Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Ken Cuccinelli: The Wannabe Governor of Virginia

by Sunnyjane

Yo, Cooch! Virginia has no interest in your brand of liberty

It is frightening that the concepts of liberty and freedom to politicians of the far-right-wing variety are delivered to Americans as repressive and regressive legislation.  And yet, like a Confederate soldier bobble-head doll on the dashboard of a white-trash Tea Partier's pickup, their authoritarian followers bob their fat gray heads up and down and continue to revere and support them to the nth degree.

The Democrats giveth and the Tea Party Republicans taketh away.  And so it will be in the Commonwealth of Virginia if the Old Dominion's voters stay away from the polls on November 5th and Ken Cuccinelli becomes our governor.  Our beautiful dogwood trees will weep.

Virginia Women's Worst Nightmare

If Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli had his way, he'd shove a transvaginal probe so far up a woman's vagina that it would tickle her tonsils.  And then, in accordance with the ALEC pro-life bill that is making the rounds of all the GOP governors in the country, he'd try to convince her it was because he was so concerned about her health.

That the transvaginal probe piece of this regressive bill didn't make it into the final legislation has not discouraged Cuccinelli from continuing his battle to make a woman's right to choose what is best for her own health more difficult to impossible.  He badgered the wusses at the Virginia Department of Health into passing a set of abortion clinic building requirements that will most likely shut down most of the centers in the state.  And, naturally, he's against all forms of conception control that would actually reduce the need for abortions. 

While supporting legislation that would defund Planned Parenthood of Virginia, Cuccinelli has made his position very clear.  In his own words, he has said that the ultimate goal is to make abortion disappear in America and make people want it that way.  Cooch also is a strong believer in a personhood bill because it's a scientific reality that life begins at conception.  

Further proof that Ken Cuccinelli cares nothing about women is that fact that he was one of only three state attorneys general in the U.S. who refused to support the Violence Against Women Act -- the other two were Alabama and Alaska.  When questioned as to why he refused to support VAWA, his staff responded with something that sounded an awful lot like the Wasilla Wingnut's word salad:  We have a strict policy of not signing onto any letters of support for federal bills that can still be amended to something that the commonwealth ultimately wouldn't support.  Previously, bills have been amended against the commonwealth's wishes, yet our original support was used to help pass the very legislation we were opposed to.  

When he was asked recently by U.S. News how he planned to appeal to the women of Virginia, Cooch actually had the guts to say, I’m a person who appeals to women with a variety of issues ... I’ve worked to improve mental health and worked to help the mentally ill for over a decade and a half, including when I was in the legislature. Women’s issues are everything women care about. And I have an awful lot of issues that I appeal to women on, just as a natural course.  Huh?  From this, are Virginians to assume that all women in the state have mental problems?

I'll  show you a mental problem:

So against women is the current Attorney General that the Seal of Virginia makes him highly uncomfortable.  I guess it's a little too, um, titillating, eh?  Forget that it's classic art depicting Virtue over Tyranny.  Cooch thought it would be a good idea to cover that bare breast, like so...      

...with a freaking breastplate, for crying out loud!  After he was roundly ridiculed for this stupid act, he tried to pass it off as having all been a joke.  Riiiight.   That's exactly why a supporting group had all these dandy lapel buttons made up to Cooch's precise specifications.

Well, There's Science and Then There's Not Science

Alert readers will remember that upthread Cuccinelli declared that it's a scientific reality that life begins at conception.  Turns out that Cooch likes his belief in science to be somewhat, um, flexible.  As an alumnus of the University of Virginia, one would think this carpetbagger from New Jersey (no insult to New Jersey intended) would have learned that UVA, like all good institutions of higher learning, fiercely protects its professors' unfettered freedom to conduct study and research.

Maybe he had problems with the liberal environment and diverse culture at Mr. Jefferson's University -- I dunno -- but he has attacked UVA on two different issues, almost simultaneously.   Shortly after he was sworn into office, he went after Prof. Michael Mann's emails with climate researchers at the University of East Anglia (UK) that had been hacked and made public during his research on how dirty fuel affected climate change.  Briefly, the climate-science-denying Cooch wanted those emails because they were said to verify that Mann had skewed the research.  The Attorney General demanded documentation from the University of Virginia, which told him to go pound sand.  The National Science Foundation did a detailed investigation and exonerated the professor of charges of scientific misconduct.  

