Re: "A November election in D.C. with a meaning," April 16
Jonetta Rose Barras once again makes it clear that she doesn't understand D.C. politics. The only "meaning" this November will be the re-election of President Barack Obama, who will be on the ballot as head of the Democratic ticket, bring out a huge Democratic vote, and win the District with 98 percent of the vote.
For any Republican or independent to beat a Democrat on the District Council, no less an incumbent, the vote splitting would have to be greater than it has ever been anywhere in the nation. That just won't happen.
As for Michael Brown winning the other-than-Democratic seat, we have seen how his name attracts voters, even when someone with the same name but different middle initial was confused with him in the last at-large election against Phil Mendelson.
Clearly, the only new face on the Council next year, barring any more resignations or indictments, will be the person winning the special election on May 15th in Ward 5 to replace Harry Thomas, Jr. Even in Barras' apparently conservative heart-of-hearts, wishful thinking doesn't replace the hard reality of politics.
Peter D. Rosenstein
Firefighters should be thanked, not criticized
Re: "MontCo firefighter makes $95K in OT," April 15
I resent the tone of this article, which does not take into account the idea that firefighters and police officers are grossly underpaid for the work they perform.
Be grateful that there are brave individuals who will run toward danger and risk their lives to save yours.If the firefighter who rescues you from your burning house happens to be working overtime, is the $95,000 worth it then?
Instead of begrudging these amazing public servants compensation for the valuable and often underappreciated work that they perform and expecting them to justify it, thank them for their willingness to do it.
Virginia Dem belatedly regrets ultrasound vote
Re: "Virginia senator says ultrasound bill he voted for went 'way too far'," April 12
I am perplexed by Virginia state Sen. Phil Puckett's, D-Tazewell, recent admission to Washington Examiner reporter Steve Contorno that he regrets voting for the now infamous ultrasound bill, saying that the legislation "went too far."
At what point did Sen. Puckett realize this? When thousands of Virginia women showed up to protest on the Capitol steps? When MSNBC, CNN, the Washington Post, the New Times, "the Daily Show" and "Saturday Night Live" ridiculed and lampooned our commonwealth for the outrageously intrusive bill? Or was it after hours of debate in the General Assembly when Sen. Puckett's colleagues pressed him about changing his vote?
Similar legislation has been introduced every year for the past four years and given countless hours of debate, TV airtime and columns in every major newspaper in the U.S. Despite being educated by our executive director, who was on the ground in Richmond, about the mandatory ultrasound bill and implored by dozens of concerned Virginians to vote against it, it was only well after the close of session that Sen. Puckett realized he had voted for bad legislation -- twice?
Sen. Puckett is fond of saying that he is consistent. But "consistency" should never come at the expense of women's health, safety and rights.
Chair, Board of Directors
NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia