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UPDATED: McDonnell not invited to appear with Obama in Virginia

Anita Kumar

This morning, President Obama paid a visit to a Falls Church elementary school to talk about his "Race to the Top" education program.

Virginia's new Republican governor Bob McDonnell is a big fan of the program as well as Obama's approach to education, which includes his support of charter schools and merit pay for teachers.

So why wasn't McDonnell in Fairfax County talking to kids alongside the president?

Turns out the White House didn't invite McDonnell or mention him in his speech. That never happened with Obama's good friend, former Democratic governor Tim Kaine, and we hear the McDonnell folks feel slighted.

It's also telling since both McDonnell and Obama talk frequently about the need to work across party lines to get anything accomplished in Richmond and Washington.

McDonnell mentioned Obama in his inaugural address Saturday and then again in his speech Monday to the General Assembly Monday. The "Race to the Top" divides grant money to states based on support for school reform policies. The governor recently said the state applied for $350 million.

UPDATED: McDonnell released the following statement this evening about Obama's visits after speaking to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and agreeing to work together to create more high-quality charter schools. "It is always an honor to have the President in the Commonwealth.The President and I are of different parties, but when it comes to expanding positive educational opportunities for our young people we are of like minds. The President and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, who joined him today, are committed to dramatically increasing the number of charter schools in the nation and enacting education reform. Virginia is the perfect state to lead this effort."

By Anita Kumar  |  January 19, 2010; 12:15 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar , Barack Obama , Robert F. McDonnell  
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Next: Filler-Corn to run for Democratic nomination for Fairfax delegate seat

Comments

Oh, grow up people! he's got enough on his plate with the virginia budget. i'd rather he be spending his time in richmond working on the state's problems than hamming it up in a photo op.

Posted by: aka583 | January 19, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

McDonnell and his new Attorney General have publicly said they are going to spend the next 4 years fighting the Federal Government and the White House. Fact. So why mingle with a guy, for any reason, whose already declared war. Republicans are the G-nO-P, the party of "NO".

Posted by: rmg4369 | January 19, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Please use spelling and grammar check before you post! Especially when writing about education.

Posted by: lydandy | January 19, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

That's enough. Why invite a guy who ran against your platform? Face it, McDonnell would probably just say "No", in keeping with the Repbulican party he represents.

Posted by: jckdoors | January 19, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Oh, but that obama wants to end partisanship. obama spends all of 2009 bashing the GOP on the health care bill, when it reality it's his own party that is holding it up. Typical lib, can't tell the truth. That's OK, he'll have to talk with the GOP after the November elections.

Posted by: irish031 | January 19, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Face it . . . Kaine and Unable are about to loose Teddy's Senate seat and they are just not in an inviting mood.


Posted by: WeThePeopleofVirginia | January 19, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

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