Freedom & Prosperity Agenda  

“Adherence to men is often disloyalty to principles.”
 – John Taylor of Caroline




EVENTS

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Tuesday Morning Group Coalition Meetings
Past News Conferences

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Tuesday Morning
Group Coalition Meetings

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October 8, 2013

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  1. Doug Mills, vice president at the Club for Growth, briefed the group on how the 2014 U.S. Senate races are shaping up.  Could there be a change in which party controls the Senate?

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  1. Scott Cosenza, attorney and policy director at One Generation Away, co-author of The Bill of Rights and You, discussed his latest book, Roots of Liberty: Unlocking the Federalist Papers.

 

  1. Howie Lind, Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, addressed the campaign issues on which he is running.  Howie, a 1980 graduate from Virginia Tech, served in the U.S. Navy for two decades as a surface naval warfare officer (retiring as a Commander), and was previously the chairman of Virginia’s 10th District GOP Committee.

 

  1. Jonathan Bydlak, president of the Coalition to Reduce Spending, introduced himself and his organization which advocates exclusively for reducing federal spending, balancing the budget, and revealing where all candidates stand on this defining issue.

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  1. Kris L. Allen, an independent scholar and partner with the Business Performance Group, Inc., presented the results of his in-depth analysis of the Common Core Standards Initiative.

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August 13, 2013

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  1. Lt. General William G. “Jerry” Boykin (USA ret) is the Wheat Professor of Leadership Studies at Hampden-Sydney College, and the executive vice president of the Family Research Council.  A founding member of the Delta Force, General Boykin served as the commanding general of the U.S. Special Forces Command, the commanding general of the United States John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center, and as the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence.  General Boykin spoke on “Dynamics of North Africa and the Middle East.”

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  1. David J. Bobb, Ph.D., director of Hillsdale College’s Kirby Center for Constitutional Studies & Citizenship in Washington, D.C., discussed the mission of the Center, the conferences it hosts, the materials it publishes, and the online learning programs on the Constitution that are available to those who wish to participate.  Dr. Bobb also addressed the issue of “Executive Orders.”  [i.e., what are they; for what were they originally intended; their historical use; limits on how they may be used; and how President Obama has used them.]

 

  1. Gibby Wright, the new chapter leader of the Richmond Lawyers Chapter of The Federalist Society, introduced himself, explained the mission of The Federalist Society, and previewed upcoming meetings/speakers that members of the Tuesday Morning Group coalition are invited to attend/hear.

 

  1. Carol Stopps, chairman of the Legislative Action Committee of the Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation, outlined the activities planned for the congressional break and beyond.

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July 9, 2013

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  1. Becky Norton Dunlop, vice president of external relations with The Heritage Foundation, addressed where we are in Virginia today, where we need to go, and the role The Heritage Foundation will play going forward.

 

  1. Steve Rossie discussed the 2013 Virginia General Assembly Scorecard that he produced for the American Conservative Union.

 

  1. Reagan George, president of the Virginia Voters Alliance, exposed the current effort in the Commonwealth to restore voting rights to felons, who is behind the endeavor and why.

 

  1. Mark J. Fitzgibbons, Esq. updated us on the corruption in Fauquier County and beyond.  Previous speaker before the Tuesday Morning Group, Martha Boneta, is now being audited by the IRS and has had her home vandalized.

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June 3, 2013

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A breakfast meeting jointly sponsored by The Family Foundation, The Heritage Foundation, and the Virginia Institute for Public Policy, was held at the Bull & Bear Club in Richmond.  The featured speaker was:

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  1. Jim DeMint, former U.S. Senator and now president of The Heritage Foundation, spoke to the current condition of, and outlook for, our country and discussed the future role of The Heritage Foundation and Heritage Action for America.

 

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May 14, 2013

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  1. Emmett McGroarty, Esq., executive director of the Preserve Innocence Initiative at the American Principles Project, exposed Common Core, CSCOPE, and the privacy issues related to state longitudinal data systems.

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  1. Jane Hogan, a retired teacher, updated the coalition on the current status of Common Core and longitudinal data capture in Virginia.

 

  1. John Taylor responded to events taking place in Washington, D.C. and raised the question as to whether these events could be explained by rampant corruption within our federal government and the institutional incompetence of our “crack” mainstream media.

 

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April 9, 2013

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  1. Del. Ben Cline introduced his new Virginia Conservative Victory Fund (www.vcvf.org) and gave his thoughts on this week’s veto session.

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  1. Bishop E.W. Jackson updated us on his campaign for Lt. Governor.

 

  1. George Tryfiates, director for government affairs of the Association of Christian Schools International, unveiled ACSI’s new scholarship granting organization, the Children’s Tuition Fund, which was created as a result of Virginia’s new tuition tax credit statute, the Education Improvement Scholarship Tax Credit Program.

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February 12, 2013

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  1. Marc Scribner, fellow in land-use and transportation studies at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, critiqued Governor McDonnell’s proposal to eliminate the gas tax and increase the sales tax.

 

  1. Donna Holt, executive director of the Virginia Campaign for Liberty, discussed the status of her organization’s legislative agenda at crossover.

 

  1. Carol Stopps, chairman of the Legislative Action Committee of the Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation, updated us on the status of that organization’s legislative agenda at crossover.

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  1. In his opening remarks John Taylor offered a comparison of the principles and courage of Ben Carson, M.D. to those of our Republican congressional “leadership.”  (This was not meant to minimize the energy and excitement one feels when Mitch McConnell steps to the podium in the U.S. Senate to make yet another impassioned plea in that enviable monotone.  Yes, “drone” can be a noun or a verb.)  This was followed by his questioning the intellectual viability of today’s Progressive culture that insists upon every possible kind of public assistance for those not looking for work (a constituency so large that it can swing election results), but cannot provide medical insurance or a pension to a Navy Seal whose body has worn out due to his service to our country.  (A constituency far too exceptional to ever be very numerous, and therefore of no consequence politically.)

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January 8, 2013

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  1. Mark Fitzgibbons, Esq. addressed legislation to be introduced in the 2013 General Assembly session by Del. Scott Lingamfelter which is being referred to as “The Boneta Bill” (HB 1430, an amendment to the Right to Farm Act).  This effort is in response to the actions Fauquier County has taken against Martha Boneta which include, among other things, fining her $5,000 for not having the proper permits to have a birthday party for eight 10-year-old girls on her own property!

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  1. Reagan George, president of the Virginia Voters Alliance and second vice chair of the Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation, spoke about the efforts to improve Virginia’s election laws in this year’s General Assembly session by requiring photo IDs to vote, getting better control over the voter registration process, reducing voter harvesting in nursing homes, and stopping double voting by students.  Reagan also exposed the layered-cake approach to voter fraud that Progressives use to tip elections in their favor, as well as what the implications would be of their efforts to have the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 declared unconstitutional.

 

  1. Carol Stopps, COLA legislative chair with the Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation, discussed the organization’s legislative agenda for the upcoming General Assembly session.

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  1. Edgar Doleman, past president of the 99th District Tea Party, provided answers for where the Tea Party goes from here and what the Tea Party needs to do to save our country during Obama’s second term and beyond.  Edgar described the two core problems facing the United States and proposed an approach for resolving those challenges.

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November 13, 2012

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  1. In response to the recent election, four Virginians representing a variety of organizations gave their thoughts on where free-market classical liberals/conservatives/libertarians go from here:
  2. Mark Daugherty, chairman of the Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation

    Becky Norton Dunlop, vice president of external relations at The Heritage Foundation

    Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League

    Mike Rothfeld, president of SABER Communications

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  1. Cheryl Chumley, co-author with Ron Utt, Ph.D. of The Heritage Foundation policy report, National Heritage Areas: Costly Economic Development Schemes That Threaten Property Rights, discussed National Heritage Areas and exposed how they financially benefit a few at the expense of many taxpayers and private property owners.

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  1. Becky Norton Dunlop introduced The Heritage Foundation’s recent publication, Eight Principles of the American Conservation Ethic.

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October 9, 2012

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  1. Delegate Rob Bell introduced his campaign for Attorney General.

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  1. Cathy Turner, of Sustain Authentic Values New River Valley (SAV NRV), discussed her own story of being a property owner in Pulaski County and exposed who is behind the land grab in 19 counties in Southwest Virginia known as “The Crooked Road National Heritage Area.”  SAV NRV is currently circulating a Petition to Remove the Pulaski County Board of Supervisors.

 

“Being denied a business license or permits to do what you wish on your own property because you refuse to put your land in a conversation easement is just a little bit too Stalinist for me,” observed John Taylor.

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  1. Don Casey, vice chairman of the Alliance for Citizens Rights, is one of the foremost authorities in the U.S. on Sustainable Development/Agenda 21.  He has just returned from a speaking tour in Australia.  Don spoke to the groundbreaking anti-Agenda 21 legislation (SB 477) which the Alliance for Citizen Rights played an instrumental role in getting passed into law in Alabama.

 

  1. Laura Southard, from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, detailed the kinds of plans and materials families should have in place as preparation for economic, natural, and terrorist-related emergencies.

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September 11, 2012

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  1. Senator Steve Martin introduced his campaign for Lt. Governor.

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  1. Stanley Kurtz, Ph.D. discussed his recently published book, Spreading the Wealth: How Obama Is Robbing the Suburbs to Pay for the Cities.
  2. Susan Lascolette, activist extraordinaire, addressed the recent decision in Goochland County to discontinue its membership in the Virginia Association of Counties (VACO).
  3. HYPOTHETICAL:  In October of this year Israel attacks the nuclear facilities in Iran.  In response, Iran attempts to close the Straits of Hormuz.  While the U.S. takes steps to keep the Straits open, oil prices double in a matter of days.  In retaliation for the U.S. “interceding on behalf of Israel,” Hamas and Hezebollah cells already in this country begin to visit American shopping malls – but not to shop (addressing the demand side of the equation rather than the supply).

This may well be a worst case scenario.  Perhaps another scenario would simply involve a global economic collapse due to massive government deficits, debt, economic illiteracy, and incompetence on the part of our elected and unelected officials.

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The two questions you want to ask yourself are these:  How much better would you feel if you had saved enough that you could pay your mortgage or rent for a year even if you lost your job?  How much better would you feel if you could feed your family for a year in the absence of your present income or in the presence of food supply disruptions?

  1. Matt Karen, from Daily Bread Food Storage, detailed how his company and its product line could be the answer to your emergency food storage needs and reviewed the pros and cons of food storage alternatives.

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August 14, 2012

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  1. Delegate Scott Lingamfelter introduced his campaign for Lt. Governor.
  1. Martha Boneta, who owns a family farm in Fauquier County, has been continually harassed by the “authorities” for the outrageous ways in which she wants to use her land.  You see, in Fauquier County holding pumpkin carvings, birthday parties for little girls, or Boy Scout jamborees on your own property are insurrections that must be put down by the petit tyrants currently in charge.  Will this continue in Virginia?  Fat chance.  Martha and Mark Fitzgibbons, who has been covering this unfolding drama for American Thinker, discussed the harassment campaign to date and the future of the Fauquier County trust-fund set.
  1. Nicholas Loris, the Herbert and Joyce Morgan Fellow at the Thomas A. Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation, briefed us on his recent policy report which analyzed the Obama administration’s war on coal and American consumers.
  1. For all of you Doc Thompson fans, Matt Whitworth, the operations manager for The Doc Thompson Show, announced the latest plans of the talk-show host extraordinaire.  Coming to a media outlet near you!

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July 10, 2012

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  1. In 2012, the Family Research Council and The Heritage Foundation joined forces and hit the road to bring their ValuesBus Tour to communities across the nation.  The purpose of the tour was to advance the causes of fiscal and moral responsibility, restore prosperity to the U.S., and defend the American dream.

                                                                                                                                                                    The ValuesBus Tour came to Richmond and folks from The Heritage Foundation and the Family Research Council were on hand to address the Tuesday Morning Group coalition.  In fact, the ValuesBus parked right outside of 1 James Center for inspection following the TMG meeting.

