Just another empty chair

Many of you will recall watching video clips of Clint Eastwood speaking to an empty chair during the 2012 Republican National Convention.

Empty Chair

To call what transpired a surrealistic event would be an understatement.

Here in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District race we have another empty chair … ahem make that empty podium, Tea Publican Dave Brat.

Empty Podium

A candidate who consistently refuses to engage the public, hiding behind closed to the press events which are nothing more than canned stump speeches filled with platitudes about the 6 principles of Republicanism, along with refusing to debate either of his opponents.

An  earlier series of postings on this blog, starting with, outlining some of what Brat is all about.  After reading this recent post on another blog, it’s clear it didn’t adequately capture the degree to which his campaign has been taken over by “Cuccinelli conservatives” and extreme party operatives.

Plain and simple, Dave Brat nothing more than a Manchurian Candidate, another brought and paid for shills working for the interests of his corporate masters. Below is an edited version of Old Dominion Libertarian’s blog posting that has been re-posted with the authors permission.

At the 7th District Candidate Debate in New Kent, Virginia on October 14th, there was an empty chair on stage.  Why? Because Republican Congressional Candidate Dave Brat chose not to show up.  The Debate organizer had two confirmations from the Brat Campaign that he would be there.  Confirmations that Brat Campaign spokesman Brian Gottstein said did not exist.  (Gottstein has yet to address the fact that he lied about the campaign not agreeing to be at the debate.)

At the Candidate Forum held at Virginia Union University and hosted by the Richmond Crusade For Voters on October 19th, there was another empty chair.  Dave Brat chose not to show up again.  Forum organizers were unsure if Dave Brat was coming, or if he was going to send a spokesperson like the Warner and Gillespie Campaigns did.

Apparently Dave Brat chose to do neither, and chose not to inform anyone of his choice.  Debate organizers waited for him to appear and when it was finally clear he was not going to show, they proceeded with the event, leaving his empty chair and nameplate in plain view of the attendees.

And of course Brian Gottstein will come up with an array of excuses.  “Dave Brat had a hang nail,” or  “The Sun wasn’t bright enough,” And “Keeping Up With The Kardashian’s was having a special on at that time and Dave couldn’t miss it.”

That’s about how lame his excuses have been.  You could point out that Dave should have invested in a DVR, but then Brian Gottstein would just stomp his feet and blame the other candidates for Dave’s failure to plan..

Libertarian Congressional Candidate James Carr attended the event as did Libertarian Senate Candidate Robert Sarvis. His other opponent, Democrat Jack Trammell, sent his campaign manager to speak on his behalf.

Many Dave Brat supporters will argue that Dave’s hands are tied.  That his campaign has been hijacked by backroom dealing, Washington Insiders like Brian Gottstein, and that there is nothing he can do about it.

But there is something he could do.  He could grow a pair and send those Washington Insiders back to D.C. and get back to the type of campaign he was running during the primaries against Eric Cantor.

At the Term Limits Summit in Richmond on Wednesday, October 8th, Dave Brat told Fletcher Voelcker, a 7th District resident that his campaign staff had not changed since he’d won the nomination back in June.  He made it clear that his campaign staff was the same now as it had been before the primary.

Liar! Liar! Pants on fire!!!  The Republican Primary in the 7th District of Virginia was held on June 10th, 2014.  Brian Gottstein was hired by the Dave Brat Campaign after the primary was held.

And let us not forget Dave Brat’s campaign manager during the primary, Zachary Werrell.  He is no longer with the campaign.  Two people have filled that roll since the primary ended and Werrell left the campaign.  One more lie in Dave Brat’s corner.

Is this the kind of man you want to send to Washington, D.C. to represent you?  A man who would blatantly lie to a voter’s face?  I think not.  Did Brian Gottstein hold a gun to Dave Brat’s head and force him to be dishonest?  Nope, Dave Brat made this decision all on his own.  But Gottstein would probably try and blame the other candidates saying they caused Dave Brat to be dishonest, if this issue were ever brought up publicly.

