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Your kind of undermined by 77-19 vote in the House of Delegates.

Seems not ALL Democrats are against this.


As the redistricting legislation showed, as far as the HoD is concerned, it's every Democrat for himself ( or herself). There is zero a Democratic Delegate can do to affect the budget, so, why fight an absolutely losing battle? I don't like it, but some of the Dems get a few crumbs for their vote, and I guess a few crumbs is better than starving.

The point is, if all the Dems in the HoD voted against the budget, it would still pass by a mile.

James Young

And Republicans won 57% of the votes for Senate. Democrats have NO legitimate claim on power, and Virginians understand this.

James Young

The point is, your claim that 20 Democrat Senators were "sent to Richmond by 50% of Virginians" is a lie. Twenty Democrat Senators were sent to Richmond by less than "43% of Virginians."

Stephen Spiker

lol @ a partisan Democrat saying "no, no, no, Republicans are really the ones to blame" and expecting people to play along. Also, funny how you spend zero words defending the demands that Senate Democrats are obstructing the budget for.


Well James, if the 40 Senators are ever elected at-large, then having a majority of votes statewide - even in races where Dems did not challenge the Republican - will mean something. Until then, it's district by district, and Dems have 50% of the districts. So, yeah, they do have a valid claim to have 50% of the committee assignments.

Not Dick Saslaw

All Senate Republicans voted yes; all Senate Democrats voted no, but the Republicans "killed" the budget? Orwellian.

kelley in virginia

I gotta say NLS: alot of Virginia newspapers this morning are reporting "budget killed by Senate Dems".

but Dems might like that.

Stephen Spiker

NotJohn, as wrong as your point is (and even Democrats in the 1990s disagreed with you), it's irrelevant. James was responding to something Ben explicitly said:

"Senate Republicans made of a point of making sure the Senators sent to Richmond by 50% of Virginians would be as powerless as possible."

He didn't say "50% of districts", he said "50% of Virginians". That is objectively a lie. Even you, with your eagerness to spin anything, cannot say otherwise.

And, no, they don't have claim to 50% of the committee assignments. They have claim to 50% of the seats, which they got. That entitles them to, at best, a tie on matters of how to organize the chamber, which is broken by an elected official that (over) 50% of Virginians truly did send to Richmond.

Not Larry Sabato

The popular vote stat is so misleading. Thanks to our incompetent state party Chair Brian Moran, most Republicans were unopposed. If you figure just by putting a name on the ballot that Dems would get a tiny 1/3 of the vote in those districts, then the Democrats won the statewide popular vote in 2011.


There's a very easy solution for Republicans: make Taliban Bob do what he said he would do when he ran for office. He said he was going to get money for transportation. The budget is currently held up because he hasn't done so, in over 2 years in office. Put the money in for the Silver Line and to mitigate tolls in Tidewater, and the budget will pass.

Stephen Spiker

Even if the popular vote stat is misleading, it at least has the benefit of being based on reality. Your claim that Senate Democrats were sent to Richmond by "50% of Virginians" is just laughably wrong.

Not that any of it matters, because from what I understand Democrats are obstructing the budget to secure even more money for Dulles rail, above and beyond what McDonnell already pledged. Admirably, they've been upfront about the reason why they're forcing a government shutdown, and the voters of Virginia can decide for themselves whether they're in the right. The whole bit about losing committee assignments is just sour grapes, and a relatively settled matter as well.

Not Larry Sabato

Stephen, they were sent by 50% of Virginians. Democrats represent 4 million, just like Republicans. Popular vote does not determine constituent count.

Stephen Spiker

So if someone doesn't vote for a Democrat but lives in a district with a Democratic Senator, they still "sent" a Democrat to Richmond?

Whatever, I don't care. Use whatever twists of logic you care in order to justify the Democrat's temper tantrum.

The fact remains the same thing I told NJSM: Democrats are entitled to 50% of the seats in the Senate, and that's what they have. They are not entitled to 50% of the committee assignments; that is decided by a vote in the Senate, which was tied and then resolved by another elected official sent to Richmond by 50% of Virginians.

This is all moot anyways, but we can continue to talk about it round and round if you prefer.


Dems are eating the budget . . . just like the dog Obama ate. Woof!

Bubby Hussein, Hillbilly Sheikh

Bob is for Higher Tolls, vaginal inspections, he likes Mitt, and hates contraceptives! Keep 'em barefoot, pregnant and in the kitchen! What's not to like?

Ghost of RWR

You’er missing a key point. The Democrats want to come up with the $300 million for the Dulles thing BY BORROWING it. Debt. And then use that DEBT to lower the tolls by an average of 40 cents! This is like using your credit card to pay our mortgage. Stupid.

Not Larry Sabato

Stephen, last time I checked, Jason Flanary doesn't get to cast 0.47 Senate votes, and Gerarda Culipher doesn't get to cast 0.41 votes. Nor does Edd Houck get to cast 0.49 votes.

Not Larry Sabato

Ghost, not totally true. Reality is Democrats would want to pay for more spending with a tax increase, borrowing it is their "compromise" option.

James Young

Ben, I generally consider you an honest --- if politically misguided --- guy. You misrepresent fact, and then try to justify it by speculating about what might have been. Abandon this lie. Your credibility is at stake.

