THE BULLETIN — News to know

Citing negative campaign ads about him, Brat tells jailed addicts he’s got it hard too

When Republican Congressman Dave Brat visited the Chesterfield County Jail to talk with convicted drug offenders, he had some nontraditional advice, according to WCVE's Ben Paviour, who covered the visit.Brat, who is running for re-election, told inmates they had to find substitutes for their drug use once they got out of jail. He suggested exercise, reading or religious practice, WCVE reported.But then he had an interesting take when inmates mentioned the difficulty they face once they're out of jail, likening his tough contest against Democrat Abigail Spanberger to the inmates' concerns.“You think you’re having a hard time?," Brat said....

Prosecutors haven’t said if a Portsmouth police officer was justified in shooting a burglary suspect; reviving a closed hospital in Patrick County; composting in Virginia prisons and more headlines

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.Last year, a Portsmouth police officer shot an 18-year-old burglary suspect in the back as he was fleeing the scene. Nearly a year later, prosecutors say their investigation is complete, but they have yet to announce if the shooting was justified. — The Virginian Pilot Patrick County is considering purchasing a shuttered hospital and finding a new operator. Since the hospital closed, rescue crews have had to drive patients across the county for care, meaning trips that can last as long as 35 or 50 minutes depending on...
Virginia Mercury

Virginia’s students outscored the nation on ACT

The Virginia students who take the ACT test did better than their peers nationwide this year, according to the state's Department of Education.Public school students received an average composite score of 23.8 on the test, which is meant to determine college readiness, compared with 20.4 nationwide. The tests are scored on a scale of 1 to 36.For the different subjects — English, reading, mathematics and science — Virginia's 2018 public school graduating seniors scored 22 or more points higher than public graduates nationwide, according to the department.Only about 24 percent of 2018 graduates, which includes private and home-schooled students,...
On Aug. 12 last year white supremacist groups entered Emancipation Park holding Nazi, Confederate, and Gadsden "Don't Tread on Me" flags. (Anthony Crider/Creative Commons)

Charlottesville organizers messaged about ‘raising an army’ and ‘the cracking of skulls’

While plenty of communications have surfaced about the violent intentions of the participants in the Aug. 12, 2017, white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, the event's organizers have steadfastly maintained that their aims were peaceful and that they instructed participants to obey laws.Court filings this week in a civil suit filed against organizers suggest otherwise.“We’re raising an army my liege. For free speech, but the cracking of skulls if it comes to it," wrote Charlottesville resident and rally organizer Jason Kessler to white nationalist leader Richard Spencer ahead of the rally.The message is one of hundreds of communications contained in...

Virginia’s teacher of the year; Senator settles suit over son’s suicide; Cracking down on erotic massage in Stafford; Peeing on the production line at Smithfield and more headlines

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.Rodney Robinson was named Virginia’s teacher of the year. He teaches history to kids jailed at Richmond’s juvenile detention center. “My students are the most vulnerable kids in society. They have succumbed to the pressure of urban living and made mistakes that they are paying for, but they still persevere and strive for success,” he said. “I will fight to my last heartbeat for them.” – Richmond Times Dispatch State Sen. Creigh Deeds, D-Bath, settled a wrongful death lawsuit he filed against a social services employee following the suicide of his...
Virginia Mercury

Report: College in Virginia is more expensive because the state hasn’t funded it

Over the last decade, Virginia's decreased spending on higher education has shifted more of the cost on to students, especially black, Latino and low-income ones, a new analysis by The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis found.Virginia spends $1,306 less per student now than it did in 2008, even though the economy has returned to pre-recession levels, the nonprofit institute found.In the same amount of time, the average tuition at public four-year institutions in the state increased 54.7 percent, or $4,534, and the average median income for Virginia families only grew about 2.4 percent.That means for the average Virginia family,...

The Libertarian candidate in the 7th District said Dave Brat kept him out of a debate

Libertarian Joe Walton said he was kept out of Monday night's 7th Congressional District debate because of U.S. Rep. Dave Brat, the Republican incumbent."I am disappointed Representative Brat wouldn't commit to participate if I was on stage even though I am a ballot-certified candidate," Walton said in a news release the morning after the debate. "That is disrespectful to the voters in the 7th District and the democratic process. They need to hear from all the candidates so they can make an informed decision about representation in Congress."Walton, a former chairman of the Powhatan County Board of Supervisors, is...

At the candidates’ debates; ‘Reckless’ pipeline construction; Free speech for Richmond teachers; Foamhenge and other headlines

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.U.S. Rep. Dave Brat, R-7th District, and Democratic challenger Abigail Spanberger faced off in their first and likely only debate. Brat repeatedly tried to tie Spanberger to Nancy Pelosi. Spanberger, who said she wouldn’t support Pelosi for House speaker, stressed her federal law enforcement background. The candidates barely mentioned Trump. – The Washington Post In a 9th Congressional District debate,  Republican Rep. Morgan Griffith touted his A+ rating from the NRA and support of coal mining. Democratic challenger Anthony Flaccavento said Southwest Virginia should be represented by a working person,...

Vangie Williams, behind in the 1st District, gets a mention in “Ebony” magazine

Vangie Williams, the Democrat running against Republican Rob Wittman in Virginia’s 1st Congressional District, was featured in a national magazine last week.It’s some wider publicity for Williams in a race that's seen as a longshot for her to win. The contest, along with three other races seen as favoring the incumbent, has been overshadowed by more competitive districts, including a a fraud controversy, political attacks about Bigfoot erotica and leaked security documents.Williams was one of 18 black female candidates from around the country listed on “Ebony” magazine’s website.“Some are labeling the 2018 election cycle the “Year of the Woman” thanks...

Fact checkers fact check Brat on fact-checking

Washington Post fact-checking columnist Glenn Kessler is calling out U.S. Rep. Dave Brat for misrepresenting his work in a campaign attack ad."We don't normally comment on how people quote our fact checks but this, from @DaveBratVA7th, is TOTALLY False," Kessler tweeted.What's going on?Kessler checked out an attack ad against Pennsylvania Republican Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, which used a procedural vote to back a claim that he supported eliminating health coverage requirements for people with preexisting conditions.The Post gave the ad four Pinocchios -- their worst rating, noting that Fitzpatrick actually bucked his party, voting against the repeal of Obamacare "specifically...