoing national security and humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. Some congressional leaders were furious at the Biden Administration’s lack of leadership on the issue. Congressman Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ-02), a former Democrat who switched parties in 2020, lashed out and called for the resignation of President Biden, Vice President Harris, and Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Senator Rick Scott (R-FL) hinted Monday that the Cabinet should consider invoking the 25th Amendment to remove President Biden.
Virginia’s congressional delegation, led by Congressman Rob Wittman (R-Virginia-01), is warning the Navy not to forget the East Coast and Norfolk Naval Shipyard as international military and commercial dynamics draw attention to China and Russia.
“As we pivot towards the Indo-Pacific in our global force posture, it comes as no surprise that we’ve bolstered our presence on our Western Seaboard through increases in homeported ships. This increased presence is of such magnitude that San Diego has eclipsed Norfolk in the sheer number of homeported ships,” the delegation wrote in a letter to Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Michael Gilday.
U.S. Sens. Tim Kaine and Mark Warner introduced federal gun control legislation Thursday to mirror some of the laws that recently passed their home state of Virginia.
The policies include expanding background checks, limiting handgun purchases and enacting red flag laws at a national level. The senators are calling the legislation the Virginia Plan to Reduce Gun Violence Act.
“Virginia knows all too well the heartbreaking consequences of gun violence,” Warner and Kaine said in a joint statement. “We’ve seen it in the tragedies of Virginia Tech and Virginia Beach and the countless drive-by shootings, domestic violence, and suicides by firearm across the country. We’re proud of the Commonwealth for leading the way to advance gun reform; now it’s time for Congress to save lives.”
The 2020 election outcomes revealed a telling political trajectory occurring in Virginia and the nation. Final tallies indicated that Republicans’ future chances of winning in the state may be ever-slimming. A consistent theme across the board – Republicans fell short with the unprecedented number of absentee voters.
Although Republicans increased their presidential vote totals from 2016 by about 185,000, Democrats increased their votes by nearly 400,000. In every election since 2008, Democratic candidates had only enjoyed about a 10,000 vote increase per year.
Five Democrat senators knelt during a moment of silence for George Floyd in a caucus meeting on Capitol Hill Thursday afternoon.
Sens. Tim Kaine (D-VA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Martin Heinrich (D-NM) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) knelt, which lasted for eight minutes and 46 seconds, The Hill reported. That was the length of time fired Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee on Floyd’s neck before he died. Chauvin faces a second-degree murder charge over the incident.