Willie Deutsch.com

Religion and Politics from a Young Christian in Northern Virginia

Why Mike Farris Endorsed Pete Snyder

April 3rd, 2013

This morning I woke up to one of the shoddiest pieces of blogging I have seen in a while.  It was from Jeanine Martin at Virginia Virtucon with the title, Why did Mike Farris endorse Pete Snyder?

I understand Jeanine can’t stand Pete Snyder, but Mike Farris deserves to be understood on his own terms, not used as one more excuse to go after Pete Snyder.  As someone who has worked with Mike Farris, been employed by organizations he created, and graduated from the college he founded, I’d like to take a moment to help explain why Mike Farris endorsed Pete Snyder.

First of all, has Mike Farris made mistakes in who he has endorsed?  The Scott York endorsement was a mistake.  There’s no point in denying that.

However, to claim that that endorsement, and the Pete Snyder endorsement were done to help Mike Farris politically takes a lot to prove, and no proof was given.  You also can’t start a rumor, and then claim that rumor as the reason for attacking someone’s decision to endorse a candidate.

If you are interested in understanding why Mike Farris endorsed Pete Snyder, let’s take a look at their history.  One thing Pete Snyder did a very good job of as Victory Director was social conservative outreach.  At times when Boston was clamping down on social conservative outreach, Pete Snyder repeatedly stood up and pushed back against Boston to give social conservatives working for Victory the leeway they needed to do their job.  As part of that outreach he worked hard to reach out to Mike Farris.  Mike Farris was very much on the fence in 2012.  It was the direct result of Pete Snyder’s outreach to Mike Farris that set up his one-on-one meeting with Mitt Romney.  The meeting with Mitt Romney and Pete Snyder’s outreach were crucial to Mike Farris deciding to vote for Mitt Romney.

Wonderful day w Mike Farris at Romney rally today. ~Pete Snyder

This relationship with Pete Snyder developed into a working relationship on Mike Farris’s most important issue.  Over the last half dozen years Mike Farris’s top issue has been the assault on parental rights.  He started ParentalRights.org, went back to school for an LLM in international law, and has generally poured more energy into this issue than any other single issue.

In the fall of 2012, Mike Farris lead the fight against the UNCRPD, UN Convention on the Rights of Person’s with Disabilities, a treaty which would have infringed on the rights of parents and transferred those rights to international bureaucrats.  He brought people together he had worked with in the past to fight this battle.  One person who provided help was Pete Snyder.  He utilized his D.C. connections to help lobby against the treaty.  He and his wife, who serves as Roy Blunt’s Deputy Chief of Staff, were crucial in helping convince Roy Blunt to oppose the treaty.  In December the Senate rejected the treaty, and it was entertaining watching the number of Democrat Senators address the number of homeschoolers opposing the treaty in the statements about their votes.

During the General Assembly session Pete showed that parental rights was an issue he cared about as he used his campaign to advocate for the passage of legislation on this issue.  It was an issue very few other campaigns were talking about.

Pete’s commitment to parental rights was crucial in making Will Estrada and Joel Grewe strong believers in Pete Snyder.  They had no race they were rumored to run for that Pete could even be rumored to endorse them for.  When you’ve recently been in the trenches with someone fighting for an important issue, it is only natural that you support that person later.  This is true for many of the activists at HSLDA, and it is very much true for Mike Farris.

In short, Mike Farris endorsed Pete Snyder because Pete fought hard for and believes strongly in the issue that is at the top of Mike Farris’s list, parental rights.  Through the time spent together fighting that battle, he has also come to realize that Pete is a true conservative on other issues as well.

UPDATE: Looks like another Virginia Virtucon contributor has a stronger response to Jeanine’s smear post.

Where do Virginia’s Republican LG and AG Candidates Stand on Marriage?

March 26th, 2013

Yesterday, thousands of Americans marched in support of marriage in DC, as expected the media barely covered it.  This march coincided with the Supreme Court oral arguments on Prop 8.  Many discussions have erupted today and yesterday on the issue of marriage, and the role of the government in it.

Virginia’s statewide candidates have been remarkably silent.  They’ve been quite willing to talk about federal issues in this race: Obamacare, the 2nd Amendment, The Patriot Act, and Standing with Rand to name a few.  So I asked them where they stood.

The definition of the family is a crucial issue for government to grapple with.  Prop 8 also makes the stance of state officials particularly important because in California, state officials refused to defend the law before the courts.  Will our LG nominee stand strong in defending marriage, or will he/she be comfortable with the continuing erosions?  Will our Attorney General nominee be willing to defend the state’s marriage amendment if it is challenged in court?

Below are the statements provided by either the candidates or their campaigns.

