Tag Archives: Rob Wittman

Memories before the dreaded but necessary Vietnam commemoration

Vietnam WallBy Daniel P. Cortez

In compliance with federal mandates, ceremonies commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War will be held throughout Virginia this year and next.

Like millions who have waited decades for America to right the wrongs of a conflicted society that dishonored military men and women, I simply followed the military directives of the commander-in-chief. I should feel proud, but such pride carries a painfully cognitive price.

A scared but proficiently trained Marine lance corporal, I arrived in Da Nang, Vietnam, one day after my 19th birthday in 1970. Landing in a combat zone was accentuated as Marines, armed for battle, were directed to deplane first.

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Moss Neck Manor hosts Supervisor Jeff Sili’s re-election Hunt Breakfast

Susan Sili 6By Susan Sili
Guest Post

The estate where General Thomas Jonathan Jackson spent the winter of 1862 after the Battle of Fredericksburg was the venue for Sili for Superivsor‘s first fundraiser of the year on Saturday, April 11, 2015. On the menu were Eggs Chassuer, Sausages, Roast Beef, Virginia Ham, artisan breads and cheeses and crumpets, fresh fruits, and Bread Pudding with Hard Sauce. Guests at the pre-reception enjoyed the fruit tower and Mimosa and Bloody Marys before the hunt.

Thank you to all the many, many people who came out to support Jeff and make the day such a success especially my caterer Kathy Heidenescher of KJo’s to Go. Also a tremendous thank you to my period band, The Virginia Serenaders.

Susan Sili 3Many thanks to the Commonwealth Hunt Club from King George for the wonderful narrative demonstration of the tradition of Virginia Foxhunting, Hunt Master and the staff, and the precious and handsome hounds.

Susan Sili 12We were truly honored to have our friend and Virginia statesman with us today, the Honorable George Allen, who came to Caroline to support Jeff. He noted, “A smart friend and gentleman of integrity who leads in bringing accountability and not higher taxes in Caroline County: Supervisor Jeff Sili hosted a wonderful brunch at the historic Moss Neck Manor. It was a perfectly beautiful morning in Virginia country helping Jeff and his wife Susan in their re-election campaign to continue to improve opportunities for all the people of Caroline County.”

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Jeff Sili and friends at his Caroline County Hunt Breakfast

Jeff Sili 1 by Cortez

Congressman Rob Wittman, Caroline Supervisor Jeff Sili, Governor George Allen, Daniel Cortez

By Daniel Cortez

What a spectacular event this morning at the fundraiser for one of Virginia’s finest elected supervisors, my good friend Jeff Sili of Caroline County, at Moss Neck Manor. A who’s who of distinguished political officials and our leading citizens were all there to support Sili. Headlining the event put together by the remarkable Susan Sili was Virginia’s finest former Republican Governor and Senator George Allen, and the veterans’ best friend, Congressman Rob Wittman. Congratulations to the Silis for a first class event. The hunt demonstration and breakfast was superb.

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Positive and questionable political actions

By Daniel P. Cortez

With the last hard snow behind us … fingers crossed … incumbents and their ambitious political opponents pound the pavement seeking support.  Locally nervous nellies use blog or Facebook posts to sway voters and genuine media who scan the web for the pulse of our community.

Elitist political establishment types using large cash reserves from dubious supporters for direct mail propaganda befuddle marginally informed citizens during this off-year election.  In Stafford County, House Speaker Delegate Bill Howell clearly worried about challenger former Supervisor Susan Stimpson has been flooding mailboxes with expensive reelection mailers.  Amusing is his repeated, questionable General Assembly claim of, “A balanced budget that does not raise taxes.”

Stafford officials may look at this statement and chortle as they recently voted to approve 16 additional firefighters through a grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency.  Supervisor Bob Thomas indicated his concern over the actions future fiscal impact citing a “million dollar cliff” being examined. Firefighting officials state the desire for the temporary positions to be full time after the two year grant period expires.

