Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Frank Wolf "paying down the debt?"

There's not much on Frank Wolf's website now, but go back to 2002, and you find this gem:
Last year, Congressman Wolf joined President Bush in his efforts to reduce income taxes and eliminate the marriage penalty and death tax, while paying down the national debt.

That's right, Congressman Wolf was bragging about supporting the Bush tax cuts for the richest 1% of Americans, while simultaneously "paying down the national debt." So, 5 years later, how is the national debt doing?

Yes, it's as bad as it looks: the U.S. national debt has increased by more than $4 TRILLION during the Bush years (after all of Bill Clinton's hard work to get us into a budget surplus), thanks to those very tax cuts that Frank Wolf touted back in 2002. No wonder why he removed that language from his website. Maybe he could replace it with a copy of this debt graph? Whatever he does, just don't let him get away with calling himself a "fiscal conservative," because that's the last thing Frank Wolf has been over the past 7 years.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Judy Feder on the Campaign Trail

Judy Feder's been busy lately, working hard to elect Democrats on November 6. Just today, I ran into her at a fundraising breakfast for Margi Vanderhye (House of Delegates candidate in the 34th district) as well as at the "Countdown to Progress Kickoff" with Governor Kaine. This is just a small sampling of PART of one day's activity for Judy Feder, one of the most committed, hard-working Democrats you're going to find anywhere. Go Judy!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Wolf Slammed from Right on Dulles Greenway

It's always amusing to watch right wingers fight with each other, and this is no exception.
Wolf appears to have abandoned fundamental principles that underlie our system of governance, rule of law, and free market economy. First, the Greenway is a state road subject to review and oversight by state utility regulators, making interference in rate-setting decisions by a federal representative unwarranted. Wolf may have forgotten that the agreement between the Commonwealth and the Greenway operator is a contractual one and cannot be amended by legislation, only through negotiation between the two parties. Even if the General Assembly attempted to undo the contract through legislative action, it is highly doubtful that the courts would allow this to occur, given that the legal sanctity of contracts is a crucial underpinning of our free market economy.


Also misguided is Congressman Wolf’s suggestion that the Commonwealth expropriate the Dulles Greenway using its eminent domain authority. A state takeover of a road financed, built, and operated by a private company is, frankly, an idea more suited to Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela than it is to modern America. Hopefully, Congressman Wolf will re-evaluate his position.

Frank Wolf as Hugo Chavez? Obviously, I'm not a big Frank Wolf fan, but I'm not sure I'd go THAT far! :) Apparently, though, that's what Leonard Gilroy of the Reason Foundation ("a nonprofit think tank advancing free minds and free markets") believes. I wonder what Wolf's "Goldwater/Reagan Republican" opponent, Vern McKinley, thinks about all this.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Frank Wolf, Dominion Power and Hallowed Ground

Marty Martinez makes a very interesting suggestion on the Dominion Power transmission corridor issue in a blog interview today:

There has been a lot of discussion about Dominion and power lines, what can our Delegate actually do about this if the SCC and Federal Government have pre-empted so much action on this issue?
We can petition our state and federal elected officials, as well as the governor, both to reverse this decision, force the undergrounding of power lines if they must be built, and, alternatively, have the area in question declared a federal heritage area. We are not without recourse and I will be the principle advocate of the needs of our community. - From Leesburg Tomorrow
As has been noted here before, Frank Wolf has done little-to-nothing to protect his constituents from Dominion Power's designs on the northeastern corridor power marketplace, even if that goal means ruining some of the most beautiful vistas in the piedmont.

What is most interesting is the fact that the vehicle for forcing undergrounding of power cables already exists, and is one of the dearest legislative initiatives Frank Wolf has offered in Congress: The Journey Through Hallowed Ground. In this legislation, Frank Wolf has the opportunity to do as Marty Martinez has suggested, and designate the areas which Dominion Power wants for its high-tension corridor as national heritage area. It would not take much expansion of area already in the legislation to create the necessary incentives for undergrounding, and considering the fact that the legislation is on its way to approval, Frank Wolf could insist on the inclusion of language that will not only preserve the land on which our nation was forged, but also the sky under which so many of our ancestors fell.

He has declined to do so, however.
Dan Scandling, one of Wolf’s aides in Washington, said the bill does not help to protect the region against federal eminent domain designation, which may come as part of the process of approval for a power line in a joint project from Dominion Virginia Power and Allegheny Energy. - The Winchester Star
Once again, Frank Wolf, the Congressman who found a way to pay people in other states to look at porn, could not find a way to use his signature legislation, which enjoys wide popularity in the Congress, to protect the interests of his own constituents.

It appears that Frank Wolf is concerned with burnishing his legacy, instead of serving his constituents. It is time we allow him to retire with that legacy and vote for someone new in 2008.

Wolf and Allen, Perfect Together!

