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Morning Read: Virginia Could Lose 200,000 Jobs With Budget Cuts

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Gov. Bob McDonnell will be on Capitol Hill Wednesday talking about sequestration -- an automatic form of spending cuts that impacts budget areas across the board, including defense spending.

    The press conference is scheduled for 2:40 p.m. outside the U.S. Capitol and, according to Politico, the governor is expected to be flanked by congressional Republicans from Virginia, including Majority Leader Eric Cantor.

    If the budget cuts go into effect, Virignia will be one of the hardest-hit states, ranking second only to California.

    The commonwealth stands to lose 207,571 jobs and nearly $10.7 billion in labor income if Congress fails to resolve the budget crisis before the cuts go into effect in January, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

    Via RTD:

    "It's a pretty big hit" for Virginia, said Stephen Fuller, an economist at George Mason University who conducted the analysis along with Chmura Economics and Analytics, a research firm in Richmond. 

    The researchers said the automatic spending cuts will cost the economy more than 2 million jobs, from defense contracting to border security to education. The cuts also would reduce the nation's gross domestic product by $215 billion next year while consumer confidence would plummet.

    "If they are allowed to occur as currently scheduled, the long-term consequences will permanently alter the course of the U.S. economy's performance, changing its competitive position in the global economy," the report said.

    * The House Judiciary Committee will consider a bill Wednesday that would ban abortions in the District 20 weeks into pregnancy, according to the Washington Times.

    Local officials and proponents of D.C. statehood see the law as an intrusion on the District’s right to govern itself.

    * In the Washington Examiner, columnist Harry Jaffe writes that the two religious leaders organizing a rally in support of Mayor Vincent Gray today are right to support Gray, but wrong to include race as part of the issue.

    But [Rev. Graylan] Hagler has insinuated that Gray is being harassed because he is black. Two of the council members who called for Gray to quit are white. Willie Wilson will have a hard time keeping his race card in his hand.

    But times have changed since Joe diGenova and Jay Stephens investigated and prosecuted Marion Barry for snorting cocaine, among other things. Both U.S. attorneys happened to be white. Now the chain of prosecutorial command -- from U.S. Attorney Ron Machen Jr. through Attorney General Eric Holder to President Obama -- is African-American.

    "There's no racial conspiracy floating in the District of Columbia," former D.C. police lieutenant Lowell Duckett tells me. "That's gone."

    If Wilson and Hagler preach racial disharmony, their legitimacy will be gone, too.

    Slate explains the latest abortion showdown in Virginia.

    The Maryland Reporter has a profile on the state’s attorney general Doug Gansler, who is also the new president of the National Association of Attorneys General.

    As the new president, Gansler has targeted Internet privacy as his main focus, according to the article.

    “Clearly, what the Internet companies are doing is an invasion of privacy,” Gansler said. “It certainly could very well be an acceptable and appropriate invasion of privacy,” much as airport security has become an accepted invasion of privacy -- up to a point.

    “Most of the things we look up on the Internet are free, but there’s a legitimate interest for those companies to make money,” Gansler said. “Where to draw that line is the dialogue we’ll be having in NAAG.”