Category Archives: Virginia Politics

Republican Mike Makee Will Face Democrat Jennifer Foy for Open HD-02 Seat

Mike Makee (pronounced Mackie) served his country as a U.S. Naval commander during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. Now he is prepared to serve his Commonwealth in the General Assembly, stepping in to run for the open House of Delegates Second District seat left vacant by retiring Republican Delegate Mark Dudenhefer.

House District 2 covers parts of Prince William and Stafford counties. In November the District carried Hillary Clinton with 56 percent to Donald Trump’s 39 percent.

A U.S. Navy veteran, Makee, 47, of Stafford, retired in 2012 after 20 years of service, graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis and earning a Master’s degree from the Naval Postgraduate School. Currently a government contractor specializing in ballistic missile defense, he serves in the community on the Stafford County Utilities Commission representing the Rock Hill District, and is treasurer of the Stafford County Republican Committee.

House Speaker William Howell, while announcing that a new candidate had been named, noted that Makee “believes in the ideas and values that House Republicans have championed over the last 15 years – creating good jobs, responsibly balancing budgets and solving Virginia’s toughest challenges.”

Republicans had until August 18 to find someone to run after the previous candidate, Laquan Austion, withdrew when questions arose after it was discovered he had not completed the educational degrees listed on his resume.

“I want to use my leadership skills, experience in the Navy and understanding of our community to grow and strengthen our economy, work to solve our transportation problems, and fight for a better future for everyone in Northern Virginia,” Makee said of his decision. He added, “I look forward to campaigning to every voter in every corner of the district and earning the support of my neighbors and our community.”

Makee and his wife are the parents of six children, according to Potomac Local. This is his first run for public office.

Makee will face off against Democrat Jennifer Carroll Foy, a VMI graduate who works as a public defender and adjunct professor at Northern Virginia Community College. She and her husband live in Woodbridge.

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John Adams for AG Endorsed by Va Police Benevolent Association

John and Lisa Adams. Photo by Lynn R. Mitchell.

On Tuesday the Virginia Police Benevolent Association (PBA) endorsed John Adams, the Republican candidate for Attorney General.

In 2013 they endorsed current Attorney General Mark Herring, a Democrat, who is running for reelection against Adams.

Saying “public safety will be my top priority as attorney general,” Adams accepted the endorsement of the organization composed of more than 4,700 law enforcement officers employed by federal, state, county, and municipal governments

Writing on Facebook, Adams noted:

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Racist, Anti-Semitic Website Kicked to the Curb By Go Daddy

The alt-right, racist, anti-Semitic website Storm Front has been kicked to the curb by Go Daddy. Google has refused to accept them as they look for a host.

Out of curiosity, I went to the website to check out the hate behind Charlottesville’s white nationalist march over the weekend that left three dead and dozens injured. Across the top of the sit, under the name, it proclaimed, “Summer Of Hate Edition.” That pretty much said it all.

I should have stopped then but I dug deeper.

What I found were the “featured” stories on the main page:

  • “Richard Spender’s Press Conference On Charlottesville”
  • Trump Finally Gives Half-Assed Charlottesville Statement to Whining Jew Media
  • Trump Attacks Histrionic Black Bastard Who Resigned From Council Over Alleged Misstatement

As I scrolled down the page, these disgusting titles were listed under the title “Jewish Problem:”

  • Kikes Pressing Trump to Condemn Innocent Nazis Who were Attacked by Terrorist Cops and Leftist Terrorists
  • Starbucks Managers Interview Somalis with Latent Tuberculosis for Jobs as Part of Jewish Chairman’s Plan to Destroy America
  • London: Inbred Jewish Tapir Stabs Two People in Kike Neighborhood

I’m not around people who talk like that so it was a little shocking.

Perhaps the most disgusting front page article was this: “Heather Heyer: Woman Killed in Road Rage Incident was a Fat, Childless 32-Year-Old Slut.” For those unfamiliar with the name, this is the young woman killed Saturday when a speeding car plowed into a large crowd during the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville.

For those having difficult believing such hate is around us, here are the stories as proof. On top of that, they carry the David Duke radio show including the August 10 show that was titled, “The David Duke Show: A Call for Every True White Man to Stand Up in Charlottesville.”