  2. Peyton Knight, recently elected member of the new free-market conservative majority of the State Central Committee of the Republican Party of Virginia, discussed the future direction of the RPV.
  3. The Culpeper Republican Committee served notice to its chairman that it seeks his removal from that office for failure to ensure compliance with provisions of the Republican Party of Virginia Plan of Organization.  A specific complaint was that he allowed numerous Democrats, including some very prominent, well-known local Democrats, to participate in a Culpeper Republican Mass Meeting.  At that meeting the race for chairman was decided in his favor by a three-vote margin.  Our own Al Aitken, chairman of VOTORS, explained what happened and what the Culpeper Republican Committee did to rectify the situation.
  4. David Johnson, an in-house attorney for Virginia Commonwealth University, introduced the central character from his recently released second book, John Randolph of Roanoke.

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June 12, 2012

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  1. Don Loos, senior advisor to the president of the National Right to Work Committee, outlined the implications of the failed recall election of Governor Scott Walker in Wisconsin.  How many states are not currently Right to Work states?  How many of those states have Republican Governors and/or legislators?  How many state governments are currently deducting union dues from public employees’ payroll checks?  (In Wisconsin, when the state government stopped deducting union dues from payroll checks and individuals had to decide whether to write their own membership dues checks to the union, public employee union membership decreased by 54% in a matter of months.)
  2. Greg Garrett, resident of York County, exposed how local cities and counties abuse the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act and circumvent the Dillon Rule by overstepping the zoning powers they have.

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May 8, 2012

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  1. William J. Olson has been in the private practice of law in the metropolitan Washington, D.C. area for almost 30 years.  A former member of the Reagan administration, he has written studies on a variety of public policy issues including Presidential executive orders (“Executive Orders and National Emergencies: How Presidents Have Come to ‘Run the Country’ by Usurping Legislative Power,” Cato Institute).  William discussed the National Defense Authorization Act and President Obama’s use of executive orders.
  1. E.W. Jackson updated us on his campaign for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Jim Webb.
  1. Angie Parker, executive director of The Middle Resolution, identified the rather large number of bills pertaining to “sustainable development” and land-use restrictions that were passed in the 2012 General Assembly session and then exposed the miscreants who voted for those bills.
  1. Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, offered his expert advice on the pros and cons of alternative weapons available for home and personal protection.

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.April 10, 2012

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  1. Delegate Bob Marshall discussed the issues he intends to highlight during his run for the United States Senate seat currently held by Jim Webb.
  1. Karen Kwiatkowski, a 20-year Air Force veteran with a Ph.D. in world politics, updated us on her campaign for the 6th district congressional seat currently held by Bob Goodlatte.
  1. Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America, revealed how western sheriffs are threatening to arrest federal agents if they attempt to enforce unconstitutional federal acts in contravention of state law.  Interposition anyone?
  1. Announcing an effort which can literally change the political landscape of Virginia, Nancy Smith and Parke West presented the We rVirginia 2012 V.O.T.E.R. (Volunteers Organized Trained Energized Ready) project. Cutting-edge technology and old-fashioned determination allows one individual to have the influence of ten!
  1. David Moss, the prime mover behind the “Got Fooled” signage, introduced the Right Move PAC, dedicated to educating the American voter and revealing the truth behind the Obama administration’s record.

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March 13, 2012

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  1. Mercifully, the General Assembly session ended this week.  Soooo, we had a panel to discuss how the Republicans have cut it as the majority party – the good, the bad, and the Tommy Norment.  The panel was comprised of: 1) Mark Daugherty, chairman of the Virginia Federation of Tea Party Patriots; Donna Holt, executive director of the Virginia Campaign for Liberty; Carol Stopps, chairpitbull of the Committee for Legislative Action (COLA) of the Virginia Federation of Tea Party Patriots; and John Taylor, just a really nice guy who is far too humble to also mention good-looking and smart as a whip!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              There was ample time allotted for a full group discussion on the session – the high points, the low points, who was deserving of praise, who was deserving of condemnation, and which politicians have clearly attained their level of incompetence.
  1. Chris Horner, director of litigation at the American Tradition Institute’s Environmental Law Center, updated us on ATI’s Freedom of Information Act case against the University of Virginia for records sent to, or from, Michael Mann while he was employed at UVA.
  1. Bradford Archer is an engineer and author of The American Manifesto: The Wrong Turn on the Road We’ve Traveled.  Brad also serves as director of the Foundation for America, an organization designed to educate all Americans (with a particular emphasis on the youth) about America’s founding heritage.  Brad introduced the Foundation and the work it is doing.

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February 14, 2012

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  1. Reagan George is the founder of the Virginia Voters Alliance which was formed to combat voter fraud in the commonwealth.  VVA fights voter fraud on several fronts including developing legislation and lobbying for its passage, analyzing voter registration data which creates voter challenges, recruiting conservative election officers and poll watchers, and assisting local election boards.
  1. David McCormick, candidate in the Republican primary for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Jim Webb, introduced himself and identified the issues on which he is focusing.
  1. John Taylor offered a critique on the General Assembly session and exposed the current effort at all levels of government in this country to erect barriers between those in elected office and the citizenry.

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January 10, 2012

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  1. Jeremy P. Hopkins, J.D., partner with the law firm of Waldo & Lyle in Norfolk, spoke to the need for the passage of the proposed constitutional amendment pertaining to eminent domain reform.  Jeremy, the author of the Virginia Institute’s study, The Real Story of Eminent Domain in Virginia: The Rise, Fall, and Undetermined Future of Private Property Rights in the Commonwealth, is the pre-eminent authority on eminent domain reform in Virginia.
  1. Adam Schaeffer, Ph.D., a policy analyst at the Cato Institute in Washington and a nationally recognized figure in the school choice movement, explained the universal tuition tax credit (school choice) legislation that will be introduced in the upcoming General Assembly session.
  1. Jamie Radtke, a candidate in the Republican primary for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Jim Webb, updated us on the progress of her campaign.
  1. John Kwapisz outlined the effects of the sequestration of defense funds on American military capabilities.
  1. John Taylor identified the precarious position currently occupied by the Republican Party of Virginia and why this is the time for the grassroots to be bold in their demands.

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December 13, 2011

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  1. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli updated us on the activities of his office, descanted upon the upcoming General Assembly session, and made a few comments in regards to his campaign for Governor.
  1. Edward Amatetti, the executive director of New Renaissance in Education, described his organization’s efforts to develop and promote within primary, secondary, and post-secondary schools the teaching of curricula that are balanced and which teach America’s heritage.
  1. Mark Daugherty, the newly elected 2012 chairman of the Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation, briefed us on the goals and activities of that organization for next year.
  1. John Taylor reviewed the recent Republican Party Advance held The Homestead.

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November 11, 2011

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  1. Professor Tom Rustici, Ph.D., of the economics department at George Mason University, revealed the unprecedented danger to which our national and state economies are exposed from a collapse of the Federal Reserve System.  Edwin Vieira, Ph.D, J.D., outlined the need for the Commonwealth to consider the adoption of an alternative currency to protect the state and its citizens in the event of a currency crisis.
  1. Tim Donner discussed political debates both historically and in the current Senate race.  He reviewed the recent Senate debate in Verona, the AP debate on December 7, other planned debates, and how significant they can be in the political process.
  1. Ken Vaughn introduced himself and his campaign for the 11th congressional district seat currently held by Gerry Connolly.

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October 11, 2011

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  1. Charles Battig, MD, president of the Piedmont Chapter of the Virginia Scientists and Engineers for Energy and Environment presented on “Achieving the Impossible: How ICLEI and Cool Counties Were Removed from Albemarle County, Virginia.”
  1. Brian Gottstein, director of communications for Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, updated us on the various lawsuits challenging Obamacare, as well as the Attorney General’s lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency, which recently received some unexpected assistance from the EPA’s own inspector general.
  1. Craig Johnson, president of The First Amendment, Inc., introduced us to the mission and work of that organization.

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September 13, 2011

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  1. Paul R. Dorr, owner of Copperhead Consulting Services, a campaign/financial consulting business based in Iowa (www.RollBackLocalGov.com), has defeated 55 of 67 local ballot fights in 8 states saving approximately $3 billion in local property taxes.  He explained his strategy and how it could be used in Virginia.
  1. Ed Braddy, executive director of the American Dream Coalition headquartered in Gainesville, Florida, presented on “Big Government and Livable Communities.”
  1. Donna Holt, executive director of the Virginia Campaign for Liberty, addressed the recent local successes in the Commonwealth in the battle to stop the looming threat to private property rights.  As government agencies and non-governmental organizations push to transform our nation into a “Sustainable America,” it’s important to learn what we can and must do to stop this socio-economic political agenda before it undermines the principles of federalism and the U.S. Constitution.
  1. Robert K. Dean, co-founder of the Virginia Beach Taxpayer Alliance and current chairman of the Tidewater Libertarian Party, gave a presentation on the pitfalls of light rail, and why fuel and other taxes paid by automobile users, instead of passenger fares, are providing 90 percent of the cost of operating this little choo-choo.
  1. Tim Donner, a candidate in the Republican primary for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Jim Webb, updated us on his campaign.

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August 9, 2011

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  1. Dr. Don Boudreaux, former chairman of the department of economics at George Mason University, Dr. David Brat, chairman of the department of economics and business at Randolph-Macon College, and Dr. Jennifer Dirmeyer, assistant professor of economics at Hampden-Sydney College, participated on a panel to answer questions about economics.
  1. Dr. Ed Hudgins, director of advocacy for the Atlas Society, spoke on the topic, “Kudos to Progressivism: Ayn Rand’s Surging Popularity.”  Ed also discussed the recently released movie, Atlas Shrugged.  David Kelley, the founder and executive director of the Atlas Society, was a script consultant for the making of the movie.
  1. Dan Gainor, vice president of business & culture at the Media Research Center, outlined the findings of his extensive research on the reach and influence of George Soros.

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July 12, 2011

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  1. Tim Donner, Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, updated us on his campaign and shared his thoughts on the budget battle currently being waged in Washington.
  1. Joe Thomas, radio talk show host extraordinaire at Freedom & Prosperity Radio, introduced himself to the coalition and discussed F&P Radio and the Virginia political scene.
  1. Pat Michaels, senior fellow for environmental studies at the Cato Institute, addressed “The Climate Coup in Washington.”

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April 12, 2011

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  1. Professor Martin Mangino compared and contrasted the science of energy production to the mythology of green energy.
  1. Jeff Ryer, the spokesman for the Virginia Senate Republican Caucus, discussed the ongoing battle to redraw the Senate district lines. 
  1. Bob Fitzsimmonds briefed us on his campaign for the Virginia Senate.
  1. A round table discussion addressed the grassroots’ successes and failures in the last General Assembly session.  What did we accomplish?  What did we fail to accomplish?  What did we learn?

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February 8, 2011

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  1. Bob Marcellus is the founder and president of the Richmond Group Fund Co. Ltd., a company that specializes in applying a highly diversified and quantitative “global macro” strategy across more than eighty global futures, commodities, and foreign exchange markets for its institutional client base.  He spoke on how the turmoil in the Middle East could impact energy supplies, which would impact energy prices, which would impact the U.S. economy.  Has Congress’ capitulation to environmentalists by abandoning domestic energy production now left us at the mercy of foreign energy suppliers and trade choke points that could be closed for days or, perhaps, weeks due to civil unrest, revolution, or war?
  1. Tim Donner is president of One Generation Away (www.OneGen.org), a web-based, video-centered education and public policy organization dedicated to applying America's founding principles to the issues of today.  He has been a trustee of the Virginia Institute for Public Policy for 12 years, and longtime executive director of Horizons Television, Inc., a media production company based in Great Falls, VA.  Tim discussed the unprecedented opportunities that were presented to Congress in the wake of the last election, and the legislative priorities and initiatives which would most effectively capitalize on the political environment.
  1. Donna Holt, executive director of the Virginia Campaign for Liberty, updated us on how her organization’s proposed legislation was faring before the General Assembly.
  1. Mark Lloyd, the new chairman of the Virginia Tea Party Federation, outlined what he hopes to accomplish during his term and spoke to the status of the Tea Party’s legislation before the General Assembly.
  1. There was a round-table discussion about the current General Assembly session.

