Category The J.R. Hoeft Show

Liz Mair

Norm Leahy and J.R. Hoeft on…

  • Face Masks and Civil Liberty
  • The necessity of a new State budget
  • Moving local elections scheduled for May to November and bumping the primaries to June 23

In J.R.’s interview with Liz…

  • The objective of communications: not to make yourself the story!
  • What took her from practicing debt financing law in England to working on RNC digital efforts in 2008 and why five-year plans are nice, but not always necessary.
  • The influence of David Gough on getting her into working in conservative politics.
  • How she ended up on the right, despite some significant influences from the left when growing up. The influence of 1978-79 on British political history. Council houses and property rights. Scottish nationalism. Seattle and free trade. Intellectual property.
  • What does it mean to have a “political home”? Do party members always have to agree? The importance of “showing up” and how breaking with a party is an abdication of being able to influence it.
  • Because she doesn’t have complete orthodox GOP/pro-Trump views, does she feel the Nunes lawsuit is retribution?
  • Surveillance, FISA Court, and civil liberties.
  • Why it’s unique that the lawsuit against her is being brought in Virginia and what it means to the First Amendment and our Constitution.
  • Why include Twitter and McClatchy News in the lawsuit?
  • The importance and fundamentals of the first amendment and how this suit might affect future rulings:
  • The Virginia General Assembly beginning to act on strategic lawsuits against public participation and how the commonwealth has a chance to lead again.
  • How COVID-19 has impacted the progress of the lawsuit and how it has affected her business and personally.

Quoted from the References:

“But Twitter, while they do have rules for what users are allowed to post, should not have a quasi-judicial role forced upon it. It is not for Twitter to go through the detailed analysis of determining when and if defamatory statements are made. It is for Twitter to do its best to adhere to its own standards in a neutral fashion. We should not scare online platforms out of existence for fear of lawsuits.” – Jessica Levinson, professor and the director of the Public Service Institute at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles

References:

  • Hashing It Out Podcast – The Washington Times
  • What GOP Rep. Devin Nunes’ Twitter defamation lawsuit says about the future of defamation law – Jessica Levinson, professor at Loyola Law School
  • Devin Nunes, Johnny Depp lawsuits seen as threats to free speech and press – The Washington Post
  • House Bill No. 759
  • Mair Strategies, LLC
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    Eric Wilson, digittal communications strategist

    Voting Absentee During COVID-19; Interview with Eric Wilson

    Norm Leahy, columnist with The Washington Post, and I look at absentee voting in the age of the Coronavirus, rethinking the state budget, and the 7th District Congressional Race. The interview is with Eric Wilson, a digital communications strategist and candidate for the Republican Party of Virginia State Central Committee. We talk about an initiative he is working on, “Build and Grow RPV.”

    “Virginia should be the center of excellence for state parties across the country. It should be a testbed for our party because we have elections every single year. That’s a perfect environment…for innovating, for testing, and learning. But we’ve just sort of grown stagnant.” – Eric Wilson

    Show Notes:

    I asked Mary Lynn Pinkerman, General Registrar, City of Chesapeake several questions related to the city’s preparation for the upcoming May election.

    1 – Absentee voting began March 20 – does the pace in Chesapeake indicate a higher turnout than regular years?

    • Yes, but we have worked with Public Communications to get the word out to vote absentee by mail.  The Department of Elections website also is encouraging this as well.

    2 – How many ballots have been requested and returned to date?

    • 1664 [have been requested]. It is still so early as the ballots have only been mailed within the past 10 days, so we have only had 58 returned so far.

    3 – Has the city taken any measures to increase the number of ballots available?

    • We are reallocating ballots from Election Day to Absentee to reduce the waste of funds.

    Has the budget been increased?

    • No

    Are you getting any additional financial support from the state?

    • No

    4 – Do you have any different procedures in place than you would for a normal election?