I haven’t included any links. That’s intentional.

There’s more but that gives an idea of just one of the many hate-filled websites that were behind the march in Charlottesville … the mindset and the propaganda.

It’s disgusting. Pardon me while I go wash my hands.

Charlottesville Judge Sides With Alt-Right, Violence Breaks Out Friday Night

A federal judge sided with alt-right organizers and upheld their right to meet Saturday in Emancipation Park, formerly Lee Park, where the Robert E. Lee statue is located that city council wants to remove.

Bearing Drift contributor Rick Sincere wrote Thursday about the last-minute lawsuit filed by the ACLU of Virginia and the Rutherford Institute on behalf of Jason Kessler, alt-right organizer of the event, after the city of Charlottesville revoked the permit for Emancipation Park and moved it to McIntire Park about a mile away. McIntire Park is much larger than Emancipation Park and, with thousands of protesters expected, the city is understandably concerned.

Friday night by 10:00 reports were coming from observers in Charlottesville that hundreds of alt-right supporters were already marching with torches through the streets and surrounding the newly renovated Rotunda on the University of Virginia campus where a brawl broke out between white supremacists and those opposing them.

NBC-12 will have coverage. Be safe, Cville.

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Where Are the GOP Gubernatorial Candidates This Weekend?

The GOP’s candidates are campaigning around Virginia this weekend. Where can you find them?

Ed Gillespie, candidate for Governor

Friday:  Wytheville, Bristol
Saturday:  Smyth, Pulaski, Floyd, Patrick, and Carroll Counties.

Galax — Fiddler’s Convention and Poor Man’s Dinner


Jill Vogel, candidate for Lieutenant Governor

Not available.



John Adams, candidate for Attorney General

1:30 – Newport Agricultural Festival (434 Blue Grass Trail, Newport)
6:00 – Poor Man’s Dinner and Fiddler’s Convention in Galax
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Charlottesville Prepares For Alt-Right Crowds, Announces Street Closings

Street closings that will begin late Friday afternoon and last all Saturday have been announced by the Charlottesville Police Department as they prepare for what is being described as “largest hate-gathering of its kind in decades in the United States,” according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.

A change in venue was met with protests from alt-right leaders who have filed a complain after their rally location was changed from Emancipation Park, former Lee Park, where a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee is slated for removal by Charlottesville City Council.

Bearing Drift’s Rick Sincere reported on the latest:

An article published on Bearing Drift is among the exhibits attached to a complaint filed in federal court late today by the ACLU of Virginia and the Rutherford Institute, calling on the City of Charlottesville to reverse its decision to revoke a permit granted to alt-right activist Jason Kessler to hold a rally in what was until recently called Lee Park, now known as Emancipation Park.

Billed as the “Unite the Right” rally, Newsweek reported on those planning to attend:

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Poll Shows GOP Needs to Catch Up In Gov, LG, AG Races

It’s early in the race. The numbers are skewed. We haven’t passed Labor Day, the traditional beginning of the fall election season. There’s still plenty of time before the November 7, 2017, election day.

Those are the reasons I can toss out to explain why Virginia Republicans are trailing Democrats for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General in the latest Virginia Commonwealth University Office of Public Policy Outreach-L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs poll. The poll also covered other areas of the 2017 election.

Here is the rundown of the numbers among likely voters.


  • Ralph Northam (D)  42 percent
  • Ed Gillespie (R)  37 percent
  • Cliff Hyra (L)  6 percent
  • Undecided  13 percent

Lieutenant Governor:

  • Justin Fairfax (D)  43 percent
  • Jill Vogel (R)  38 percent
  • Undecided  15 percent

Attorney General:

  • Mark Herring (D)  45 percent
  • John Adams (R)  39 percent
  • Undecided  15 percent

For full results and to dig into the cross-tabs, see the poll results here.

Polls Show Northam Leading in Virginia Gubernatorial Race

2017 Virginia Gubernatorial Debate with Democrat Ralph Northam, Republican Ed Gillespie, and moderator Judy Woodruff (PBS NewsHour). Photo by Matt Hall.

The latest Virginia statewide poll on the gubernatorial race came out Tuesday (see Northam leads Gillespie by 6 points in new poll, Trump’s Va. approval at 36 percent).

