Afternoon Read: Obama Outraises Romney in Virginia in April - NBC4 Washington
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Afternoon Read: Obama Outraises Romney in Virginia in April



    President Barack Obama outraised Mitt Romney in April in donations of $200 or more from Virginia donors.

    Obama led Romney $483,000 to $332,000 in April, according to The Virginia Public Access Project, which gathered its figures from a list of itemized presidential donors from Virginia provided by the nonprofit Center for Responsive Politics.

    Overall, Romney still leads Obama—$3.3 million to $3.2 million—among donors who have given at least $200 in the state.

    Look at this map to see a breakdown of donors by county.

    * Gov. Bob McDonnell has invited Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour to deliver keynote speeches Thursday at an annual retreat in Bath County hosted by his political action committee, Opportunity Virginia.

    The three-day retreat is not a fundraiser, but an annual event to recognize supporters of the PAC, according to The Roanoke Times.

    Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling—who are battling it out for the GOP gubernatorial nomination—will both attend the retreat.

    * First lady Michelle Obama will speak to northern Virginia grassroots volunteers and supporters Thursday at VFW Post 1503.

    She will remind them what’s at stake this election and thank them for their help in working to get her husband reelected.

    Tickets are required to attend and will be available starting Tuesday at 10 a.m. on a first served basis at Organizing for America Field Offices in northern Virginia.

    * A 380-bed homeless shelter known as 801 East along Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE is slated to be knocked down to make way for an office building, according to Washington City Paper.

    The demolition is not yet finalized and is still years away, but the Department of Human Services wants to replace that shelter with several other shelters around the city with about 100 beds each.

    Via WCP:

    "The vision is to move away from building large-scale shelters of 300 or more beds and focus more on finding opportunities for permanent housing placements as the best alternative for persons who are homeless," writes spokesman Reggie Sanders. "This is the direction in which the Mayor would like to move."

    While this is an admirable goal, Lydia DePillis writes that it might not be so easy to achieve.

    Read more here.

    * A columnist for theArizona Republic tries to explain the history of Arizona Rep. Trent Franks—the congressman who is pushing legislation that would ban abortions in the District after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

    The columnist, E. J. Montini writes, “You can take the zealot out of Arizona, but you can't take the Arizona out of the zealot.” 

    In 1987 he was appointed by then-Gov. Evan Mecham (who was later impeached and removed from office) to head the Governor's Office for Children. At the time, Franks was a one-term state legislator who had lost a bid for re-election and was known almost exclusively as a one-note, anti-abortion politician. He made news not long after his appointment by referring to Planned Parenthood as an organization that was "murdering children for profit."

    Not long after that, Franks got upset when The Arizona Republic, in an editorial, referred to him as "the quintessential single-issue politician."

    But here he is, 25 years later ...

    Some residents of D.C. have staged protests at the Arizona congressman's office, sarcastically wondering if Franks is also interested in repairing potholes or dealing with sewage issues in the district.

    Those are local issues. Franks claims to believe in local control. So how does a politician who rails against big government justify imposing his personal agenda on people who didn't elect him?

    I contacted Franks' office about this. A spokesman sent me a statement from the congressman that reads in part:

    "Congress has the seminal and incontrovertible responsibility for making legislative policy in the District of Columbia. Those who pretend to question that are in fact trying to direct attention away from the true purpose of this bill, which is to help prevent unborn children beginning at the sixth month of pregnancy and beyond from being subject to the agonizing process of being aborted.