Commentary: Warner’s new brand of politics

By Leroy Donald

It seems to me that Mark Warner chose to offer a new brand of politics as Virginia’s senator compared to his politics as our governor. During his term as governor, many of his decisions were aimed at honoring the will of Virginia voters. That all changed in 2009 when he became Virginia’s senator. Since then his voting record confirms his intense belief in being a devout follower of Barack Obama and supporting his political obsessions and failures regardless of the thoughts and values expressed by Virginia’s voters.

Recall that Obama also started his first term as president in 2009, leading with brazen chants of hope and change for America. Warner jumped on the Obama bandwagon early and became a devoted and loyal follower, voting with his new hero 97 percent of the time. Since then his voting record has continued to mirror Obama’s policies, even as America’s downward spiral continues.

His vote in favor of the pPresident’s $831 billion dollar economic stimulus bill in 2009 was a strike against him. That vote gave a clear indication of Warner’s lack of confidence and support for America’s free market system as the trusted source for job creation. The Council of Economic advisers and economic experts who refuse to spin the facts agree that the stimulus spending bill was an abject failure and that history will bear out that fact for future generations.

Strike two was Warner’s vote in favor of the Affordable Care Act, the most extensive federal intrusion into personal choice regarding health care any swarm of Federal bureaucrats could ever toss out. Health insurance for an additional 30 million Americans can only come with additional cost. Warner should have known this and I suspect that he did. And don’t forget his statement in 2010 defending his vote, “I wouldn’t vote for a health care plan that doesn’t let you keep the health insurance you like,” much like the Obama message that was awarded 4 pinocchios by The Washington Post.

Strike three: Warner’s repeated promises to reach across the isle and to find common ground even as he was voting in lock-step with Obama 97 percent of the time. Compromise is not something Obama is willing to do and not something Warner’s voting record reflects. His 97 percent voting record in the senate is second only to Sen. Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire with a 98 percent record of voting with the president. Would you call Warner’s voting record an attempt to reach across the isle? Let’s face it, while his press releases are bipartisan, his floor votes are party line.

Those three strikes alone should be enough to convince voters to reconsider their votes in the November elections. Add to that his anti-gun stance, his vote against the Keystone pipeline and his refusal to recognize the need for secure borders and the justification is overwhelming. Virginia needs a new senator because the current one simply votes as the president would have him vote.

The policies of the Obama administration have been bad for America and Virginia and the facts bear out the truth. Regardless of liberal spin and half truths, our economy is still floundering, the national debt is approaching $18 trillion, real unemployment is approaching 12 percent when you factor in the labor participation rate, our Congress is divided, our country is divided, our foreign policy is weak, we have no strategy to protect freedom abroad, the political scandals are a dime a dozen, and Warner supports the policies that led us to these unfortunate realities. Virginia needs a new senator.

Ed Gillespie supports policies that will strengthen America, including increased defense spending and support for the Keystone pipeline. He opposes Obamacare and excessive spending. We’ve seen the results of bad senate votes. We should use our votes in November to lead us away from the failed policies of this administration and make a new start. A vote for Warner will be a vote for more of the same from the Obama administration.

Th best way to change direction is to change leadership. Vote for Gillespie to replace Warner. We need the change. He deserves a chance to make it happen.

Leroy Donald is a Stephens City resident.