Brat’s campaign is losing supporters every day because of Brian Gottstein and the rest of the Washington Insiders that have been hired. 10 people – and these are just people I know personally – have stopped supporting Dave Brat and are now supporting other candidates.  At first they were merely looking at the other options because they had grown extremely disappointed with Dave Brat since he won the primary, and there are many more across the 7th District that I don’t know, who are jumping off of Dave Brat’s ship.

Some are asking if Brian Gottstein is aware that he is hurting the Brat Campaign.  Let’s be clear.  Brian Gottstein does not care if Dave Brat wins or loses.  He will get paid either way.  And regardless of the outcome, he will slither back to that backroom deal in Washington, D.C. whence he came, when it’s all said and done.  Calling Brian Gottstein an opportunist would be the understatement of the new millennium.

Brian Gottstein has claimed that he is a libertarian.  He made the claim in the comments section of this article on http://www.varight.com There’s just one problem with that statement.

A real libertarian would not work for or vote for a theocrat.  And that is exactly what Dave Brat is.   Another thing Brian Gottstein seems to be good at is always blaming someone else for the Brat Campaign’s missteps.

Dave Brat doesn’t want to face either Jack Trammell or James Carr in a debate because he knows his platform cannot stand public scrutiny.  He knows they both can talk circles around him when it comes to healthcare and economics. Brian Gottstein knows this as well.  And that’s fine.  The longer Dave Brat hides, the more voters there will be who will be casting their votes for someone else.

Dave Brat rode the “anyone but Cantor” wave for as long as he could.  And now that Eric Cantor is no longer in the picture, there’s just no reason to vote for Dave Brat.

Jon Taylor & Joe Enroughty


Warner has served us brilliantly


In our Senate race this year, we have our incumbent Sen. Mark Warner who is opposed by Ed Gillespie.

Mark Warner was our governor 2002-2006 and was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2008. In his last senatorial election, against former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore, Virginians gave Warner a resounding 65 percent of their votes. Mark Warner, as governor and as senator, has consistently worked with those across the aisle to find consensus and do what is right for all Virginians.  Former five-term Virginia Sen. John Warner, a Republican, has endorsed Mark Warner, as have many other Virginia Republicans.

Ed Gillespie is a Washington lobbyist, political advisor and former chairman of the Republican National Committee. He has never run for any elective office, and I see nothing in his background that would qualify him for the U.S. Senate.

From what I have read and heard, he is against a lot of things and for very little. What little he is for took months of prodding by the press to draw it out of him.

For years he has been hiding in the dark corners of lobbying activities, pushing an agenda good for his own paycheck but not so good for the American people. Does anyone really know who Gillespie is or what he stands for?

Meanwhile, Mark Warner has been under the bright lights of elective office for 10 years and has been thoroughly vetted by the media and opposition politicians. His record on issues is well known and well respected and represents a convergence of good ideas from both sides of the aisle to promote good public policy.

For me, Senator Mark Warner is the obvious choice. He has broad experience at the state and federal levels, understands our problems and has broad support in both major political parties.

As the sayings goes, “Bad politicians are elected by people who don’t vote!”  Please vote on Nov. 4 and support Mark Warner.

Gary Schatz

Where is the fact checker?

I am compelled to respond to Jerry Reynolds editorial of October 16, entitled Promises, promises Mr. President. As usual, his editorial is filled with lots of ranting, but no facts. He didn’t provide any statistics, but I will.

Mr. Reynolds first comments were in regards to Obamacare (the ACA) and unemployment. He states that if you kept your healthcare plan and your doctor and your job, you should thank God.   He further stated that over one third of Americans work force is out of work and those are just the ones still looking for a job.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report today, October 16, the unemployment rate is 5.9%–the lowest it has been since 2008.

