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The Right Note: Terry McAuliffe’s Top Nine ‘Qualifications’ for Governor

The Right Note is a weekly opinion column published on Thursdays. The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of

Mark Kelly

9. Dollars Before Dorothy. McAuliffe left his sobbing wife and newborn baby in the car on the way home from the hospital to attend a DNC fundraiser. But, hey, it was a million bucks.

8. Everyone Fudges Their Resume. McAuliffe pointed to Franklin Pellets as a successful green energy venture. Except the facility still sits dormant.

7. Everyone Fudges Their Resume (Part 2). McAuliffe claimed his company, GreenTech Automotive, was creating hundreds of jobs here in America under his watch. Except that it hasn’t.

6. What Didn’t He Know. . . Speaking of GreenTech, Governor Kaine’s administration rejected economic development assistance for the company because of concerns it looked like a cash-for-visas scheme. McAuliffe moved the planned plant, which has not been built, to Mississippi. The SEC began an investigation into GreenTech earlier this year as a cash-for-visas scheme. McAuliffe claims to have no knowledge of it.

5. . . . and When Didn’t He Know It. After news reports about his investment in a scheme to steal the identities of the terminally ill, McAuliffe claimed to know nothing about it.

4. Believes Money Grows on Trees. . . McAuliffe believes Medicaid expansion is free money for Virginia. Setting aside the fact that Medicaid expansion is essentially “paid for” by Medicare cuts, it is true the next governor would be able to expand Medicaid with little impact on the state budget. However, while the federal match is at 100 percent now, the state share will phase in to 10 percent beginning in 2017. In order to meet the 10 percent match, Virginia will need to raise taxes, or other priorities like education and transportation will be squeezed out of Virginia’s budget. And, with a growing $17 trillion national debt, it is unlikely the federal match will remain at 90 percent for very long.

3. . . . and Obamacare is Working as Promised. No one is a bigger cheerleader for Obamacare than the former DNC Chairman. McAuliffe ignored basic economics which undercut the law’s two big selling points: if you like your health care plan, you can keep it; and your premiums will go down. McAuliffe’s campaign website issues page still claims exchanges will “lower costs” despite all evidence to the contrary.

2. His “Expertise” on Virginia. One of McAuliffe’s transportation priorities was to build a “four lane” a highway that is already four lanes. With no experience in Virginia government, McAuliffe will need on-the-job training to be governor. Cuccinelli, on the other hand, can hit the ground running and keep doing things like this.

And the number one Terry McAuliffe qualification is . . .

1. Has a Plan for Getting Things Done. While offering no specific policy proposals, McAuliffe told the Northern Virginia TechPAC board his secret to being governor – invite everyone out for drinks. The board endorsed Cuccinelli because he actually offered serious, detail-oriented responses to their questions.

Mark Kelly is a former Arlington GOP Chairman and two-time Republican candidate for Arlington County Board.

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