August 23, 2006
It is hardly news that many Democrats just cannot contain their bitter, hateful feelings of having lost most of the recent elections, but every once in a while one of them says or does something that goes way over the line. Steve Kijak follows up with his first-hand experience from the Augusta County Fair last week. A local Democrat Party volunteer walked over and told Rhonda Winfield, the mother of Marine Lance Cpl. Jason Redifer who died in Iraq last year, "Jim Webb is more of an American patriot than this man ever was." It is hard to imagine anything more disgusting than breaking the heart of the mother of a fallen war hero by insulting the memory of her son. I just hope Mr. Webb disavows such ugly sentiments. Unfortunately, according to Steve, the Waynesboro News Virginian has not covered both sides of this story, leaving many of its readers with a false impression of the incident.
Speaking of partisan acrimony, I view our new governor with a wary eye, but upon the occasion of his inauguration in January I made a gesture of public spiritedness: "Let's give bipartisanship another try!" Alas, my feeble hopes for a fresh, constructive start in Richmond proved in vain. Most recently, in a speech to the AFL-CIO convention in Vienna (Virginia), Gov. Kaine boasted that "progressive" (leftist) forces are gaining strength, and that his party has a good chance to regain control of both chambers in next year's election. The new governor clearly relishes his power and is not shy about using it to tweak the Republicans in the state legislature. So much for the centrist approach of Mark Warner! Thus, it was a pleasant surprise that today's News Leader called attention to Gov. Kaine's unfortunate turn toward a more partisan approach to governing, and the underlying tone of "rancor" he perpetuates.