Friday, January 7, 2011

Roanoke Tea Party rejects both 8th district candidates

The Roanoke Tea Party Position on the 8th District House of Delegates Special Election:

The Board of Directors of The Roanoke Tea Party would like to provide some basic information on our position with regard to this race.

Greg Habeeb is a successful lawyer and has some experience in politics as head of the Salem GOP for the past few years.

We spent several hours talking to Greg Habeeb recently about his candidacy. He was open and frank in our discussion, and has been willing to discuss tough issues.

After Mr. Habeeb’s announced run, several Conservative GOP members approached the Roanoke Tea Party leadership with concerns about Mr. Habeeb’s fitness to represent the district. These individuals were actively looking for and presenting alternate candidate choices to us in the immediate aftermath of Habeebs’s announcement. No other GOP candidates stepped forward, presumably because of the obvious advantages that Mr. Habeeb held for any primary fight with so many high powered endorsements.

After reviewing his stated positions and information he shared with us, he seems to share our concern about rampant government overreach and seems willing to address this in a meaningful way. On the surface, we aren’t really sure why there was so much concern with his candidacy.

Our rating system is simple for candidates with little or no public voting record. Either we feel the candidate has the knowledge and the inclination to uphold the US and VA Constitutions, or they don’t.

We extend our rating to Greg Habeeb that he understands the Constitution and seems ready to uphold his oath.

While he is mostly saying the right things prior to the election, we do have some concerns.

Mr. Habeeb speaks of carrying on Governor McDonnell’s fight to control the state budget, we hope that Mr. Habeeb will be an independent voice and make sure that the Governor actually is cutting the budget. As we have pointed out several times on our web site, the Governor’s rhetoric on the budget hasn’t always been accurate.

We are also concerned about the level of support from GOP establishment figures for Mr. Habeeb’s campaign and that this may make it difficult for Mr. Habeeb to strike out an independent path when the right thing to do isn’t the easy thing to do.

Time will tell if he wins.

Ginger Mumpower

Ginger Mumpower has never responded to repeated requests for a meeting. She does have an impressive resume: successful businesswoman and a stint on the Radford City Council when she was in her 20s.

Since she has chosen not to respond to our inquiries, her issues page is all we have to go by.

Her page has some very generic pro-business information, but she is in favor of funding light rail, “We must also encourage rail development for our area as this will promote more productivity for our local economy and allow our citizens to travel farther and faster.”

This is a terrible idea at anytime, and would be particularly fiscally irresponsible today. This has been tried in several places…in Oregon they found that:

Light rail does not reduce traffic and congestion;

Over 90% of the light rail users will be former bus riders;

Light rail will cost 65 times more than the bus service;

Light rail is nothing more than a permanent bus line that can’t be moved;

8 miles of light rail will cost billions to construct;

The estimated taxpayer subsidy for one person taking one ride on the light rail is over $38.00 (Again, that’s one person, one way, one ride); Light rail does not attract new commuters, only bus riders;

Light rail costs billions-taking money away from our roads and other ne= eded transportation projects that serve everyone. More on Portland’s fiasco here.

In our own state, Virginia Beach has experienced the boondoggle that is light rail, and has backed away from their project after finding that the unelected officials in charge of this were lying about costs.

A candidate supporting light rail is a deal breaker from a Roanoke Tea Party perspective.

In addition:

Nowhere in her positions does she even mention Constitutional issues and seems to take the standard position that government has unlimited power. Even when she discusses making government “efficient” she states “government must form a partnership with each community and provide support instead of dictating our day to day lives.”

Well were thrilled she’s not in favor of dictatorial rule, but most of the oppressive state and federal regulations that strangle business and individual liberties today are prettied up with a promise of building partnerships= with the community.

The indefensible light rail position and other similar statements are indicative of a candidate who just doesn’t get the basic fact that the primary role of government is to protect our individual liberties, not to partner with communities or spend billions of dollars on public works projects. So we have no choice but to rate her:

Little/No chance that Ginger Mumpower will uphold her oath. We urge our members and concerned citizens to do their own research and make their own decisions. We provide this information as a service to our membership and the Roanoke Valley.

Chip Tarbutton on behalf of the Board of the Roanoke Tea Party.

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Election 2011, Elections, Politics, State Politics

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