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January 11, 2011

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  1. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli descanted upon the status of his major initiatives (e.g. challenging the federal health care mandate, UVA/Michael Mann, etc.), and discussed the upcoming effort in the 2011 General Assembly session to have eminent domain reform enshrined in the Virginia Constitution.
  1. Chris Horner, senior fellow with the Competitive Enterprise Institute, exposed the Obama administration’s effort to circumvent the legislative prerogatives of Congress by issuing environment regulation through the unelected and unaccountable Environmental Protection Agency.
  1. James Gattuso, senior research fellow in regulatory policy at The Heritage Foundation, revealed the Federal Communications Commission’s plans to issue regulations pertaining to net neutrality.
  1. There was a free-flowing, veritable ventilation of views and viewpoints regarding the upcoming session of the General Assembly.

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December 14, 2010

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  1. Speaker William J. Howell discussed the effort to pass The Repeal Amendment now endorsed by such worthies as constitutional law professor Randy Barnett, television host Judge Andrew Napolitano, and radio talk show host and former chief of staff to Attorney General of the United States Ed Meese, Mark Levin.
  1. Brian Riedl, the Grover Hermann Fellow in Federal Budgetary Affairs at The Heritage Foundation, updated us on where we stand in regards to the federal budget and what we can expect in 2011.
  1. Dr. Adam Schaeffer, education policy analyst with the Cato Institute, explained the universal tuition tax credit proposal for school choice to be introduced in the upcoming General Assembly session.
  1. Joshua Baker, attorney at law with Waldo & Lyle, reviewed the language of the constitutional amendment that will enshrine the eminent domain reforms, which were passed as a statute in 2007, into the Virginia Constitution.  This constitutional amendment will be introduced by Delegate Johnny Joannou.

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November 9, 2010

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  1. For the last six months Donna Holt, executive director of the Campaign for Liberty; Parke West, president of Just Liberty and member of the Committee on Legislative Action of the Virginia Tea Party Federation; and John Taylor, president of Tertium Quids, have traveled the Commonwealth of Virginia speaking to local activist groups about a joint legislative agenda for the 2011 General Assembly session.                                                                                                                                                                                            At the Tuesday Morning Group meeting, the three presented this aggressive, free-market, limited-government agenda that calls for the elimination of entire taxes, eminent domain reform, school choice, private property rights vs. the United Nations’ environmental agenda, federalism, and much, much more.
  1. The Republicans won the recent election on a platform of shrinking the government, the deficits, and the national debt.  Jim Bacon, author of Boomergeddon, enlightened us on what congressional GOP leaders have in store, and whether they can return the United States to the path of fiscal sustainability

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August 10, 2010

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  1. Doc Thompson, radio talk show host extraordinaire, discussed the recent JournoList scandal.  Should we now just accept the fact that the best we can hope for from the GoingtheWayoftheDinosaurMedia is something between spin and outright propaganda?  Can journalism still be considered a profession.
  1. Dr. David Brat, professor of economics at Randolph-Macon College, spoke on the topic “From Greek Ethics to Greek Debt Ratios.”  Why is ethics not taught in K-12?  Why is ethics optional at all Virginia colleges?  Why is there no longer a shared ethical language in our culture?  How did this happen?
  1. Lindsey Burke, long-time TMG coalition member and now an education policy analyst at The Heritage Foundation, gave an overview of the Obama administration’s education agenda, the expanding role of the federal government in education, and the unsustainable spending increases for education.
  1. Nan Swift, FreedomWorks campaign manager, outlined FreedomWorks plans for the fall including the 8/27 Take America Back Convention and the 9/12 Taxpayers March on Washington.

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July 13, 2010

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  • Congressman Randy Forbes offered an update as to where the country stands going into the November elections, on what we might expect from the lame-duck session of Congress and the report of the Obama Administration’s Debt Commission, and on the potential consequences to the economy if the Bush tax cuts are repealed in early 2011.

                    

              Congressman Randy Forbes                               Delegate Kirk Cox

  • Delegate Kirk Cox briefed us on the upcoming special session of the General Assembly and what the Republicans must accomplish between now and the November 2011 elections to maintain their majority in the House of Delegates and to retake the majority in the Senate.               
  • David E. Williams, vice president of policy for Citizens Against Government Waste, exposed ongoing and massive federal government waste as detailed in CAGW’s 2010 Congressional Pig Book.

      

       David Williams introduces Citizens             Professor Don Boudreaux calls for the

      Against Government Waste’s 2010            privatization of Virginia’s ABC stores

     Congressional Pig Book

  • Professor Don Boudreaux, senior fellow for economic policy and tax reform at the Virginia Institute for Public Policy, summarized his findings in the recently released Virginia Institute report, Impaired Judgment: The Failure of Control States to Reduce Alcohol-Related Problems. This study provides the intellectual ammunition for the Commonwealth of Virginia to privatize its ABC liquor stores.

     

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June 8, 2010

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  • The Honorable Gerard Robinson, Secretary of Education for the Commonwealth of Virginia, discussed his agenda for reforming/improving K-12 education in the Old Dominion.

                   Gerard Robinson

                   Secretary of Education

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  • Dr. Richard Brake, director of university stewardship at the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI), detailed the findings of ISI’s 2010 Civic Literacy Report, The Shaping of the American Mind: The Diverging Influences of the College Degree & Civic Learning on American Beliefs.
  • Jamie Radtke, chairwoman of the Virginia Tea Party Patriots, offered an update on the Tea Party movement in the Commonwealth and discussed upcoming events.
  • Susan Hamblen, national coordinator for Liberty Central, introduced her organization’s mission to serve as a resource for activists at the grassroots level who are working to preserve the blessings of liberty.

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May 11, 2010

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  • On his television program, Glenn Beck has been detailing the attempt to establish a Chicago Climate Exchange for the purpose of trading carbon credits. Glenn has exposed the individuals (George Soros, Barack Obama, Al Gore, Van Jones, Franklin Raines), associated foundations (Tides), corporations (Goldman Sachs), and quasi-governmental entities (Fannie Mae), who stand to reap enormous financial gains at the expense of the rest of us through the passage of cap and trade legislation. On several occasions Glenn has thanked Barbara Hollingsworth, local opinion editor of The Washington Examiner, for the background research she has provided for this exposé. Barbara shared with the Tuesday Morning Group what she has uncovered.

Barbara Hollingsworth of The Washington Examiner addresses a packed house

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  • Dr. Ron Utt, of The Heritage Foundation, addressed Governor Bob McDonnell’s recently released Executive Order #10, which establishes a “housing policy framework” (government intrusion) to promote the development of workforce housing (say what?), increase access to transportation systems (that’s public transportation), while furthering economic literacy (Oh God, Nooooooo!). This order promotes “sustainable” communities, “green” building concepts, and public-private cooperation in the provision of affordable housing (so the people who can’t understand the role of markets are going to teach the rest of us about economic literacy). There will be an emphasis on “fair” housing (à la Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac), increasing capacity for the homeless, and “investing” in “permanent supportive housing” (guess who is making the “investment” decisions and whose assets are being “invested?”).

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  • Bishop Earl Jackson, without question, gave the outstanding address at the recent Liber-tea Revival Tax Day Tea Party in Norfolk. (And he did this without resorting to violence!) Bishop Jackson gave his perspective on what is happening, and what needs to happen, at the grassroots level in Virginia and nationally.

Bishop Earl Jackson acknowledges a standing ovation

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April 13, 2010

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  • You’ve read his articles at www.lewrockwell.com. You’ve read his blog Krugman-in-Wonderland.blogspot.com. William L. Anderson, Ph.D., a professor of economics and devotee of the Austrian school of economic thought, explained why the recession is not over; why the stimulus is not working; and why a value-added tax (VAT), now being proposed to cover the fiscal sins of our federal government, is a really bad idea.

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Professor William L. Anderson, Ph.D. discusses the exploding debt, the burgeoning deficit, the onerous tax increases, and the continuing unemployment caused by the “Progressive” policies of Congress and the Obama administration.

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  • Brian Gottstein, director of communications for Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, gave an update on the AG’s lawsuit challenging the federal government’s recently passed health-care legislation.

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Brian Gottstein

Director of Communications

Office of the Attorney General

Commonwealth of Virginia

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  • On February 17, 2010, more than 80 leaders, representing tens of millions of activists nationwide, met at Collingwood Library and Museum in Alexandria, Virginia to sign The Mount Vernon Statement, a declaration of the principles, values, and beliefs of the conservative movement for a new generation.

Becky Norton Dunlop, vice president of external relations at The Heritage Foundation, discussed the purpose, and outlined the specifics of The Mount Vernon Statement.

  • In September 1960, a document referred to as The Sharon Statement was signed by conservative movement leaders in Sharon, Connecticut at the home of National Review editor William F. Buckley.  Meant to be a statement of the founding principles of Young Americans for Freedom, in a larger sense it became the creed for the conservative movement.

The Tuesday Morning Group’s own Carol Dawson is one of only two people who were present for the signing of both The Sharon Statement and The Mount Vernon Statement. Carol reminisced about the experience of being present for the signing of The Sharon Statement: what the signatories were hoping to accomplish, who was present, and what William F. Buckley was really like.

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March 09, 2010

       

  • John Taylor, president of the Virginia Institute for Public Policy and Tertium Quids, introduced Scott Lee, the new vice president for communications at the Virginia Institute and host of Freedom & Prosperity Radio.  John also introduced Josh Eboch as a new vice president for government affairs at Tertium Quids.
  • Norm Leahy, vice president for public affairs at the Virginia Institute, and Lynn Taylor, vice president of Tertium Quids, offered an update on the current General Assembly session.
  • Steve Clarke, attorney at law with Waldo & Lyle in Norfolk, reviewed what we have learned in the current General Assembly session about the legislature’s attitude toward private property rights. Do the citizens of Virginia, in fact, have private property rights if they adversely affect the fiscal position of the Commonwealth of Virginia?
  • Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, discussed the recent move by Senator Henry Marsh, chairman of the Senate Courts of Justice Committee, to create a new sub-committee to hear all firearm-related bills passed by the House of Delegates. Philip also briefed us on how firearms-related bills have fared in the 2010 General Assembly session.

    Philip Van Cleave

  • Robert Tracinski, editor of TIADaily.com, talked about a new organization, The Tea Party Debates, teapartydebates.org, which he started to help local Tea Party organizers sponsor debates for candidates in the congressional primaries.
  • Shelby F. McCurnin introduced the Republican Liberty Alliance, citizens who have decided to work within the Republican Party to take the GOP back to its roots of individual rights, limited government, and capitalism. The ultimate goal of this organization is to return the U.S. to the principles of the Founders.
  • Butch Porter, chairman of the American Conservative Party, a political party established to promote and protect individual rights and freedoms set forth in the U.S. Constitution while limiting the scope of government as established in that document, outlined five reasons why conservatives must leave the Republican Party if genuine conservatism is to survive in the U.S.

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February 09, 2010

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  • The Honorable Doug Domenech, Secretary of Natural Resources for the Commonwealth of Virginia, outlined the high points of the administration’s agenda for the next four years, including the plan to allow off-shore energy exploration and development.

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Doug Domenech
Secretary of Natural Resources

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  • Pat Michaels, Ph.D., an internationally–recognized figure who has been at the heart of the global warming debate since its inception, exposed Climategate – the manipulation of data until it seems to substantiate one’s preconceived notions; the hiding of data that fails to substantiate what one was given the government grant to substantiate in the first place; the refusal to release data to allow other scientists to replicate one’s work to see if they obtain the same results; the personal attacks made on anyone who might question to what extent human activity really affects global warming; the politicization of science and the scientific method; the lemming-like complicity of the dull and lazy toadies in the Gee-I-need-a-new-business-plan media; and how Al Gore made that last $100,000,000. (Isn’t it odd that every crisis can only be addressed by centralizing more wealth and power in cash-strapped central governments?)

