Peter’s Take is a weekly opinion column. The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ARLnow.com.
Ken Cuccinelli for Governor
As I have previously written, Ken Cuccinelli has an extreme anti-women agenda, including support for a “personhood” law that would end or cripple a series of personal rights that women in Arlington and the rest of Virginia have enjoyed for decades, such as:
- Birth control
- Fertility treatment
- Management of a miscarriage
- Access to safe and legal abortions
Cuccinelli holds many other extreme positions that are unappealing to large numbers of Arlington Republicans, including his attacks on academic freedom and his war on science. Rather than balancing Cuccinelli with two other more moderate candidates, the RPVA instead chose two candidates with even more extreme views.
E.W. Jackson for Lieutenant Governor
This is Mr. Jackson’s message for the gay and lesbian community: “Gays and lesbians have ‘perverted’ minds and are ‘very sick people psychologically, mentally and emotionally,’ … [they] seek societal approval because ‘they’ll never feel satisfied because in their heart of hearts’ they know ‘it is immoral, it is perverse, it is degenerate.’”
Mr. Jackson believes that gay marriage is like “spitting in the face of every bible-believing Christian in America.” Mr. Jackson thinks that Planned Parenthood has been “far more lethal to Black lives than the KKK ever was.”
RPVA is sponsoring Mr. Jackson as someone who deserves to be a heartbeat away from the Virginia governorship.
Coyote Spottings in Arlington? — Some residents in the Leeway Overlee area of Arlington have recently reported spotting a coyote in their neighborhood. While video has proven the presence of coyotes — or at least one coyote — in Arlington, naturalists question whether the animal spotted might actually be a fox or a mangy dog. [NBC Washington]
GOP AG Debate at GMU Law Tonight — The George Mason University School of Law in Arlington will host a debate between the two Republican candidates for Virginia Attorney General tonight. The event, which is open to the public, will start at 7:30 p.m. and will be moderated by former attorney general and governor Jim Gilmore. [Republican National Lawyers Association]
Arlington ‘Avoiding D.C.’s Traffic Nightmare’ — Arlington County has managed to avoid the “traffic nightmare” that’s facing nearby D.C. thanks to a “multifaceted effort to curb car-dependence” that serves as “a regional model,” according to WAMU. [WAMU]
Flickr pool photo by Ddimick
More on the Arlington Goat Prank – The Navy has confirmed that Bill the Goat, the U.S. Naval Academy mascot, was the goat that was found tied up in a median at the intersection of Army Navy Drive and S. Eads Street, near the Pentagon, this past weekend. The goat was “recovered Saturday morning in good condition.” The Army-Navy football game is Dec. 8 and a Navy spokeswoman noted: “Bill the Goat has been a part of our 10-game winning streak against Army, so we are glad to have him back before the big game next week.” [Navy Times]
Arlington GOP Counts Accomplishments — Even though Republican candidates did not win a single race in Arlington, members of the Arlington County Republican Committee are tallying some small victories. “We kept Arlington moving toward more common-sense policies,” said Matt Wavro, this year’s GOP County Board candidate. [Sun Gazette]
‘Shark Tank’ Charity Pitch Event — Twenty entrepreneurs from around Virginia will have a chance to pitch their business startup ideas to panel of business leaders and investors in Arlington this morning. The Shark Tank-like pitch competition will help raise money for charity. The event is taking place at the Ballston offices of Arlington Economic Development, but tickets are no longer available. [Eventbrite]
Commission Says No to Lee Hwy Project — The Arlington Planning Commission has voted against a developer’s plan to build a 10-story apartment building and a MOM’s Organic Market grocery store on the current Bergmann’s Dry Cleaner site on Lee Highway. The commission expressed reservations about approving the project when there’s no overarching county development plan for Lee Highway. Some neighborhood residents who supported the development said they were disappointed with the commission’s vote. The County Board will have the final say when they consider the matter on Dec. 8. [Arlington Mercury]
Arlington GOP Still Trying to Stop Streetcar — The Arlington County Republican Committee is trying a new tactic to halt the planned Columbia Pike streetcar. The GOP is asking state lawmakers to pass a measure that would require Arlington County to have a voter referendum before selling bonds to fund the streetcar. [Sun Gazette]
Ballston Bar Crawl to Benefit Sandy — Eight Ballston-area bars are hosting a bar crawl to benefit victims of Hurricane Sandy. The bar crawl will start at noon on Saturday at Front Page (4201 Wilson Blvd). The event also includes a poker competition for prizes, like Redskins and Capitals gear. [Clarendon Nights]
Arlington Democrats will be watching the election returns on the big screen at the Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse (2903 Columbia Pike). The event, which starts at 6:00 p.m., features free admission, a hot food buffet ($10 or $12, depending who you ask) and a cash bar.
