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The Virginia GOP Better Adopt the Sanders Platform to Win Elections Again!

It’s time.  It’s time to say it out loud.  The election was lost on June 13.  Wagner and Davis were defeated.  I voted proudly for both.

Now I helped Ed and Jill and especially John Adams in their elections even though I did endorse one Democrat (Carlos Hutcherson in Lynchburg CA race) and one LP (Will Hammer in the 20th) but I am my own person and always will be.

Now I am going to say it!  The state GOP needs to adopt what I will call the Sanders Platform (I’m ready to take the blame for it if it fails) and here it is:

  • Term limits for HOD and state senate
  • Initiative and referendum
  • End to crony capitalism disguised as “economic development”
  • Education:  Put a curb on administrative costs – both salaries and extra jobs
  • And yes I am stealing the Whitlock Test!  We need it to control spending.
  • Some sort of serious reform of the domestic relations law such as collaborative divorce
  • A statewide indigent defense system and better access to courts
  • A serious look at overcriminalization starting with raising the larceny threshold to $1000
  • A serious look at the worker’s compensation laws to ensure it is not too tilted toward businesses
  • Health care reform of a Glenn Davis free market variety
  • Tax reform – get RID of the BPOL tax for starters
  • Effective ballot access for third parties

If your choices are 1) lose or 2) lose or 3) maybe something else will win – might win – I cannot promise it will win – while still being true to libertarian/conservative principles, then I’d take option three and run with it.  Or the GOP better talk NOVA into seceding from the rest of Virginia.

What to do should be the discussion at the Huffman Advance this year – not throw a party.

About Elwood Sanders

Elwood "Sandy" Sanders is a Hanover attorney who is an Appellate Procedure Consultant for Lantagne Legal Printing and has written ten scholarly legal articles. Sandy was also Virginia's first Appellate Defender and also helped bring curling in VA! (None of these titles imply any endorsement of Sanders’ views)

6 Responses to “The Virginia GOP Better Adopt the Sanders Platform to Win Elections Again!”

  1. Kyle P. says:


    This election was about Medicaid expansion
    Plain and Simple
    Healthcare was the number one exit poll issue in Virginia yesterday.

    The Pink Hat brigade voters turned out en masse to vote for Northam who made medicaid expansion his primary platform.


    Republican Delegate and Speaker of the House Bill Howell stopped Medicaid expansion in Virginia and the GOP paid for it Tuesday.

  2. Bob Shannon

    I have listened to a summary of sorts explaining just what happened in Tuesday’s elections here in Virginia. Some come closer to the mark in my opinion than do others. Did Medicaid expansion play a part… of course it did. Virginia like any other state will always have their share of folks who want something …and are comfortable with sticking someone else with the costs. Was it recent events in Charlottesville, yes in some small way. The Never Trump crowd still stinging over the loss a year ago had their say.

    Ed Rollins last night made the point that in 84′ candidates who openly embraced Reagan won across the nation. Reagan, much like Trump stood for something and was very clear in specifically stating just what it was he stood for and believed in.

    Trumps agenda is a direct threat to many elements across the spectrum, commonly classified as members of the ” swamp”. The number of folks who alone comprise the NOVA vote have gotten very comfortable indeed with the plethora of the civil service welfare state. It is often cited that the surrounding counties around DC are the wealthiest in the nation, and it’s not lost on anyone as to why. These folks are genuinely threatened by Trump’s promise to drain that toilet ( swamp just doesn’t adequately define what it truly is) The migration into NOVA is also made up of folks who have the good sense and desire to get in on the game by relocating to where the honey is. Between the civil service army and the dependence in our state on Defense contractors it should not surprise anyone that a genuine fiscal conservative ( and I don’t hold Gillespie as a conservative) will struggle to win state-wide office in the foreseeable future.

    It would be remiss however to not address the loss, as well as the number of seats in the State House of Delegates without also pointing out another key underlying cause of what happened Tuesday.

    In 2009 here in Virginia republicrats won all 3 spots at the top of the ticket, controlling the Virginia House and had the advantage of a 20-20 split in the State Senate…………and just what did they get across the finish line legislatively ? Nothing, unless of course you count the 6 billion in new taxes.