As for health insurance, according to an Urban Institute of Health survey asking people if they had lost their insurance and/or doctor, 75% of those surveyed said no; 18.6% said yes (because their plan did not meet new requirements); and, 6% said yes (because of other reasons).  On average, prior to ACA, 83% of non-group insurance policy holders lost their policies after two years, for various reasons.  Over 8 million Americans signed up for ACA.  Of that number, 87% were previously uninsured. An additional 5 million signed up for Medicaid.  Some enrollees were uninsured because of previous existing conditions. That is no longer legal.

The ACA has problems, just as every reform program in the past.  Historically, Congress made amendments to correct problems.  Republican have been playing politics and refuse to work to make the program better.  If they had written as many amendments as they have proposals to overturn ACA, it would be perfect by now.

get over

Mr. Reynolds is now blaming Obama for Ebola coming to our shores. That is stupid. I would love for him to tell us how Obama could have stopped one individual, who lied about being exposed, from flying to the US.  The only choice would be restrict ALL international flying. That’s when the “individual freedoms police” show up.


Mr. Reynolds says no one in the administration has a clue about what to do about Ebola? What does he think the CDC is doing?  It’s another example of Republicans claiming the government is too big, while complaining simultaneously that no government experts are available.

As for the South American children shipped to other states, that’s because of a law Bush enacted that will not allow their immediate deportation.  Obama asked Congress to overturn the law. They did not. Ergo, the blame belongs to the Republicans, not Obama.

Contrary to Mr. Reynolds comments, America is finally back on the road to jobs and prosperity.  The Federal Deficit is now at 2008 levels.  The stock market is at record highs. More Americans have health insurance than ever before. Unemployment is at 5.9%.  Sounds like Obama has been keeping his promises.

Republicans need to quit running around like Chicken Little, screaming “the sky is falling” when, in fact everything is better. In November we need to look at what the President has accomplished, despite Republican efforts to stop him.  We need to give him a Democratic Congress to help him finish the job. Vote for Trammell.

Deanna Nicosia

Medicare and Social Security

No matter how much we disagree about how to fund Social Security and Medicare, we must realize that these programs are the primary income and health care for the majority of seniors in the United States. Social Security was created as a system to allow people to save and create an annuity for themselves in their retirement years so they would not have to live in poverty. It has worked.

Medicare has provided medical care benefits for seniors in their retirement years when they have to live at a reduced income. I believe these two programs are a sacred commitment to seniors who have saved and paid into them over the years.

According to the non-partisan Office of Management and Budget, the Social Security system is stable and in the black until 2039. It does require attention, but it is not broken.

Why is it that Republicans, almost without exception, want to raise the retirement age to 70? Perhaps I am being cynical, but I think it is because they think most people will die before or not live long after 70, solving the fiscal problem for the system.

Some people want to and can continue working, but that’s not everyone. Being a senior myself and knowing many others, I can tell you that employers don’t like to hire older people. They consider them a medical risk. So some folks can’t work until 70. Or maybe their health is bad. What should they do about income? According to Republicans, the only way to fix Social Security is to raise the age to 70.

It is the same with Medicare. According to Republicans, there is only one way to fix it. Privatize it. After that happens, a profit has to be carved out of the Medicare money pool. That doesn’t help seniors who depend on Medicare, but it does help private companies increase their profit margins. In fact, since the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) has been in effect, the growth of healthcare costs has gone down and so has the costs to individuals who have Medicare.

I encourage voters to look at what the candidates say about these two topics before they cast their vote on Nov. 4. Republican/ Tea Party candidate, Dave Brat, has called for cutting Social Security payouts by two-thirds and has said in Tea Party meetings, out of public view, that “In order to avoid those major solvency issues with Medicare and Social Security, you are going to have to do some major cuts.” Congressional candidate Dave Brat is for cutting, not saving the system.

This is America. We have the greatest economy in the world. It is based on innovation and problem-solving. We invented the Internet! (ARPANET was the U.S. government program that developed it). We can solve these problems without making seniors wait to die to keep them off Social Security.

