Funeral for Arlington Firefighter Injured on 9/11 — A funeral will be held today for an Arlington firefighter who was a first responder on 9/11. Phillip McKee III suffered a severe leg injury while battling fires at the Pentagon following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attack. He also inhaled toxic dust and later suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder. His family says McKee, 41, died from complications from those injuries. McKee, who held degrees from Yale and Harvard, was openly gay and is survived by his husband and partner of 15 years. [Washington Blade]
County Officials: No Subsidies for Gov’t Agencies — With the county still reeling from the impending loss of the National Science Foundation, Arlington officials are sticking to their guns and saying that offering tax breaks and other financial incentives to lure federal agencies is bad policy. Arlington Economic Development Director Terry Holzheimer is pushing for the General Services Administration to disclose additional information related to the decision to move the NSF to Alexandria by 2017. “None of it makes any sense,” Holzheimer said of the decision and its impact to other government tenants in Ballston. [Washington Business Journal]
Bluemont Trail Improvements – Arlington County crews will be widening a section of the Bluemont Trail between Buchanan Street and the Ballston Holiday Inn this month. Crews will also be removing obstructions and landscaping around the trail. [Bike Arlington]
SUPERNOVA Photos — Dozens of artists invaded public spaces in Rosslyn over the weekend for the SUPERNOVA Performance Art Festival. Some of the artists and their performances can be seen in a series of photos published the the Ode Street Tribune blog.
Democratic Primary Today — Democrats will go to the polls today in Virginia to vote in the primary for lieutenant governor and attorney general. Among the candidates is Arlington resident Aneesh Chopra, who’s running for lieutenant governor. Polls will remain open in Arlington from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. [Arlington County]
Arlington School Board member James Lander is facing a primary challenge this year.
Lander is being challenged in the upcoming Democratic Caucus by Barbara Kanninen, a Yorktown High School mom, children’s book author, environmental economist and Democratic National Convention delegate. The endorsement caucus is scheduled for May 9 and 11.
Lander is the only African American elected official in Arlington, where about 8 percent of the population is Black or African American. This has led some political observers to predict a racially-charged primary.
Kanninen plans to officially announce her candidacy at Wednesday’s Arlington County Democratic Committee meeting. Asked why she’s running, Kanninen released the following statement to ARLnow.com.
We have great schools in Arlington, from preschool all the way to high school. We prepare thinkers, entrepreneurs, and artists, and we prepare them well. But, the world is changing fast and we need to stay ahead of the curve. We need a School Board that is experienced, forward thinking, and, above all, passionate about educating kids.
Kevin and I have lived in Arlington for 20 years. We have been elementary school parents for 9 years, middle school parents for 6 years, and high school parents for 3.
I have spent years volunteering in classrooms, doing everything from one-on-one reading, to hands-on science, to gifted math. I’ve worked with kids of all ages and backgrounds and skill-levels.
I’m a math geek, a children’s book author, a Ph.D. economist with a business motto of “Good, Clean Data Crunching.”
I’ve worked on School Board committees. I’ve been on the ACI — the Advisory Council on Instruction. I’ve co-chaired the Early Childhood Advisory Committee, and I’ve served on the Math Advisory Committee.
I coached Odyssey of the Mind for seven years.
I am also, occasionally, a political activist.
All these experiences — but especially that of being a parent — have fed into and nurtured my core belief that all children are awesome human beings, they all deserve every opportunity to excel, and we owe it to them to pay attention, to push our own thinking in new and fresh ways, and to never, ever shrug our shoulders.
Here are three things I think we should focus on, going forward:
- Strengthening our STEM programs — science, technology, engineering, and math. More hands-on science programs in elementary school, Mentoring programs for middle and high school science fair projects. Better utilization of the crown jewel of STEM education here in Arlington: the Arlington Career Center. We need to make it more accessible to more kids, including making summer programs more affordable.
- The Arts. Young people are coming into a world where new ways to express yourself are cropping up every day — video, graphics, even music is changing. We not only have the opportunity to help kids take their talents to the cutting edge, but, if needed, we can help them use their talents and interests to buttress up their academics.