    The serious problems Virginia faces —Medicaid drowning us, an Education system that continues to drain taxpayers pockets with increasing amounts of money spent every year sustaining a system that is awash in crony spending, bloated salaries and administrative growth that reflects the political muscle VDOE has , and the loyal obedience of both parties who abide their wishes out of absolute fear. And just what do we get for feeding this beast—- a continuing stream of academic performance declines for the money that is spent. Virginia has 9 Public Charter Schools–N. Caroline 160. The General Assembly continues to sell our kids education out for no other reason than the control the education establishment has, and their strong arm tactics they will employ immediately if any member of the G.A refuses to play ball. I have often cited that to win any local office in 2017 all a candidate has to do is capture the local government employees and the local school employees ( pledging to give them even more goodies ) and he/she likely has a 51% majority , again a reflection of how the enormous growth of local gov’t bloat is feeding the problem.

    If the republicrats are ever to right their ship and have a chance, then they need to examine what Trump did in his campaign , dismissing 15-16 establishment types. He clearly enunciated what he intended to do, he clearly defined the issues/problems and then went about selling his ideas to the electorate.

    Tough odds face the republicrats, but it just might dawn on them at some point to try some old fashioned LEADERSHIP. It also wouldn’t hurt is they went beyond the tiny circle of lobbyists & insiders to find a messenger.

    The State tax code is yet another example of what I often refer to as legalized bribery or the corrupt dirty money of politicians was ignored ( if not made worse)and runaway costs associated with the out of control growth of local government. Voters, conservatives in particular waited patiently to see the McDonnell administration take on these tough issues, they chose instead to maintain the status quo—and conservatives have grown weary of being repeatedly lied to , in Richmond and across the nation by republicrat candidates who beg us to ” give them the House–give them the Senate, 7 years of telling Americans they were going to repeal the ACA….if only we had the White House.

    How did the two candidates address any of these issues during the campaign you ask ? The last 3 weeks was yet again a pathetic example of two adults who said little about pressing issues, but had a lot to say about how bad the other guy is ?
    Leaders are bold, leaders push and highlight their legislative agenda, leaders inspire , leaders lead.

    4 years from now these problems will still be with Virginian’s, and likely worse than they are now. Republicrats had their chance in 2009 to lead. They did not and part of what happened Tuesday was a result of voters who hadn’t forgotten that cold hard fact.

    Bob Shannon King William

    • BushWacked says:

      Many of us believe the Republican loss in Tuesday’s election was a much needed house cleaning in the House of Delegates. The Swamp was drained in Richmond Tuesday.

      O’Bannon and Loupassi- good riddance.

      Opportunity for some real fiscal conservatives to run in two years to CUT SPENDING and expose the corrupt tax exemptions that give $Billions to special lobby interests in VA annually.

      • Bushwacked says:

        In 2011, JLARC did a tax preferences study. What is interesting it shows that there was $11.3 Billion in tax preferences with no formal oversight. Could the Commonwealth eliminate all state corporate income taxes and probably a lot of personal income taxes if we eliminated these tax preferences.
        Fund Medicaid?

  3. Bob Shannon

    Obviously Northam will come out of the gate with Medicaid expansion. If repulicRATS have any one left with some brains and negotiating skills , recognizing Medicaid expansion is going to happen—they will use this as an opportunity to seriously reform the programs eligibility and the pitiful co-pays that are a stunningly bad joke.

    I told Del Peace back in 2012 anyone who can afford to spend thousands of dollars tattooing themselves until they look like a freak walking billboard can afford more than $1 or $3 co-pays. A side benefit ( and those of us who have professional insurance backgrounds already know this ) is that by raising co-pays you simultaneously help the over utilization problem. Medicaid recipients stop running to the Doctor for paper cuts and sprained ankles.

    Of course that is counting on some of the puss boots republicRATS to stop acting like little sissies and forcefully have the guts to speak to the truth, not a personal characteristic that describes many of them

    Bob Shannon King William


  1. […] He has hit on (or stumbled upon) the key issue: Right to Work. While the GOP needs to adopt the Sanders Issues Proposals, and sooner rather than later, I would think most Virginians favor right to work laws. Remember, if […]

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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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