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Pat Michaels, Ph.D.
author, Meltdown: The Predictable Distortion of Global Warming by Scientists,
Politicians and the Media

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  • Lawrence Verga (R) updated us on his campaign for the people’s 5th district congressional seat currently held by Tom Perriello.
  • Floyd Bane (I) introduced his campaign for the people’s 7th district congressional seat currently held by Eric Cantor.


January 12, 2010


  • Senator Jill Holtzman Vogel discussed two pieces of legislation for which she is the patron in the Senate: 1) the Virginia Health Care Freedom Act would guarantee that every Virginian has a right to purchase health insurance and medical services from whatever provider he chooses, and also guarantees that Virginians not be subject to federal fines if they choose not to purchase government-approved health coverage; and 2) the Virginia Firearms Freedom Act would prevent federal gun laws from being imposed on Virginians who own Virginia-manufactured guns and ammunition that remains within the borders of the commonwealth.

Senator Jill Holtzman Vogel introduces the legislation that

she will carry in the 2010 General Assembly session.

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  • Donna Holt, Virginia state coordinator for the Campaign for Liberty, introduced herself as well as her organization, and updated us on its activities in the commonwealth, including the Virginia Tenth Amendment Revolution event on January 18th at the Virginia Capitol.
  • Kay Coles James, the founder and president of The Gloucester Institute, an organization that trains and nurtures leaders in the African American community, outlined its program for 2010 and beyond. Mrs. James previously served as Director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management for President George W. Bush, and Secretary of Health and Human Resources for Governor George Allen.

Kay Coles James discusses the mission

of The Gloucester Institute.

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  • Richmond attorney, Ken Davis, gave a summary of the main constitutional issues raised by the pending ObamaCare legislation.
  • Josh Eboch, the Virginia field coordinator for FreedomWorks, announced the date (February 13th) for showings in Richmond of the film Tea Party: The Documentary. Josh also gave a status update for the Boucher/Connolly/Nye/Perriello/Warner/Webb healthcare bill and detailed how we can still drive a stake through the heart of this monstrosity.

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December 8, 2009


  • Lt. Governor Bill Bolling gave his thoughts on the recent election in Virginia and previewed the upcoming General Assembly session.

Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling

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  • Delegate Bob Marshall discussed a statute and a constitutional amendment that he will introduce in the 2010 session of the General Assembly to ensure the right of individuals: i) to select the health-care provider of their choice, or ii) to make no choice at all.
  • Josh Eboch, the Virginia field coordinator for FreedomWorks, updated us on what that organization is doing in Washington to stop the health-care reform bill currently before the Senate, and reviewed the ongoing efforts in the commonwealth in regards to Senators Warner and Webb.

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November 10, 2009


  • Michael Cannon, director of Health Policy Studies at the Cato Institute, updated us on where the health-care debate currently stands in Washington and what we should be doing at this time.

Michael Cannon, director of Health Policy Studies
Cato Institute

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  • J.D. Foster, the Norman B. Ture Senior Fellow in the Economics of Fiscal Policy at The Heritage Foundation, explained how the Obama administration hopes to pay for their deficits – a value-added tax (VAT). In an increasingly long list of pathetic policy proposals, this one could be devastating to you, your family, and the economic future of our country.

J.D. Foster, Ph.D.

Norman B. Ture Senior Fellow in the Economics of Fiscal Policy
The Heritage Foundation

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  • We had a round-table discussion about the implications of the recent elections in Virginia and nationally, including what political consultants, party “leaders,” and incumbents should have learned from NY-23, but probably did not.

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October 13, 2009


  • Senator Ken Cuccinelli updated us on his campaign to become the Attorney General of Virginia.
  • Dr. Ron Utt, an adjunct scholar with the Virginia Institute for Public Policy, exposed President Obama’s livability program which promises to substantially alter the way Americans travel and live. In this regard, Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood has stated that it is his intention to coerce Americans out of their cars.
  • Delegate Tom Gear discussed his bid for reelection to the 91st district House of Delegates seat.
  • Michael Gage reviewed his effort to unseat Delegate Joe Morrissey for the 74th district seat in the House of Delegates.

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September 8, 2009


  • Leslie Carbone discussed her recently released book, Slaying Leviathan: The Moral Case for Tax Reform. The late Jack Kemp called Slaying Leviathan “a devastating indictment of the absurdity that has masqueraded as tax policy for the last century.” Ms. Carbone has made an important contribution to the current national debate over the moral hazards of wealth redistribution.

Leslie Carbone discusses her recently released book,

Slaying Leviathan: The Moral Case for Tax Reform.

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  • Bob Marcellus, the president of the Richmond Group Fund Company. Ltd., described the economic boom that would occur, and the tens of thousands of new jobs that would be created, if we were to completely eliminate Virginia’s corporate income tax.

Bob Marcellus

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August 11, 2009


  • Grace-Marie Turner is president of the Galen Institute, a public policy research organization that she founded in 1995 to promote an informed debate on free-market proposals for health care reform. She has spoken extensively in the U.S. and abroad, including presentations at the London School of Economics, Oxford University, and the Gregorian University at the Vatican in Rome. Ms. Turner exposed the many inconsistencies contained within the pages of the health care proposal currently being considered in Washington, and warned of the danger it poses to the nation’s fiscal well-being as well as to the delivery of health care services in the United States.
  • Pat Mullins, the chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia, joined us again to offer an update on this November’s statewide and House of Delegates contests.
  • Kerry Bolognese introduced himself and his campaign for the 41st district House of Delegates seat currently held by David Marsden.
  • John Taylor discussed the importance of understanding the true nature of the political battle currently before us. If, as an activist/community organizer, you don’t know who the actual sides are and for what we are fighting, you’re walking into a gunfight with a knife.

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July 14, 2009


  • Professor Regina Herzlinger is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute Center for Medical Progress and the Nancy R. McPherson Professor of Business Administration Chair at the Harvard Business School. Author of the best-selling book titled Who Killed Health Care: America’s $2 Trillion Problem – and the Consumer Driven Cure, Professor Herzlinger discussed why consumer-driven health care is the only way to reform the industry in America.

Professor Regina Herzlinger addresses the Tuesday Morning Group coalition

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  • Pat Mullins, chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia, outlined the efforts to rebuild the GOP in Virginia and gave us his insights on this November’s statewide races.
  • Andrew Langer is president of the Institute for Liberty, a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy organization. The Institute for Liberty injects the small business perspective into the public policy debate, especially those debates within the federal executive branch. Mr. Langer introduced the Institute for Liberty’s mission and reviewed two upcoming projects on health care and off-shore drilling.
  • Butch Porter is the chairman of the American Conservative Party, an independent political movement started in February of 2008. He explained why the organization was created, its national goals, and how it plans to impact the political climate in Virginia.

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June 9, 2009


  • Delegate Bill Janis discussed his campaign for reelection to the 56th district House of Delegates seat.
  • Delegate John O’Bannon, III, MD outlined his plan for victory in his reelection bid to retain the 73rd district House of Delegates seat.
  • Doc Thompson, WRVA radio talk show host extraordinaire, gave a recap of the April 15th Richmond Tea Party and what the powers-that-be should learn from the Tea Parties so that they don’t become powers-that-were.
  • Sara James, organizer of the Richmond Tea Party, discussed the next step, “Liberty 101,” to be held July 25th at the Chesterfield County Fairgrounds. Go to their Web site www.RichmondTeaParty.com for complete details.
  • Robert Tracinski, editor of The Intellectual Activist and TIA.com, explained the recent surge of interest in Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged as well as the significance of the novel and more broadly of Ayn Rand’s philosophy.
  • Steve Bierfeldt, director of development for the Campaign for Liberty, commented upon his recent detention by the Transportation Safety Administration. This outrage was covered on Freedom Watch with Judge Andrew Napolitano, a live video broadcast on the Internet. Also, Steve recently coauthored a book, Who Is the Real Barack Obama?, and he regularly blogs at TheStateVsYou.com.
  • Chris Malagisi, president of the Young Conservatives Coalition, introduced us to the work of his organization and what it is accomplishing in Virginia.
  • B.J. Ostergren reported on her recent federal court victory against the Office of the Attorney General of Virginia. U.S. District Court Judge Robert E. Payne ruled that Ostergren may continue posting the Social Security numbers of Virginia legislators, county clerks, and other officials on her Web site www.TheVirginiaWatchdog.com. B.J. began this practice to protest public records containing citizens’ Social Security numbers and images of their signatures from being put online by county clerks, thus exposing Virginia’s citizens to identity theft as well as infringing upon their privacy rights. In 2008, the General Assembly passed a law to prohibit B.J. from posting the signatures and Social Security numbers of public officials on her Web site. Judge Payne’s ruling essentially stated that what is good for the goose, is good for the gander.

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April 15, 2009


  • The TMG meeting for this month was "held" at the Richmond Tax Day Tea Party. All TMG members were encouraged to attend the tea parties in their own cities or the Richmond party. Here are pictures from Charlottesville's (attendance: 1400) and Richmond's (attendance: 4000) tea parties.

John Taylor speaks at the Charlottesville Tea Party

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Charlottesville's Tax Day Tea Party

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Richmond's Tax Day Tea Party

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March 10, 2009


  • The Concord Coalition’s recently released and critically-acclaimed film, I.O.U.S.A., was viewed and discussed. This documentary follows David Walker, the former Controller General of the United States and head of the General Accounting Office, on his “Fiscal Wake-Up Tour” and exposes America’s four key deficits—budget, savings, balance of payments, and leadership—and their implications for the current citizens of the U.S. as well as for future generations. As the United States’ economic plight begins to worsen, it is hard to grasp the magnitude of the even larger financial tsunami looming in our future.

  • Krystal Slivinski, vice president for government affairs at Tertium Quids, gave a recap of the 2009 General Assembly session.


February 10, 2009


  • Congressman Bob Goodlatte discussed the financial meltdown, the bailouts, the stimuli, and the Republican vision for the future.

    Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling addresses the Tuesday Morning Group
    Rep. Bob Goodlatte addresses the Tuesday Morning Group
  • John Tate, president of the Campaign for Liberty, updated us on the continuing progress of the Ron Paul inspired Revolution.

    Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling addresses the Tuesday Morning Group
    Campaign for Liberty president John Tate
  • Sandra Fabry, executive director of Americans for Tax Reform’s Center for Fiscal Accountability, outlined this new organization’s efforts to promote fiscal restraint and budget transparency at all levels of government.
  • Brandon Holmes, grassroots director of Citizens in Charge, discussed Circuit Judge Westbrook J. Parker. A month ago Judge Parker threw out recall petitions to remove four Gloucester County Supervisors. The four had been indicted by a grand jury. But Judge Parker dismissed the indictments, too. Then (when you’re hot, you’re hot!) Judge Parker ruled that the members of the Gloucester County Citizens for Accountable Representation, the group that organized the recall, had to pay $80,000 to cover part of the supervisors’ legal fees. Yup, lucky we appoint our judges in Virginia, because if they were elected by the people, we might end up with some real boneheads!
  • Krystal Slivinski, vice president for government affairs at Tertium Quids, updated us with a report from the trenches of the General Assembly session.
  • Brian Gottstein, vice president for communications at Tertium Quids, introduced TQ’s foray into broadcast radio.


January 13, 2009


  • Lt. Governor Bill Bolling previewed the 2009 General Assembly session.

    Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling addresses the Tuesday Morning Group
    Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling addresses the Tuesday Morning Group
  • Kelly Cobb, state affairs manager for Americans for Tax Reform, discussed the Virginia cigarette tax proposal, the federal SCHIP tax, card check and state labor efforts, and transparency in the federal bailout.


December 9, 2008


  • Senator Stephen Martin discussed a constitutional amendment that he will patron in the 2009 session of the General Assembly that will keep funds in the Transportation Trust Fund from being used for anything other than transportation. This amendment will NOT include putting the General Fund off-limits to transportation.