I found this on Flickr and thought it was worth sharing. :)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Judy Feder on Frank Wolf

From an interview I did with Judy Feder back in April 2006, this seems as relevant today as it was then:
RK Question: What are your main criticisms of Frank Wolf, the current (Republican) Representative from the 10th District? How do you plan to defeat a popular, entrenched incumbent like Wolf? And how would you respond to Jim Moran's comments that you "would make a wonderful Congresswoman," that he would be "hard pressed to work against Frank Wolf?"

Judy Feder: The question voters will answer on November 7th is simple: do they want the status quo - clogged roads, unaffordable education and health care - or are they ready for a change? I am ready for a change.

Frank Wolf has been in office for 26 years; the district's changed, and he hasn't. While he's been in office, our roads have grown clogged with traffic, health care costs have skyrocketed, our green space is disappearing, and college education has become almost unaffordable for many families. The world is more dangerous, and, as we saw with Hurricane Katrina, our government remains unable to keep our communities safe.

Virginia's 10th District, like the rest of America, wants a change in the status quo. We want leaders that will put our families first, focus on new priorities while solving our problems, and get the country back on the right track.

Read the entire interview here.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Wolf Votes Against Virginia's Environment

Why would Frank Wolf oppose this?
H RES 763

Vote description: Providing for Consideration of H.R. 1011, to Designate Additional National Forest System Lands in the State of Virginia As Wilderness or a Wilderness Study Area, to Designate the Kimberling Creek Potential Wilderness Area for Eventual Incorporation in the Kimberling Creek Wilderness

No thanks to Frank Wolf, the bill passed 225-190. For a description of the area Frank Wolf apparently doesn't want to protect, see here.

Judy Feder Speaks on "Our Troubled Health Care System"

What Judy Feder's been up to recently. I'll post the speech transcript as soon as it's available.
Our Troubled Health Care System: Why Is It So Hard to Fix?
Judy Feder, Professor and Dean, Georgetown Public Policy Institute

Friday, October 19, 2007, 2:00 - 3:30 pm
Sheraton Syracuse University Hotel
801 University Avenue, Syracuse, NY

Judy Feder, Ph.D.
, was the 2006 Democratic nominee for Congress in Virginia's 10th Congressional District. She is one of the nation's leaders in health policy—most particularly, in efforts to understand and improve the nation's health insurance system. A widely published scholar, her policy research began at the Brookings Institution, continued at the Urban Institute, and, since 1984, has flourished at Georgetown University. Her expertise on the uninsured, Medicare, Medicaid, and long-term care is regularly drawn upon by members of Congress, Executive officials, and the national media. Feder earned her BA from Brandeis University, and her Master's and PhD from Harvard.

In contrast to Judy's expertise on health care issues, Frank Wolf has consistently voted in lockstep with his Republican leadership and their friends in the insurance industry. He voted to allow insurance companies, not doctors and patients, to make health care decisions. He supported an HMO reform bill that John McCain said “favors the H.M.O. over the patient.” He opposed legislation to help small businesses afford health care legislation by opening up the federal health care system. And he supported legislation that gutted state protections for diseases like diabetes, breast cancer and cervical cancers, and even voted to allow insurance companies to drop coverage for patients with serious illnesses.

At this time of scares about MRSA, wouldn't we rather have someone who knows a bit about health care than someone who has the record described above?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Natural Disasters and Frank Wolf

I haven't heard Frank Wolf comment on the California fires yet, but given his actions after Hurricane Katrina, I can only imagine. Courtesy of Rob on Raising Kaine, let's take the "way back machine" to December 22, 2005:
It's not often that I agree with Faux News, but this guy nails the problem with Frank Wolf's discriminatory amendments against the entertainment and tourism industries in the Katrina relief bills:
All of that said, Rep. Wolf's prohibition amendment to the aid package is, nonetheless, reprehensible. It's a naked attempt to impose his own morality on the victims of a natural disaster. In some ways, it's not all that different than the fringe fundamentalists who proclaimed that Katrina was some sort of divine wrath for New Orleans' penchant for indulgence. They believed liquor stores and casinos didn't deserve to be spared. Wolf's amendment says they don't deserve to be rebuilt.

Wolf's proposal is also bad economic policy (accepting the fact that such aid programs aren't great economic policy to begin with). Good developmental economic policy lays down a few general ground rules establishing property rights and enforcement of contracts, then lets businesses thrive or bust, flourish or wither, based on how well they meet public demand. The aid bill was purportedly aimed at getting businesses wiped out by this year's hurricane season back on their feet. Wolf's amendment turns it into a social engineering bill.

Wolf in fact was so sure of his moral rectitude in this matter, he didn't even want an honest dialogue on the matter. In a "Dear Colleague" letter circulated to his fellow members of Congress, Wolf wrote, "Prohibiting massage parlors, liquor stores and casinos from getting tax breaks is not a tough call. In fact, there really shouldn't be any debate."

