What you need to know about the General Assembly Session

What you need to know about the General Assembly Session
Virginia General AssemblyVirginia Lawyers Weekly

“No man's life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session.”

Today marks the opening session of the “oldest continuous lawmaking body” in the world, dating back to Jamestown and the House of Burgess in 1619. This a “short session,” meeting for only 45 days, ending on February 25th. Thousands of bills have already been filed by legislators to be voted up or down.

There are 100 members of the House of Delegates and 40 members of the Senate. They will be wrestling with a budget shortfall of $1.26 billion.

Tonight Governor McAuliffe will come before the lawmakers in his “State of the Commonwealth” address  to explain his priorities for his last year in office. The Governor wants more money to treat mental illness and substance abuse. Lawmakers would like to increase the pay of teachers and state employees while balancing the budget.

The Governor has made it clear that he will veto any so called “bathroom bill” that would require people to use the restroom of their biological gender and not whatever gender they feel like today.  Governor McAuliffe stated his objections:

Do not think for one second that these discriminatory bills on LGBT members…they are job killers. Companies have opportunities to go all over the globe.  And go to 50 states, they are not going to a state that is putting walls up around them.”

House Majority Leader, Kirk Cox, responded:

I think it’s getting too much attention. It’s ironic the governor talks about being open for business, then talks about social issues.”

Another change this year is General Assembly committees (where the sausage is made) will be videoed and archived.  General Assembly sessions will be broadcast live and for the first time they too will be archived.

More on the session here, here, here, and here.


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  • Pat Lee Sonny

    The opening quote is not Mark Twain but Gideon J. Tucker. See https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gideon_J._Tucker

    • Jeanine Martin

      Yes, I know the authorship is disputed.

      • Pat Lee Sonny

        Sorry, but it is not disputed at all. Thousands of Mark Twain cites are all over the net but not one says where he wrote it, because he didn’t write it.

        OTOH, professional quote sites give Judge Tucker credit because he actually wrote the quote into a case he had settled.

        For example, this is from Wikiquote: No man’s life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session. — Gideon J. Tucker in Final Accounting in the Estate of A. B. (1866)

        Yogi Berra once said “I really didn’t say everything I said.” That quote also applies well to Twain.

        • old_redneck

          Don’t question the Lovettsville Lady. She is always right.

          If you don’t believe me, just ask her.

          • Jeanine Martin

            Sigh……if only that were true.

          • Rocinante

            Can’t think of very many more to the right of you.

          • Pat Lee Sonny

            Rocking Horse,
            She only looks far right to someone far left.

          • Rocinante

            I am probably one of the most right-wing kooks in the party, anytime I enter a room and Jeanine is there, I am always on her left.

          • Pat Lee Sonny

            I’m not getting into a “righter than thou” argument ☺

          • Pat Lee Sonny

            I’ve found her to be correct in points that matter. This is simply an interesting academic exercise. It is a study in sociology. Most people “know” the wrong answer only because the vast majority of people on the net have copied the wrong answer from each other. Only a small minority know the correct answer.

            An interesting case in point was when I was in cub scouts and we went through a drill. At the end, I was facing one was and everyone else faced the other. I was told that I was wrong but insisted that it was the others that were wrong. The drill master then went through his own instructions and ended up facing in the same direction as me. He made everyone else turn around.

            The moral is, don’t follow the herd, they aren’t always right.

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