    • Yes. We are waiting to hear more information in the next couple of days from the Department of Elections as to how to proceed on Election Day.  Because the City of Chesapeake offices are closed to the public, we are having to do curbside voting for all voters who come to do in-person absentee voting.  We want that to be a last resort, and for voters to please use the online and mail options as much as possible for their safety as well as the staff.

    Senate Republicans again reiterated their concern about the budget in a letter to Governor Northam:

    Provided the June 10 expiration of Executive Order 55 remains operative, most of Virginia’s economy will have been shut down for a three-month period. With a profoundly negative effect on anticipated state revenues inevitable, it would be fiscally reckless to enact House Bills 29 and 30 without extensive revisions reflecting the expected shortfall. As the April 11 deadline for amending the 2018-2020 and 2020-2022 Biennial Budgets is now less than two weeks away, we urge you to submit amendments that accurately reflect our new fiscal reality. By using the 2018-2020 Biennial Budget – as originally enacted in 2018 – as a baseline, we could significantly minimize the disruptions to the Commonwealth and its citizens resulting from the current suspension of economic activity.

    In my interview with Eric Wilson, we discuss:

    • Going from Texas to Capitol Hill (intern for Rep. Michael Burgess)
    • Working on campaigns with Patrick Ruffini and Mindy Finn
    • Working on the Marco Rubio for President campaign and the difficulties of running a national campaign, learning the need for 100% name identification, and politics as entertainment (consumption)
    • The importance of resources in a state race and the skill of Virginia candidates across the board
    • Why digital media appeals and the importance of the medium?
    • Why engage with new/social media?
    • The importance of platform tools. Understand the “why”.
    • Defining “owned”, “shared”, and “earned” audiences/media.
    • Vanity v. Value/Outputs v. Outcome Metrics.
    • His platform for wanting to become a Republican State Central Committee member. (grow the party, grow the data, increase online fundraising, stop the interparty feuds).
    • The importance of running a candidate everywhere.
    • Improving voter registration.
    • Conventions and primaries in nominating contests.
    • Internal party campaigning in the COVID-19 era.
    • What should happen if we have an online convention? What are the two phases of digital transformation?
    • His campaign/ticket mates for state central committee: Jack Blakely and Sarah Curran.
    • What does RPV reform look like?
    • Not accepting demographic shifts as an answer to GOP losses.
    • His vision for the party in 1 to 5 years.

    Sites referenced:

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    Shaun Flanagan, Legatum Institute

    Shaun Flanagan: U.S. Prosperity Index

    COVID-19 continues to dominate the conversation as Norm Leahy, columnist for The Washington Post, joins J.R. to discuss Virginia impacts. Topics include closing schools for the remainder of the year, Liberty University reopening, the mixed messages between state and federal government, herd immunity v. quarantine, the potential for “shelter in place” rule in Virginia, and boldly spending to prop up the economy.

    For the interview, J.R. is joined by Shaun Flanagan – Director, Center for Metrics for the Legatum Institute. In the show, Flanagan explains why statistics matter, the purpose of the Legatum Institute, why a think-tank in England is looking at global and U.S. prosperity, what constitutes their prosperity index – especially their “Pillars of Prosperity”, the regional differences between the states, and the performance of Virginia.

    Virginia, home of the “Virginia Declaration of Rights”, today ranks 30th among the states in personal freedom. And, even though CNBC ranks the state 1st for business, Legatum found that we are 30th in economic quality. Flanagan helps us understand what exactly these scores mean.

    We also explore recent legislation passed by the General Assembly, especially the budget that increases state spending by 20%, more mandates, a higher minimum wage, and higher taxes. In general, he helps un understand the effect of such policies on the pillars of prosperity.

    We also look at the potential impact of COVID-19 on scores both at the Global and U.S. level.

