The House of Representatives passed Congressman Gerry Connolly’s (D-VA-11) resolution supporting NATO and calling on President Joe Biden to support establishing a Center for Democratic Resilience (CDR) within NATO. The resolution received Democratic support and significant support from Republicans, but 30 percent of House Republicans voted against the bill, including half of Virginia’s Republican congressmen.
“Our commitment to shared democratic values is what distinguishes NATO from other military alliances,” Connolly said in a Tuesday press release. “Without it, NATO is just another military block that does not like Russia. This commitment cannot remain purely aspirational or rhetorical. It must be operationalized. This is why we believe that we need formal architecture in NATO itself. There are divisions and units within NATO dedicated to collective defense, terrorism, hybrid warfare, cyber, climate change, and all other security challenges. But after 72 years, there’s not even a broom closet in NATO headquarters dedicated to democratic institution building.”
The Virginia Supreme Court will approve final redistricting maps for Virginia later this month, after the Virginia Redistricting Commission failed to complete any maps. Draft proposals from the Court’s special masters released maps last week with no consideration for protecting incumbents, which has triggered complaints from both parties.
“Virginia’s first draft Congressional map is a disaster that completely fails to deliver fair representation that reflects the Commonwealth. Virginia voters wanted a bipartisan and transparent process. What they got was two people hastily drafting a map behind closed doors and ignoring public input,” Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chair Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney (D-New York-18) said in a press release.
Congressmen Ben Cline (R-Virginia-06) and Bob Good (R-Virginia-05) are protesting Democrat-led COVID-19 vaccine mandates by cosponsored multiple bills. House Republicans lack the ability to pass bills without Democratic buy-in, but that hasn’t stopped them from introducing multiple bills targeting mandates in November. Cline touted his support for the bills in a Tuesday newsletter.
“Businesses across the country are desperate for workers, and our Nation is facing a critical supply chain shortage. As grocery store shelves sit empty, and communities struggle to recover, President Biden should be doing everything possible to encourage Americans to show up to work. Instead, it is the Administration’s plan to implement a vaccine mandate that would force millions of Americans out of work,” he wrote.
Governor Ralph Northam announced Thursday that all state employees will be required to show proof that they are fully vaccinated or take COVID-19 tests every week. Local governments and private employers are considering similar moves
“Governor Northam’s action comes as the highly transmissible Delta variant is driving up cases across the Commonwealth and around the country, primarily among unvaccinated people,” Northam’s press release explains.
Rep. Bob Good (R-VA-05) is leading Virginia’s Republican congressional delegation in asking Gov. Ralph Northam (D) to loosen COVID-19 restrictions.
In a letter co-signed by Rep. Robert J. Wittman (R-VA-01), Rep. H. Morgan Griffith (R-VA-09), and Rep. Ben Cline (R-VA-06), Good asked Northam Monday on behalf of his constituents to give them a reprieve from COVID-19 restrictions, and allow them to get back to work.