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Veterans Plan by Moran, Open Government by McDonnell

Rosalind Helderman

Some interesting policy roll-outs today on both sides of the aisle. In the morning, Brian Moran put out a plan to provide more benefits for Virginia veterans and this afternoon brought together the duo of Bob McDonnell and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling with a series of good government proposals, including endorsing bipartisan legislative redistricting and a two-term governor.

The Moran plan includes allowing military personnel to buy into Virginia Retirement System life insurance policies, requiring state government to make up salaries for reservist employees who take a pay cut when called up, and giving veterans an advantage with state procurement. It also require that banks delay foreclosures for deployed military personnel until at least 90 days after their deployment ends.

His proposal on the issue includes a positive quote from the co-chairman of Virginia Veterans for Obama, a validator any Democratic candidate would be happy to have.

McDonnell, in the meantime, acknowledged he has not in the past been a fan of bipartisan redistricting (a pet issue of Democratic candidate Creigh Deeds). But he said he has now been persuaded it could improve citizen participation and make the process more fair. He proposed a blue-ribbon governor's panel including citizens and leaders of both parties that would propose a plan to the legislature which it would, in some fashion, be compelled to consider. (Details there are still be worked out, he said.)

Other McDonnell proposals include, yes, allowing a governor to run for re-election -- probably not himself, he said, given the timelines involved with changing the Virginia constitution that limits governors to one term. But, he said, it would apply to a Gov. Bolling.

Also, he called for an independent ethics commission for state government and lawmakers, more disclosure for lobbyists, a "working-mom" task force designed to simplify government, a new requirement that all executive boards would live-stream video of their meetings online and a new independent agency that would fact-check the veracity of candidate materials during campaigns. (Hey, what are we, chopped chicken liver?)

They're interesting proposals. They pick up a classic Republican theme--suspicion of government--but provide some new specifics on the idea. Yes, Ronald Reagan came up.

By Rosalind Helderman  |  May 21, 2009; 2:51 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , 2009 Lieutenant Governor's Race , Bill Bolling , Brian J. Moran , Creigh Deeds , Election 2009 , Robert F. McDonnell , Rosalind Helderman  
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