Stephen Spiker

The confusion here is over your repeated use of the word "send", and the claim that 50% of Virginians sent Democrats to the Senate. I did not "send" Toddy Puller to Richmond; the majority of voters in my district did. However, I, and the majority of voters in Virginia, voted for a Republican.

You're trying to claim that the will of the voters is absolute parity in the Senate, which isn't true by any reasonable or logical standard.

Not Larry Sabato

James, we are in agreement that Republicans got more votes last year. My quibble is with the reasons for that- which was many Democratic voters not having an option to vote for. So at best, we could say the results were inconclusive to what direction a majority of Virginians wanted in the State Senate.

That having been said, I would admit that is the fault of the Virginia Democrats who failed to put names on the ballot.


More to the point: Building rail to Dulles solves very little in the way of transportation problems. I found it doubtful that this boondoggle (or, to honor Obama, "boondoggie") will get Ben out of his Volvo.


From Facebook . .. it looks like Colgan caved and voted for this just now.

I guess trying to tie the abortion regulations into the budget didn't work on him.

Bubby Hussein, Hillbilly Sheikh

Colgan was holding out for Dulles rail funding.


This is just a drawn out way of saying the Senate Democrats decided at the beginning of session to hold the budget hostage as revenge for not getting their way on power-sharing.


Unfortunately, the R’s wasted a perfect opportunity to show selflessness and respect at the beginning of the session by rubbing the D’s nose in their new “majority”.
The senate’s “new leadership” seemed more focused on exerting power than solving our real problems. As a conservative I am greatly disappointed that Virginia has moved into the “low” class of politics that we see in Washington.

The Governor could and should have stopped this “train wreck” back in January.

It is still not too late for the senate leadership to show some understanding and camaraderie in focusing on the important issues to the commonwealth in a fair manner. I hope they do so in an expeditious fashion, and that both sides move towards solving the most important issues that face us.


Colgan didn't cave -- he's elevated himself as a great American and Virginian. Thank goodness we're not throwing more precious lucre at that Dulles boondoggle.

just the fats

You cruel, heartless BASTARDS!! I think you all need to stop all this making fun because you are making poor Benny-Wenny cry. Those are REAL TEARS that are streaking his mascara. Mommy is going to have one heck of a job cleaning those panties!

Lovettsville Lady

Colgan deserves the John Kerry award. He was FOR the budget, before he was against, before he was for it again.
Thank goodness he stood firm on giving away 62 state transportation project for ONE that benefits far less than 1% of Virginians. I support the 99% of Loudouners and Fairfaxians who will never ride metro but will be forced to pay for it. At least they didn't make the whole state pay for this boondoggle that is metro.

Ghost of RWR

Well, my my. Seems like the budget story has changed a bit...oh well.

Planning an update or just sitting there is stunned silence?


Not Larry Sabato

Nothing changed except for one legislator who needs to retire.

James Young

We have done our best to retire him, Ben. And you know as well as I that it took a Democrat gerrymander of epic proportions --- dividing a County which deserved two full seats, and part of another, among five districts, with only Colgan's completely within the County --- to save both Colgan, and the twenty seats Democrats were able to win.

I guess you reap what you sow.

Bubby Hussein, Hillbilly Sheikh

The commuting workers of Virginia's economic engine reap what the Governor sows.


After the hundreds of thousands of dollars McDonnell spent trying to beat him in last year's elections, I'm really surprised Colgan caved. Oh wait, no I'm not. It's still 1992 in that guy's head.


This goes to show what $1 million dollars of Republican campaign money and 300 votes in one district can do to change Virginia. Today, and this whole session, shows how much we miss Edd Houck!

Ghost of RWR

So Ben, nothing has changed?

Consider this.

1. Virginia has a budget,
2. The House GOP position largely prevailed,
3. Dick Saslaw is totally repudiated as minority leader for not keeping his team together,
4. Don McEachin is deprived of a further extending the session for his own political benefit, still sore he didn’t get a designed congressional district to run in,
5. Janet Howell is apoplectic
(actually this is her normal state, so no change) since she can no longer wax eloquent about vaginal probes, and
6. Ben’s big puff above saying “Dick Saslaw deserves a lot of credit here for holding his caucus together and not allowing Republicans to once again seize un-elected power that voters did not give them” winds up empty.

Alas…so much for Democrats “standing united”. Don’t you just love it…


well perhaps the voters in Colgan's district wanted him to support the budget package...and not serve simply has a Saslaw lap dog.


Sen. Colgan didn't want to run the last two times, but he did it anyway. He's always pressured to do it for the sake of the party as the only Dem that can hold onto Prince William County. Cut him some slack....can't you let him vote his conscience for ONCE before you run him into his grave?

Ghost of RWR

Gnarly, you're right.

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Not Bubby

Dulles rail is a joke, espoused by union thugs and bedwetting Prius drivers. Very few NOVA commuters would use it because it would do nothing to alleviate traffic where the traffic is.

Another win for Bob.

Not Bubby

Ghost of RWR...

Don McEachin's desire to extend the session has very little to do with politics. He's a civil litigation lawyer who abuses a little known law allowing legislator attorneys to drag out lawsuits.

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