Reprehensible discrimination. Bad economic policy. Fundamentalist meddling. Welcome to Frank Wolf's world!

I couldn't have said it better myself.

P.S. Maybe Wolf might start by condemning right-wing commentator Glenn Beck for his heinous remarks.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Frank Wolf and the $9 Trillion Debt

The other day, we received what amounts to good news coming out of the disastrous Bush Administration. That's right, the budget deficit this year is "only" $162 BILLION. Yippee, heckuva job and all that! Now, back to reality, which is that under George W. Bush and a Republican Congress (2001-2007), the U.S. national debt has increased by $3 TRILLION, to almost $9 TRILLION today. That's $30,000 for every man, woman and child in America.

What's pathetic is that when George W. Bush took over the White House, the nation had a budget surplus and was starting to slash the national debt under the leadership of President Clinton. Six years later, the nation faces budget deficits that are considered an "improvement" when they are "only $162 billion. In addition, America's children will be saddled with trillions more in debt, thanks to George W. Bush’s disastrous budget policies. Let's not forget that the five largest budget deficits in history have come in the last six years.

Now, what does Frank Wolf have to do with all this? Well, during this period of unprecedented fiscal irresponsibility, Wolf has been Bush’s willing accomplice in creating more debt in the past six years than every single president in history combined. Frank Wolf has walked in lockstep with the Bush administration and the irresponsible Republican leadership is passing budgets that have created enormous deficits. The result is the $9 TRILLION debt we now face -- $30,000 for every man, woman and child. Next time you worry about the future of Social Security, Medicare, or the future of our nation's economy, think about the role that Frank Wolf has played in allowing things to deteriorate this far, and consider whether we can afford another two years of this foolishness.

By the way, whatever happened to old-style Republican fiscal conservatism? Has Frank Wolf morphed into a supply-side, trickle-down neo-con after 36 years in Congress?

Friday, October 19, 2007

Feder Statement on SCHIP Veto

This is EXACTLY why we need Judy Feder in Congress; she's an expert on health care and will fight to make sure that everyone has access to high-quality, affordable health care. Go Judy!
Statement by Judy Feder on Congress’s Failure to Override the Veto of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP)

McLean, VA - Judy Feder, Democratic candidate for Virginia's 10th Congressional District, issued the following statement regarding the House vote to override the President's veto of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). The vote failed to reach the 2/3rds majority required to override a Presidential veto, 273-156.

"Yesterday, the Republican Party chose to support George Bush instead of the 137,000 children in Virginia who are already eligible for SCHIP and thousands more who could benefit in the future. Those members of Congress who voted to uphold the President's veto should be held accountable for standing in the way of the health and well-being of millions of children nationwide. Today's vote makes crystal clear the misguided priorities of the President and the Republican Party. Rather than providing access to health care for low income children, House Republicans chose to provide support for a failed President and a bankrupt ideological agenda.

"Our representatives in Washington ought to be fighting to improve the lives of hard-working Americans who are trying to provide for their families, not rubber-stamping President Bush's shameful policies. I was deeply disappointed in President Bush's veto of the State Children's health Insurance Program, but I am outraged by the failure of House Republicans to step up and do the right thing today and override the President's veto. I've been fighting for affordable health care for over 30 years, and next year when I'm elected to Congress I plan to lead that fight on Capitol Hill."

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Dulles Greenway Partnership Slams Frank Wolf

According to the Examiner newspaper:
The partnership that owns the Dulles Greenway fired back at Rep. Frank Wolf Wednesday, two days after the congressman called on Virginia’s attorney general to review the firm’s business practices.

Tom Sines, CEO of Toll Road Investors Partnership II, or TRIP II, called Wolf’s accusations “politically motivated” and “misleading,” and carry “unjust insinuations about the integrity of TRIP II’s staff and management.”

This should be interesting to follow. As we do so, we should keep the following in mind:
The dirty secret about Frank Wolf's Greenway complaints is that he has had the power to affect change since the original idea was penned in 1988. For almost twenty years, he chose not to.


...this issue has only become important now that he is in the minority, and faces a real challenge to his seat? Unless it is now convenient to blame Richmond under a Democratic administration there? This is a state road, governed by a state law, and overseen by a state regulator, so why should our Congressional representative get involved? Surely there are more important issues Congress should be dealing with? If Frank Wolf needs a suggestion, the Federal issue of immigration sits unreformed.

There can be no doubt that tolls on the Greenway are an issue, but Frank Wolf's credibility on the issue is doubtful.