“We will be joined by volunteers, candidates, elected officials and the general public as we watch the returns, share stories from the campaign trail and celebrate democracy in action!” said Arlington Young Democrats spokesman Mike Lewan.
Arlington Republicans will be monitoring the election results on five televisions at RiRa Irish Pub in Clarendon (2915 Wilson Blvd). The grand ole party will include $3 Heineken and Newcastle all night, plus “some specials on some Americana type beers, likely Sam Adams.” Nachos and pretzels will be half off.
The event is officially being held from 8:00 to 11:00 p.m., but attendees are being encouraged to show up earlier and stay later. WiFi internet access will be provided for wonks who want to monitor real-time results and Twitter reactions.
The Arlington Green Party, meanwhile, will be holding a more subdued affair. The Greens’ celebration, which is being held at a private north Arlington residence starting at 7:00 p.m., will feature “vegetarian chili, corn bread, hot and cold drinks.”
Those hoping for a more non-partisan event can attend an “Election Day Decompression Session” at Iota Club and Cafe in Clarendon (2832 Wilson Blvd) on Tuesday. The free event will offer happy hour prices from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. DJ Sam Snow will be spinning tunes from 6:00 until “late.” The DJing will be decidedly undemocratic: no requests will be taken.
“IOTA is a politics-free zone lovin’ the donkeys and the elephants and the indies,” said co-owner Jane Negrey Inge. “It’s all about togetherness!”
Capitol City Brewing in Shirlington (4001 Campbell Avenue) is hosting Election Day festivities all day on Tuesday. The event, from 11:00 a.m. to midnight, includes election-related programming on the TVs, $5 appetizers, half dollar wings and happy hour-priced pints of beer.
Some local restaurants are offering election-specific specials in the run-up to the election.
Bar TNT (within Eamonn’s, 2413 Columbia Pike) is offering two bipartisan cocktails for the price on one: a red tequila-based “Willard ‘Mitt’ Romney-rita” and a blue rum-based “Obama-Mama,” $12 for the pair (pictured). Good Stuff Eatery in Crystal City (2110 Crystal Drive), meanwhile, is still tallying votes for its “Great Burger Debate,” featuring a Democratic “James Carville” burger and a Republican “Mary Matalin” burger.
Local Parties to Hold Debate Watching Parties — Local Republicans and Democrats will be holding viewing parties for the first of the 2012 presidential debates tonight. The Arlington Republican viewing party will be held at Mad Rose Tavern in Clarendon (3100 Clarendon Blvd). The Arlington Democratic viewing party will be held at Bailey’s Pub & Grille in Ballston (4238 Wilson Blvd).
Parents Say Bus Changes Are Taking a Toll – Students are not performing as well academically and at least one mom lost her job as a result of changes to the County’s school bus policies, according to a group of parents. Parents of Campbell Elementary students are planning to carpool — to Thursday’s School Board meeting, to voice their concerns. [WTOP]
More Local BRAC Moves Coming — According to one estimate, government agencies with leases expiring between now and 2015 as a result of the Base Realignment and Closure Act occupy more than 4.5 million square feet of office space in Arlington and Alexandria. The BRAC move-outs are impacting the bottom line of some commercial property holders. Vornado, with office space in Arlington and Fairfax County, expects earnings to be down as much as $60 million as a result of BRAC. [Bloomberg]
Church Series on ‘Restoring Political Civility’ — The Rock Spring Congregational United Church of Christ (5010 Little Falls Road) will be holding a four-part series that will “discuss how citizenship is a responsibility rather than a privilege, and how to restore civility to the political process.” [Sun Gazette]
Flickr pool photo by Keithhall
Arlington Newlyweds Climb Mountain in Tux and Gown — Bob Ewing and Antonie Hodge Ewing, a newlywed couple from Arlington who happen to be avid rock climbers, have attracted national media attention by climbing a summit in Seneca Rocks, W. Va. while wearing a tux and a wedding dress. A small wedding party, including the bride’s mother, also completed the climb with them. [ABC News]
McDonnell Gives Speech at GOP Convention — Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell delivered a speech at the Republican National Convention last night. McDonnell said the election “is about restoring the American Dream” and implementing the kind of fiscally conservative policies that have benefited Virginia. [NBC Washington, Transcript]
Boathouse Comment Period Extended – Updated at 12:30 p.m. — The National Park Service is now accepting public comments about preliminary alternatives for a Potomac River boathouse in Arlington County through Sept. 30. Of the four possible locations identified for the boathouse, two are just south of the Key Bridge, one is near Gravelly Point, and one is on Daingerfield Island. “The boathouse facility and its amenities would enhance public waterfront access in the vicinity of Arlington County for non-motorized recreational activities,” NPS says. [National Park Service]
Photo courtesy Andrew Clegg
Bluemont McDonald’s Demolition — Crews have been working to tear down the McDonald’s restaurant at 5009 Wilson Blvd in the Bluemont area. (See photo, above.) The building will be replaced with a new, more modern McDonald’s restaurant.