We have solved big problems before and we can do it again. Vote for Democrats if you want solutions. Vote for Jack Trammell for Congress and Mark Warner for Senate. We need solutions, not exclusions.

Joanna Hickman

Where in the World is Dave Brat?

This spring in the Republican primary lightning struck and incumbent politician Eric Cantor was soundly defeated. The reason is because he lost touch with us.  Remember how much help he was after the earthquake!  How many of you had ever seen or spoken to Eric Cantor during his 13 years of representing us? Don’t feel too sorry for him – it didn’t take Cantor long before he resigned and took a job with a Wall Street firm for megabucks!

In this election we have two candidates who are running to represent us in Congress – Democrat Jack Trammell and Republican/Tea Party Dave Brat.  Both are professors at Randolph-Macon College — and that is where their similarities end.

Dave Brat and his economic vision would turn Social Security upside down and greatly jeopardize present and future retirees’ benefits. He would repeal the Affordable Care Act leaving millions, once again, without any healthcare.  It is not a perfect system that is for sure and just like Social Security and Medicare, it took several years and many legislative actions to get it right. Do people really want to go back to the system we had? – Pre-existing conditions exclusion, limit on lifetime benefits, insurance company can drop you when you get sick – I don’t think so!

His economic vision is that of the Robber Barons of the last century. No taxes, no rules, no safety nets, no women suffrage or rights, no minimum wage, gerrymandering all congressional districts, and strictly limit the right to vote. We tried this approach before and the results were always economic recessions/depressions and social chaos.

Brat_do nothing

Where in the world is Dave Brat? Have you seen him? You are not alone. Is he hiding somewhere in the 7th District hoping you won’t find him before Election Day??  God forbid you ask him an unscripted question. Just like Cantor, he seldom shows his face in public and is afraid to debate! I saw Jack Trammell at our 4th of July parade, the Orange Street Fair, and at the Mineral Harvest festival.  In Mineral he was with his wife and dog walking around and talking to vendors and visitors.

Trammell is one of us.  He lives on a farm here in Mineral with his wife and children. His son is a wounded Vet from the War in Afghanistan and Jack understands the problems Veterans suffer when returning home. His children attended local schools and Jack strongly believes that State and local school districts should be in charge of local schools not a Federal bureaucracy.  As a husband and father of several daughters, Jack values a woman’s right to decide for themselves about their healthcare needs and fully supports equal pay for equal work.

Jack understands us and is one of us and that is why I am voting for Jack Trammell on November 4th.

By the way, where in the world is Dave Brat?

Gary Schatz

Tea Party Leader Fired Up Over Letter

Seems I really riled up Fred Gruber, the Louisa Tea Party leader, in my editorial. Mr. Gruber says that my editorial was “misleading, misguided and even mean spirited, outright lies.

The first lie he cited in his rebuttal to my editorial was that Dave Brat refuses to debate his opponents. The only debate scheduled is a one-hour event on Oct. 28 between Brat and Jack Trammell. An hour is hardly sufficient time to cover the major topics and will not give voters an in-depth view on where each candidate stands and why. Their libertarian opponent won’t be there because Brat refused to debate if Carr was on the podium. The other event he cited on Oct. 23 is not a debate. Each candidate will be asked questions submitted by private citizens specifically directed to them. There will be no debate.

I did as Mr. Gruber suggested and checked Brat’s website and Facebook account to see where Brat had made “hundreds” of public appearances. I couldn’t find “hundreds” but, through further research on the internet, I found several events that he attended that were “closed to the press.” Since the majority of us cannot attend his “public” appearances, having the press present would be an invaluable tool for us to learn where he stands on issues. My question is why is the press excluded? Is Brat afraid to be quoted?

Mr. Gruber stated my remark about the proliferation of huge Brat posters all over the district was snide because I said he received money from outsiders. I check Brat’s list of contributors and found that many of them are not only outside of the 7th District, several are also outside of the state.