- Finally, at the end of the day, kids are kids, and kids needs personal support. I believe every child in Arlington should be able to walk into their school building every morning and know that there is at least one adult who knows them on a personal level, who believes in them — exactly as they are.
Photo via barbarakanninen.com
Chopra, who lives with his wife and two children in the Donaldson Run neighborhood, says he’s running to create “new opportunities” for Virginians and to help solve the state’s “biggest challenges.”
Chopra, who was appointed the first Chief Technology Officer of the United States by President Obama, said he’s also going to work to support the president’s reelection. Last month he joined actor Kal Penn at two events for Obama supporters in Arlington.
The following statement was issued by Chopra this afternoon.
“We live in a time of profound change. In our communities, our Commonwealth and our country, people are looking for pragmatic solutions that address our biggest problems, create opportunities and improve our lives.
Ideas matter. And so does action to make our economy work for everyone.
Since I left my position as U.S. Chief Technology Officer, friends, neighbors, business and community leaders have encouraged me to take action by running for statewide office. I’m humbled by their support and pleased to announce that today, after months of reflection, I enthusiastically filed my candidate qualification to seek the Democratic nomination for Lt. Governor in 2013.
As Virginia’s Secretary of Technology, I worked with communities across the Commonwealth to plant the seeds of new ideas to ensure all Virginians have the skills they need to compete in the 21st Century economy. We created hands-on high school technology training through Virginia STAR, accelerated efforts to prepare more people without a high school degree for jobs of the future through PluggedInVA, and harnessed the power of mobile technology to support great teaching through our Learning Without Boundaries initiative.
I remain excited about these efforts and the new opportunities we have to bring Virginians together to solve our biggest challenges in the years ahead. I am committed to seeding innovative ideas that support a quality workforce and educating Virginians throughout their lifetime to strengthen and maintain a state economy that is built to last.
Over the next several months, our Commonwealth and our country face important choices. I will work hard to help elect President Obama, Governor Tim Kaine, and our exceptional roster of Democratic Congressional candidates this November. In addition, in the days, weeks and months ahead, I look forward to continuing to listen to Virginians, hearing directly from them about the issues affecting their families and serving as an enthusiastic advocate on their behalf.”
With 100 percent of precincts reporting in the Eighth District of Virginia — which includes Arlington, Alexandria and parts of Fairfax County — Moran received 74 percent of the vote to Shuttleworth’s 26 percent.
In Arlington, Moran captured a 2-to-1 to 3-to-1 advantage in most precincts. One notable exception is the Republican-heavy Madison precinct, near Shuttleworth’s home in the Old Glebe neighborhood of north Arlington. Shuttleworth received 196 votes from Madison precinct voters, to 182 votes for Moran.
In the Virginia Republican U.S. Senate primary, George Allen has been declared the winner.
Local polling stations will remain open until 7:00 tonight for the Democratic U.S. House of Representatives primary between Rep. Jim Moran and Bruce Shuttleworth, and the Republican U.S. Senate primary between Jamie Radtke, George Allen, Bob Marshall and E.W. Jackson.
Arlington County Registrar Linda Lindberg says no problems have been reported at the polls. Based on voting thus far, she is anticipating a countywide turnout of between 6 and 10 percent, which is about average for a primary.
“It has been a pretty quiet day,” she said.
Lindberg noted that turnout has been higher in parts of north Arlington that often see more of a Republican turnout, while it has been lighter in parts of south Arlington (like Crystal City) that have more of a transient population.
Arlington Funeral Home Demolition — Arlington Funeral Home in Virginia Square has been torn down to make way for a new office building. Arlington funeral home first opened in April 1956. [Arlington Public Library]
Election Day Today — Arlington voters are going to the polls today to cast their ballots in the Republican primary for U.S. Senate and the Democratic primary for the U.S. House of Representatives (see candidate essays for Rep. Jim Moran and Bruce Shuttleworth). Arlington has a complete list of polling places here.
