Afternoon Read: Obama Tells Maryland Backers to Campaign in Virginia - NBC4 Washington
First Read
Your first stop for politics in D.C., Maryland and Virginia

Afternoon Read: Obama Tells Maryland Backers to Campaign in Virginia



    President Barack Obama's campaign is urging its volunteers in the blue state of Maryland to call voters in the swing state of Virginia, according to Politico.

    Here's an email sent today to Obama backers in Kensington (via Politico):

    In 2008, Marylanders from all across the state lent a helping hand to our friends in Virginia -- and it worked, President Obama won Virginia.

    This time around, the election could be even closer -- and once again, we could play our own small part in helping Virginia get ready for November.

    That's why you should come out to a phone bank in Kensington on Wednesday. We'll call Virginia voters and encourage them to get involved -- and we won't even need to travel to do it.

    Vewing Virginia as a key state to win, Obama will open two new offices in the state this weekend.

    The Washington Post reports that in the past four months the Obama campaign has opened offices in Fairfax County, Newport News, Petersburg and Fredericksburg. The headquarters are based in Richmond.

    The campaign has more than a dozen staffers in every region of the state.

    * Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) wrote a letter to Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell urging him to sign legislation that would prohibit Virginia state agencies and employees—which include members of the Virginia National Guard and state police—from assisting in the military detention of U.S. citizens without trials.

    The Virginia legislation comes in response to a provision in the National Defense Authorization Act that leaves U.S. citizens open to the possibility of indefinite military detention without trial.

    While Obama has already said that he disagrees with this provision and would not invoke it to detain citizens, this had done little to reassure the detractors.

    Paul wrote (via the Richmond Times Dispatch):

    The rights we give up now may never be restored,” he wrote. “The NDAA attempts to repeal fundamental rights guaranteed by our Constitution, and flies in the face of bedrock principles of liberty that pre-date even the Magna Carta.”

    “It is my sincere hope that you will join me and other freedom-loving Americans in support of HB 1160 by signing it into law.”

    It is still unknown whether McDonnell will sign the bill.

    Paul, a member of the Tea Party, is the son of presidential candidate Ron Paul. McDonnell is a big Romney supporter and is believed to be in the running for vice president if Romney takes the nomination.

    Read more at the RTD.

    * D.C. Councilman Jack Evans said today on Newstalk with Bruce DePuyt that he would seriously consider making a run for D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray’s or Council Chairman Kwame Brown’s seats if either of them should have to vacate office early, according to Loose Lips.

    Both Gray and Brown are currently under federal investigation

    Loose Lips wrote:

    “That Evans has aspirations beyond his Ward 2 seat isn't news. That he's mulling in public a run for offices that are currently occupied by two guys under federal investigation is.”

    * D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray seems to have a case of March Madness.

    The Washington Examiner got a hold of the mayor’s NCAA bracket that he entered into ESPN’s Tournament Challenge.

    Gray put Kentucky, Michigan State, North Carolina and Ohio State in the Final Four, which the Examiner says isn’t a very daring bracket. He has Kentucky taking home the crown.

    The mayor, however, didn’t show much D.C. love when he bet San Diego State would upset third-seeded Georgetown in the third round.