Mr. Gruber stated that my attitude about “big government” is the very problem with Democratic principles—tax and spend. He cited our $18 trillion debt, $127 trillion unfunded liabilities, and increase in food stamp enrollment as though they were caused by Democrats only.

While the deficit has increased exponentially, so has everything else—cars, groceries, homes, etc. In 1973, the average car cost $3,950. In 2013, that same car cost $31,940. Groceries cost $519 per month in 1973 and $2,336 per month in 2013. A house cost $32,500 in 1973 but $152,000 in 2013. Percentagewise the deficit has not increased much more than anything else. But Republicans want everyone to think so!

As for food stamp increases, that is a result of the recession brought on by Republican policies, namely an unfunded war and tax decrease at the same time along with deregulation of financial organizations. That war, which led to our involvement in other Middle-Eastern conflicts, is the reason we now spend so much on defense homeland security covert operations etc , , , . Brat and other Republicans think the way to reduce the budget is to eliminate “entitlement” programs such as Medicare and social security. Seniors invested in those programs for years—they are not entitlement programs–we earned the money!

Mr. Gruber said I misrepresented the Republican Party. I think not. Republicans misrepresent Democrats.

Russ Nicosia

Brat’s a no-show, just like Eric Cantor


In many ways, Dave Brat is just like Eric Cantor. First, he is a no-show. While he was a candidate in the primary, Mr. Brat called out Eric Cantor and insisted he debate. Now that he is a candidate, he has been invited to many events but has agreed to only two “forums” in the presence of Democrat Jack Trammell and Libertarian James Carr.

Those forums do not allow rebuttals, at the insistence of Mr. Brat’s campaign. That’s cowardly.

Mr. Brat won’t appear where he can be quizzed because he’s an extremist. He has expressed a commitment to “free” markets. What does that mean to you and me? The big corporations will still rule because of their size.

In response to a question on minimum wage, Brat responded “Minimum wage, no, I’m a free market guy.” If the minimum wage were lowered or eliminated, even more workers would be on government assistance.

Mr. Brat wants to go after Social Security and Medicare. When speaking to supporters at a Mechanicsville Tea Party meeting, Mr. Brat said, “In order to avoid those major solvency issues with Medicare and Social Security, you are going to have to do some major cuts.

He wants to cut Social Security and Medicare, not fix them, just like Eric Cantor.

So on Nov. 4, don’t make the mistake of voting for Eric Cantor again by pushing the lever for Dave Brat. Otherwise, we will have the same congressman we had before–a no-show who works against our interests and will continue to keep Congress in a stalemate.

Let’s bring some new blood to Congress. Vote for a moderate who will look for solutions, not shutdowns, who will work for our district and our country.

Vote for Jack Trammell on Nov. 4.

Lewalta Haney

CV’s policies limit election commentary

For the past few weeks, our local paper, the Central Virginian has been printing this memo on their op-ed pages.

The Central Virginian strives to publish as many letters to the editor on the opinion page as possible each week. With the November election nearly upon us, we remind those who submit letters that they must be 500 words or less, be signed, and contain an address and daytime phone number for verification purposes.

Only one letter per person pertaining to the election will be accepted for print between now and Oct. 23. The only letters that will be printed in the Oct. 30 edition will be rebuttals to previous letter published in the CV prior to Oct. 23.

And as always, the editor reserves the right to accept or reject a letter for publication, and edit for clarity or brevity. Potentially libelous letters, or those deemed in poor taste will not be accepted. Letters are due by 10 a.m. each Tuesday.

The problem everyone should have with their revised policy is that this change effectively limits writers to just one letter during the critical months of September and October. This is a  marked contrast to their normal policy of one letter per month, per person.

It should be noted that during the past two  years their special election season policy has had the unintended “effect” of creating a rough numerical parity between opposing sides political letters during the critical September and October time frame.