Trader Joe’s Asks for Display Cases — Trader Joe’s in Clarendon is asking the Arlington County Board for permission to put display cases in the store’s windows along N. Garfield Street. Currently, the windows — which are legally required to remain transparent, per a site plan — look in on the store’s storage area. [Arlington County]
APS Accepting Applications for Committee — Arlington Public Schools is inviting applications from parents and community members for its Pupil Services Committee. The committee meets once a month during the school year and “reviews the services offered by psychologists, social workers, substance abuse counselors, school counselors, and attendance specialists.” [Arlington Public Schools]
Photo courtesy Bill Colton
Last week we asked the two Democratic candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives, Eighth District of Virginia, to write a sub-500 word essay on why the county’s residents should vote for them during tomorrow’s (Tuesday, June 12) primary.
Here is the unedited response from Bruce Shuttleworth:
To any of the ARLnow community who I may have “robocalled” during your dinner hour — sorry!
I’m Bruce Shuttleworth. I’m running for Congress, and I’d be honored to earn your support. I say that about a thousand times a day at Metros, Farmer’s Markets and gatherings across the 8th District. Now I say it to you — and I deeply mean it. Your vote is incredibly important and I know that you don’t cast it idly.
I think serving in Congress is incredibly important too; and I won’t ever forget that it isn’t my office — it is yours. And you will always be welcome in it.
If I am so honored to become your Congressman, I will protect the vulnerable. And fellow Arlingtonians, we are all vulnerable. If you breathe air and need healthcare, you are vulnerable.
Both my parents died of lung cancer, both as non-smokers. I see the cost of unclean air in terms of life and death — and I intend to do something about it.
If America can show the determination and grit to put man on the moon in the 1960s, then we can certainly build a National energy supergrid that will finally enable the effective use of clean, green technologies. That technology exists today. But it is drowned out by the big money of oil, gas and coal — and our Congress that takes it.
At stake is nothing but air quality, climate change, energy security, jobs, better health and more than a hundred billion dollars a year in defense department savings when we finally don’t have to protect our foreign sources of oil.
Want to do something nice for your kids? Do this. We simply must break our addiction to carbon-based fuels — it is slowly killing us.
And if you need healthcare, you are vulnerable. We are in a treatment trap where too many fee-for-service doctors over treat (which is dangerous) and too many insurance providers under treat (which is pathetic). Caught in the middle are the suffering citizens paying too much and getting too little — with 45,000 of us dying unnecessarily each year.
This is a life and death issue; this is about promoting the general welfare.
Universal Healthcare is within reach; but it is being drowned out by the big money of big insurance – and our Congress that takes it.
But I don’t blame special interests for representing their special interests. This is America and free speech is broad and deep. I blame our Congress for not keeping conflicts of interest at arm’s length. In no other organization would this be tolerated — not with our CEO’s, not with our Judges, not with our President.
For all the great things we want to accomplish — we must reform Congress. I encourage the American People to have no tolerance for this ethical tomfoolery. If we want a different result, then we will need different Congressmen. With your support, and perhaps that of your friends, I’ll be honored to lead this effort.
Last week we asked the two Democratic candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives, Eighth District of Virginia, to write a sub-500 word essay on why the county’s residents should vote for them during tomorrow’s (Tuesday, June 12) primary.
Here is the unedited response from incumbent Rep. Jim Moran:
I’ve dedicated my adult life to fighting for Northern Virginia; to strengthen our economy, promote social progress and safeguard our environment for future generations. Northern Virginia’s economy has been highly resilient through one of the worst downturns in U.S. history. Our proximity to the federal government, capitalizing on a creative class of technology entrepreneurs, government contractors and a diversity of small businesses has provided steady growth. We are now being challenged by conservative attempts to hollow out the federal government, regardless of the serious, negative, economic and societal impact it would have. I am using my role on the Appropriations Committee to fight to overcome these challenges and ensure that the 8th District remains the best place to work and live in the country.
Yesterday the Democratic blog Blue Virginia reported that the call claimed Shuttleworth was “doing a conference call… with [Democratic National Committee] Chairwoman [Rep.] Debbie Wasserman Schultz on women’s issues.” In reality, Blue Virginia blogger Lowell Feld wrote, “this call was simply ‘one of several monthly constituency caucus calls the Chair is making this week, with several thousand total participants.’”
