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The Right Note: How Are They Doing?

Mark KellyThe Right Note is a weekly opinion column. The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ARLnow.com.

Not a single member of the House of Delegates from Arlington received an endorsement from the National Federation of Independent Businesses, the nation’s largest organization of small businesses. To be fair, not a single Democrat in Virginia received one of NFIB’s 53 endorsements.

While NFIB’s legislative priorities of lower taxes and a common sense regulatory environment does not regularly line up with the Democratic policy agenda, it makes one think, how are Democrats doing when they can implement their own agenda?

While the General Assembly is controlled by Republicans, Democrats in Arlington have a 4-1 majority on the County Board. This is not new. As Arlington has become more urban, its voting patterns have increasingly trended toward the Democrats. The Democrats have controlled the Board since the 1980s and have spent most of the time since holding all five of the seats.

Erik Gutshall, the Democrats’ current nominee for County Board, is almost certainly going to maintain that 4-1 split this November. To his credit, he has posted a number of issue statements on his website. In one of them, Gutshall repeats the line that many Democrat candidates have used when he says, “it is more important than ever for Arlingtonians to embrace the shared progressive values that have always united us.”

When I hear a Democrat make such a statement, it makes me wonder do they spend much time talking to people outside of their own bubble? While “progressive values” do unite about one-third of Arlingtonians, one in four Arlingtonians typically vote Republican. The remainder are left of center and generally vote for Democrats, but they are open to a common sense message that paved the way for the election of Republican-backed Independent John Vihstadt to win a seat.

But year after year Democrats in Arlington run on a similar set of so-called “progressive” issues. After three decades of controlling Arlington, maybe it’s time to ask how have their results stacked up against their own agenda? Here are three issues to start the conversation:

Commercial Vacancy Rate: This issue has come to the forefront in recent years, but it boils down to a simple question: do Arlington’s policies as they relate to owning and operating a business attract new businesses to our county?

Housing Affordability: For all of the efforts to address this issue and talk year after year from Democrat candidates, has the all-Democrat county leadership made housing in Arlington more affordable or less affordable?

The State of Metro: Arlington is not alone in this one, but the WMATA Board has almost exclusively been made up of Democrats. Under that leadership, is Metro structured and operated in a way that is safe and fiscally sustainable?

Democrats may have a virtual lock on electoral politics for the foreseeable future here in Arlington. They also benefit from Arlington’s location directly across the Potomac River from the greatest concentration of power and wealth on Earth which protects are tax base and gives our elected leaders a big margin for error in how they manage our resources. They should be held accountable for how they measure up to their own “progressive” standards.

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This year, the tree sale will be held at the Knights of Columbus (5115 Little Falls Road). The lot opens for sales on November 25th. The Optimist Club is selling small and large trees ranging from tabletop size to huge 14 foot tall trees! Wreaths, garlands, tree stands, and White House Christmas ornaments will also be for sale.

100% of all proceeds go towards helping Arlington County youth.

For more information, please visit the Arlington Optimists website at https://optimistclubofarlingtonva.org/.

Submit your own Announcement here.

Art House 7 is a small art studio in Arlington – offering instruction in painting, ceramics, sewing and more. We are looking for kind, dedicated people who love both creating and teaching.

Ceramic Teachers are needed to teach wheel-throwing to adults and 6-12th graders and to teach hand building to elementary grades. Classes have 3-8 students.

Drawing teachers are needed to teach either kids or adults. For kids, we offer cartooning, manga or traditional drawing. For adults, we only offer traditional drawing.

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Submit your own Announcement here.

National Chamber Ensemble – Holiday Cheer!

NCE’s Holiday Concert will bring the finest classical masterpieces and holiday favorites together for the whole family. The festivities begin with Leroy Anderson’s classic “Sleigh Ride” and “Chanukkah Festival”, music from the Nutcracker and by J.S. Bach.

Outstanding Young Artist

Tony Woods Live – Standup Comedy Showcase

Live Standup Comedy Starring the Legendary Tony Woods!
Arlington, VA
Friday, November 25

8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. (Doors at 7pm)
Crystal City Sports Pub (3rd floor lounge)
529 23rd Street South, Arlington, VA
$15 – General admission
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