Lieutenant Governor

Jeannemarie Devolites Davis:

As a traditional, pro-life Catholic, I believe that marriage is between one man and one woman.  That is why I voted for the Constitutional Amendment, both in 2005 and 2006.  (The Resolution proposing a Constitutional Amendment must pass two General Assembly Sessions twice, with a House of Delegates election between the two votes – you probably already know that!)

Please keep in mind that my Senate District had a 17 point Democrat generic (only 25% of my voters were Republican), but I voted for the Amendment, none the less, and it failed in my district when it was on the ballot. It’s easy to say you would have voted for it if you’ve never had to, and it’s easy to vote for it when you represent a district that supports it – I am the candidate for LG who actually voted for it in a very tough district in which it failed!

E.W. Jackson:

I strongly support the only true definition of marriage as a sacred union between one man and one woman. Any other arrangement will never be a marriage no matter what anyone calls it. This has been the definition for thousands of years, and it is disappointing that we have come to a place where radical activists, politicians, lawyers and judges arrogantly seek to change that definition and turn history, biology and reality upside down. Regardless of the Supreme Court’s decision, the true definition will never change. With love and patience toward those who are confusing the issue, I will defend the rights of Americans who hold to the truth against all efforts to persecute and marginalize them. Marriage as we have known it from time immemorial is best for children, best for society, best for American culture, and it is a sacred gift that we dare not desecrate.

He was also the one candidate to advocate for traditional marriage online.

Scott Lingamfelter:

I am one of the few candidates for Lt. Governor who has consistently fought for legislation to protect the traditional definition of marriage between one man and one woman and have supported legislation to protect this sacred institution of marriage.  As a husband to my wife of 33 years and a father of three children, I believe that the foundation of our society rests largely on stable and cohesive family units. And it is because of this firm belief that I have supported legislation to preserve the institution of marriage and have fought against legislation that sought to erode, even if by the slightest bit, this sacred institution.

Since my first campaign to represent the people of the 31st District, I have promised to remain dedicated to “faith, family, and freedom” and I have kept that promise. And my record as a legislator demonstrates that:

In 2004, I supported the Marriage Affirmation Act, which prohibited “A civil union, partnership contract or other arrangement between persons of the same sex purporting to bestow the privileges and obligations of marriage is prohibited.”  It also prohibited out of state civil unions from being legally recognized in Virginia law

In 2006, I was one of the patrons of HB 101 (http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?061+bil+HB0101) which called for an amendment to the Constitution of Virginia to define marriage as solely between one man and one woman.  As required in Virginia, this constitutional amendment was put on the ballot in November of 2006 and was approved by the citizens of the Commonwealth.

While others in this campaign “talk” about supporting families, I have an actual record, a 100% rating from the Virginia Family Foundation and was named one of Virginia Family Foundation’s Citizens of the Year in 2001.  I am proud of my record and if chosen by the people to be Virginia’s next Lt. Governor, you will not only know where I stand on this important matter by my words, but you will know where I stand by my votes and actions.

Steve Martin:

As you’re probably aware, Senator Martin strongly supported the marriage amendment to the Virginia Constitution. He chaired the committee through which the matter had to pass numerous times, and he personally negotiated the final language of the amendment. Senator Martin truly believes that marriage, properly defined, can only exist between one man and one woman.

Pete Snyder:

Pete believes in traditional marriage as defined in the Virginia Constitution, a definition that was approved by an overwhelming majority of Virginians. He’ll fight to stand up for the traditional family as Lieutenant Governor.

Corey Stewart:

I am committed, as a Christian and as a public leader, in supporting marriage between one man and one woman, God Ordained Marriage.  I supported the VA Marriage Amendment in 2006 and support a federal marriage amendment to the Constitution as well.

It is a sad day for our Republic and our United States when the people have spoken and their elected leaders will not represent the will of the people, as in Proposition 8 in California.  Furthermore, I believe the states should decide public policy on marriage, however, the issue of God Ordained Marriage is so prominently essential to our society, as the family is the backbone of our society, I believe there should be a federal marriage amendment to constitutionally protect marriage between one man and one woman.

Susan Stimpson:

She believes marriage is between a man and woman. She supports Virginia’s constitutional amendment affirming that.  She does not support same sex marriage.

Attorney General

Rob Bell:

Rob Bell supports traditional marriage between one man and one woman.  As Attorney General he will defend Virginia’s laws and Constitution, including the Marriage Amendment voters enshrined in the state constitution.

He has publicly stated his position on this issue and other family values issues — here is the link to his website: http://www.robbellforag.com/issues/family-values/

Bell voted for the Marriage Amendment when it was before the General Assembly.  http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?061+vot+HV2149+HJ0041

Mark Obenshain:

I believe that marriage is between one man and one woman. As Attorney General, I will vigorously defend Virginia’s constitution and laws.