In response, the Shuttleworth camp released a statement it sent to to Blue Virginia.
There was no intent to misrepresent the candidate’s status on the call as anything other than a participant.
In light of the ongoing attacks on Women’s rights in this country by the political right wing, Bruce Shuttleworth is encouraged by the DNC Chair’s initiative to energize women in support of the only party which protects their rights — the Democratic Party. That you don’t think it is important to widely share this initiative is a shame.
Bruce Shuttleworth will continue to encourage the citizens of VA-8 to get active and engaged and to fight for social and economic justice for all citizens. In fact, there will be another robocall going out tonight that will encourage Latino voters to participate in the White House Hispanic Community Action Summit this weekend in the District. We think it is important to support the President and get the Latino community engaged.
The campaign also released a transcript of the call (after the jump). Shuttleworth will face incumbent Rep. Jim Moran in the Democratic primary this coming Tuesday, June 12.
‘Flags-In’ Ceremony at Arlington National — As they have done every year since 1948, members of the “Old Guard,” 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment, placed an American flag at every grave in Arlington National Cemetery yesterday evening. The annual “Flags-In” ceremony is held each year in advance of Memorial Day weekend. The flags will be removed after Memorial Day. [Houston Chronicle]
Shuttleworth Campaign Profiled — Bruce Shuttleworth, who is challenging incumbent Rep. Jim Moran for the Eighth District Democratic congressional nomination, says he’s running against the 11-term congressman because of alleged ethics violations. “I think he votes the right way on social values, but he brazenly embraces conflicts of interest, and I think that’s unacceptable,” Shuttleworth told the Washington Post. Shuttleworth’s campaign, however, seems like a long shot — in March a group called the Campaign for Primary Accountability pulled its support of Shuttleworth to focus on “races where challengers understand what they must do to prevail.” [Washington Post]
Guas Returns to New Orleans — Bayou Bakery (1515 N. Courthouse Road) owner David Guas has returned to his native New Orleans — for the weekend. Guas will be appearing at the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience, a food festival, where he will demonstrate how to make “crawfish cheesecake” and then serve as a judge for the fifth annual Louisiana Seafood Cook-off. Guas is described by his hometown newspaper as ”a New Orleans-native, Harley-riding, duck-hunting, bass-fishing chef.” [New Orleans Times-Picayune]
Zapatat Tackles Tough Tattoo Removals — Ballston-based Zapatat (820 N. Pollard Street) has already attracted some 1,500 clients for its laser tattoo removal service. The business is now experimenting with a new laser removal process that is purported to remove tattoos in a quarter of the time of the usual method. [Washington Post]
Flickr pool photo by BrianMKA
County Manager Proposes $2.4 Billion CIP — Arlington County Manager Barbara Donnellan has proposed a $2.4 billion Capital Improvement Plan for FY 2013-2022. The CIP includes big ticket items like a new Long Bridge Park Aquatics Center and streetcars for the Columbia Pike and Route 1 corridors. It also includes maintenance-related item, like increased funding for street paving, parks and facility renovations, and replacement of aged fire stations. [Arlington County]
Arlington Eateries in Dining Guide — Two Arlington restaurants — Eventide and Ray’s The Steaks — have made Tom Sietsema’s spring 2012 dining guide. [Washington Post]
Shuttleworth Keeping Race Close? — The campaign of Democratic congressional challenger Bruce Shuttleworth is touting new polling numbers that it says show Shuttleworth has a chance against incumbent Rep. Jim Moran. The poll reportedly shows a thin margin between Shuttleworth and Moran among likely voters — 16 percent to 19 percent — with 65 percent of likely voters undecided. A Moran spokesman said the claim of a close race was based on “laughably inaccurate numbers.” [Sun Gazette]
Flickr pool photo by ddimick
Arlington resident Bruce Shuttleworth, who is challenging incumbent Rep. Jim Moran for the Eighth District Democratic congressional nomination, has withdrawn a lawsuit he filed after initially being told he did not qualify for the ballot.
Shuttleworth was eventually allowed on the June 12 primary ballot, but only after he filed the lawsuit. That led him to accuse local Democratic officials of “corruption.” (A charge the state Democratic party vehemently disputed.)
