Monday, March 24, 2008

Paul Nichols --- Your Union-Label Delegate

Just managed to notice this: the RINO's favorite candidate, Delegate Paul Nichols (D-51st) voted in favor of Delegate Adam Ebbin's (D-Lavender) bill to repeal Virginia's ban on public employee monopoly bargaining. Ironically, it would have repealed a law sponsored by former Delegate David Brickley (D-51st), Nichols' predecessor in the district. Though Brickley is a Democrat, and was at one time a union lawyer (for the PWEA, the National Education Association's County affiliate), even he was not enough of a moonbat to hold that government employees should be given privileged status in the allocation of scarce public resources.

Interesting. Even the obvious costs of creating a special agency to manage resulting contracts predicted that the bill would put a $7 million hole in the budget through 2014. And that's to say nothing of the possibility that government would grow, cost more, and the possibility of government-employee strikes (whether legal or not, they happen under such regimes). Very sensible in a time of tight budgets and transportation-spending deficiencies.

The Virginia GOP Caucus blog identifies it as the single worst bill for business in the Commonwealth. I wouldn't dispute that characterization.

You can thank the spoiled brats who didn't get their way in nominating Julie Lucas as the GOP nominee in the district, and/or the Gill-haters --- i.e., those who opposed the GOP victor, Faisal Gill --- for this lunacy. Apparently, for these children, smears are more important that policy.

And Nichols certainly can't plead ignorance about the effects of this bill. I had a detailed discussion with him about it well before the election.

I suppose Nichols can be credited with dancing with the ones who brung him. Or more likely, for hearing his master's voice.


Waldo said...

I can certainly see how you might think that's how Del. Nichols voted -- the record indicates quite clearly that he cast his vote in favor of the bill -- but, in fact, that's a trick of the House Republican caucus. Del. Morgan Griffith cast votes for the Democrats after he refused to let Del. Ebbin's bill be withdrawn. No Democrats cast any votes on that bill, but Griffith had the votes recorded as if they had voted.

And this blog entry is precisely why that sort of thing is so problematic. The record indicates that a thing happened that did not, in fact, happen. That's not good for anyone.

James Young said...

Soooo, Waldo, the Rules adopted by the House --- as I understand it, the same rules applied for decades, if not centuries (Bob Marshall was my Delegate for a time) --- provide for a consequence for a course of action, that consequence is applied, and its "a trick of the House Republican caucus"?

I suppose it's a distinction (which is one reason why I published your comment), but it seems to me to be one without a difference. And it's certainly "confusion" easy enough to clarify, were the affected Dems so inclined.

Perhaps it is they who should be doing the 'splainin', rather than their blogosphere allies (I eschewed use of the word "apologists" in this case, since you --- not Lowell --- authored this comment). Or are they worried about offending their most loyal constituency (union bosses), by 'fessing up to the fact that this effort was a radical agenda repugnant to most Virginians?

Waldo said...

You quite misinterpret my comment, James. Perhaps I was unclear. The "trick" does not refer to an action taken by Republicans against Democrats but, rather, an action taken by the House against the public. That is, of course, the practice of adding to the record a "vote" without explanation that no such vote was cast. The fact that you charged Del. Nichols with casting a vote that he did not cast shows quite clearly that you were tricked, as anybody reading the record would likewise be tricked by this falsehood.

The fact that this has been the practice of the chamber for many years does not make it any less odious. I favor as much government transparency as is possible. That means doing away with this business of claiming that one thing happened when, in fact, something entirely different happened.

James Young said...

I guess I reject your suggestion that it's a "trick," Waldo, whether it be one "by Republicans against Democrats" or one "taken by the House against the public." And I respectfully disagree that I "misinterpret[ed] your comment," Waldo. I did quote the phrase you used, after all.

The rules quite clearly set forth actions which are votes, and which actions are tantamount to votes (whether for or against any proposal).

The problem here for House Dems is that they have to explain to the public why the Record demonstrates their votes in favor of this proposal, AND to their union-boss buddies why they didn't vote in favor of one of their most devoutly-to-be-wished agenda items. That's a Catch-22 irresistible to most political types, I imagine.

"Transparency" is certainly something to which all leaders should aspire, in the THEORY of Politics. Putting one's political opponents in an untenable position is equally an aspiration of all leaders, in the PRACTICE of Politics. It seems that you most vigorously object to the fact that House Republican elegantly succeeded in achieving the latter goal here.

Waldo said...

Well, I guess I look forward to when Democrats do the same thing to Republicans in the House, and you rightly complain that Democrats are lying about Republicans' votes, because they never voted that way. Here's hoping that I'll have the integrity to agree with you...though I may quietly enjoy a little schadenfreude. :)

James Young said...

Well, I love the smell of schadenfreude in the morning.

Waldo, I try very hard never to complain about the consistent application of established rules. Sounds a little too much like whining to me.

Of course, you (and House Dems) remain free to try to change the rule, if and when they achieve majority status.

But that it was a rule (as I believe it was) when they had control suggests to me that we should be more concerned about the reality that they have been hoist on their own petard, rather than the potential for schadenfreude.