Yeah, Wolf's credibility IS doubtful -- on this and on a lot of other issues as well. It's time for a change.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Wolf Votes Against Checks and Balances

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H RES 746 (the Responsible Electronic Surveillance That is Overseen, Reviewed, and Effective Act of 2007 or “Restore Act of 2007”) by a vote of 223-196. Frank Wolf voted against it, in lockstep with the White House and the House Republican leadership as usual. Here is what Frank Wolf voted against today:

*"This bill provides the Intelligence Community with effective tools to conduct surveillance of foreign targets outside the United States but restores Constitutional checks and balances that were not contained in President Bush’s bill, the Protect America Act (PAA)."

*"Clarifies that No Court Warrant is Required to Intercept Communications of Non-United States Persons When Both Ends of the Communications are Outside the United States."

*"Requires an Individualized Court Warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Court When Targeting Persons in the United States."

*Reinstates "Court Review of Targeting Procedures," "Court Review of Minimization Procedures," and "Court Review of Guidelines."

*"The bill clarifies and eliminates ambiguous language in the PAA that appeared to authorize warrantless searches inside the United States, including physical searches of American homes, offices, computers, and medical records."

*"If the government learns that the target of surveillance is a U.S. person (say, an American traveling abroad), it cannot use this new authority."

*"Requires quarterly audits by the Justice Department Inspector General (DOJ IG) on communications collected under this authority..."

*"The bill is silent on retroactive immunity because the Administration has refused to provide Congress with documents on the specifics of the President’s warrantless surveillance program. However, the bill does provide prospective immunity for those complying with court orders issued pursuant to this authority."

*"Sunsets this new authority on December 31, 2009, when certain PATRIOT Act provisions sunset."

In other words, this bill provides all the tools necessary to fight foreign terrorists and threats to our country while safeguarding the constitutional rights and freedoms of law-abiding American citizens. Frank Wolf apparently would rather give the Bush administration nearly unlimited powers to eavesdrop on whoever it wants, whenever it wants, without serious oversight or checks and balances. Once again, Frank Wolf proves that he cares more about defending the Bush administration than about defending the U.S. constitution and the freedoms of American citizens.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

"Frank Wolf's Greenway Gambit"

Cross posted from Leesburg Tomorrow with permission of the author

Frank Wolf's Greenway Gambit

Frank Wolf either has an issue with the free-market and private ownership, or is making political hay while the sun is shining on the issue of Greenway toll increases.
How accurate is the financial information the company that owns the Dulles Greenway provided to Virginia? Rep. Frank R. Wolf, R-Va., wants Virginia's attorney general to investigate.

"I think they are going to find it's a Ponzi scheme," Wolf tells WTOP. "It think they're going to find that this whole setup is set up in such a way that the toll payer has no protection."

Wolf opposes the toll increases that will more than double what commuters pay now. The increase will make the Dulles Greenway the most expensive toll road in the nation. The road carries an average of 57,000 vehicles a day. - WTOP News

This statement comes after Wolf's previous statements suggesting that the state should take over the Greenway. In 2005, an Australian company, Macquarie, took over the Greenway from TRIP II, then the road's operating company. In the original statements about the takeover, Macquarie estimated the tolls of the Greenway to be $3.00 in 2007.
Current peak toll of US$2.40 for cars (US$2.30 for ETC motorists) with a schedule of staged increases to reach US$3.00 in 2007. Tolls are regulated by the SCC and tolls beyond 2007 will be set through application to the SCC.

And there they are today. The application recently approved by the SCC will raise those tolls in the coming five years. The basis for this increase is that the owners of the road are due a "reasonable return" based on their investment, in accordance with the original legislation authorizing the road. The Greenway is operated as a Public/Private Parternship, a program promoted by the Federal government.

The dirty secret about Frank Wolf's Greenway complaints is that he has had the power to affect change since the original idea was penned in 1988. For almost twenty years, he chose not to.

Frank Wolf has been in Congress since 1981, and during the period of Republican control of Congress, from 1995-2007, Frank Wolf could have taken action in Congress to mitigate the iniquities of a private-public toll road in his district. He has been a senior member of one of the most powerful Committees in the House of Representatives: the Appropriations Committee. He has inserted earmarks in legislation to make sure that retired cops could get paid to look at online porn. If iniquitous tolls were truly an issue close to his heart, surely in the twelve years of the Republican Congressional majority, during which the Toll Road was operable, Frank Wolf could have crafted legislation to provide for better regulation of the road's owners?

Unless, of course, this issue has only become important now that he is in the minority, and faces a real challenge to his seat? Unless it is now convenient to blame Richmond under a Democratic administration there? This is a state road, governed by a state law, and overseen by a state regulator, so why should our Congressional representative get involved? Surely there are more important issues Congress should be dealing with? If Frank Wolf needs a suggestion, the Federal issue of immigration sits unreformed.

There can be no doubt that tolls on the Greenway are an issue, but Frank Wolf's credibility on the issue is doubtful.

