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Posted at 7:08 PM ET, 03/23/2010

Cuccinelli's throwback tactics

By washingtonpost.com editors

By Robert J. Surovell
Alexandria

When the Supreme Court overturned the policy of “separate but equal” in Brown v. Board of Education, the commonwealth of Virginia adopted a policy of massive resistance. Virginia would close her public schools rather than suffer “mixing of the races” in schoolrooms. As we all know, massive resistance went the way of segregation into the dustbin of history, where it belongs. But now massive resistance is back.

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II and his Republican colleagues in the General Assembly of Virginia are arming themselves to do battle with the federal government over health-care legislation [“Va. poised to fight federal health-care reform measure,” Metro, March 18]. Mr. Cuccinelli is going to defend Virginians from the age of universal health care. And while he and his colleagues are at it, they are going to defend our right to low taxes, clogged roads and underfunded public transit, schools and mental health services. Mr. Cuccinelli is also hard at work changing policies so that Virginia’s public colleges and universities will have the “right” to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.

Massive resistance didn’t work in the 1950s, and it isn’t going to work now. Mr. Cuccinelli should attend to the responsibilities of his office and leave the policymaking to the policymakers.

The writer is a law partner of Virginia Del. Scott A. Surovell (D-Mount Vernon), his son, and Virginia Sen. J. Chapman “Chap” Petersen (D-Fairfax).

By washingtonpost.com editors  | March 23, 2010; 7:08 PM ET
Categories:  HotTopic, Virginia, health care  
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Comments

I agree. If he is so against health insurance, please let him give his up. As a taxpayer paying for his salary, all the better if we don't have to cover his health insurance costs. In general, doesn't our Attorney General have better things to do with his time than waste our tax dollars on his frivolous partisan pursuits?

Posted by: garbagejosh | March 23, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

I hope any independent that voted for this clown is happy with the result. In the future voters should do some of their own research. It was anticipated that this jerk would be a disaster. I'm embarassed for the State. I thought the Governor ran as a moderate. Thus far it seems he is pretty acting much in line with his conservative thesis.

Posted by: Falmouth1 | March 24, 2010 6:25 AM | Report abuse

Personally, I think this man should be commended for his efforts. Even our governor is backing him. We have a President who is unbelievably incompetent, and he cares for no one but himself and government. This country belongs to it's citizens and our leaders are supposed to be setting examples and fighting for what the people want. This ridiculous health bill is a slap in the face to us, to our constitution, and quite frankly, it has the potential to destroy our economy. Not to mention, anyone with a job is going to be funding it. So i really don't think we should be disagreeing with an attorney general who has the courage to fight against this stupid reform and stand up for his fellow citizens. We should back him and give our support.

Posted by: TheDubya | March 24, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

General Cuncinelli should be commended to fight for freedom. He is following in the fine example of Tim McVay, Rev Fred Phelps of Westboro Baptist Church, Rach Limbaugh, Larry “Wide Stance” Craig,and of course Jesse Helms.
This is what the people of Virginia want and deserve.. freedom!

Posted by: vanwahlgren | March 24, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

You are an attorney? How did you pass constitutional law and the bar exam?

It violates the Constitution by requiring people to do something the Constitution doesn't grant to the federal government. There's no way that people are considered "interstate commerce", otherwise the federal power would be limitless, and then there would be no point for the constitution to have created a federal system. The Federal government can no more force you to buy insurance than it can force you to buy a car, or a bicyle. Trying to compare that to denying civil rights is PATHETIC. I wonder what grade you got in Constitutional Law. If this hypothetical came up on a law school exam, or the bar exam, do you think you would actually do well on a question if you agreed that the federal government could force you to buy something that doesn't fall into the commerce clause? I pity your clients.

Posted by: scoran | March 24, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Completely omitted by the writer's agenda spun submission, is the fact that the Virginia legislature has spoken in this matter, as well as Mr. Cuccinelli.

The writer's real issue is that he is a socialist, and consequently believes that there should not even be 50 states. Just one federal government forcing all Americans to dance to its tunes.

Posted by: john_bruckner | March 24, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

TheDubya:

There is nothing "courageous" about the Attorney General's filing a "junk lawsuit" (to use a favorite Republican phrase) to advance an ideological cause. "Foolhardy," "unethical," and "cynical" would be more like it. The man's job calls for him to ensure the public safety of the citizens of the Commonwealth, and it is a misuse of his position to be spending our money tilting at windmills like this.

(BTW, who, exactly, do you think is currently paying for health care for the uninsured? Hint: look in the mirror.)

Posted by: jac13 | March 24, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

How is this a "junk lawsuit"? I cannot even imagine the arguments the Federal government will make other than it iwll argue to expand what is considered interstate commerce to include people. And that failed when they tried to include students into being interstate commerce. If anything, the ill will, bad faith, was in congress in passing a bill that as it stands today, is unconstitutional based upon current precedent. This kind of law needs a constitutional amendment to give the federal government this kind of power.

Posted by: scoran | March 24, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

The positive about Cucinelli's tactics is that he has established a solid national reputation as an extreme right-wing birther, state rights, anti-gay judicial activist conservative in a resoundingly short time. There will no way he can hide his true colors like Va Governnor McDonnell did in the last campaign. This is no thesis from the 1980's - there are numerous statements in the press and in legal briefs. We will see how much support he gets from the more moderate voters in Northern VA in any future campaign. Sorry Kenny - enjoy your run since its not going to last!! If you mess up in any way that can legally stick during your stay in office - malfeasance, improprieties - lots of people will pounce on you!! Watch those expenses you claim!!