    Links of note:

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    Go Directly To The Interview

    Skip to 20:30 in the player for the interview with Shaun Flanagan

    Garren Shipley

    In Episode 73, Norm Leahy, local columnist for The Washington Post, and J.R. discuss the local impacts of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), as well as a call for a special session of the General Assembly by State Senate Minority Leader Tommy Norment. From the Norment press release calling for the session:

    Norment is requesting that a revenue reforecast be provided to the General Assembly. Additionally, Norment calls for consideration of legislation limiting the liability of employers with employees who have been exposed to the Coronavirus and continue to work without the employers’ knowledge of that exposure. Finally, Norment is calling for the exactment of legislation granting local governments and regional commissions greater latitude to conduct necessary business during the continuing state of emergency.

    For the interview, J.R. interviews the Communications Director for House of Delegates Minority Leader Todd Gilbert. Shipley effectively works as the lead communicator for the House Republican Caucus. For the interview, we discuss:

    • How journalism prepared him for his job;
    • His daily routine during and out of session;
    • Evaluating the message;
    • Surprises from this General Assembly session – including gun laws, the repeal of commonsense abortion limits, redistricting (and some true profiles in courage for some Democratic members), criminal justice changes, and transportation (spoiler alert: we still have a Car Tax and an increase in the gas tax);
    • His view on legislation impacting Virginia’s pro-business environment (including minimum wage, right to work, tax increases); and
    • the new state budget.

    “We’re working very hard to make [dealing with Coronavirus] somewhat better,” Shipley said. “Republicans and Democrats alike, across the General Assembly, are working with the administration, talking amongst ourselves, trying to get the best plan to move forward as quickly as we can to help those folks who are hurting right now.”

    Links of note:

    Subscribe to the show!

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    Go Directly To The Interview

    Skip to 15:45 in the player for the interview with Garren Shipley

    Michael Petrilli: How to Educate an American

    Episode 72 of The J.R. Hoeft show has Norm Leahy, local columnist for The Washington Post, discussing unintended consequences to higher education due to the Corona Virus and the aftermath of the General Assembly. The consequential gathering of the worthies included progressive legislation on firearms, abortion, marijuana, redistricting, and more, but was it as apocalyptic as some conservatives are making it seem? Norm and J.R. also dig into the numbers of Super Tuesday’s results in Virginia’s Democratic Primary for President and share what it means for the November General Election.

    In the main interview, J.R. is joined by Michael Petrilli, co-editor of HOW TO EDUCATE AN AMERICAN: The Conservative Vision for Tomorrow’s Schools (Templeton Press), which is a series of essays by noted conservative writers on education reform, including Michael Barone, Bill Bennett, Arthur Brooks, Jonah Goldberg, Yuval Levin, Heather Mac Donald, and many others. Pitrelli, president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, offers personal insights on his interest in education reform, as well as recounting his journey to become one of the leading voices in the movement. Additionally, we explore the topics of charter schools and school choice, the importance of knowing our nation’s history, individual character, accountability in learning (including the Standards of Learning/testing), the cost of higher education, and the value of learning a trade.

    Links of note:

    Subscribe to the show!

    Google Podcasts
    Apple Podcasts

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    Subscribe on Android

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    Phil Kerpen

    American Commitment is an organization seeking to inform the American people about opportunities to expand and grow the American economy through free-market ideas. Phil Kerpen, American Commitment’s president, joins the show to discuss the organization and current restrictions on Wi-Fi technology.

    Kerpen penned an article about how a substantial portion of the frequency spectrum was set aside twenty years ago for its specific use in automobile communication. However, car manufacturers are not making use of that spectrum for a variety of reasons, yet vehicles are still getting safer. Kerpen argues that this spectrum should be returned from the government to be used in the open market.

    Links of note:

    American Commitment

    FCC Should Open Up 5.9 GHZ Spectrum For Faster, Better WIFI (Kerpen)

    DOT Open Comment Page (now closed to comment) with Supplementary Information

    Subscribe to the show!