Fiscally the majority of the Commonwealth’s blue collar workers would be hard-pressed to say their taxes have gone down, period, as they struggle to make ends meet. Funny how legislators won’t discuss user fees which are a “tax” that keeps going up.  Our well-heeled politicians don’t have that problem as a general rule.

And little help came from Howell and the General Assembly directly with both sides bragging of “better days are here” as the majority of independent voters shake our heads.  And as the region’s senior delegate and Speaker, he remains at war with Governor Terry McAuliffe, opposing federal aid providing help to Virginia’s large medically uninsured minority and immigrant community.

Hypocritical how Howell remains vociferous against accepting federal aid for our mostly minority and indigent community, but remains silent over a federal grant taken from Virginia’s share of taxable income for firefighters. Increased Stafford taxation is clearly just around the bend, thanks to Howell’s lack of support in an effort to pad an election year flyer.

Stimpson also boasts of sessions without raising taxes and her service to our community, but in fairness where is the verifiable Christian charity shown by both candidates to our oppressed?

Is it wrong to want specificity regarding Howell’s Dominion Leadership Trust fund and his fiscal compassion? Since 2002, 14 million dollars has been donated by taxpayers and businesses to the fund, according to the Virginia Public Access Project.  How much has gone directly to help the indigent or the badly needed minority voter in the region by Howell in scholarships, grants, or actions?  Still waiting for his campaign to provide such compassionate information. Not hard to understand why the Howell campaign is not forthcoming. Or will the expected response be, “This money is exclusively for candidates.”  How compassionate of Howell.

So much for the negative.  For those who relish civil war sites and want to attend a function for a genuine servant of the people, there’s a very positive event for Supervisor Jeff Sili of Caroline County on April 11. Sili, the very popular veteran supervisor, is kicking off his reelection campaign at Moss Neck Manor beginning at 9 a.m.

Historians will acknowledge Moss Neck with towering trees, a rolling landscape, and Greek revival antebellum charm as the estate where General Thomas J. Jackson spent the winter of 1862 after the Battle of Fredericksburg.  During this event the Commonwealth Hunt from King George will bring horses and hounds for an early morning demonstration of the traditions of Virginia hunting and individual property rights.  Ever popular former Virginia Governor George Allen and Congressman Rob Wittman headline the event in support of Sili. Personally, I’m looking forward to the “Hunt Breakfast.”

Sili, one the regions most requested key note speakers for Veterans and Memorial Day programs, is widely embraced by the minority community.  His involvements from Wounded Warrior fishing, to contributing time and money with DIVAS (Diverse Individuals Valuing Self and Another) and Caroline’s Promise, which are youth mentoring programs, remain noteworthy.  His town hall meetings are standing room only with a racial diversity seldom seen by his Republican colleagues.

When it comes to outreach, Sili and wife Susan set an example for all area politicians by faithfully supporting multicultural events and attending church regularly with the African American community at Mt. Zion Church in lower Caroline.  He’s the rare politician who, during the recent hard snow, mounted his tractor and plowed too many neighbors driveways to count.  Noted beekeepers, they recently donated hundreds of dollars of home grown honey from Sili’s well-cultivated hives to support the Ruritans.

The independent voter clearly can see the value of supporting in-touch working class local politicians over contentious elitists who largely ignore the grass roots minority community or veterans, and have never gotten their hands dirty.

Yes, the politically worthy and the questionable. For those who choose to vote.

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Daniel Cortez, a distinguished Vietnam veteran and award winning writer/broadcaster, is active in veterans and political affairs with an independent voter perspective. He can be reached at dpcortez1969@yahoo.com

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Compassionate words and deeds define new conservative leadership

Daniel Cortez 2By Daniel P. Cortez

The indefatigable Susan Allen, former First Lady of Virginia, co-hosted an open-to-the-public function this past weekend in Northern Virginia to benefit “Our Military Kids.”  It was a huge success to raise money benefiting our wounded soldiers and, specifically, the children of veterans whose parents face the financial difficulty of being deployed.