    Senator Stephen Martin
    Senator Stephen Martin
  • Senator Ken Cuccinelli spoke to one constitution amendment and one statute that he will patron in the next session. In the 2007 legislative session, a strong eminent domain reform bill was passed that provided essential safeguards to private property owners throughout the commonwealth. In 2009, we want the same protections enshrined in the Virginia Constitution so that they cannot be tampered with, or weakened by, the legislature without a vote of the people.

    Second, Senator Cuccinelli also reviewed a top legislative priority for 2009 which is a comprehensive budget transparency bill. This legislation, which Senator Cuccinelli will patron, will put the budget of the Commonwealth of Virginia online—and in context—so that the citizens of Virginia can see what is being spent down to the individual program, vendor, and contract level.

  • Delegate Mark Cole addressed his plans to patron a bill that would require expiration dates or sunset provisions, of no more than four years to be placed on all new taxes, fees, and markups, as well as to increases in existing taxes, fees, and markups.

  • Glen Caroline, director of the NRA-ILA Grassroots Division, gave an overview of the upcoming General Assembly and congressional sessions—what the NRA supports, what the NRA opposes, and what he would like to see in future years in regards to legislative efforts in Virginia.

Glen Caroline, director of the NRA-ILA Grassroots Division
Glen Caroline, director of the
NRA-ILA Grassroots Division


November 11, 2008


  • Chris Edwards, director of fiscal policy studies at the Cato Institute, discussed the current financial meltdown, the bailout-of-the-week program, and what the economic environment that President-elect Obama will inherit, as well as the programs he intends to implement, will mean for federal government spending and taxation. Chris also introduced his new book Global Tax Revolution: The Rise of Tax Competition and the Battle to Defend It, which he coauthored with Dan Mitchell.

  • Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America, reviewed what effect the presidential and congressional elections will have on issues relating to the Second Amendment.

  • Greg Mourad, director of federal legislation for the National Right to Work Committee, addressed Obama's promise to implement the Employee Free Choice Act, legislation that would do away with secret ballot elections to decide if workplaces are to become unionized.

  • Chris Horner, a senior fellow with the Competitive Enterprise Institute, briefed us on likely legislative initiatives dealing with energy and environmental policy in the next Congress. Chris also introduced his new book Red Hot Lies: How Global Warming Alarmists Use Threats, Fraud, and Deception to Keep You Misinformed.

  • Chris Freund, vice president of policy and communications for The Family Foundation of Virginia, outlined the implications of an Obama administration for the social conservative movement.

  • Bob Gibson, formerly a reporter with The Daily Progress newspaper in Charlottesville and now executive director of the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership at the University of Virginia, gave his unique perspective from having covered Virginia politics for a number of years.

  • Becky Norton Dunlop, vice president for external relations with The Heritage Foundation, shared her thoughts on the way forward for the free market, conservative movement in both Virginia and the United States.


October 14, 2008


  • Wayne Brough, chief economist of FreedomWorks, analyzed the recent financial meltdown, the bailout of the elites by Joe Six-Pack, and what we might expect in the coming months/ years.

  • In his book, Buck Wild: How Republicans Broke the Bank and Became the Party of Big Government, author Stephen Slivinski tells the gripping story of how the Republican Party lost its head and examines the fate of limited government in America today. In his remarks, Stephen discussed why gridlock in Washington, DC, is a good thing for America and what that means for the possible resurgence of fiscal conservatism in the GOP.

  • Bill Redpath, Libertarian Party candidate for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by John Warner, updated us on his campaign and offered his own views on the recent economic and financial news.

  • Chris Freund, vice president of policy and communications for The Family Foundation of Virginia, used the soon-to-be open DC Capitol Visitor Center as a typical example of a government project politicized and gone awry.

  • Amanda Kathryn Hydro, executive director of Citizens in Charge Foundation and Citizens in Charge, discussed the citizen initiative process and how imperative it is for citizens to truly exercise control over their government in the 24 states that have initiative and referendum (I&R) rights. CICF and CIC works with activists, legislators, media, opinion leaders and voters to protect I&R where it exists and to expand the process to the 26 states where voters currently lack that right. They educate the public on the benefit of citizen initiative, referendum and recall as well as litigate to protect and expand those rights. Amanda talked about their plans for the upcoming year.


September 9, 2008


    Don Boudreaux, Ph.D.
    Dr. Don Boudreaux, senior fellow for economic policy and tax reform at the Virginia Institute for Public Policy
  • Ed Braddy, executive director of the American Dream Coalition, discussed public policy and planning fads in Virginia's metropolitan areas. This coalition defends the American dream of freedom, mobility, and affordable homeownership by promoting market-based alternatives to Big Government planning doctrines like "Smart Growth."

  • Don Boudreaux, Ph.D., chairman of the department of economics at George Mason University and senior fellow for economic policy and tax reform at the Virginia Institute for Public Policy, rebutted current "Political Myths."

  • Jonathan Williams, director of the tax & fiscal policy task force at the American Legislative Exchange Council, introduced ALEC's joint project with Art Laffer: Rich States, Poor States. This publication contains valuable information in regards to lessons that Virginia can learn from other states.


August 12, 2008

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Libertarian Presidential candidate Bob Barr

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  • Former Congressman Bob Barr, the Libertarian Party candidate for President of the United States, outlined his platform and briefed us on his campaign.

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  • Delegate Jeff Frederick, the new chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia, updated us on his efforts to build and rebrand the state GOP.

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  • Iain Stuart Murray, senior fellow in energy, science, and technology at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, discussed his recently released book The Really Inconvenient Truths: Seven Environmental Catastrophes Liberals Don't Want You to Know About - Because They Helped Cause Them.

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  • Paul Jacob, president of Citizens in Charge and senior advisor to the Sam Adams Alliance, examined the left's attacks on the initiative and referendum process and why activists in all states need to be paying attention and need to be concerned.

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July 8, 2008


  • Delegate Sam Nixon, chairman of the Republican Caucus in the House of Delegates, updated us on the special session of the General Assembly – what has happened to date, where we could be going.

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  • Keith Fimian briefed us on his campaign for the 11th congressional district seat currently held by Tom Davis.

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  • Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America, summarized his thoughts on the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, a landmark decision for those of us who are still bitterly clinging to our guns and religion. In God, and if we don't want to bother Him with trifles, in Beretta we trust!

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  • Brian Gottstein, vice president for communications for Tertium Quids, reviewed TQ's first and second podcasts, and what is planned for the future.

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  • Norm Leahy, vice president for public affairs at Tertium Quids, introduced TQ radio – safely ensconced behind the golden TQB microphone with nine-tenths of his brain behind his back in his formerly nicotine-stained fingers.

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  • Krystal Slivinski, vice president for government affairs for Tertium Quids, described the progress of the budget transparency effort in Virginia.

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May 13, 2008


  • Tom Schatz, president of Citizens Against Government Waste, reviewed the results of CAGW's recently released 2008 Pig Book.

  • Kristina Rasmussen, director of government affairs at the National Taxpayers Union, announced the results of NTU's latest ranking of the members of Congress.

  • Jennifer Perkins, executive director of the Virginia Coalition for Open Government, introduced herself and her organization, promoted an upcoming conference in Virginia, and discussed VCOG's support of budget transparency for the commonwealth.

  • John Taylor presented Tertium Quids' legislative agenda for 2009.

  • Robert Dean, communications director for the Virginia Beach Taxpayer Alliance, gave an update on the combined efforts of the Tidewater taxpayer groups to have the Hampton Roads Transportation authority abolished.

  • Keith Drake, chairman of the Albemarle Truth in Taxation Alliance, introduced this new taxpayer group headquartered in Charlottesville and described the ongoing efforts to control taxes, particularly property taxes, in Albemarle County.


April 8, 2008


  • Senator Ken Cuccinelli discussed his race to become the Commonwealth of Virginia's next Attorney General.

  • Vern McKinley outlined his strategy to claim the 10th district congressional seat currently held by Frank Wolf.

  • Longtime TMG coalition member, Jeff Bowles, was recently elected chairman of the Libertarian Party of Virginia. Jeff introduced his plans for the LPVA.

  • James Parmelee, chairman of the Northern Virginia Republican PAC, reviewed the recent taxpayer rally outside the Fairfax County Government Center.


March 11, 2008


  • In early 2007, the Washington State auditor contracted for a "performance audit" of the state's transportation program with a focus on "what could be done to reduce congestion in the next five years." Northern Virginia consultant Richard Mudge led the audit team, and his report was presented three weeks before the November referendum on Proposition 1, a proposal to increase taxes to fund $18 billion of transportation-related spending. That referendum was defeated, in part due to the audit's findings. Mudge discussed why a similar project should be the foundation for future discussions of, and spending for, transportation in Virginia.

  • Three new staff members of Tertium Quids, the 501(c)4 sister organization of the Virginia Institute for Public Policy, were introduced:

              Brian Gottstein, vice president of communications
              Norm Leahy, vice president of public affairs
              Krystal Slivinski, vice president of government affairs

  • John Hager, chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia, outlined the vision and direction of the state GOP going into 2009. (In 2009, there will be an election for all 100 House of Delegates seats.)

  • Ample time was allocated for a roundtable discussion of the 2008 General Assembly session (the defeat of the Homestead Exemption constitutional amendment, the Virginia Supreme Court ruling on the embarrassing Transportation Bill, the resulting special session of the legislature, etc.)


February 13, 2008


  • Delegate Jeff Frederick reported on his plans to run for chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia.

    Delegate Bob Marshall
    Delegate Bob Marshall
  • Delegate Bob Marshall updated us on his campaign for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by John Warner.

  • Delegate Ben Cline and Senator Ken Cuccinelli revealed the reasons for the defeat of the budget transparency legislation in the House and Senate, respectively.

  • Senator Ralph K. Smith gave his observations on being a freshman in the Virginia Senate.

  • Libby Wright, with Citizens Against Government Waste, discussed the payday lending issue, the government's desire to provide this service instead of allowing the private sector to do it, and what has been the result in those states where payday lending has been banned.

  • Robert Dean, communications director of the Virginia Beach Taxpayer Alliance, presented the case for Virginia opting out of the Federal ID program. Robert also spoke in favor of passage of the Homestead Exemption legislation before the General Assembly, which would give Virginians the opportunity to vote for this measure in a November 2008 referendum.


January 8, 2008


  • Lt. Governor Bill Bolling previewed the upcoming General Assembly session.

  • Paul Teller, deputy director of the U.S. House Republican Study Committee, outlined the House conservative agenda for 2008 and discussed the need for the GOP to reestablish its conservative brand.

  • Andy Blom, president of Hawaiian Values.US reported on S310, The Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act, commonly known as the Akaka Bill. This bill, if enacted, would establish a race-based, sovereign nation in Hawaii for people with one drop of Hawaiian blood. At issue is up to 40% of the land in Hawaii, the establishment and codification of race-based preferences, serious economic and natural resource questions, as well as threats to U.S. border integrity and national security. This has implications for Virginia where several groups are vying for official recognition as Indian tribes.


December 11, 2007


  • The Honorable Thelma Drake outlined her recent activities in Congress as well as her expectations for 2008 going into the presidential election.

  • Delegate Bob Marshall discussed the ongoing assault on accountability by public servants (politicians and bureaucrats) on behalf of (?) the people (Sovereigns).

  • The Intercollegiate Studies Institute's recently released report, Failing Our Students, Failing America: Holding Colleges Accountable for Teaching America's History and Institutions, asks whether American higher education is doing its duty to prepare the next generation to maintain our legacy of liberty. Dr. Richard Brake, director of university stewardship for ISI, reviewed the results of the report.

  • Amanda Hydro, director of policy development for the Reason Foundation, updated us on the activities of the coalition that has been formed to support the Coburn/Obama bill requiring public transparency of all grants and appropriations made by the federal government.


November 13, 2007


  • The Honorable James S. Gilmore, III updated us with his thoughts on the upcoming race for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated with the retirement of John Warner.

