A Virginia state lawmaker is trying to prevent the appointment of an openly gay lawyer as a General District Court judge because he is “an aggressive activist for the pro-homosexual agenda.”
State Delegate Bob Marshall said he wants former Naval aviator Tracy Thorne-Begland, who was honorably discharged after coming out on Nightline in the 1990s, to be removed from a list of nominees set to be voted on today, according to the Advocate.
Marshall said Thorne-Begland should be disqualified because he supports gay marriage, specifically calling him out for having a partner.
Marshall issued this statement:
“Mr. Throne-Begland joined the Navy under clear rules on homosexuality that he challenged when he sued the Department of Defense to change DADT,” Marshall said.
“Would Mr. Thorne-Begland also challenge rules that apply to Virginia courts? Can this candidate swear the required oath to support our state’ constitution if he has already indicated by his past actions that he does not support that section of our constitution barring same-sex legal relationships?
“While our judges and judicial candidates certainly have a right to free speech, they do not have the right to disregard the Virginia constitution”
* Virginia lawmakers reconvened in Richmond to vote on Gov. Bob McDonnell’s 88 proposed amendments to Virginia’s two-year, $85 billion state budget.
The amendments amount to roughly $44 million in budget adjustments, according to The Richmond-Times-Dispatch.
Before the lawmakers even started their meeting, the governor pulled a proposed amendment that would have slashed $2.5 million from the Area Agencies for Aging, which provides senior services throughout the state.
Earlier this afternoon the House of Delegates unanimously struck down a proposed amendment that would have made it more difficult for state employees to receive a 3 percent bonus that lawmakers included in the already-passed state budget, according to The RTD.
The governor can still eliminate the bonus with a line item veto.
Lawmakers will also vote on judge appointments.
* The Washington Post has an article laying out Ward 5 council member candidates’ views on transportation, safety and development.
The election for northeast Washington voters to replace disgraced Council member Harry Thomas Jr. is Tuesday.
According to The Post, this newly elected council member could potentially be a key swing vote on the 13-member council.
There are 11 candidates vying for the post.
* On the first day of an expected three-day special session in Annapolis to fix the state’s budget, at least five bills were introduced in response to a recent court ruling that makes it easier to sue owners of aggressive pit bulls, even if their dogs have no prior history of biting, according to The Washington Post.
Lawmakers also introduced a pair of bills to create an inspector general position in Maryland.