 

2013 VA State Convention Poll

March 9th, 2013

There have been a number of polls taken on the LG race.  However, with a 7 person race, it is important to figure out more than just who people’s front runners are.  Please take a moment and fill out the following poll and share it with your friends.  I’m trying to get a more in depth handle on the race.  I’ll be sure to post a very thorough analysis of the poll afterwards.  I will hold it open for two weeks.

Republican Party of Virginia: The Party of Higher Spending and Higher Taxes

February 21st, 2013

Over the past month, I’ve been watching the Republican Party of Virginia release tweets attacking Democrats for not supporting incredible spending packages while going after Democrat obstructionism.  One would think supporters of limited government would be the ones opposing a 3+billion dollar project that only keeps increasing in cost, and required revenue.  One would  expect the the Democrat Party to attack Republicans for opposing reckless spending.

Not only does RPV support higher spending, they support higher taxes to pay for the higher spending.

This session the Governor and the Republicans in the legislature decided passing a transportation plan had to happen.  The Governor offered a plan that slightly increased taxes, the Senate Dems pushed a plan that drastically increased taxes.  What has come out of the conference committee is a McDonnell/Bolling/McAuliffe endorsed plan that raises taxes on gas, cars, and the sales tax among other things.  Interestingly this plan may cause gas shortages over the summer.

What is particularly troubling is that the RPV has been supporting these plans.  Multiple sources relayed to me that on a recent call with the RPV Executive committee, Chairman Pat Mullins told the members that the transportation was crucial to the Governor and they needed to get their unit committees to support the package.  Multiple District Chairs who are normally not rabble rousers were very upset that Chairman Mullins was asking them to support a tax hike which they knew their members opposed.  This is a far cry from five years ago when Chairman Jeff Frederick made it clear that the RPV strongly opposed tax increases.

Thankfully many statewide candidates including E.W. Jackson, Pete Snyder, and Susan Stimpson oppose the transportation tax package.  However, this package looks like it will be passed tomorrow.  (It may also already be hurting Ken Cuccinelli electorally.)  If it does pass, the Republican Party of Virginia can no longer claim to be the party of limited spending and lower taxes. If this hurts them at the ballot boxes, they have no one to blame but themselves.

Stimpson Campaign: Attacking Those Who Question Their Narrative

February 18th, 2013

Last night I posted an article questioning Susan Stimpson’s anti-establishment credentials.  I’ve been highly critical of both Susan Stimpson, and Pete Snyder on my facebook profile as I question whether they really are what they claim to be.  To Pete Snyder’s credit, when I was at the Sterling forum, he came to me and said, “I’ve seen your posts about me on facebook.  Thanks for keeping me honest.”  We had a good time interacting throughout that evening.  Seeing a candidate not take criticism personally, was refreshing.

Stimpson’s response to criticism is quite the opposite.  While one of her supporters was willing to respond good naturedly, her Campaign Director, Scott Hirons, believed it was better to attack my maturity and motivation, than engage in a discussion and respond to the questions.  I’d love to have begun a discussion on whether Stimpson was the anti-establishment candidate, and if I’m wrong I’d love to see the proof.  Instead the campaign has sent a clear message, we don’t set the record straight, we just impugn our critics.  I’d love to see how that strategy works in the general election.

This thin skinned response by the campaign is reminiscent of the incredibly condescending way in which she spoke at the candidate forum in Sterling last week.  She spoke as if the audience agreed with her that she was the one who got it, while everyone else was flawed.  She also seemed to start every response to a question with a jab at whoever had just spoken.

Maybe in this post Scott Hirons, Stimpson’s Campaign Director, wasn’t speaking for the campaign, but for himself.  This is understandable, because maybe the post hit a little close to home for him.  You see, his Linkedin account states the following…

Yes, Bill Howell is the Speaker of the House…  Quite possibly he was upset, I would write something that seemed to go after his former boss.

This however, only further highlights the Stimpson/Howell connection, that Stimpson supporters try to deny.  Stimpson owes her seat to Howell, works hand in hand with him, and his former Director of Communications directs her campaign, but her supporters would have you believe Lingamfelter is really the one in bed with Bill Howell.  Some connections are just a bit too hard to deny.

Either Stimpson’s campaign is incredibly thin skinned, or it has an undisciplined campaign manager who highlights the Stimpson/Howell connection.  Either one is not good news for the Stimpson campaign moving forward.  Let’s see what results from these approaches as the nomination process continues, or when the papers start questioning her should she win the nomination.

Willie Deutsch.com

Religion and Politics from a Young Christian in Northern Virginia