I was proud to be a co-sponsor, being a Vietnam veteran and having a military kid myself.  Recently-elected Congresswoman Barbara Comstock was also present to provide her support.

Another gallant cause by the extended Allen family.  And it was a family event as by her side was husband George, the enormously popular former Virginia Governor and U.S. Senator.  And it didn’t hurt to have support of his brother Bruce, president of our beloved Washington Redskins.

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Political and media hypocrisy laced with hope

Daniel Cortez 2By Daniel P. Cortez

After several bedridden weeks battling the flu and then watching the President’s State of the Union Address, I’ve realized Stafford voters need inoculation from Democratic political hypocrites and elitists’ moral turpitude. Fortunately, actions by former Governor George Allen and wife Susan provide hope for Virginia Republicans  struggling for unity.

Raising conservative angst was President Obama’s depiction of a booming jobs market in our record deficit economy and free community college at taxpayer expense. While socialistically invigorating to Democratic partisans, they remain troublesome to Republicans and Independents.

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Virginia delegation’s votes on $1.1 trillion bill

By Lynn R. Mitchell

The Virginia Congressional delegation’s votes on the $1.1 trillion spending bill:

In Favor (Yes): U.S. Reps. Scott Rigell (R-2nd), Randy Forbes (R-4th), Bob Goodlatte (R-6th), Frank Wolf (R-10th), Jim Moran (D-8th), Gerry Connolly (D-11th) and U.S. Senators Mark Warner (D) and Tim Kaine (D).

Opposed (No): U.S. Reps. Rob Wittman (R-1st), Bobby Scott (D-3rd), Robert Hurt (R-5th), Dave Brat (R-7th), and Morgan Griffith (R-9th).

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Confounding Outreach Comments Plague Republican Advance

Daniel Cortez 2By Daniel P. Cortez

The need for outreach and how best to promote it was an underlying theme during the recent Virginia Advance for Republicans in Chantilly, Virginia.  But perplexing comments by Virginia Delegate David Ramadan over the word could prove insulting to Hispanics and other minorities.

Fortunately, the damage was limited because of the lack of conservative outreach.  Few, if any minorities were actually in attendance.

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An Independent political perspective: Vote your conscience … but vote

Daniel Cortez 2By Daniel P. Cortez

Tomorrow brings the dawn of another election day. Another opportunity to send a message to candidates “the people choose so they may be better served.”

After the concession calls and victory speeches, political drama continues, hopefully, with new players. These men and women regardless of voter turnout become the people’s representatives. And the term is “representative” … not dictators. Granted many won’t get the message. But we can say later we knew them before they became omnipotent.

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The Presentations of a County Fair

Daniel Cortez 2By Daniel P. Cortez

The home grown values of a county fair help ground you. One can’t help reconnecting with the principles this nation was founded on by those who remain stewards of the land.

Walking around the Caroline County Fair stock yard communing with the blue ribbon roosters and grand champion cattle, the sounds and smells of rural living were calming.

I needed calm in the face of the media firestorm about immigration and children who continue to flood our southern border due to a misunderstanding of President Obama’s DACA ruling, “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.” It may have been an attempt of compassion by the President, politically oriented or not, but the consequences have our nation in an uproar. It has enraged the Hispanic community regardless of political orientation.

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The Presentations of a County Fair

Daniel Cortez 2By Daniel P. Cortez

The home grown values of a county fair help ground you. One can’t help reconnecting with the principles this nation was founded on by those who remain stewards of the land.

Walking around the Caroline County Fair stock yard communing with the blue ribbon roosters and grand champion cattle, the sounds and smells of rural living were calming.

I needed calm in the face of the media firestorm about immigration and children who continue to flood our southern border due to a misunderstanding of President Obama’s DACA ruling, “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.” It may have been an attempt of compassion by the President, politically oriented or not, but the consequences have our nation in an uproar. It has enraged the Hispanic community regardless of political orientation.

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