Glenn Davis, Jill Vogel and Bryce Reeves were all on hand for the Lieutenant Governors Forum in Virginia Beach Wednesday night, and topics introduced by the audience included health care, marijuana laws, and government cronyism. All three candidates at various points in the evening were able to gain robust applause for their takes on a myriad of issues. The forum was hosted by the Virginia Beach TEA Party and moderated by radio talk show and news host, Dave Parker.
Glenn Davis – “I voted against Medicaid 6 times”
Glenn Davis, speaking to a very friendly home crowd, opened up with a question about Obamacare and Medicaid expansion, to which he repeated an erroneous claim that he has always stood against government control of healthcare and opposed Governor McAullife on the issue of expansion. In a 2014 Special Session Delegate Davis was a chief patron of HB 5008 which basically was Medicaid Expansion. Vogel and Reeves did not support Medicaid Expansion in any form.
Glenn’s District and Minority Contracts
On his district’s political makeup and minority contracts, Glenn Davis also went on to say that his district was 50/50 when a look at the map shows otherwise. Glen lives in a district that went 64% for McDonnell in 2009 and 51% for Ed Gillespie in 2014. Furthermore, the April 2011 redistricting gave him a whole percentage point more Republican advantage. In fact, his district has 16 precincts and 11 of them went “R” while only 5 went “D”.
Regarding minority contracts, Glen claimed at the forum he “fought against cronyism for a level playing field” while in Virginia Beach City Council and that he worked with them to get awards. On this claim, his assertion is dubious, as minority contract expenditures decreased every year Davis was on city council. While on city council Davis supported light rail expansion in Virginia Beach, which many have lambasted as a give away to developers with property interests along the failed rail line. Delegate Davis is currently seated on the transportation committee in the General Assembly.
Bryce Reeves – “90% Bi-Partisan Fashion”
Reeves was responding to a question on working with the other side and closing the gun show loophole when he mentioned “the bills he works on in most cases are 90% bi-partisan” – however when examining bills he has voted on in the 2016 session, most he voted for were split into partisan lines and 67% of the bills he Co-Patrons were introduced by Republicans. Glen Davis had the closest score of bipartisanship for his Co-Patrons bills, although as previously indicated this doesn’t reflect the makeup of his district.
On ‘Evolving on Medical Marijuana’ and Transportation
Reeves was pressed whether he agrees with medical marijuana and quickly pivoted to the battle against opioid addiction. He then further went on to explain, after it was pointed out that each one of his opponents co-patron bills on allowing CBD Oil treatments for patients with cancer or epilepsy, that he was ‘evolving’ on Medical Marijuana. For this claim, I searched the entire VLIS system with the keywords ‘Marijuana’ and ‘Bryce Reeves’ and couldn’t find an example of him supporting a medical marijuana bill, although he did correctly admit to not being in support of any such bills. Evolving can be a nebulous term. Reeves also claimed he was fully behind privatization and that PPP tolling projects work and then mentioned bringing speaker Howell, McAuliffe and others to secure government money for the Rappahannock River Bridge – which was really not a standalone project but part of another project using federal money. Jill Vogel supports decriminalizing marijuana use, not trafficking as does Davis. Vogel was recently chief patron SB1298 and SB1306 to deal with the issue. SB1298 died in committee and SB1300 is waiting for the Governor’s signature.
Jill Vogel – “The Only Candidate with a 100% VCDL Score”
This is true for 2016 Jill Vogel has a %100 on the VCDL scorecard and an A+ on the NRA rating in 2016. If you want the average ratings we’ll look at the VCDL surveys they have online for 2014-2016, and Reeves has the better percentage average. Glenn Davis was not a member of the House of Delegates in 2013 so no score there. So to be fair I did the percentages over the years while in office. Adding all the scores for each representative in the years attending 2014-2016. Reeves actually has the highest VCDL score of 99%, while Davis has a %92 and Vogel a %93. Jill Vogel was the chief patron of two pro-gun bills, SB1299 and SB1300. While Bryce Reeves chief patron SB1347 a concealed knife bill. These bills appear to advance the pro-gun agenda.
I Support Regulatory Rollback Bills
Vogel has indeed introduced regulatory rollback bills that have a veto-proof element. The current bills submitted as chief patron, Jill Vogel are SB1294 and SJ295. However, as Vogel has repeated this claim often, it bears repeating that Vogel has also according to “Project VoteSmart” voted for such items that increase government regulation like higher fines for texting while driving, smoking in personal vehicles and procedures for derelict buildings. The bad has to be taken with the good in this case.
As far as Bryce Reeves and Glenn Davis, there are no similar bills submitted by them for the 2017 session for regulatory rollbacks. However, Bryce Reeves “Project VoteSmart” with the American Conservative Union gives him a 78% rating and Glenn Davis a 60% rating.
American Conservative Union
2016 Positions (State Legislatures)
VA State Senate 17 Bryce Reeves Republican 78%
VA State House 84 Glenn Davis, Jr. Republican 60%
Ben Cline and Rob Bell have 100%
The forum lasted about an hour and a half with time for each candidate to meet with constituents.