In withdrawing the lawsuit, Shuttleworth says he still “intends to hold the party fully accountable for its practices regarding ballot access.”
The campaign issued the following statement last night.
Democratic Congressional Candidate, Bruce Shuttleworth today has voluntarily dismissed his lawsuit against Brian Moran and several Democratic operatives after being certified for the Virginia District 8 Democratic primary ballot.
Bruce Shuttleworth stated, “the convenient turnaround when faced with a Federal lawsuit does not provide answers to how petitions in a Congressional race in America can simply go missing. We were forced to file suit when the Virginia Democratic Party proved unresponsive, at great personal expense. It is disappointing that I was required to invest so much time and money to fight for our inalienable right for an honest democratic process.”
Candidate Shuttleworth has reached out repeatedly to the party and to Jim Moran to attempt to remove the pall over the party’s ballot access process without the need for court review, but was rebuffed. In the interest of ceasing further deployment of resources, which the VA Democratic Party has not yet offered to repay, the case is being voluntarily dismissed. Notwithstanding today’s dismissal, Bruce Shuttleworth intends to hold the party fully accountable for its practices regarding ballot access. His dismissal of this case does not prejudice him from bringing further claims related to the irregularities of the party’s signature review process.
Bruce Shuttleworth is focused on providing ethical and practical solutions for the people of Virginia’s 8th Congressional District. Candidate Shuttleworth understands the power of free markets but is committed to people first and understands the real needs of his community. Lip service and fake compassion while cosying up to big business is not his style. Bruce Shuttleworth believes public service is his duty, not a career option.
This year there is an alternative to Jim Moran, a 22 year incumbent. This year a challenger has squeezed through to the ballot. This year, the people of VA-8 can choose a real progressive by voting for Bruce Shuttleworth on June 12th, not an opportunist who is a Blue Dog one day (DLC–Democratic Leadership Council) and a progressive the next. Bruce Shuttleworth has served his country with passion and integrity. While he is the underdog against the Moran machine, Bruce believes in the power of the grassroots movement.
New Indian Eatery Coming to R-B Corridor? — The Fairfax-based Indian restaurant Curry Mantra is scouting out real estate along the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor in hopes of opening two new “Curry Mantra Express” carryout restaurants by the end of the year. [Northern Virginia Magazine]
Shuttleworth Recruits Republicans — Bruce Shuttleworth, the Arlington businessman who’s challenging long-time incumbent Rep. Jim Moran for the Democratic nomination for Congress, is recruiting Republicans to vote for him in the June 12 primary. The Democratic blog Blue Virginia posted video of Shuttleworth asking for the vote of members of the Falls Church Republican Committee. [Blue Virginia]
GOP Looks for County Board Candidate — Arlington County Republicans are still trying to recruit a candidate to challenge Democrat Libby Garvey in November’s County Board election. Mark Kelly, who lost to Garvey in the recent County Board special election, says he doesn’t plan to run again this year. June 12 is the filing deadline to get on the November ballot. [Sun Gazette]
Local Bank Makes ‘Most Trustworthy’ List — Virginia Commerce Bancorp, the locally-based parent company of Virginia Commerce Bank, was named to the Forbes magazine list of “America’s 100 Most Trustworthy Companies.” [BusinessWire]
Flickr pool photo by Philliefan99
State Democratic officials say an error, not corruption, was the reason why Democratic congressional challenger Bruce Shuttleworth was initially not allowed on the 8th District primary ballot.
Officials announced yesterday that Shuttleworth had, in fact, submitted the necessary number of signatures to quality for the ballot, after they determined last week that he was 18 signatures short. At a press conference today, Shuttleworth charged that his opponent, Rep. Jim Moran, was somehow behind the snafu.
In a statement, a Moran spokesman didn’t respond directly to the allegations, but said the campaign hoped that officials would “get to the bottom of the situation.” The campaign also took a shot at one of Shuttleworth’s political backers.
The Moran campaign submitted their petitions well ahead of the deadline to avoid any last minute problems. It’s a deep concern that petitions appear to have been misplaced by the Fairfax County Registrar’s Office. We urge local officials to get to the bottom of the situation to find out what really happened, to ensure the Democratic process is protected.
