Virginia’s easy choice

By:
10/25/2001

The Virginia Governor’s race offers an unambiguous choice for state voters. Republican candidate Mark Earley will continue Governor Jim Gilmore’s pattern of irresponsible budgetary policy and preaches intolerant social values. Democrat and successful businessman Mark Warner, on the other hand, will use fiscally responsible policies to bolster education, health care and transportation. The path to a better Virginia clearly lies with Warner.

Warner’s work in the private sector shows that he can create jobs, business and investment for the state. He would also develop Virginia’s rural and coastal sectors as well as reach out to the state’s neighbors, Maryland and the District. Meanwhile, Mark Earley has been playing the social card to central and southern Virginia, falsely attacking Warner on “morals” and “Virginia Values” in order to garner support among Virginia’s far right.

Earley has waged an incessantly negative campaign against Warner and his running mate for Lieutenant Governor, Tim Kaine, the current mayor of Richmond. He characterizes Warner as an extreme liberal, this claim is groundless. Warner is pro-choice and supports certain homosexual rights, but he also supports the death penalty, the rights of gun owners, and opposes gay marriage?hardly the views of an extreme liberal.

In fact, calling Warner an extreme liberal only makes Earley look like an extreme conservative, which inhibits his ability to attract broad-based support. In Earley’s bigoted radio and television campaign against homosexuals has even antagonized members of the Virginia State Republican Party.

Warner’s platform makes good economic sense. He supports a responsible budget. Taxpayer money will go toward improving public school facilities, training and hiring teachers, raising teacher salaries, instituting after-school programs and opposing private school vouchers. He wants to improve Northern Virginia highways for D.C. commuters as well as to improve health care facilities.

Earley, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to have much of an agenda. He has focused on lowering taxes and attacking the Democrats. In fact, his only real policy is continuing Gilmore’s car tax cuts, which tamper with the state’s education and public works budgets. Earley also wrongly claims in his ads that Warner’s focus is on raising taxes. But Warner will continue to phase out the car tax and will also attempt to cut the food tax. He also supports a referendum specifically for Northern Virginia that would allow those citizens to vote on a tax increase for education and transportation.

Warner will implement fiscally responsible policies and programs that will benefit Virginia voters. His agenda will produce results. Earley merely criticizes and demands more cuts. A vote for Earley is a vote for extreme conservatism, economic irresponsibility and dirty politics. Vote sensibly Nov. 6. Vote Warner.

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