So, tonight my Senator finally decided to give his town hall at an expo center that would hold up to 3,000 people.
First, I would like to say what a great job the Senator's staff and the police did keeping the people orderly and civil. At least as much as these can be.
I would say that ratio was about 60/40 against the public option.
I did not see any SEIU members that were all over the Moran/Dean town hall. The union members that I did see were from the Communications Workers Association. They wore their matching red shirts and hats and carried more of the union printed signs promoting a public option. These signs were the exact same signs that were handed out Moran/Dean town hall.
It is a little hard to see, but the top picture has a woman holding a sign that said that 77% of people want a public option. I don't know where the heck she got that number from.
Senator Warner was at one time our governor. Virginia has a one term limit for that office. As governor I would say he ran and governed as a fiscally responsible moderate. Personally I thought he did a decent job. I didn't agree with everything, but he did leave office with a balanced budget and a surplus.
Now that he has become Senator, his voting record has taken a turn to the left. He has for the most part followed the party line and has voted with Obama I believe 100% of the time.
One very big shock for me was that we started with The Pledge of Allegiance. Isn't that sad that I was so shocked by this?
The senator told us the following:
1. He would not vote for anything that was not budget neutral.
2. No illegal aliens will get coverage.
3. He would read the bill before voting on it.
4. Abortions will not be covered by tax payer funds.
5. President Obama is indeed a patriot would loved America. (this was an answer to a direct question/statement)
6. He does not want a single payer system and does believe in competition.
7. He does support tort reform and does feel that is a component of lowering costs.
Now lets take a couple of the above listed things.
The CBO has said that the current plans are not budget neutral, which means he would have to vote no.
The courts have ruled over and over again that if the language is not specifically disqualifying something, that means that it is included. So, unless an amendment is added abortions will be performed at tax payer expense. When he was asked if he would add an amendment on abortion he just ignored the question. So, I guess that means no.
I have called and called this man's office when I was trying to get a date for the town hall. During these conversations I have asked if he would sign the pledge to read the bill and the answer was always no. I was not picked to ask a question, so I was not able to find out why he won't sign the pledge. But, I think I may very well be making some more calls next week to get an answer on that.
Senator Warner is walking a tight rope. He is trying to please the party and still stay true to his "moderate" views. It seems to me that party is winning. Ultimately I think he will support the bill because they will find a way to tell us that it is budget neutral.
I met a very nice retired couple who have become very active in the past few years. They concentrate mainly on state issues but have joined their local 9/12 group and go around on the weekends telling people what is being voted on in the Virginia legislator. Meeting them was well worth the drive. They have both heart and passion. I hope I still have that when I am their age.