Feder Outraises Wolf 3:1, Has more Cash on Hand

Building Momentum: Feder Out Raises Wolf 3-to-1 in Third Quarter
Has more Cash on Hand than Wolf at end of Quarter
Raises more In Virginia than Wolf

McLean, VA – Judy Feder’s campaign for Congress announced today that it raised almost 3 times more money in the 3rd Quarter than incumbent Congressman Frank Wolf. Feder raised more in Virginia than Wolf and ends the quarter with more cash on hand.

“We are building momentum,” said Feder. “Virginians want change in Washington. We started this in 2006, and we are gaining the strength we need to finish it in 2008.”

Feder raised more than $223,000 in the third quarter. More than twice the amount she raised in the last quarter. Over 96% of Feder’s third quarter contributions ($196,000) came from individual donors, with $141,000 raised online, demonstrating strong grassroots support for her campaign.

“Frank Wolf has failed to offer the leadership that Virginians want and deserve, especially on bringing our troops home from Iraq,” Feder said. “Wolf has been wedded to the Bush policy on Iraq, from the initial invasion, through the surge and at every major step in-between,” said Feder. "Instead of a representative who blindly follows the President and votes against every effort to change course in this disastrous war, we need someone in Congress who will stand up to the President and bring our troops home."

Feder is now one of the few challengers in the country to have more cash on hand than her opponent. Feder’s cash on hand is $294,000. Frank Wolf has only $230,000 in the bank. Despite her vigorous and record-setting fundraising in 2006 Feder has never led Wolf in Cash on Hand until now.

While significantly out raising her opponent, Feder has also campaigned for, contributed to, and raised thousands of dollars on behalf of Democratic candidates for Virginia's General Assembly. Following the November 6 elections, Feder plans to formally announce for Congress and shift her campaign into high gear.

Last year, Judy Feder mounted the strongest challenge to Frank Wolf in nearly a quarter century, waging a vigorous campaign and raising an unprecedented $1.6 million. Though Feder entered the 2006 race a mere 10 months before Election Day, she cut Wolf's margin of victory dramatically from 2004, revealing growing discontent with the longtime incumbent. As Feder begins her 2008 rematch against Wolf, she has the advantage of an existing organization and is more than seven months ahead of her own record fundraising pace of 2006.

Monday, October 15, 2007

League of Conservation Voters (LCV) Scorecard on Frank Wolf

From the 2006 League of Conservation Voters soorecard, here's more on Frank Wolf's pathetic environmental record (27% LCV rating):

*Wolf vote FOR this: "S. 3711, the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act, ended protections for Florida’s Gulf Coast and opened up 8 million acres off the coasts of Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana for oil and gas drilling. And, for the first time ever, 37 percent of the revenue from drilling would go to Gulf Coast states rather than the federal treasury — a precedent that could encourage more states to support drilling off their coasts and cost federal taxpayers billions."

*Wolf supported drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), with its "abundant and diverse wildlife, including rare musk oxen, polar bears, grizzlies, wolves, millions of migratory birds, and more than 120,000 caribou."

*Wolf voted for this: "H.R.5254, the Refinery Permit Process Schedule Act. The bill, pushed through without committee consideration and with only minimal floor debate, could undermine the public health and environmental permitting decisions by state and federal officials and would give oil companies the right to sue public health officials in order to speed up refinery projects."

*Wolf voted against S. Con. Res. 83, "an amendment by Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME) to restore $1 billion in energy assistance that had been removed by Senate leadership. In addition to easing the burden of fuel costs, these funds will help low-income families insulate and weatherize their homes, making them less vulnerable in the future to high energy prices."

*Wolf voted against H.R. 5386, "the Interior-Environment Appropriations bill...that would force the EPA to rescind its directive and reaffirm a broad application of Clean Water Act protections."

*Wolf voted against "making toxic pollution information publicly available, the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) of the premier tools for alerting U.S. citizens to chemical contamination in and around their communities."

Great stuff from the 10th district's "moderate" Congressman, huh?

Friday, October 12, 2007

Al Gore Wins Peace Prize for Environment; Frank Wolf is No Prize!

This morning, Al Gore won the Nobel Peace prize for his work "convincing world governments that climate change was real, caused by human activity, and posed a threat to society." And Frank Wolf? Needless to say, he didn't win any awards for his work on the environment. Here's a brief synopsis of Wolf's environmental record:

*A miserable 25% rating from the League of Conservation Voters, an even worse 16% rating from the American Wilderness Coalition, and a 20% rating from the Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund. Wonderful...

*In 2005, Wolf voted for the energy conference report that exempts oil and gas industries from some clean-water laws, streamlines permits for oil wells and power lines on public lands, and helps the hydropower industry appeal environmental restrictions.

*In 2004, Wolf voted against an amendment to increase funding for renewable energy sources by $30 million.

*In 2003, Wolf voted against an amendment to the energy bill instructing the Department of Transportation to reduce the amount of oil consumed by U.S. automobiles by five percent by 2010.