  • Senator Ken Cuccinelli shared his thoughts on what we can expect from the General Assembly given the recent election results in which the Republicans lost the majority in the state Senate and continued to lose seats in the House of Delegates.

  • A panel of Robert Dean (Virginia Beach Taxpayer Alliance), Brian Gottstein (Tertium Quids), Paul Jost (Virginia Club for Growth), Norm Leahy (blogger extraordinaire), and John Taylor discussed the recent General Assembly race. This was followed by a Q&A and a group discussion (free-for-all) on where we go from here.


September 11, 2007


  • John Stirrup (R), supervisor in Prince William County, reviewed the county's recent steps to crack down on the influx of illegal aliens.

  • Greg Letiecq, president of Help Save Manassas, discussed the activities of his organization in Prince William County as well as the future plan to build a statewide grassroots network based upon the model used in northern Virginia to focus on immigration issues.

  • Paul Goldman, advisor to former Governors Mark Warner and Doug Wilder, shared his thoughts on the 2007 Omnibus Transportation Bill.

  • George Landrith, president of Frontiers of Freedom, exposed how the left is using climate change/environmental stewardship arguments in an effort to seduce Christian conservatives into supporting Democrat candidates.

  • Donald Tabor (L) outlined his campaign for the 14th district Senate seat currently held by Harry B. Blevins (R).

  • Patrick Gleason, state coalitions manager with Americans for Tax Reform, reviewed pending legislation currently before Congress, including the effort to expand the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) and the effort to address who is subject to the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT).


August 14, 2007


  • Chris Evans, secretary of the Portsmouth Taxpayers Alliance, introduced the group and discussed what the fine folks in Portsmouth hope to accomplish with this newly formed organization.

  • Bill Redpath, chairman of the Libertarian National Committee, discussed political competition in Virginia and the United States.


July 10, 2007


  • Ronald Reagan (C) made a special appearance to remind us of first principles and also to remind us that one leader with vision, courage, and a commitment to principles can change the world. (A short DVD.)

  • Alison Fraser, director of the Thomas A. Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation, discussed the devastating effect federal entitlement spending is going to have on state budgets in the very near future.

  • Roger Pogge updated us on his wife Brenda's (C) campaign for the 96th district House of Delegates seat being vacated by the retiring Melanie Rapp.

  • Joe Blackburn (C) discussed his recent campaign for the 12th district Senate seat held by Senate Majority Leader Walter Stosch (R).

  • Jill Holtzman Vogel (C) updated us on her campaign for the 27th district Senate seat being vacated by the retiring Russ Potts (R).

  • Craig Hudgins (I) briefed us on his campaign for the 8th district Senate seat currently held by Ken Stolle (R).

  • Arin Sime (L) briefed us on his campaign for the 24th district Senate seat currently held by Emmett Hanger (R).

  • Trish Stall (C) updated us on her campaign for the 1st district Senate seat currently held by Marty Williams (R), who she defeated in the Republican primary.

  • Ralph Smith (C) briefed us on his campaign for the 22nd district Senate seat currently held by Brandon Bell (R), who he defeated in the Republican primary.


May 8, 2007


  • Delegate Mark Cole discussed the status of the conservative movement in Virginia.

  • Ron Utt, senior research fellow at The Heritage Foundation, exposed Frank Wolf's Journey Through Hallowed Ground scheme and Peyton Knight, director of environmental & regulatory affairs at The National Center for Public Policy Research, reported on the status of that legislation.

  • Gary Marx, conservative coalitions director of the Romney for President Campaign, introduced the Virginia effort.

  • Bob Fitzsimmonds briefed us on his campaign for the 29th district Senate seat currently held by Chuck Colgan.

  • Gerard LaBrecque outlined the eminent domain battle he is waging with the City of Staunton.

  • Tim Wise, president of the Arlington County Taxpayers Association, reported on the Arlington County Board of Supervisors' decision to "go green."

  • John Kwapisz, legislative director of the Virginia Council for Immigration Reform, updated us on legislation currently before Congress and gave his thoughts on what action should be taken.


April 10, 2007


  • Michael Tanner, director of Health and Welfare Studies at the Cato Institute, introduced his latest book Leviathan on the Right: How Big-Government Conservatism Brought Down the Republican Revolution. In Leviathan on the Right, Tanner outlined the rise of a new brand of conservatism - one that believes big government can be used for conservative ends. It is a conservatism that ridicules F.A. Hayek and Barry Goldwater while embracing Franklin Roosevelt. Unless conservatives return to their small-government roots, Tanner warned, the electoral defeat of 2006 was just the beginning. Everyone attending this meeting was given a hardback copy of Leviathan on the Right.

  • Ron Maxwell, producer and director of the two movies Gods and Generals and Gettysburg, exposed the need for, as well as the Senator who is the main obstacle to, immigration reform in Virginia.

    Ron Maxwell
    Hollywood writer, producer, and director Ron Maxwell

  • Trish Stall briefed us on her campaign for the 1st district Senate seat currently held by Marty Williams.

  • Ron Utt, senior research fellow at The Heritage Foundation, gave his evaluation of the recently passed Transportation Bill. (Hint: It's not a transportation bill; it's a money bill.)

  • Brian Smith, chairman of the Norfolk Tea Party II, discussed his group's truly impressive efforts to roll back property taxes in the Tidewater.

  • Mary Meeks, who spoke at our December meeting about Cumberland County taking her property by eminent domain, won her court case. Her attorney was our own Joe Waldo. Initially offered $200,000 for her property by Cumberland County, she received $865,000 after going to court. Mary's story is another example of why property in Virginia must be protected by a constitutional amendment.


March 13, 2007


  • Richard A. Viguerie, chairman of American Target Advertising, has been called "the funding father of the conservative movement" for his pioneering work in ideological and political direct mail. The author of the newly released Conservatives Betrayed: How George W. Bush and Other Big Government Republicans Hijacked the Conservative Cause, Mr. Viguerie is an outspoken critic of the Republican Party's abandonment of conservative principles. But instead of sitting on the sidelines shaking his fist at the wind and whining about the present, he has a vision for the future in which the conservative movement grows and prospers in spite of party politics. Everyone who attended this meeting was given a hardback copy of Conservatives Betrayed.

  • John Van Hoy outlined his campaign for the 28th district Senate seat currently held by the retiring John Chichester.

  • Jill Holtzman Vogel briefed us on her race for the 27th district Senate seat currently held by the retiring Russ Potts.

  • Faisal Gill updated us on his campaign for the 51st district House of Delegates seat currently held by the retiring Michèle McQuigg.

  • Joe Blackburn discussed his race for the 12th district Senate seat currently held by Walter Stosch.


February 20, 2007


  • We had a round table discussion about the current General Assembly session. Were our leaders (ahem) really slashing government, cutting taxes, protecting property, and making our government schools competitive? Was traffic congestion in northern Virginia and the Tidewater truly about to be relegated to the ash heap of history? Or did these issues pale to insignificance in a commonwealth fraught with the dangers of secondhand smoke, modern musicians purloining the names of the legendary bands of yesteryear, and debates about whether we should apologize for, or merely be contrite about, slavery?

  • Mark Tapscott, editorial page editor of The Washington Examiner, introduced his publication and discussed journalism in the 21st century.

  • David Nixon, practicing attorney in Roanoke, reviewed the ethics complaints that he filed against Senator Tommy Norment (R-Williamsburg) and Senator Ken Stolle (R-Virginia Beach).

  • Charlie Judd and Shaun Kenney, executive director and communications director respectively of the Republican Party of Virginia, outlined the direction of the organization in the coming months.

  • Patricia Phillips briefed us on her race for the 33rd district Senate seat currently held by Mark Herring.


January 11, 2007


  • Senator Jay O'Brien previewed the 2007 General Assembly session.

  • Senator Ken Cuccinelli discussed the battle for eminent domain reform in the upcoming session of the legislature.

  • Stacey Chamberlin, of the DCI Group, briefed us on what the Virginia legislature intends to do in regards to tobacco taxes in the upcoming session.

  • Sandra Fabry, state government affairs manager with Americans for Tax Reform, updated us on the status of health care reform in the states as well as ATR's intention to give the Taxpayer Protection Pledge more teeth.

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Past News Conferences

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Ben Cline named House of Delegates

"Legislator of the Year”

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Del. Ben Cline (with his wife, Elizabeth) receives the

House of Delegates Legislator of the Year award

from Tertium Quids president John Taylor (right)

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GAINESVILLE, Virginia (August 12, 2009) – Tertium Quids has named Delegate Ben Cline (R-Rockbridge) as its inaugural “Legislator of the Year” in the Virginia House of Delegates.


“Virginia would not have passed a law to put the state budget online without Del. Cline’s two years of hard work building bipartisan support for the effort among his colleagues in the House of Delegates, and then shepherding the bill through the legislative process,” said John Taylor, the president of Tertium Quids. Tertium Quids is Virginia’s largest advocate for limited government and free-market solutions for challenges that face the citizens of the commonwealth.


The budget transparency bill, which puts more of the state’s budget, revenues, taxes, and expenditures on the Internet in a format easily understandable and accessible to the general public, was signed into law in March. The Virginia General Assembly unanimously passed the legislation in late February, despite opposition to the bill last year. It has been hailed as beginning a new era in Virginia in regards to government transparency and accountability.


Citizens, legislators, state employees, and the media will be able to use the new information posted on the Web to identify wasteful spending and redundancies. These savings can then be returned to the taxpayers or shifted to fund more effective programs.


"There is no reason for expenditures of taxpayer dollars to be kept hidden from the taxpayers," said Del. Cline when promoting the bill to his colleagues.


This is the first year Tertium Quids has presented a “Legislator of the Year” award. “We have had several major pieces of legislation passed in the last four years that reduce the size and scope of government in Virginia. A number of legislators have stepped forward and taken the lead in introducing and supporting our bills, and we thought it was time to start recognizing their outstanding efforts,” said Taylor.

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Tertium Quids also named Ken Cuccinelli its “Legislator of the Year” for the Virginia Senate back in May.

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Ken Cuccinelli named

Senate “Legislator of the Year”

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Senator Ken Cuccinelli receives the Senate Legislator of the Year award

from Tertium Quids president John Taylor

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GAINESVILLE, Virginia (May 20, 2009) – Tertium Quids has named Sen. Ken Cuccinelli as its inaugural “Legislator of the Year” in the Virginia Senate.


“Virginia would not have passed a law to put the state budget online or a law to prevent Kelo-like eminent domain abuses without Senator Cuccinelli steadfastly pushing for them for several years in the Virginia Senate,” said John Taylor, president of Tertium Quids.


Cuccinelli’s budget transparency bill to put more of the state’s budget, revenues, taxes, and expenditures on the Internet in a format easily understandable and accessible to the general public was signed into law in March. The Virginia General Assembly unanimously passed the legislation in late February, despite opposition to the bill last year. It has been hailed as beginning a new era in Virginia government transparency and accountability.


Cuccinelli’s bill to reform Virginia’s frequent abuse of eminent domain means that except for property taken for true public purposes such as utilities, schools, public buildings, etc., property may not be seized by government if the primary purpose is private financial gain, private benefit, an increase in the tax base or tax revenues, or an increase in jobs. In addition, no more property can be taken than would be necessary to achieve the stated public use. It passed and was signed into law in 2007.


This is the first year Tertium Quids has presented its “Legislator of the Year” of the year award. “We have had several major pieces of legislation passed over the last four years to reduce the size and scope of government in Richmond. We have had many legislators introduce and support our bills, and we thought it was time to start recognizing their outstanding efforts,” said Taylor.


Tertium Quids will soon announce its “Legislator of the Year” for the Virginia House of Delegates.

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Tertium Quids’ bill begins new era of government accountability and transparency
*****
Bill putting Virginia’s budget and expenditures online signed into law


Sens. Ken Cuccinelli and Chap Petersen and Del. Ben Cline propose full state budget transparency at Tertium Quids' news conference on January 13th.

