I commend the Washington Post for refocusing attention on Bob McDonnell's
legislative record and his actions while a member of the Virginia General Assembly. His statements and actions are totally the opposite of those of the centrist moderate that McDonnell is now pretending to be - because he knows his real record would send moderates and independents fleeing to the Deeds camp. As the saying goes, actions speak louder than words and McDonnell's past actions literally shout out that he is an extremist who puts far right Christianist
dogma ahead of the Virginia and United States Constitutions. The "lynching" of Circuit Court Judge Verbena Askew by McDonnell and his partner in crime, state Senator Ken "Police Brutality" Stolle
, is most illustrative of the real Bob "Taliban Bob" McDonnell. The true irony of McDonnell's explanation for his homophobia based attacks on Judge Askew ring particularly hollow, however, when one knows that Senator Stolle
was likewise involved in a lawsuit settlement back when he was a Virginia Beach police officer accused of police brutality. Sometimes cities will settle suits simply settle claims to avoid costly litigation. Applying McDonnell's standaed
was then automatically guilty of the alleged police brutality. Here are highlights from the Washington Post
In January 2003, then-Del. Robert F. McDonnell helped gavel in one of the most extraordinary judicial reappointment hearings in Virginia history: a seven-hour, trial-like affair that led to questions about whether the future Republican gubernatorial candidate thought gays were fit to serve on the bench.
As chairman of the House Courts of Justice Committee, McDonnell sat at the head of the proceedings, with his Senate counterpart next to him and committee members on both sides. Facing them was Verbena M. Askew of Newport News, the state's first black female Circuit Court judge, whose reappointment was in jeopardy because of allegations that she had sexually harassed a female colleague.
Amid accusations of racism and homophobia, state lawmakers grilled Askew and several witnesses for hours, focusing in large part on her failure to disclose the harassment case. Some members also raised questions about her actions from the bench. A majority, including McDonnell, voted against her reappointment.
In comments before the hearing, McDonnell indicated that Askew's sexual conduct was relevant, telling one newspaper that "certain homosexual conduct" could disqualify a person from being a judge because it violates the state's crimes against nature law. The words were widely published at the time, and his remarks contributed to a lasting view that sexual orientation was at least one reason for Askew's ouster. McDonnell said in an interview last week that the episode has nothing to do with his campaign for governor.
McDonnell was credited by Republicans and Democrats in the Virginia General Assembly at the time for making sure witnesses supporting Askew were present at the hearing. He also became known for telling the Daily Press of Newport News that certain homosexual activities could disqualify a person from the bench. "It certainly raises some questions about the qualifications to serve as a judge," he said.
At the time, McDonnell did not deny the comments, which were reprinted by several other papers, but he told the Virginian-Pilot that they were "inartful." . . . Terry Scanlon, the Daily Press reporter who interviewed McDonnell, and Ernie Gates, the newspaper's editor, both said last week that McDonnell never complained about the quotation's accuracy.
"Bob was the only one that I remember who at the time described his position on the case in relation to her sexual orientation," said Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D), who was then the state's lieutenant governor and president of the Senate.
The sad reality is that Taliban Bob meant everything he said back in 2003. Now, however, those statements detract from his false claims that he is a moderate and some six years latwe he is belatedly trying to disavow them. Bob, I hate to say it, but simply put, you are a liar. You know it and I know it.