*In 2001, Wolf voted against an amendment to require a combined corporate average fuel efficiency (CAFE) standard for passenger automobiles and light trucks, including sport utility vehicles, of 26 miles per gallon in 2005 and 2006 and of 27.5 miles per gallon in 2007 and beyond.

We could go on and on, but you get the picture. Al Gore is an environmental hero. Frank Wolf is an environmental zero. It's time for a change!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Judy for Jay

From Judy Feder...
A few weeks ago I wrote to tell you about Jay Donahue. Jay is a personal friend and one of our best Democratic candidates for the House of Delegates.

This year's elections for the General Assembly are critical, and Jay's campaign is one that we need to win to bring change to Richmond. I believe so strongly that Jay's race is a must win that I'm helping him with a fundraiser to support his campaign on October 24th from 7-9 p.m. in Herndon.

I hope you'll join me at this event to make sure that Jay has the resources he needs to help us change Richmond on November 6th. If you can't make the event, you can still make a contribution by clicking here:

The details of the event are below. I hope to see you on October 24th!

Judy Feder

Details of the event are in the comments. Please attend if you can, and help defeat one of the lead authors of the hated abuser fees, Tom Rust. Thanks.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Frank Wolf Votes Against Affordable Housing

Earlier today, Frank Wolf voted against HR 2895, the "National Affordable Housing Trust Fund Act of 2007." Wolf was in the small minority on this one, as the bill passed by a nearly 2 to 1 margin (264-148). Even Wolf's Republican colleague Rep. Tom Davis voted yes to "establish the National Affordable Housing Trust Fund in the Treasury of the United States to provide for the construction, rehabilitation, and preservation of decent, safe, and affordable housing for low-income families."

According to the House Committee on Financial Services, this bill would represent:
...the largest expansion in federal housing programs in decades, with a goal of producing, rehabilitating and preserving 1.5 million housing units over the next 10 years. The bill as amended will initially allocate between $800 million and $1 billion annually directly to states and local communities, without increasing government spending or the federal deficit.

Great bill, in other words. As Committee Chairman Barney Frank said:
The growing shortage of affordable housing is one of the most serious social and economic problems facing our country. Given our severely constrained fiscal realities, we are today doing the best we can to address this – creating a low income housing trust fund that will be paid for in ways that do not draw from federal tax revenues

Sounds like a winner, right? So why on earth would anyone, let alone a self-proclaimed "moderate Republican" like Frank Wolf, vote against this bill? If you want to ask Rep. Wolf, contact him here, and be sure to let us know what he says. Thanks!

"Frank Wolf's Attention"

Courtesy of the excellent blog, Leesburg Tomorrow, here are some thoughts on "Frank Wolf's Attention."

It would be nice if Frank Wolf paid a little bit better attention to his district.

First, Frank Wolf pays people in Ohio and New Mexico to look at online porn.

Then Frank Wolf is asleep at the wheel as AOL moves its headquarters out of Dulles.

And now, Frank Wolf is inserting himself in debates over whether an Indian tribe in Connecticut deserves recognition?

Surely there are issues that matter to the 10th District that are more important than Internet porn and Connecticut tribal policy?

Personally, I'm still waiting to hear Frank Wolf's comments on his political allies' -- Ken "Fairfax County Public Schools are Failing" Cuccinelli and Jill "Mark Tate fiasco" Holtzman Vogel -- shenanigans. But maybe he's just too busy paying attention to those other things.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Wolf and the Schaghticokes

According to an article in Sunday's edition of Newsday,
Frank Wolf has gotten himself into a bit of a controversy involving the Schaghticokes Tribal Nation in Connecticut and former Bush Interior Secretary Gale Norton. According to the article:
The Schaghticoke Tribal Nation has asked a federal judge to throw out the decision that denied it federal recognition, citing what it calls unprecedented political interference.

In a motion seeking summary judgment from U.S. District Court Judge Peter Dorsey, the tribe argues that powerful political forces opposed to a third Indian casino in Connecticut caused the U.S. Department of Interior to act in an "unprecedented and arbitrary manner" by reversing a decision to acknowledge the tribe.

Powerful political Frank Wolf perhaps? Yep, you guessed it:
In its motion for summary judgment filed last month, the tribe details a March 30, 2004 meeting attended by three Republican members of the Connecticut Congressional delegation, U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va. and then-Interior Secretary Gale Norton.

In a deposition, Norton said that Wolf and the Connecticut delegation - which included U.S. Rep. Christopher Shays, and former Reps. Nancy Johnson and Rob Simmons - pressed her to overturn the decision.

She said Wolf threatened to ask President Bush to replace her.

The tribe also details other instances of what it argues were illegal political attempts to influence the process.