For our campaign, nothing has changed. We were fully preparing for a primary, and the coming attacks from the conservative, Texas oil money fueled Super PAC that has stated their intent to try defeat the congressman, who has been a champion of the environment throughout his time in Congress.
Later this afternoon, Democratic Party of Virginia spokesman Brian Coy explained what had happened.
Democratic 8th Congressional District Committee chairwoman Margo Horner, who was named in Shuttleworth’s federal lawsuit challenging the initial petition decision, had passed off the petition signatures to impartial local election officials in Fairfax, Alexandria and Arlington, in an effort to avoid the certification process becoming too “politicized,” according to Coy.
Somehow, Coy said, the Fairfax County registrar lost a number of petitions during the process. They only discovered that the petitions had been lost after Arlington County registrar Linda Lindberg notified them that there were Fairfax County signatures within her office’s stack of petitions, according to Coy.
After the error was discovered — which was after Shuttleworth had initially been denied a spot on the ballot — the lost petitions were found, counted, and yesterday afternoon it was determined that Shuttleworth had, in fact, qualified for the ballot. Coy said that correct procedures were followed and denied that there was any intentional effort to leave Shuttleworth off the ballot.
“The results of this process had nothing to do with anything other than whether or not Mr. Shuttleworth had enough signatures,” Coy said. “Any insinuation that the party lost the signatures, that they did anything other than… go above and beyond the procedures that are laid out… is inaccurate.”
Coy added that “the responsibility to certify petitions lies with our congressional district committees” – not centrally with the Democratic Party of Virginia, whose chairman is Brian Moran, the congressman’s brother.
Update at 5:50 p.m. — Rep. Moran’s campaign and the state Democratic party have responded to Shuttleworth’s allegations.
When the campaign of Democratic congressional challenger Bruce Shuttleworth was first informed that it had not made the ballot for the upcoming June 12 primary, a spokeswoman said they were “supremely confident that this is nothing more than a minor clerical error.” After all, they had submitted 1,823 petition signatures when only 1,000 were needed to qualify for the ballot.
Today, a day after the Democratic 8th Congressional District Committee reversed itself and allowed Shuttleworth on the ballot, the Arlington businessman held a fiery press conference in Old Town Alexandria to decry what he asserted was “corruption” within the local Democratic party.
Dubbing the incident “Petition-gate,” Shuttleworth ripped in to his Democratic opponent, 11-term incumbent Rep. Jim Moran, accusing Moran and his supporters of having “cheated the people.”
“I think this sordid episode makes it clear that my opponent and his supporters will do anything, resort to almost anything to deny a reasonable choice,” Shuttleworth said to a small crowd of supporters and 2-3 journalists. “What kind of pathetic, smoke-filled backroom, Tammany Hall corruption is going on around here?”
Without giving specifics, Shuttleworth said officials misplaced or lost a portion of his campaign’s petition signatures, leading to the initial determination that he had come up 18 signatures short. Shortly after his campaign filed a federal lawsuit against several officials — including Moran’s brother, Virginia Democratic Party Chairman Brian Moran — Shuttleworth said the missing signatures were found.
“Somewhat less than miraculously, when confronted with a lawsuit, those hard-to-find missing petitions magically showed up,” Shuttleworth said. “It has been made very clear that challenges to the throne are not welcome.”
“They have no right to do this to our Democratic party,” said Shuttleworth, a former U.S. Navy pilot who has declared himself to be a “progressive warrior.”
“After more than a quarter century of Jim Moran at the helm of this party machine, when petitions for getting on the ballot of the United States Congress can be lost or misplaced for one second — one second! – what kind of banana republic is he trying to turn Northern Virginia in to?” Shuttleworth said emphatically. “How can this happen in America? Who will be held accountable?”
“There has been a grotesque miscarriage of justice,” Shuttleworth continued. “Without the recourse of legal action, I would not have made it on this ballot, and your voice would not have been heard… If the full truth in this case is ever revealed, I think voters will be very interested to see who is behind the curtain.”