As I studied over it trying to decide how to pass it along (not sugar coat or spin but, rather, lay the facts out there), former Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling posted his thoughts on Facebook that mirrored my own. I share them here:

“This is the second poll this week to give LG Ralph Northam an early lead over Republican Ed Gillespie. An earlier poll showed the candidates tied. We will see a plethora of these polls in coming weeks. My best advice is to ignore them. They haven’t been terribly reliable in recent years.

“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – Gillespie will win big ‘downstate’ and the outcome of the election will depend on Northam’s ability to turn out the traditional Democratic vote in Northern Virginia and urban centers.

“At the end of the day, unless one candidate makes a big mistake, it will likely be a 2-3 point race, one way or the other. That’s been the trend in these top of the ticket statewide races for the past decade or so. The only blow out was in 2009 when Bob McDonnell defeated Creigh Deeds by a wide margin. All of the other races have been very close, and this one will likely be close as well.”

It is difficult to put a lot of faith in polls these days but if a trend is developing, it will be worth paying attention to in the months ahead. However, it is still early and we haven’t even crossed the traditional Labor Day beginning of the campaign season. Stay tuned….


Cross-posted at Bearing Drift

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Failure to Repeal Obamacare Results in Lawsuit in Virginia Against RNC, RPV, Blackwell, Dunbar, Whitbeck

Claiming that the GOP “has been engaged in a pattern of Racketeering which involves massive fraud perpetrated on Republican voters and contributors as well as some Independents and Democrats,” Virginia Beach attorney Bob Heghmann, 70, has filed a lawsuit against the Republican National Committee, Republican Party of Virginia, National Committeeman Morton Blackwell, National Committeewoman Cynthia Dunbar, and RPV Chairman John Whitbeck.

The 24-page lawsuit (see copy here) is dated August 3.

It appears Mr. Heghmann is angry that the GOP was unable to overturn Obamacare and claims GOP representatives dangled the repeal as a means to fundraise while supposedly knowing a repeal and replace law would never be passed.

In the lawsuit it notes that “[t]his commitment to Repeal and Replace Obamacare was stated not only in campaign and fund raising literature but in the Republican Party Platform such as the one adopted at the Republican Party Convention in 2016 which clearly stated, “We agree with the four dissenting judges ofthe Supreme Court: “In our view, the entire Act before us is invalid in its entirety.” It must be removed and replaced with an approach based on genuine competition, patient choice, excellent care, wellness, and timely access to treatment. To that end, a Republican president, on the first day in office, will use legitimate waiver authority under the law to halt its advance and then, with the unanimous support ofCongressional Republicans, will sign its repeal.” 2016 Republican Party Platform at p. 36.”

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UVa’s Bob Gibson to Moderate Lieutenant Governor Debate With Vogel, Fairfax

Virginia Lieutenant Governor candidates Jill Holtzman Vogel and Justin Fairfax are set to participate in a Lieutenant Governor debate on Wednesday, August 9, at Piedmont Virginia Community College.

Bob Gibson of the University of Virginia’s Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service will moderate the debate that is sponsored by the Senior Statesmen of Virginia and PVCC. The event is open to the public, and will include questions submitted by the audience.

Republican Vogel, 46, and Democrat Fairfax, 38, won their respective party primaries in June. Vogel would be Virginia’s first woman to hold the position. Fairfax would be the second African American lieutenant governor, following Democrat Doug Wilder who won in 1986 and then went on to become Virginia’s first African American governor in 1990.  Both Vogel and Fairfax are attorneys.

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Monmouth Poll: Gillespie, Northam tied in Virginia Governor Race

In the first poll published since Saturday’s Virginia Gubernatorial Debate, Monmouth University Poll has a tied race between Republican Ed Gillespie and Democrat Ralph Northam. The telephone poll was conducted from July 20-23, 2017, with Virginia voters most likely to participate in the next election.