Posted by: PWChomeowner | March 24, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Whatever, spineless smoking ban liberals.

Posted by: scoran | March 24, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Hey Scoran -

excellent point! These "spineless" smoking ban liberals just whooped you in the U.S. Congress to pass a history changing law. Glad your stiff backbone couldn't stop it from happening. Good luck with those junk lawsuits - you'll need it! Better yet - go smoke one - outside in the fresh air.

Posted by: PWChomeowner | March 24, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Re "junk lawsuit" -

See, "Health bill lawsuits are going nowhere"

http://www.cnn.com/2010/OPINION/03/24/jost.health.bill.challenges/index.html?hpt=T1

Posted by: jac13 | March 24, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Jac13:

What exactly is cynical and foolhardy about defending our rights and our constitution?? Not to mention there's hardly any use in debating with anyone who considers morality an ideology. Anyone with half of a brain knows that dishonesty is something we absolutely DO NOT need in leadership, much less Presidency.

I'm well aware of who pays for healthcare, however I appreciate a man fighting for not having to pay additional money, especially when certain other officials, including the president himself, have included their own exhemption in their own bill. How twisted is that? But how can argue with someone that votes for that. Fact is, you can't...and the reason is simple. Those type of people have no morals, no concern for others, extreme lack of common sense and a passion for finding something to complain about.

Our president, most of our leaders, and the vast majority of people that voted for these people are, i'm quite sure, extremely intelligent and highly educated. However, without common sense, their just educated idiots. Truth hurts. Sorry to inform.

Posted by: TheDubya | March 24, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Have fun Virginia. You voted for him. Northern VA. should become the 51st state. Let those south and west of Fredericksburg fend for themselves in their 18th century mind-set.

Posted by: jckdoors | March 25, 2010 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Surely there must be some stream of grant money that Virginia receives (and obviously never complains about) that the Federal Government can turn off? If Cucko-Nelly wants to be ticky tacky, how about ticky-tacky ways to deprive VA of its highway funds?

So go your own way Virgnia! Good luck! Maybe VA ought to experience on year of no Federal involvement in anything. Your state police, state DOT, hospitals, and schools would be bankrupt ina week.

Posted by: Wallenstein | March 25, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

It is absolutely shameful that people are acting the way they are over the healthcare bill, especially Ken Cuccinelli. This is a bill that HELPS PEOPLE for goodness sakes! Why are people acting so ignorant and idiotic about it?
Ken Cuccinelli should be ashamed of himself for wasting taxpayer money on such a frivilous lawsuit. If he is so against healthcare, lets cancel his policy and leave him and his family without health insurance and see how he likes it. The shameful part about all of this is, that it's really not about healthcare. It's about the fact that OBAMA initiated this bill and he just happens to be a black man. Some people just cannot stand that. It cuts to the core of their hatred of people that don't look like them and that is pathetic and shamefully sad. Again, this bill helps so many people that need and deserve to be helped. This bill is what presidents since Teddy Roosevelt have been trying to pass but couldn't. Now Obama and done it and there are some people that hate that fact. Their hatred for our President, a black man, overpowers their compassion & love for their fellow man and that is a horrible reprehensible shame! Get over it people. No matter how much AGs like Ken Cuccinelli try to sue the Federal Government; how many protests their are; how many nasty names people are called; how many gas lines are cut, hoe many ignorant pranks calls are made, or how many folks are interviewed on TV saying idiotic & hateful things, THE HEALTHCARE BILL PASSED & WILL PASS AGAIN because it is the right thing for the U.S. Virginia is my state, but it has been in its past, a very racist state. It wasn't too many years ago that VA said it would close the doors on its schools before it allowed "race mixing". It was also not too many years ago when it was illegal for blacks and whites to marry in Virginia. Virginia has come a way, but this healthcare & Ken Cuccinelli nonsense proves Virginia still has a looooong way to go. Virginia is better than this. For once people, lets allow what we know is right to outweigh our hatred. This is not a black issue or white issue, it's an American issue and it helps ALL people! COME ON PEOPLE, WE ARE BETTER THAN THIS! On 911, it didn't matter who helped you or your loved one out of the twin towers or the Pentagon, we were ONE, WE WERE AMERICANS and we were under attack, so we came together because NOTHING ELSE MATTERED. We need to go back to that today. WE ARE AMERICANS and we are under attack again, let's rise up as we did on 911 and do today what we did then. Color, tax bracket, political party...none of that mattered then and it shouldn't matter now. Let's put aside those things that don't matter and JUST DO THE RIGHT THING for ALL AMERICANS! COME ON PEOPLE! I DARE YOU TO SEARCH YOUR HEART AND FOR ONCE..PUT HATRED & NONSENSE AWAY AND JUST DO THE RIGHT THING!!

Posted by: msmarti2u2 | March 25, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Watch out for this Cuccinelli guy. He's Rick Santorum, only with brains.

Posted by: gardyloo | March 26, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Re John Bruckner:

Rob Surovell the socialist? What a hoot!

Re scoran: I assure you Mr. Surovell is a very fine attorney. You would do well to retain him if you found yourself in need of legal help.

Both have you have a very bad case of Republicanitis. If someone offers an opinion different from yours, you denigrate and dehumanize rather than using whatever intellect you possess to simply express your disagreement as Mr. Surovell has done.

Good luck with that.

Posted by: rockchalk | March 27, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

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