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Virginia
  • The Daily Show on the Enthusiasm of Young Voters

    For whom will the youth vote break this November? It's certainly a question that bears asking. Conventional wisdom is on Barack Obama, but I'm not convinced. Mitt Romney could pull off an upset. I've seen how much kids these days are into digitally-rendered characters.

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    The Daily Show airs Monday through Thursday at 11/10c.


    Tags: Al Madrigal, Alcohol, Barack Obama, Jon Stewart, The Daily Show, Video, Virginia
  • Judge Rules Freedom of Speech Does Not Include Facebook "Likes"

    Facebook profileFreedom of speech is one of the fundamental rights guaranteed in the constitution. Thanks to the First Amendment, we can rant about politicians and other public officials all day long.

    We just can't "like" them on Facebook

    Daniel Ray Carter and Robert McCoy were deputies in the Hampton, Virginia sheriff’s office. Were, that is, until they made the mistake of "liking" their boss' opponent's Facebook page during a contested sheriff election. They were both fired shortly after their boss won reelection.

    As government employees, Carter and McCoy are protected by the First Amendment. Nevertheless, a federal judge in Virginia denied their claim that they were unconstitutionally fired for expressing their political view on the unusual theory that "liking" a Facebook page does not constitute a form of expression protected by the First Amendment:

    "No such statements exist in this case. Simply liking a Facebook page is insufficient. It is not the kind of substantive statement that has previously warranted constitutional protection."

    Of course, that's not actually true. The Supreme Court has held that protected speech includes acts such as wearing an anti-war armband, waving a flag and displaying a swastika. Apparently, the judge was just exercising his freedom to be a crotchety old man to whom everything on the Internet is too new, evil and scary to be constitutional.

    In addition to losing their case, the two fired deputies were promptly ordered to get off the judge's lawn.

    Photo by John Moore/Getty Images News/Getty Images


    Tags: Bill of Rights, Constitution, Facebook, Internet, Laws, Police, Supreme Court, Virginia
  • "Real Housewives of DC" Star to Run for Governor of Virginia

    Well, it's finally happened. The great reality televison/politics singularity has arrived. White House "gatecrasher" and Real Housewives of DC star Tareq Salahi is running for governor in Virginia.

    According to an exclusive report by TMZ

    Salahi — whose estranged wife left him back in September to bang the guitarist from Journey — tells TMZ, he wants to formally announce his candidacy for VA Governor in the upcoming election.

    Salahi says he wants to use his extensive life experience as a vineyard owner and reality TV famewhore to change how things are run in his home state.

    Salahi tells us, "I am troubled to see how our current political figureheads continue to waste tax payer dollars! I'm a big believer in limited government, keeping taxes, regulation and litigation low, and if I do win, everyone is invited to crash the inauguration!"

    Yeah, the federal government spends way too much money on frivolous things, like health care, education and preventing crazy people from crashing White House parties.

    Salahi leaked the story to TMZ, though he probably should have chosen a more esteemed political news source, like US Weekly or People.

    Despite the stigma attached to being on a trashy reality show, a guy like this just might be a natural fit for Beltway politics. All those vapid, fame-hungry narcissists would mix well with the stars of reality television.

    Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images News/Getty Images


    Tags: Hollywood, Republicans, Television, Virginia, White House
  • One of a Kind Candidate: Ginger Crapse, City Council, Williamsburg, VA

    Ginger Crapse is running for city council in Williamsburg, Virginia, our country's vital source of Civil War blacksmithing re-enactors and candle-dippers. Her professional qualifications include owning a bed and breakfast, making miniature military figurines for museums, and probably being a character from a Wes Anderson movie. That's meant to sound charming, not snarky. The Internet is hard.

    Right now, Colonial Williamsburg is full of Crapse ideas (sorry). For starters, she wants to improve the sidewalks for motorized scooters. If this woman can get an army of scooters to parade behind her, Wes Anderson will be required by law to make her campaign ads. A B&B-owning miniatures crafter backed by a squad of scooters IS his delicately-arranged wheelhouse.

    Crapse herself (sorry) is a bit of a longshot since she's up against three incumbents. Also, an opponent characterized her as a "Tea Party type," and once you get that on your shirt, it's hard to wash off. Is it fair to say we've reached the expiration date of putting up with Tea Partiers? I mean, aren't people tired of seeing adults walk around in tri-cornered hats… oh. Right. Williamsburg, Virginia. And Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

    But get a load of Crapse (sorry). She says she's no Tea Partier, she just digs that sweet Constitution. If only there were a way to prove she isn't a Tea Partier! If only she could distance herself from everything we seem to know about Tea Party candidates! Speaking about her opponents, Crapse said, "I don’t have anything against the three incumbents, they are all nice people." Yep, that'll do.

    Photo by Pasotraspaso. Jesus Solana/Flickr/Getty Images

    Previously: Andy Shock, "Shock and Awe-kansas."

    Our friends at Dr Pepper are going to send Ms. Crapse a one-of-a-kind t-shirt, and you get to choose its slogan:

    Want a custom t-shirt of your own? Of course you do! Head to DrPepper.com and get started.


    Tags: One of a Kind Candidates, Virginia
  • Virginia Middle Schoolers Forced to Dig Up Dirt on GOP Candidates

    With high unemployment and an opposing party willing to do anything to get him out of office, President Obama's going to need all the help he can get in the general election.

    So why not let a bunch of middle school students do all the work?

    A Virginia middle school teacher recently forced his students to support President Barack Obama's re-election campaign by conducting opposition research in class against the Republican presidential candidates.

    The 8th grade students, who attend Liberty Middle School in Fairfax County, were required to seek out the vulnerabilities of Republican presidential hopefuls and forward them to the Obama campaign.

    Liberty teacher Michael Denman…assigned two kids to write a paper revealing the identified "weaknesses," two to write the attack strategy paper and two others to locate an individual inside the Obama campaign to whom they could send the information. "My classmates don't actually know a lot, but a few of us tended to agree that the most recent instruction on this project just didn't seem right," one of the students told TheDC.

    Using children to do opposition research isn't such a bad idea. If you're going to hire people to dig up dirt, you might as well choose the ones who spend their time digging up actual dirt.

    After this whole Etch A Sketch kerfuffle, the primary is starting to take on a juvenile tone anyway. Who knows? Maybe one of those kids can unearth a Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots scandal.

    The Obama campaign gets some good dirt and the students learn how to act like slimy political operatives. It's a win-win situation. Well, except for the one kid who had to go home everyday and google "Santorum."

    Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images News/Getty Images


    Tags: Education, Primaries, Republicans, Virginia