So Cuccinelli went to court and here's what happened: Cuccinelli’s demand sparked widespread academic condemnation and was denied in August 2010 by a judge for failure to state sufficient cause. Cuccinelli tried to re-open his case by issuing a revised subpoena and appealed the case to the Virginia Supreme Court. The case was defended by UVA, and the court ruled that Cuccinelli did not have the authority to make these demands. The decision, seen as supporting academic freedom, was welcomed by the Union of Concerned Scientists. 
Why would Ken Cuccinelli -- who is such a believer in science when in involves contraception -- try to discredit scientific research on how dirty fuels cause disastrous climate change?  He has to, you see, because he's a Koch-sucking puppet and they've been financing his political campaigns, including to the tune of $2 million for his 2013 gubernatorial campaign.  Makes sense now, doesn't it?

Cuccinelli sent a letter to UVA stating that it could not have a policy that prohibited discrimination against students, faculty, and employees based on sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or like classification… because such a ban did not comply with state law and public policy.  In other words, Discriminate against gays and lesbians if you want to!   Not so fast, said the ACLU of Virginia, which sent their own letter to all colleges and universities in the Commonwealth telling them to ignore the Attorney General and stating, Regardless of state law or policy, not only should universities prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, but they are required to do so under the U.S. Constitution.  Take THAT, Cooch!

But the AG wasn't finished messing around with what Virginians do in their bedrooms with another consenting adult.  So obsessed with sex is this man that he's tried several times to get a ruling that would uphold Virginia's moldering anti-sodomy law.  After losing two appeals -- and after the Supreme Court ruled the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional -- perhaps it's the last we've heard of that

Or, perhaps the ALEC bill-mill can come up with anti-gay legislation similar to the one Zimbabwe's president is proposing: If you take men and lock them in a house for five years and tell them to come up with two children and they fail to do that, then we will chop off their heads.  That solution would suit Cooch very well, I'll wager.
A Quick Look at Other Cooch Kookiness 

Why is the Attorney General of Virginia one of Orly Taitz's Friends?
Has Cuccinelli advised Orly Taitz in her quest to prove that Barack Obama is not a U.S. citizen and, therefore, not legally the President?  In my opinion, it's highly likely, based on the response he gave an attendee at one of his 2009 campaign stops.  When he was asked, What can we do about Obama and the birth certificate thing?, Cooch responded with a thorough answer that included the exact legal criteria that would have to be met, ...under Rule 11, Federal Rule 11, we gotta have proof of it.  He concluded with:  ...someone is going to have to come forward with nailed down testimony that he was born in place B, wherever that is. You know, the speculation is Kenya. And that doesn't seem beyond the realm of possibility.

What?!  Obamacare is Constitutional?
After the Affordable Healthcare Act became law in 2010, Ken Cuccinelli went on a campaign to kill it in the state of Virginia.  He was damn proud to become the state attorney general who was going to destroy the dreaded Obamacare!  Instead, however, he got his ass kicked when the appeals court ruled that he didn't have a legal right to sue over the law's requirement that most people buy insurance.  The court vacated a lower court’s ruling in the case and instructed the lower court to dismiss the suit.  Dontcha just hate it when that happens?  Heh.

Adding insult to injury, of course, was the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in July 2012 declaring that the Act was Constitutional.

So How's the Campaign Goin' for Ya There, Cooch?

You're really gonna vote for  fool like me?  Give me some money!

Cuccinelli has spent his entire term as Attorney General trying to legislate Virginians' morals, take away their social and entitlement programs, and restrict their right to vote.  The good news is, liberals and moderates are not the only ones who are fed up with his Gestapo tactics on these issues instead of focusing on jobs, energy, and Virginia's woebegone infrastructure.

Republican business leaders have become exasperated with Cooch's lack of attention to the real issues just four months before the election, and are venting their frustration both privately and publicly. One historically large Republican donor has already contributed $25,000 to Cuccinelli's opponent, Democrat Terry McAuliffe, summing up the feelings of many business leaders: Mr. Cuccinelli’s very hard stance on some of the social issues is a concern for me.  I believe personally in a woman’s right to choose, but I also think from an economic development standpoint, we’re trying to attract businesses from other areas of the country, and we’re telling women that we’re going to regulate the way that they run their life? I just don’t think we can be exclusionary when it comes to women and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered individuals.

The Democratic Ticket for 2013

Terry McAuliffe, Ralph Northam, and Mark Herring are running for Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney General, respectively.  The most important thing to know about this team is that they are the exact opposite of the Republican Ticket!

Speaking of which...


 Ken Cuccinelli, E. W. Jackson, and Mark Obenshein -- the most socially far-right extremist ticket in the history of the Commonwealth

These restrictive, extremist Republican agendas are not peculiar to Virginia, of course; it is happening nationwide.  Republican candidates for governor have proven that they cannot be trusted -- for example, Gov. Pat McGrory of North Carolina who promised he would not sign new abortion legislation and then signed the most restrictive pro-life bill in the country.

The only solution is to keep these people OUT of politics.  It's mandatory that we do so.

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