Leaving the impression that the local community is fairly evenly divided between the two viewpoints, a manufactured equivalency effectively concealing the fact that Progressive and Democratic letters have consistently outnumbered Republican and conservative ones by 3:2 to 2:1 margins.  It has been noted in previous BlueLouisa postings that the CV and it’s parent company having a history of pushing extremely conservative syndicated editorials along with slanted coverage of local stories.

Recently, the CV has taken to not printing local stories which don’t fit in with their conservative narrative. http://bluelouisaorg.fatcow.com/2014/04/26/local-media-complicity-in-our-fake-town-halls/ It remains to be seen if they will they allow any progressive rebuttal letters to some of the more egregious Republican commentaries which have recently appeared in their paper. If so, this is one of the letters that should appear in their October 30th edition.

Most of the Republican letters in the CV claim that everything that is wrong with this country is the Democrats’ fault, when in fact they are distortions and lies wrapped up in circular logic.

Like Ms. Ircinck’s 9/18 letter claiming our society is under relentless assault and only by restoring moral and religious values we can “take back” our country, and “regain our lost freedoms.” Images of persecution appealing to shared Southern cultural assumptions which few will question, culturally conditioned to believe they are the true rebels.

A paranoid dynamic driving theirs and FOX’s serialized outrage about; ISIS, Ebola along with hordes of infectious immigrants.


Distractions from the fact that it was Republicans decades’ long control of Congress that enabled them to rig the game in favor of the banks and corporations giving them the “freedom” to dictate our future by steering tax breaks and regulations in their favor.

Or, Mr. Brickey’s 9/11 letter, promoting the dubious concept of “constitutional originialism,” asserting that we need to “…shrink our federal government to the way it was defined in the constitution,” asking us to overlook the reality that as the wealthiest grew even richer, the rest of us grew poorer with income inequality growing to heights not seen since the Great Depression.

Incapable of defining their views beyond a recital of magical mantra’s; like Fred Gruber’s 10/9 letter saying adherence to the Republican “creed” is all his mans needs, declaring that he’s actively engaging with the people of the 7th District and hasn’t gone out of his way to avoid public debates.

Comments which reflect a level of denial like the Tea Parties barely concealed misogyny and racism. The angrier they get, the more honest they become, moving away from their carefully coded tribal language, transforming “a culture of life” into a quest to “punish loose women,” and “welfare” and “food stamps” into “keeping those ni$$ersand w*@backs in  their place.” Convinced if they repeat it enough it will happen.

Their non-stop attacks allow them to conceal the fact that they don’t have a single idea which hasn’t been recycled several times over; all they have left is to stoke fear. Like Frank and Joanne Boenig’s 10/9 or Jerry Reynolds 10/16 projective claims about Ebola and immigrants they are “full of fury signifying nothing.


Such prideful ignorance and defiance might not rise to the level of sedition or even terrorism, but make no mistake; the people they elect have and will continue to bring Congress to a standstill.  Bomb throwing anarchists determined to get their way by any means necessary; doing as little as possible to address the nation’s problems.

Electing a Tea-Publican Manchurian economist only assures us of yet another do-nothing in Congress.

Electing Jack Trammell means the beginnings of smart solutions to our many problems, and our first honest representation in Congress in decades. So if you’re tired of angry partisan bickering and want a representative who works for you, November 4th is the time to back Jack.

Jon Taylor

Elections do matter

The only elections which matter for us this year are; selecting a new representative in Congress, and re-electing Senator Warner.  The 7th District election is worth watching, since it will be the first one in over twenty years where there is an honest choice between candidates.

For many, thinking about, let alone voting for Democrat Jack Trammell is an inconceivable heresy.  For three decades Louisa has voted heavily Republican, yet there’s no compelling reason or evidence to believe it always will or even should.