  • Ed Gillespie (R) 44%
  • Ralph Northam (D) 44 %
  • Cliff Hydra (L) 3%
  • Undecided 8%

Currently Gillespie has 91 percent Republican support while Northam has 88 percent Democratic support. Among Independents, Gillespie has 42 percent support to 38 percent for Northam.
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‘Burgers with Bill’ … Celebrating Bolling’s 60th Birthday

They are two classy people. Former Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling and Jean Ann Bolling welcomed and thanked everyone for attending “Burgers With Bill” to celebrate his 60th birthday. Many thanks for bringing together the large crowd of Republican friends for an evening of fellowship, laughter, and happy memories.

My Bill and Missy’s Shaun.

Trixie and Bill.

Trixie, Donald Williams, Nancy Williams

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‘Dear Glenn.’ An Open Letter to Glenn Davis

Dear Glenn,

Thank you!

For the past year you traveled the Commonwealth and shared your generosity with those around you.

You shared your ready availability and willingness to talk with prospective supporters …

… as well as your policy, leadership, and business sense with a plan and an eye to the future.

For all that and so much more, thank you.

And thank you for your gracious concession and call for party unity. You, Sir, are a class act.

Rest up because we’re going to need your pragmatic common sense somewhere down the political road. Take Chelle on a long vacation. Sleep past 4:00 am.

And when you’re in my part of the Valley please be sure to stop by so we can again break bread together and talk about life, politics, and the world around us.

This door may have closed … but somewhere there’s a window waiting for you to dive through it! The best, as they say, is yet to come….


~Lynn Mitchell

Photo by Lynn R. Mitchell

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How Did Bearing Drift Do With Primary Predictions?

It’s the morning after the night before so it’s time to turn our bleary eyes to the 2017 Primary predictions made by some of Bearing Drift’s writers.  How did we do? First, let’s look at the final results as provided by the State Board of Elections.

GOVERNOR – Republican

Edward W. “Ed” Gillespie 160,039 43.71%
Corey A. Stewart 155,716 42.53%
Frank W. Wagner 50,345 13.75%

LT. GOVERNOR – Republican

Bryce E. Reeves 142,141 40.02%
Glenn R. Davis, Jr. 61,157 17.22%
Jill H. Vogel 151,849 42.76%

GOVERNOR – Democrat

Ralph S. Northam 303,429 55.90%
Tom S. Perriello 239,383 44.10%

LT. GOVERNOR – Democrat

Justin E. Fairfax 252,319 49.14%
Gene J. Rossi 60,008 11.69%
Susan S. Platt 201,154 39.17%

The surprise of the night was the tight race between Republicans Ed Gillespie and Corey Stewart, a nail-biter that went down to the wire before it was called for Gillespie.

The other tight race was between Republicans Jill Vogel and Bryce Reeves who battled for LG until Vogel pulled ahead. While many voters seemed to wrangle over the LG decision of who to vote for, the undecideds did not break for Glenn Davis as some had expected.

With those results in mind, let’s look at what our writers predicted.

Brian Schoeneman: 100%. Without giving exact percentages, he nailed it.

Jim Hoeft: 25%. His one correct prediction was Fairfax but he missed with Wagner, Perriello, and Davis, thinking outside the box with a couple of those.

Matt Hall: 100%. Matt’s percentages were off but his choices were on the money.

Rick Sincere: 75%. His prediction that Stewart would get less than 10 percent, we now know, was a miscalculation.

Shaun Kenney: 100%. His percentages were way off for Gillespie and Vogel but he chose the correct winners for each office.

Lynn Mitchell: 50% for the statewide races. Of the three local races, I had two correct (Emily Brewer and Bethany Harrison). Ben Dessart’s loss was a surprise since it seemed his chances were higher than Emily’s, mainly because she was going up against a local supervisor.

All in all, not bad for the Bearing Drift crew.

2017 Virginia Primary Day Open Thread at Bearing Drift

I’m busy at Bearing Drift today helping to keep the open thread updated so come on over and see what’s going on around the Commonwealth (see Primary Day Open Thread).

You may also be interested in Election Eve late-night predictions from some of our Bearing Drift writers (see 2017 Primary Predictions from Bearing Drift’s Political Junkies).

Meanwhile, don’t forget to vote. This year is Governor and Lieutenant Governor plus all 100 House of Delegates seats, and in some areas there are local races (see Tuesday Primary … Virginians to Vote for State, Local Candidates).

Widespread coverage will be available tonight from news outlets, VPAP, and the Board of Elections website.

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