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    Dr. Carole Adams

    The Foundation for American Christian Education has been around since 1965, with its origins in California. Today, it is headquartered in Virginia and hosts one of the most outstanding libraries of original works by the Founders and those who influenced them that you can find at The Hall-Slater Library.

    Joining me on the podcast is only the second president of F.A.C.E., Dr. Carole Adams, to discuss the reason for the organization, the curriculum they provide to both private educators and those who home school, in particular, “The Principle Approach“, STEM as part of their curriculum, the success of students who subscribe to this method, adult and continuing education, and religious plurality.

    Subscribe to the show!

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    If you liked this podcast, please support it by subscribing either on Apple Podcast, Google Play or Google Podcasts, TuneIn, or Stitcher – and please leave a review. It helps!

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    Del. Rob Bell talks race relations, good governance, and Fairfax hearings

    Del. Rob Bell (R-58) joins the podcast to recap the 2019 General Assembly session. Bell represents Greene, Fluvanna, Albamarle, and Rockingham Counties.

    Despite all the noise that came along with scandals plaguing Gov. Ralph Northam, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, and Atty. Gen. Mark Herring, a good bit of excellent governing was accomplished this session.

    Specifically, we discuss:

    Additionally, we look at what the GOP needs to do to make its case to expand their narrow majority in the House this election.

    Finally, perhaps the most important question, is Gonzaga really the best team in NCAA basketball or will the eventual champion emerge from the ACC or the Big 10?

    Subscribe to the show!

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    Should Fairfax go? Depends on who you ask.

    It’s another installment of “Shoutin’ Along the James” with Norm Leahy! This episode we look at the recently released Roanoke College poll that asks the question of Virginians, “Should [Ralph Northam, Justin Fairfax, or Mark Herring] resign?” The results are fascinating. We also dive into some finer points on the politics associated with the Fairfax ‘impeachment hearings’ progress, and conclude with our review on the 2019 regular session of the General Assembly.

    Follow Norm on Twitter and read his columns at The Washington Post.

    Subscribe to the show!

    Google Podcasts

    Apple Podcasts

    If you liked this podcast, please support it by subscribing either on Apple Podcast, Google Play or Google Podcasts, TuneIn, or Stitcher – and please leave a review. It helps!

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    Listening to a Podcast:

    1) Click the player and listen to it via your device
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    Rep. Rob Wittman Returns – National Emergency 2019

    Joining J.R. this week is Rep. Rob Wittman – representing Virginia’s First Congressional District and serving as the ranking member of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower and Force Projection.

    On this podcast, Congressman Wittman appropriately addresses the concerns conservatives have with declaring a national emergency to build the border wall, as well as not passing appropriations bills on-time. That said, Rep. Wittman believes while the president will be challenged on the legality of his declaration, President Trump’s action certainly makes sense given the nature of the threat to our national security and the inaction of Congress to address the issue. Regardless, another shutdown has been averted. Rep. Wittman was clear that hardworking civil servants deserve better than to be dangled as collateral for every political disagreement, and that Congress needs to govern regarding the “power of the purse” – and not go to brinksmanship.

    We also discuss shipbuilding. Huntington Ingalls Industries made record profits in the last quarter of 2017, yet there was a multitude of issues with the last, yet first in class, building project, CVN-79, the USS GERALD FORD. Although there are concerns, Wittman was clear that the recent two carrier block-buy for CVN-80 and 81 would yield a net cost-savings – $4 billion – and will serve to stabilize the shipbuilding industry in the long term, as well as advance seapower supremacy against our peer competitors.

    Finally, we address Virginia’s turmoil with Gov. Ralph Northam, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, and Atty. Gen. Mark Herring. Wittman, who is regularly mentioned in political circles for statewide office, is clear that due process is the best way to address the current scandal. That said, Wittman also made clear his thoughts on the role of an elected official regarding race relations.

    (header photo by Mark Winterstein. See more of his photos at his Instagram page.)