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RICHMOND, Virginia (April 2, 2009) – Governor Kaine signed a bill into law this week to put more of the state’s budget, revenues, taxes, and expenditures on the Internet in a format easily understandable and accessible to the general public.  The Virginia General Assembly unanimously passed Senate Bill 936 (Ken Cuccinelli) in late February.

Many legislators admitted that they did not know how the budget was spent each year because the details were not readily accessible -- even to them.  At a time when the federal government is struggling with an economic meltdown that is now affecting our state government as well, fiscal accountability and transparency in how tax dollars are being spent have emerged as front-burner issues. 

Citizens, legislators, state employees, and the media can use the new information posted on the Web to identify wasteful spending and redundancies.  These savings can be given back to the taxpayers or shifted to fund other programs.

Virginia’s existing Web site, Commonwealth Data Point, puts part of the budget online, but breaks little down and offers little detail.  The new legislation adds another layer of information to the existing system.  Most notably, the new law requires a vendor table, where expenditures to individual vendors can be easily tracked. 

“We are pleased with the bipartisan support this bill received,” said Krystal Slivinski, vice president for government affairs of Tertium Quids.  Tertium Quids had representatives at every committee meeting in this year’s General Assembly session urging legislators to vote for the bill.

Early in the legislative session, the bill faced serious opposition when the Department of Planning and Budget hung a $3 million financial impact price tag on it.  However, Sen. Cuccinelli (R-Fairfax), the chief patron of the bill in the Senate, worked closely with Virginia’s Auditor of Public Accounts, Walter Kucharski, to eliminate any financial impact or additional burden on the taxpayers.

“Taxpayers should be able to easily access the details on how the state is spending their tax dollars and what results are achieved for those expenditures,” noted Cuccinelli.  He continued, “This bill is a foot in the door, and will allow us to make even more information available to taxpayers in the future.”

"There is no reason for expenditures of taxpayer dollars to be kept hidden from the taxpayers," said Del. Cline (R-Rockbridge), the chief patron of an identical bill in the House which also passed both houses unanimously.  “I even had resistance when I tried to get spending details out of certain agencies, and I vote on their budgets each year!”

Another patron of the legislation who played an important role in the bipartisan success of the effort was Sen. Chap Petersen (D-Fairfax).  Additionally, Tertium Quids wishes to thank the following organizations that helped push transparency through the legislature:  members of the Tuesday Morning Group coalition (Virginia’s largest coalition of small government, free market activists), The Family Foundation, and the Virginia Coalition for Open Government.

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Bipartisan bill to put Virginia's budget and expenditures online a priority in

2009 General Assembly session
*****
Fiscal accountability and private property protection also highlighted


"These four pieces of legislation can fundamentally change the relationship between the state and the citizens, and return significant power to the people, where it rightfully belongs."
- John Taylor

Click here to watch video of the news conference

RICHMOND, Virginia (January 13, 2009) - Putting Virginia's budget and expenditures online in a searchable database will give citizens more control over their state government, said a group of Republican and Democrat state legislators at a Capitol news conference today.

At a time when the federal government is struggling with an economic meltdown that is now affecting our state governments as well, fiscal accountability and transparency in how tax dollars are being spent have emerged as front burner issues. Virginia House and Senate legislators are sponsoring a bill this General Assembly session to put the state's budget, revenues, taxes, and expenditures on the Internet, in a format easily understandable and accessible to the general public.

The federal government and a number of states have already enacted measures to put their budgets online, enabling citizens and the media to look up details such as the name of a vendor, how much was spent on a particular item, the agency or program spending the money, and the purpose for the expenditure, among other data.

"Taxpayers should be able to easily access the details on how the state is spending their tax dollars and what results are achieved for those expenditures," noted Sen. Ken Cuccinelli (R-Fairfax), a patron of the bill. Currently, many state legislators admit that they do not know how the budget is spent each year because the details are not readily accessible even to them.

Virginia has a Web site which puts the budget online, but many numbers are aggregated, and it does not show details. The Web site does not drill down to program-level spending, and does not show what was purchased with the money.

"There is no reason for public expenditures to be kept hidden from the public," said John Taylor, president of Tertium Quids, the nonpartisan issue advocacy organization promoting this and other legislation to reduce the size and cost of Virginia government.

Citizens, legislators, state employees, and the media would also be able to use the proposed site to identify wasteful spending, or products and services that could potentially be purchased less expensively through other sources. These savings could be given back to the taxpayers or shifted to fund other programs. The software to implement the program is available free to the state, and costs associated with maintaining the data would be more than offset by the savings resulting from the waste and inefficiencies the program would identify, said Taylor.

Other patrons of the bill are Sen. Chap Petersen (D-Fairfax) and Del. Ben Cline (R-Rockbridge).

Additional legislation introduced to promote fiscal
accountability and protect property rights


One other bill and two constitutional amendments unveiled today at the news conference could also fundamentally change the relationship between Virginians and their government:

Bill #2: A bill was introduced today to require four-year expiration dates for all new taxes, fees, and tax increases. New taxes and fees are often passed to fund specific, limited-time purposes, but many remain on the books in perpetuity. As an example, many Virginians still pay the BPOL tax that was instituted to pay for the War of 1812.

This bill, patroned by Sen. Jill Vogel (R-Winchester) and Del. Mark Cole (R-Fredericksburg), would require legislators to publicly debate, defend, and secure the votes to pass a tax again, if they felt it was necessary to keep it after the expiration date.

Constitutional amendment #1: Citizens have been told for years that Virginia's transportation system is in "crisis" and that there is never enough money to make most needed improvements. Yet to pay for other programs, legislators have raided hundreds of millions of dollars from the funds set aside specifically for fixing transportation.

The Transportation Trust Fund is a "lock box" where certain taxes and fees solely dedicated to transportation are supposed to go. The General Assembly has had several opportunities to "lock" the lock box again to prevent further raids, but has not done so. Today, legislators introduced a constitutional amendment to prevent the funds from being plundered again. It is being patroned by Sen. Stephen Martin (R- Chesterfield) and Del. Bob Marshall (R-Manassas).

Constitutional amendment #2: In 2007, the General Assembly passed a law to prevent Kelo-type eminent domain abuses in Virginia. However, a law can be overturned by a simple majority of state legislators, allowing local governments and state agencies to once again confiscate homes and businesses and sell them to developers to build more expensive homes or more profitable businesses to increase jobs or tax revenues.

Some legislators have publicly stated that they are willing to soften the new law if it poses too much of a burden to agencies and local governments. Therefore, a constitutional amendment is being introduced this session, which, if passed, would mean the voters, not just legislators, would have to vote to change the law. The amendment is being patroned by Sen. Mark Obenshain (R-Harrisonburg) and Del. Rob Bell (R-Charlottesville).

"These four pieces of legislation can fundamentally change the relationship between the state and the citizens, and return significant power to the people, where it rightfully belongs," said Taylor.

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Nation's Largest Taxpayer Group Launches

Nationwide "No Tax Hikers!" Campaign
at Tuesday Morning Group meeting

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RICHMOND, Virginia (September 9, 2008) – Public officials at all levels of government may be tempted to raise taxes to close budget deficits, but a new project by the 362,000-member National Taxpayers Union (NTU) is aiming to make these would-be tax boosters think twice before shaking down citizens for even more money. NTU's nationwide "No Tax Hikers" campaign, unveiled today in Richmond, is a grassroots effort to protest the tax-and-spend mentality in government and to remind politicians that there is a coordinated taxpayer lobby – one that votes, too.

"We're approaching an extremely important election this November – one in which we'll choose the officials who will control the public purse strings," NTU Vice President for Policy and Communications Pete Sepp said. "Many candidates would try to stuff that purse with more of our hard-earned dollars. It's time to let politicians at the federal, state, and local levels know that we've had enough – and we'll show it at the ballot box if necessary."

NTU created a web site, www.NoTaxHikers.org, where citizens can pledge not to vote for politicians who seek to raise taxes. In return, participants will receive a free bumper sticker declaring, "I Don't Vote for Tax Hikers." The pledge is intended to send a message to would-be tax hikers seeking office – one that will be plastered on vehicles across the country.

"We've seen politicians pledge not to raise taxes, and some even put it in writing. Those pledges are often broken when elected officials don't have the courage to cut budgets, and instead confiscate more of our income to pay for their irresponsible spending habits," said Brian Gottstein, vice president of Tertium Quids. "This is one pledge the politicians can't break, because they aren't making it -- we taxpayers are."

Tertium Quids, Virginia's largest limited government advocacy organization, hosted the Richmond news conference. Virginia was chosen as the launch state because of its distinct heritage associated with another taxpayer revolt that changed the world more than 230 years ago.

The "No Tax Hikers" initiative seeks to end any question of whether candidates are aware of America's preference for policymakers keen on allowing citizens to spend their own money, rather than insisting that government spend it for them.

"I'm glad to see something is being done to reinforce that the taxpayers are the sovereigns who hold control over government, and not the other way around," said Virginia Attorney General candidate, Sen. Ken Cuccinelli (R-Fairfax).

In addition to paid online advertising, NTU is getting word out nationwide through talk radio, the blogging community, and appearances at other public events.

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Conservative leaders blast the 2007
Virginia Transportation Plan

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RICHMOND (August 14, 2007) - Grassroots groups came together at the Virginia Capitol today to blast the General Assembly's 2007 transportation plan and the politicians who crafted and continue to support it.

In a news conference organized by Tertium Quids, Virginia's fiscally-conservative public policy advocacy organization, conservative grassroots leaders gathered together publicly for the first time since the transportation bill was passed and leveled heavy criticism at politicians for the plan, which they say is fundamentally flawed as transportation policy, constitutionally flawed as legislation, and "stunningly inept" as a political strategy going into November's elections.

Conservative leaders blast the 2007 Virginia Transportation Plan The Republican leadership in both the House and Senate - those who were architects and those who are continuing backers of the package - took the brunt of the criticism.

House Bill 3202, which authorized the plan, passed with bipartisan support in the General Assembly, but has received bipartisan disapproval at the grassroots level. An online petition has now collected more than 171,000 signatures of citizens who are demanding the repeal of exorbitant "abusive driver fees" and who pledge not to vote for "any Delegate or State Senator who voted for this bill, or for any Delegate or Senator who does not take action to repeal the sections of House Bill 3202 that inflict these exorbitant and unjust penalties."

Paul Jost, chairman of the Virginia Club for Growth However, more than just the high abusive driver fees component of the legislation came under fire at the news conference. The plan included tax and fee increases, unelected taxing authorities were created in Northern Virginia and the Tidewater region to raise revenues for transportation projects, and the Virginia Department of Transportation - already accused of wasting billions in taxpayer dollars - was given more money without measurable performance objectives for improving existing transportation problems.

"In a dishonest attempt to fool the voters of Virginia into thinking that they were not raising taxes, our legislators passed one of the worst pieces of legislation in Virginia's history. This contorted bill is a massive tax increase that will not pass constitutional muster," said Paul Jost, chairman of the Virginia Club for Growth. "It is time for new leadership in both houses of the General Assembly," he added.

Robert Dean, communications director of the Virginia Beach Taxpayer Alliance Also rejecting the tax increases contained within the plan, Robert Dean, the cofounder and communications director of the Virginia Beach Taxpayer Alliance, stated, "HB 3202 penalizes folks who buy or build a home close to work by levying a grantors tax - an additional 40 cents per $100 - which, on the sale of an average Virginia Beach home, will cost the seller $1,800."

Dean concluded, "In a legislature in which the majority party is completely unable to field a leadership team, the Republicans are reduced to relying on more spending and higher taxes as the universal answer to every problem."

Patrick McSweeney of the Richmond law firm McSweeney, Crump, Childress & Gould, P.C. explained the legal bases for the constitutional challenge to the transportation legislation that his firm filed in the Circuit Court of the City of Richmond.

