November 2, 2007 [LINK / comment]

Mukasey nears confirmation

As the 2007 election in Virginia approaches, it's time to get caught up on sundry political matters:

Now that the very partisan senators Chuck Schumer and Dianne Feinstein said that they will vote in favor of Michael Mukasey as the next attorney general, his confirmation is assured. See Washington Post. Mukasey was originally presumed to be a cinch for the nomination, but then he raised hackles by declining to state a legal opinion on the "waterboarding" method of interrogating terrorist suspects. Andrew Sullivan, who has been railing against the Bush administrations' use of harsh interrogation methods for many months, rued the Democrats for being "spineless." From what I can tell, Mukasey's demurral about whether "waterboarding" is legal or not was appropriate, because the law is not clear. If Congress believes that such a practice is illegal, all it has to do is pass a law against it.

Stewart is cleared

A special prosecutor has determined that there was no violation of the law by Prince William County Board of Supervisors Chairman Corey Stewart, who had sent a mailer informing residents of a meeting in October about the immigration issue. It could be construed as a campaign statement since he is a candidate, but it was ruled that the matter is of general public interest. Indeed it is. See BVBL.

GOP "horse race"

Sam Brownback pulled out of the presidential race last week, so I have removed him from my list of GOP 2008 candidates. Also, I've been impressed with some of what Ron Paul has been saying, so I moved him ahead of Mitt Romney, who now occupies last place. Even though the primaries are only a couple months away, or perhaps even sooner, depending on what states like New Hampshire do, I still have a hard time focusing on those silly "debates."

Shifflett endorsement

To my surprise, Jeremy Shifflett, candidate for the Augusta County Board of Supervisors from Beverley Manor, was given a "rather lukewarm endorsement" by the News Leader today. The editorial board members were miffed that Shifflett passed up the opportunity to meet with them, but they feel that he has a much stronger connection to local issues than his opponent Lee Godfrey, a relatively recent arrival.

Virginia legislature

Since I have started to pay more attention to state-level politics in recent months, I added a table showing the leaders of the Virginia Senate and House of Delegates on the Politics blog page. The Republicans may lose two or three Senate and Delegate seats in Northern Virginia, but unless there is a widespread last-minute defection, it looks like they will cling to a thin majority in Richmond.