Stay tuned for more details on this. If nothing else, by denying the Schaghticokes recognition, Frank Wolf is preventing members of the tribe from receiving federal health care benefits. Of course, given Wolf's record on health care in general, that's not exactly surprising.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Wolf Votes Against Economic and Infrastructure Development

Apparently, Frank Wolf opposes "a comprehensive regional approach to economic and infrastructure development in the most severely economically distressed regions in the Nation." That's what he voted against this past Friday. Fortunately, 264 U.S. Congressmen felt differently, and the bill passed. As is so often the case, however, no thanks to Frank Wolf.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Ken Cuccinelli Disses Fairfax County Schools; What Does Frank Wolf Have to Say?

One of Frank Wolf's friends is at it again. This time, Sen. Ken Cuccinelli has a new TV ad that portrays Fairfax County public schools as a failure, even though they consistently rank among the best in the nation. And, of course, what "Cooch" doesn't mention is that his opponent, Janet Oleszek, has been a big part of that excellence for years now. Instead, Cuccinelli implies that Oleszek, the Fairfax County school board, teachers in the county, and the families of students are somehow not measuring up. Sorry, Senator, but it's you -- not them -- who aren't measuring up.

I wonder what Frank Wolf thinks about his friend Ken Cuccinelli dissing the Fairfax County public schools.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Who Does Frank Wolf Care More About?

Who does Frank Wolf care more about, "Abby" or George W. Bush? We'll find out in the next few weeks...

Thursday, October 4, 2007

"No health care for us, no photo ops for you!"

So what's it gonna be, Congressman Wolf? Health care for the kids, or no photo ops for you? Ha.

Frank Wolf is No Moderate

Progressive Punch has a new tool to rate members of Congress on how progressive they are.  Here are the Virginia delegation lifetime rankings, with 100 being the most progressive and 0 being the least.  Note that even the supposedly "moderate" Republicans like Frank Wolf are still highly conservative.

Bobby Scott: 88.73
Jim Webb: 86.64
Jim Moran: 80.16
Rick Boucher: 76.03

Tom Davis: 15.05
John Warner: 12.86

Frank Wolf: 12.42
Virgil Goode: 6.76
Jo Ann Davis: 6.72
Randy Forbes: 4.76
Bob Goodlatte: 4.56
Thelma Drake: 4.12
Eric Cantor: 1.60

And just for fun, here are the presidential candidates:

Hillary Clinton: 91.81
Barack Obama: 90.45
Dennis Kucinich: 87.41
Chris Dodd: 86.84
Joe Biden: 84.40

Ron Paul: 24.14
John McCain:  13.77
Tom Tancredo: 6.92
Sam Brownback: 5.13

That's right, Frank Wolf is somewhat less conservative than far-right-wing extremist Tom Tancredo, but more conservative than John McCain. That's a "moderate?"

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Feder Raises More than $223K in Third Quarter

Great news from the Feder campaign...Judy is going to rock Frank Wolf's world next year! :)
Feder Raises More than $223K in Third Quarter
Virginians want new leadership in Washington

McLean, VA – In a clear indication that Virginians want new leadership in Washington, Judy Feder’s campaign announced today that it had raised more than $223,000 in the third quarter of 2007. That's more than twice the amount raised during the previous reporting period, demonstrating the growing support for Feder's campaign for Congress.

Over 96% of Feder’s third quarter contributions came from individual donors, with $141,000 raised online, demonstrating strong grassroots support for her campaign. “Our success is another indication that people want change in Washington,” stated Feder.

“Frank Wolf has failed to offer the leadership that Virginians want and deserve, especially on bringing our troops home from Iraq,” Feder said. “Wolf has been wedded to the Bush policy on Iraq, from the initial invasion, through the surge and at every major step in-between,” said Feder. "Instead of a representative who blindly follows the President and votes against every effort to change course in this disastrous war, we need someone in Congress who will stand up to the President and bring our troops home."

Feder has raised over $335,000 since June, an unprecedented total at this point for a 10th District race. While working towards victory over Wolf in 2008, Feder has also campaigned for, contributed to, and raised thousands of dollars on behalf of Democratic candidates for Virginia's General Assembly this year. Following the November 6 elections, Feder plans to formally announce for Congress and shift her campaign into high gear.

Last year, Judy Feder mounted the strongest challenge to Frank Wolf in nearly a quarter century, waging a vigorous campaign and raising an unprecedented $1.6 million. Though Feder entered the 2006 race a mere 10 months before Election Day, she cut Wolf's margin of victory dramatically from 2004, revealing growing discontent with the longtime incumbent. As Feder begins her 2008 rematch against Wolf, she already is more than seven months ahead of her own record fundraising pace of 2006.

And what's Frank Wolf up to? Well, he's busy campaigning for Ken Cuccinelli, a far-right-wing extremist who believes in criminalizing abortion and even contraception, who opposes embryonic stem cell research, and who never met an abuser fee (aka, "tax") he didn't like.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Wolf and Cooch: Birds of a (right-wing) Feather

The other day, we noted the following event:
10/3 - Senator Ken Cuccinelli's Lunch w/Rep. Frank Wolf - 12:15-1:30 PM, JRs Stockyard Inn, 8130 Watson Street, McLean. $250. Call: (703) 766-0635.