McGhee Gets GOP Nod for Special Election — Tim McGhee is the Republican nominee in the special election for the 45th District House of Delegates seat, which is being vacated by Del. David Englin. McGhee, who lost to Adam Ebbin in a state Senate race last year, will face either Democrat Karen Gautney or Rob Krupicka, depending on the outcome of a party caucus that got underway last night. [Patch, Sun Gazette]
Last Chance to Comment on Bikeshare Plan — Today is the last day to comment on Arlington’s Capital Bikeshare Expansion Plan. Comments on the six year strategic growth plan can be submitted online through the end of the day today. [Arlington Transportation Partners]
Republicans Pounce on Garvey’s Streetcar Abstention — Hoping to capture a seat on the County Board this November, Republicans are planning on hammering away at the current all-Democrat Board for approving the Columbia Pike streetcar. The GOP is also planning to pounce on their Democratic opponent, Libby Garvey, for abstaining from the streetcar vote while expressing skepticism about the plan. Republican Matt Wavro will face Garvey and Green Party candidate Audrey Clement on the Nov. 6 ballot. [Sun Gazette]
Arlington Officials Puzzled by Estate Gift — Arlington officials can’t fathom why a late resident left the county five percent of his estate in his will. The County Board had to vote to refund some of the money after whoever is in charge of executing the will made an error and sent the county $51,000 more than it was actually owed. [Patch]
Paisano’s Named Best Pizza by WTOP — Paisano’s has been named the best pizza in the D.C. area by WTOP listeners and website visitors. The local chain has a location near Crystal City at 3650 South Glebe Road. Pete’s New Haven Style Apizza, which has a location in Clarendon, placed #4 in the voting. [WTOP]
Flickr pool photo by Christaki
Wavro will be facing Democrat Libby Garvey and perennial Green Party candidate Audrey Clement in November, following Garvey’s recent defeat of a better-known Republican candidate in a very low-turnout special election — an election that was billed as the GOP’s best chance of getting on the Board since 1999.
Wavro’s chances are especially long due to the other, higher-profile races that are on the bill for November 6 — the presidential race, a U.S. Senate race and a House of Representatives race — all of which are sure to draw droves of Democrats to the polls in Arlington.
Nonetheless Wavro, who lives in Crystal City and works as a human resources consultant, says he’s prepared to make a strong case to voters for why he should be elected. In an email to ARLnow.com, Wavro detailed some of his positions on the issues.
Like many in Arlington, I am concerned with the direction of our county. We score well in magazine surveys, but the health of our civil society and the quality of life of our neighbors is a much better measure of the performance of our political leadership. The civil and political health of our community continues to decline under the control of a single-party controlled County Board. It is the lack of any dissenting voices on the board that has allowed the County Board to continue their plans to rapidly redevelop neighborhoods and redesign our lives and our community around their ideological beliefs.
I am running for a seat on the Arlington County Board to stand up for our neighborhoods. It shouldn’t be considered part of living in Arlington that you have to regularly mobilize your neighbors to speak out against a local government action, program or plan that members of the County Board have determined does not require public input. We deserve a County Board Member who will insist on meaningful collaboration with homeowners, renters and local businesses instead of a top-down, rigid ideological approach to sidewalks, streets, zoning, permits, signs and outdoor restaurant seating.
I am running to bring active and engaged leadership to the County Board. The Arlington County Civic Federation has regularly called for an Inspector General to provide a professional and independent review of governmental operations to the County Board and the community. When elected, I will work with my colleagues to establish an Office of Inspector General to provide this much needed governance reform. If the current County Board continues their obstruction and insistence on a structural lack of accountability on tax, budget and spending issues, I will raise donations myself to fund an analogous position through a non-profit entity.
I am running to stand with our community against the wholesale redevelopment of particular neighborhoods and to develop a better plan for Columbia Pike than the trolley. I am running to prove that Arlington County government can be both effective and efficient without increasing taxes on top of already increased property-tax assessments. Lastly, I am running to appropriately prioritize projects in our county’s capital improvement program so that we can give our schools the flexibility to solve the capacity problem without another massive tax increase or an equally damaging downgrade to the County’s bond rating.