Generally speaking, local traditions tend to be a positive influence. But those same cultural ties which bind us together can also shackle us to dysfunctional ideas, relics of the past that require a considerable amount of social capital and money to survive. You’re probably familiar with some of them; Bigotry, Racism, Unequal Justice, Social and Economic Inequality.

Ideas which exist only because you allow them too, ideas full of resentment that others are somehow getting over on you, taking your place in the world, and everything will be all right if those wrongs could somehow be righted.  A resentful state of mind powerfully opposed to being particularly charitable or Christian like.

Apparently that’s what Republican’s are selling these days, disingenuously claiming it will restore our freedoms and values with not a shred of evidence to support their claims.


It’s been said that past behavior is usually a good predictor of future actions. So when Dave Bar acts just like Cantor, carefully minimizing public exposure and debates, and hiding his pre-primary Facebook postings that reveal his true thoughts about Social Security and Medicare. Where he makes it clear he supports drastic reductions in payouts for these social programs for seniors, there should be reason enough to ask “is there any difference between the two, other than a good chance that one will vote even further to the right?

In fact, you might not get everything you want with Jack. With Republican’s controlling the House, he’s would be a minority Democrat, one of many legislative sea anchors holding fast against a powerful Congressional rip tide determined to be the do-nothingest ones ever.

You might want to consider taking the time to examine how this state of perpetual Congressional gridlock will affect you and your family. Assuming you don’t believe that Democratic ideas are some kind of dark magic, you will find that Jack Trammell is bu far the better alternative.

Jack believes in using a holistic approach to solving problems, looking at smart solutions to fix the whole problem and not just one part of it. Like his stance on the Affordable Care Act, it’s the law of the land, its good ethics and its good business. A healthy people reflect a healthy society.

He wants to improve jobs throughout the region, starting with addressing all the moving parts that could improve our transportation capability, using everything from light rail, to rebuilding infrastructure, improving the roads, along with bring in more broadband (aka high speed internet). Jack has similar ideas for education reform such as; revising accountability standards and strengthening support for special-education.

Jack Trammell has proven leadership and problem solving skills along with the determination to help our economy and government run more efficiently. Voting for him this November will help make that happen.

Bart Yount



Trammell-Warner ticket


The letter to the editor headlined “Gillespie has a proven track record” (The Daily Progress, Sept. 16) is missing something pretty important: some facts.

The author spouts off about Ed Gillespie’s “plan” for economic growth, but where are the actual proposals? Gillespie has nothing but a carefully crafted list of talking points, and it seems ridiculous to call this list a “proven record.”

If you want to talk about a proven record, talk about Sen. Mark Warner.

This is the leader who formed the bipartisan Gang of Six to cut back the nation’s debt.

He’s the senator who secured the pro bono help of Northern Virginia technology companies to work with the Veterans Administration to reform its broken system so Virginia’s veterans need not have to suffer any longer.

This is the senator who is fighting to fix student debt so that the future leaders of our commonwealth are not economically hindered from success.

Leaders like Sen. Mark Warner don’t try to shut the government down or bring progress to a halt, as the GOP promotes.

Sen. Warner cares about American workers and recognizes the importance of federal regulations and federal jobs. He has consistently voted to support federal workers (according to the October edition of NARFE, the magazine of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association, in “How They Voted: 113th Congress”) — unlike Virginia’s Republican congressmen. In fact, the Senate Democrats support reversing the Citizens United decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, which allows the wealthy elite (e.g., the billionaire Koch brothers) to buy American elections, send jobs overseas to boost corporate profits and blame Democrats for American job losses.

We need to support leaders like Sen. Warner and turn the leadership of the do-nothing-but-shut-the-government-down Congress over to real representatives like Jack Trammell (Seventh District). Jack has been compared to Sen. Mark Warner as “someone who can work across the aisle” (http://www.politico.com/story/2014/06/2014-virginia-election-jack-trammell-eric-cantor-107855.html#ixzz3DsgCsqNT).

Mark Chapman