Former Republican Party of Virginia chairman and attorney Patrick McSweeney explains to the press the legal bases for his firm's constitutional challenge to the 2007 transportation legislation. McSweeney outlined the claims in the lawsuit, stating that the legislation violated the provisions in the Virginia Constitution that (1) limit all statutes to a single subject, (2) prohibit the delegation of taxing power to unelected regional authorities, (3) prohibit the levying of impact fees that are not tied to the impact of a new development, (4) prohibit the issuance of either state or regional tax-supported bonds without voter approval, and (5) bar the assessment of civil redial fees thatDr. Ron Utt, senior research fellow with The Heritage Foundation are actually fines. His lawsuit claims the law is a violation of the due process, double jeopardy, and excessive fines clauses of the Virginia Constitution, and is a violation of the requirement that fines be paid into the state's Literary Fund (instead of being used for transportation, which was the plan's intent). Some of the claims are also based on the United States Constitution.

Criticizing the Commonwealth of Virginia's transportation policy for lacking any coherent goal or objective (ie. reducing congestion in high traffic regions), Dr. Ron Utt, a senior research fellow with The Heritage Foundation, asserted, "What we need is not more money for transportation in the commonwealth, but a performance-based Virginia Department of Transportation that utilizes quantitative measures of congestion relief and safety based upon the application of cost/benefit analysis to prioritize projects as well as to guide investment among alternative modes of travel."

John Taylor, president of Tertium Quids and host of the Tuesday Morning Group coalition John Taylor, organizer of the news conference and president of Tertium Quids and host of the Tuesday Morning Group coalition, reacted to comments made last week by a Republican leader in the House of Delegates who said that the citizens who are voicing opposition to the transportation plan "are the same anti-tax folks who oppose all progress."

"My goodness! In the last five years, the federal budget has grown by a trillion dollars. In the last decade, the Virginia budget has grown by 120 percent. In communities across the commonwealth, property taxes are growing by double-digit percentages. And yet, despite this explosion in spending and taxing, according to Virginia's politicians, the problem is that we do not have enough layers of government, we do not have enough layers of taxation, and we do not have enough unelected taxing authorities," responded Taylor.

"The 2007 transportation plan is fatally flawed for any number of reasons. It needs to be scrapped, and we need to start again with the understanding that our first transportation priority in Virginia is congestion relief."


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Commentary on the 2007 Transportation Plan


August 14, 2007

by John Taylor
president of Tertium Quids and host of the Tuesday Morning Group coalition
Given at the August 14th grassroots news conference in the Virginia Capitol.

"Despite the enormous growth of government and spending at all levels, our political leaders think the real problem we face in Virginia is that we don't have enough layers of government, we don't have enough layers of taxation, and it would be nice if the bureaucrats imposing the new taxes didn't have to stand for election." So far today, we have heard Pat McSweeney offer an analysis on the constitutionality of the Transportation Bill, and Dr. Ron Utt has offered a critique of HB 3202 from a policy perspective. In the next few minutes, I am going to analyze the legislation from the standpoint of its political implications.

Going into the last General Assembly session, the common wisdom in the GOP was that a transportation bill had to be passed to prevent Republicans from losing seats in Northern Virginia in the November election.

A deal had to get done. And a deal was done. So how has that worked out?

It is telling that as legislators campaign door-to-door this summer, the same legislators, who voted for the Transportation Bill only four months ago, are now trying to distance themselves from it - if they are not calling for a special session of the legislature to scrap House Bill 3202 in part, or entirely. That is because their constituents, or perhaps their former constituents, are verbally beating them around the head and ears for voting for the Transportation Bill.

It is also telling that a gentleman in Alexandria started an on-line petition, which to date has been signed by more than 171,000 people who pledge not to "vote for any Delegate or State Senator who voted for this bill [HB 3202], or for any Delegate or Senator who does not take action to repeal the sections of House Bill 3202 that inflict these exorbitant and unjust penalties."

However, what is most telling is the political tin ear of Republican leadership.

The Speaker, who was a prime mover behind this legislation, continues to stand by it even though it has badly divided his Party going into November's election.

Recently, another Republican leader in the House of Delegates dismissed opposition to the Transportation Bill by saying that the opponents of HB 3202 are the same anti-tax folks who oppose all progress.

My goodness. In the last five years the federal budget has grown by a trillion dollars; in the last decade the state budget has grown by 120%; and property taxes are growing by double-digit percentages in many locations around Virginia. And the people of Virginia are scratching their heads and wondering, "Now where is that, uh, progress?"

And yet, despite this enormous growth of government and spending at all levels, our political leaders think they have put their finger on the real problem that we face here in Virginia.

  • They think we don't have enough layers of government.

  • They think we don't have enough layers of taxation.

  • And they think it would be nice if the bureaucrats imposing the new taxes didn't have to stand for election.

So who is the winner, politically speaking, from this legislative fiasco? I would say Governor Kaine and the Democrats are the clear winners. Eight months ago, political observers were saying the Republicans could lose the Senate this year. But the majority of the Republicans in the Senate vote with the Democrats already. Thanks to the unpopularity of the Transportation Bill, the Democrats have the incentive and an opportunity to focus their campaign resources on House races.

Going into the next General Assembly session, it is conceivable that the Democrats could have the Governor's mansion; effective, or actual, control of the Senate; the House of Delegates by a narrow margin; and a Transportation Bill for which the Republicans took the blame and the fall.

The 2007 Transportation Bill is a dramatic policy failure; we believe it is unconstitutional on a number of grounds; and it reflects a political ineptness that is truly stunning in an election year.

The grassroots in general, and the Republican grassroots in particular, needs to ask their political leaders:

"What Were You Thinking?"

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The Freedom & Prosperity Agenda for 2007

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RICHMOND (January 11, 2007) - A news conference was held in the General Assembly Building on Thursday to discuss legislation that will be introduced in the current session of the legislature. The individual bills correspond to planks in the Freedom & Prosperity Agenda. John Taylor, president of Tertium Quids and host of the Tuesday Morning Group coalition, spoke first on the overall status of that Agenda.

"In the spring of 2005, we introduced an eleven-plank legislative platform to offer a conservative/free market vision to the citizens of Virginia," began Taylor. "In the 2006 session of the General Assembly two of the planks were addressed when Virginia's estate tax was eliminated as well as the annual prepayment of the sales and use tax," continued Taylor. "In the 2007 session, seven bills will be introduced that together will limit the growth in the Commonwealth of Virginia's budget, reduce taxes, and protect the private property of the citizens of Virginia from the rampant eminent domain abuses currently taking place across the state," he added.

John Taylor
John Taylor
president, Tertium Quids

Delegate Mark Cole discussed a bill he is sponsoring in the upcoming session that will complete the elimination of the car tax. "It is hard to make the argument that we do not have enough money in the budget to fully eliminate the car tax when the budget in Virginia has more than doubled since we originally passed the Personal Property Tax Relief Act of 1998. With $37 billion of new money in the biennial budget, I believe the taxpayers of Virginia deserve a little tax relief," stated Delegate Cole.

Mark Cole
Delegate Mark Cole


Echoing the tax relief theme, Delegate Jeff Frederick spoke to two bills he has submitted. First, he is proposing a constitutional amendment that would limit increases in the annual assessments of real property to one percent plus the rate of inflation, while limiting increases in the tax rate on real property to one percent per year. Second, Delegate Frederick is proposing the elimination of the Business Professional and Occupation Licensing (BPOL) tax that was originally put in place in Virginia to raise revenue to fight the War of 1812. As a gross receipts tax, this tax must be paid by a business even when it is not making a profit.

"A lot of times taxes that were put on the books for a specific reason, stay on the books when that reason no longer exists," stated Delegate Jack Reid. "The BPOL tax was put on the books to raise money to fight the War of 1812; in 2006 a federal excise tax was finally eliminated on telephones that was put there in 1898 to raise money to fight the Spanish-American War; and the federal withholding tax was originally called the "Victory Tax," put in place to raise revenue for World War II," added Delegate Reid. "That is why I am sponsoring a bill requiring a sunset date of no more than four years on all new taxes and tax increases," explained Delegate Reid.

Yet another effort at enforcing fiscal discipline, Delegate Bob Marshall is proposing a constitutional amendment in the current session that would limit the uses of revenues dedicated to the Commonwealth Transportation Fund, the Transportation Trust fund, and the Highway Maintenance and Operating Fun to transportation and related purposes.

Taylor wrapped up the morning news conference, "The budget of the Commonwealth of Virginia has grown by 118% in the last eight years; in the last five years the federal government has grown by 42%; and there are a number of population centers in Virginia today where property taxes are increasing by double-digit percentages annually." He concluded, "It should be obvious that this growth in government at all levels is neither sustainable, nor desirable. It is time our elected representatives started prioritizing the fiscal well-being of Virginia's families ahead of looking for new ways to enrich special interests and growing the public sector."  

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Fiscal conservatives begin to set the

fiscal agenda for the

General Assembly session in 2006!


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THE

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began its grassroots tour around Virginia on November 15, 2005 in Roanoke.
 

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State Senator Ken Cuccinelli, John Taylor (president of Tertium Quids), Delegate Ben Cline, and Al Aitken (chairman of Virginians Overtaxed on Residences) presented the Agenda to 75 activists and donors assembled at the N&W Passenger Station Lobby in the O. Winston Link Museum in Roanoke.

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As a result of the meeting, the activists are:

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1)  giving their friends brochures detailing the Agenda
2)  writing letters to the editors of their local newspapers in support of the Agenda
3)  writing their state Senators and Delegates to tell them to support the Agenda
4)  and donating money to help more people hear about the Agenda across Virginia.

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To set up a Freedom & Prosperity Agenda event in YOUR community,
email John Taylor at
JTaylor@TertiumQuids.org

 

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75 new supporters came out in Roanoke on November 15 to hear about the Freedom & Prosperity Agenda and what they could do to help get it passed in the General Assembly.

 

John Taylor,
president of Tertium Quids,
speaks to the group.

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Virginia conservatives launch
"Freedom & Prosperity Agenda"

RICHMOND (April 12, 2006) – Virginia's leading conservatives gathered in Richmond on April 12, 2006, to unveil the “Freedom and Prosperity Agenda,” an 11-point plan designed, in the words of Tertium Quids president John Taylor, “To protect the properties, incomes, and futures of Virginia's citizens.” 

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Taylor noted,  “It took 386 years for Virginia to reach a $30 billion biennial budget. It only took the last 10 years to add another $30 billion.  The Freedom and Prosperity Agenda gives conservatives in the General Assembly and throughout the Commonwealth a game plan to restore the balance between the people and their government.” 

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Sen. Ken Cuccinelli, one of the Agenda's supporters, said, "We've laid out the markers with this Agenda. A lot of these planks are about trust – restoring public trust in government and holding the government accountable for the promises it makes. We know not every part of the Agenda will be passed in the next session.  But we will prevail in the end." 

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Del. Scott Lingamfelter added, “I don't think it's going to be difficult to get a great deal of support in the House for these issues when they come up. I think the challenge will come from other quarters of the government.  But I think these issues are ripening, and I also think we'll see these issues gain more support in the months ahead.” 

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Senator Ken Cuccinelli and Delegate Scott Lingamfelter address the individual planks of the F & P Agenda

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The Freedom and Prosperity Agenda focuses on four main areas – taxes and spending, property rights, education reform, and transportation.  The Agenda's planks are as follows: 

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  • Eliminate the War of 1812 tax (BPOL)

  • Taxpayer's Bill of Rights (TABOR)

  • Eliminate the Death tax

  • Eliminate the prepayment of the Sales and Use tax

  • Redefine and limit the public uses for which private property may be confiscated

  • Constitutional Amendment to base real estate taxes on the acquisition value of the property

  • Parental choice in education

  • Protect the Transportation Trust Fund with a Constitutional Amendment

  • Proposals for new taxes must contain sunset provisions

  • Freedom and Fiscal Accountability Act for Virginia's Public Colleges and Universities

  • Eliminate the Car tax

     



Delegate Lingamfelter responds to a question from the media

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Click here for the full details of the Freedom & Prosperity Agenda.

 


Tertium Quids
282 Bald Rock Road • Verona, Virginia • 24482
(540) 248-1899 •
JTaylor@TertiumQuids.org