Anyone interested in more information can visit my website www.Wavro2012.com to sign up for email updates and get involved.
Photo via Facebook
Arlington Cops Recognized — Five Arlington cops have been recognized by Virginia State Police for their exceptional work in deterring auto theft. The Law Enforcement Office Award competition — which recognizes efforts to combat car theft — is judged by partnering law enforcement agencies, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, and insurance industry representatives. [Arlington County]
Remembering Swillers Music — Back in the mid-20th century, Swillers Music was the place in Clarendon to buy musical instruments, sheet music, and even turntables or radios. The bygone store also had its own recording studio. [Library Blog]
Arlington: The Palo Alto of the East?– The Arlington Convention and Visitors Service is touting the our tech-savvy county as “the Palo Alto of the east coast” via Twitter.
Flickr pool photo by Divaknevil
Good Stuff Eatery Opens Tonight — The new Good Stuff Eatery location at 2110 Crystal Drive in Crystal City will open to the general public for the first time tonight. The burger and shake restaurant will be open for dinner only today; it will start opening for lunch and dinner tomorrow. A television production crew is expected to be filming at the restaurant tonight for an upcoming episode of ‘Life After Top Chef.’
Potomac Overlook Naturalist Retiring — Martin Ogle, who is retiring next week after 27 years as chief naturalist at Potomac Overlook Regional Park, is being credited with playing a key role in a number of environmental initiatives in Arlington over the years. [Falls Church News-Press]
Moran Challenger Worries About GOP Inclusiveness – Patrick Murray, the Republican who will be trying again to unseat incumbent Rep. Jim Moran (D) in November, is concerned that the GOP is straying from Ronald Reagan’s belief in a ‘Big Tent.’ Murray issued a statement following Ric Grenell’s resignation from Mitt Romney’s Republican presidential campaign. Grenell resigned as a spokesman for the campaign after social conservative groups began criticizing the campaign because Grenell is openly gay. Murray said he was “disappointed” to learn that Grenell stepped down. [Sun Gazette]
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
Contractor Chosen for New Ballston Apt. Tower — KBR Building Group has been tapped to build “The Place at Founders Square,” a new 17-story, mixed-use residential tower at 4000 Wilson Boulevard. Construction is expected to wrap up by the end of 2013. [CityBiz Real Estate]
Construction Update on Rosslyn Office Building — Construction on 1812 N. Moore Street, a 35-story behemoth in Rosslyn that will be the region’s tallest building upon completion, has topped the construction pit and reached surface level. [DC Metrocentric]
Multimedia Tools Available at Library ‘Lab’ — Next month Arlington Central Library will be launching a temporary “lab” on the first floor that will provide do-it-yourself multimedia creation tools. The Digital Projects Lab, as it will be called, will be open 20 hours per week and will have digital tools like Photoshop, Flash, Illustrator, InDesign, Dreamweaver, Fireworks, Final Cut Pro, Audacity and iMovie. The lab will be powered by MacBook computers and will also have a video camera, microphone, large color printer, film/photo scanner and Wacom Intuos 3 tablet. [Arlington Public Library]
Arlington GOP Doesn’t Rule Out Nov. Run — Arlington Republicans say they’re trying to recruit a candidate to take on newly-elected Democratic County Board member Libby Garvey in November. A Republican County Board candidate would face very steep odds, as the presidential election is expected to drive Arlington Democrats to the polls in droves. No Democratic candidate filed to challenge Garvey for the nomination before last night’s filing deadline. [Washington Post]
GOP May Skip November Board Race — With a presidential election likely to bring Democrats out to the polls in droves, Republicans are saying, privately, that it’s likely they will not be running a candidate for County Board in November. Republican Mark Kelly received 43.5 percent of the vote to Democrat Libby Garvey’s 49.2 percent in yesterday’s historically low turnout special election. [Sun Gazette]
D.C. Premiere of H-B Grad’s Film Planned — Fresh off a big win at the Sundance Film Festival, “Fishing Without Nets” will be holding its Washington, D.C. premiere next month. The short film, created by H-B Woodlawn grad Cutter Hodierne, will be premiering at a “surprise location” on Saturday, April 21. Tickets are $15. [Eventbrite]
Sun Gazette Sold to Texas Company — The weekly Sun Gazette newspaper has been sold to HPR Hemlock LLC, a newspaper investment firm out of Fort Worth, Texas. A company executive says the Sun Gazette and its sister publication, Leesburg Today, will retain autonomy at the local level. The Sun Gazette had previously been owned by another Texas company, American Community Newspapers LLC, which declared bankruptcy in 2009. [Sun Gazette]