Now that this debate is coming up tomorrow, and also following Ken Cuccinelli's debate last night with Janet Oleszek, we've got a few questions for Wolf about his friend "the Cooch."

1. Do you agree with Cuccinelli that abortion should be illegal in all cases -- rape, incest, life of the mother? How about contraception? For more on this, see HB2797, a bill which Cuccinelli patroned this past year, As a commenter on RK correctly pointed out, the bill "would have codified the view that life begins at fertilization (a point on which there is no consensus, in the medical community or otherwise), threatened not only safe, legal abortion, but certain types of contraception as well, including the pill." Is that your belief as well, Congressman Wolf?

2. Do you agree with Cuccinelli on the abuser fees, which he voted for?

3. Do you agree with Cuccinelli on his opposition to potentially life-saving stem cell research? Oh, wait a minute, we already know that your position on that issue!

4. Are Cuccinelli and Jill Holtzman Vogel -- who Wolf has strongly supported and who Russ Potts has said is "to the right of Attila the Hun and way out of the mainstream" -- your types of Republicans? If so, then how can you honestly call yourself a "moderate?" If not, then what are you doing campaigning for these people?

We eagerly anticipate your responses to our questions.


The Feder Campaign

Frank Wolf Bad for Your Health: Part II (Popcorn Edition)

There are many examples of how Rep. Frank Wolf is bad on health care issues -- "bad for your health," so to speak. Now, we've got another one. On September 26, Wolf voted against the "Popcorn Workers Lung Disease Prevention Act," which passed the House of Representatives overwhelmingly (260-154) despite Wolf's opposition. The bill, H.R. 2693, would "direct the Occupational Safety and Health Administration [OSHA] to issue a standard regulating worker exposure to diacetyl." What is diacetyl and why does it matter? Here is a good explanation:
Dozens of workers around the country have developed the debilitating lung disease bronchiolitis obliterans, also known as “popcorn workers lung,” and other respiratory illnesses from exposure to vapors from diacetyl, a component of artificial butter flavor used in microwave popcorn and many other food products.


On July 26th, 2006, the United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters petitioned OSHA to issue an emergency temporary standard to protect workers from diacetyl and to begin the process of protecting workers from other hazardous flavoring chemicals. Unions also petitioned Cal-OSHA (the state equivalent of the federal agency) to take these steps.

Why would Frank Wolf oppose protecting workers against lung diseases from job-related hazardous chemical exposure? I guess you'd have to ask Wolf, because I can't think of any good reason whatsoever. You might also want to ask Wolf why 47 Republicans -- but not Wolf -- voted "yea" on this one. What, is there a big popcorn industry in the 10th district that none of us knew about? Did Orville Redenbacher move to Virginia recently or what? Maybe Frank Wolf has some answers. You can contact him at (202) 225-5136, (800) 850-3463, (800) 945-9653, or here. It will be interesting to hear what's "popping" in Frank Wolf's head on this one.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Frank Wolf: Bad for Your Health

According to today's Washington Post, one of the big issues for Congress this fall will be health care. Aside from SCHIP, an issue on which Frank Wolf has been here, there and everywhere, Congress will also look at escalating health care costs and the need for universal health care coverage in this country. Where has Frank Wolf been on health care issues over the years? Let's review.

*In 2005, Wolf voted against a proposal to maintain state coverage mandates on a variety of medical treatments. The proposal would have maintained state coverage protections for pregnancy, child care, breast and cervical cancer screening, mental illness and diabetes.

*In 2005, Wolf voted against a plan to lower health insurance costs for small businesses. The plan allowed small employers access to state and federal low-cost health insurance plans that pool all health risks and provided subsidies to help small employers with low-wage workforces afford family coverage.

*In 2005, Wolf voted for legislation to create so-called “Association Health Plans” (AHPs) that would gut state health coverage protections like cancer screening and diabetes treatment. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) found that more than 75 percent of small business workers - representing over 20 million workers and their dependents - would see their health insurance premiums increase as a result of AHPs. The CBO also found that that up to 8 million workers who currently have insurance would be shifted into cheaper, lower benefit, "bare bones" AHP health plans - where their coverage would be notably less than it is right now.

*In 2004, Wolf voted against a motion that would have required the Association Health Plan legislation to prohibit plans that allow reductions in breast cancer coverage.

*Tn 1996, Wolf voted against an amendment to assure insurance portability and prohibit insurers from canceling or refusing coverage based on an employee's health.

There's a lot more in Wolf's record, but we don't have all day. Frankly (pun intended), this could be a continuing series that could last for many days. So, stay tuned for more about how Frank Wolf is bad for your health!