MONTHLY SPEAKER INFORMATION

The CARMA Luncheon Speaker For Thursday, May 20, 2021 Will Be:

STATE SENATOR TOMMY NORMENT

norment

Senator Norment is no stranger to CARMA, and will be asked to discuss all of the recent political issues facing the Virginia Republican Party, as well as the issues coming from the last legislative session. Following are his committee involvements and a short bio.

Senate Minority Leader,  Republican, District 3

Committees
Biography
Born in Richmond, Virginia on April 12, 1946; educated at James Blair High School, Williamsburg, VA; Virginia Military Institute (B.A.); Marshall-Wythe School of Law (J.D.); Attorney With Kaufman & Canoles; Teaching Fellow, The College Of William And Mary ; Episcopal; member: Bruton Parish Church; Member of the Senate: 1992-


District 3 Description
Gloucester County (All), New Kent County (All), King and Queen County (All), King William County (All), Poquoson City (All), Isle of Wight County (Part), James City County (Part), Surry County (Part), York County (Part), Hampton City (Part), Suffolk City (Part),
 

The CARMA Luncheon Speaker on Thursday, April 15, 2021 was:

Kristi Way - 1st Vice President, Republican Party of Virginia

416-9

(Rich Anderson was called away at last minute to resolve voting issues regarding the upcoming GOP Convention on May 8th.)

Kristi Way has been active in Virginia GOP politics dating back to the first campaigns of Governor george Allen. She is n active member of the RPV, and agreed to speak to CARMA on very short notice.

She began her informative discussion with a packed CARMA luncheon by talking about the upcoming GOP Convention which presently will have 37 voting locations, that it will be a weighted election, and that each person voting will be asked to rank each candidate according to the number of candidates running for that office. (i.e. 1 to 7 for the seven governorship candidates.) She said there are 17 candidates in the state GOP convention for the top 3 seats. She said that the party is working hard to restore confidence in its ability to elect key republicans, and why the RPV should be supported.

She said that it is expected that there will be at least 92 of the 95 House seats having a GOP candidate. A central theme will be the very poor management of the state during Northam's tenure. She mentioned that there is in DC a bill posted to expand the Supreme Court to 13, and to expand the House by a margin sufficient to insure a democratic victory, no matter how the results may turn out.

She answered a lot of tough questions, a lot of them expressing frustration over the past performances of RPV in recent elections. She said the state central committee is working hard to bring about support, confidence and victorys in November.

 

 

The CARMA Luncheon Speakers for March 18th were:

Delegate Amanda Batten, and Jeff Ryer - Senate GOP Caucus Press Secretary

batten

Delegate Batten spoke of the 100% virtual House legislative Session that just recently completed its session. The utilization of zoom type controls to eliminate Republican House Delegate input was noted. Simply muting the delegates whose input was not wanted by the Dems occured frequently as Bills were rushed through the various steps from committee to "floor" votes. Examples were in the returning of students to school Bill, unwanted comments were just silenced. She discussed how all teachers will be required to pass a cultural competency exam. It teaches the teachers all the sensitivity they must have in teaching all classes. She also mentioned that the democrats including Mike mullins voted against sending the students back to school. She also mentioned the discussions about low emission vehicle mandates, by passing rules on the volume of the vehicles that must be sold by each company. The Parole Board scandal was simply the board not following existing state laws. Not bending them, but simply violating them. The marijuana bill was another fiasco. Apparently, we are being viewed as "East California" for the extent of the liberal policies passed and considered.

Delegate Amanda Batten represents District 96 in the Virginia House of Delegates.  Elected in 2019, Delegate Batten is a member of the House Education Committee and the House Public Safety Committee.  She also serves on the Aerospace Advisory Council.  Prior to her election, Batten worked as legislative aide to former Delegate Brenda Pogge.
 
Amanda resides in Toano with her husband, Rick.  Her son, Troy is an engineering major at Virginia Tech.  She is currently a board member of the Virginia Symphony Society, and she previously served on the board of the Thomas Nelson Community College Educational Foundation and as president of the Providence Classical School Board.  A graduate of Ashford University, Amanda has also completed the University of Virginia’s Sorensen Political Leaders Program and the Greater Williamsburg Chamber & Tourism Alliance’s LEAD Historic Triangle program.

For over ten years, Amanda has volunteered for Republican candidates and principles in the Hampton Roads region.  She completed three terms as chairman of the James City County Republican Committee and was selected as the Commonwealth’s Republican Chairman of the Year in 2013.  She is currently a member of the Jamestown Heritage Republican Women’s Club and she serves as Eastern Vice Chairwoman of the State Central Committee of the Republican Party of Virginia.

The 96th District includes portions of James City County and York County.

ryerpic-13

(Jeff Ryer - Senate GOP Caucus Press Secretary - Filled in for Senator Norment who had been summoned to Court on CARMA's Luncheon date. He is very familiar with the Senate session, the bills passed, etc.)

Jeff described how the Senate met in person in an off campus building. He began by quickly mentioning some of the bills passed and what they meant. Beginning in July this year, the purchase of PPE will be tax free. Higher income families will pay a subsidy towards lower income families with regard to costs for medical supplies and such. The death penalty has been eliminated has the reality of life in prison without parole. An attempt to eliminate all felony mandatory minimum sentences has failed, but it is not gone forever. Expect it back next year if either the house or governorship does not flip. A bill to remove dead voters from the polling lists failed. The in person school bill was approved but only after July 1st. Virginia has not extended its tax filing date beyond April 15th. (They are cash short!)

Jeff now turned to elections this year. The need to flip either the House or Governor is a must. Virginia GOP was outfunded by about 17 million last election because Virginia has a shortage of billionaires who will write big checks freely. The key for the GOP candidates is to get the message out with Grassroots type campaigns and to work smarter and harder. The message must simply be that what the Dems are doing is making your lives less safe, more expensive, and they are taking away indvidual liberties on many issues. An example is a proposal going around that would have Virginia join a regional fuel cooperative where the amount of fuel is rationed by setting caps on the number of gallons sold, forcing conversion to electric vehicles, heating, etc. Prices would skyrocket, while so many choices would be removed. The reactions from the sold out crowd was very glum, along with anger.

Jeff & Amanda were thanked for their comments.

 

 
The February 18th Luncheon Speakers were:
Sandy Young & Greg Dowell - Members of the W-JCC Board of Education


Sandy Young and Greg Dowell are elected members of the W-JCC Board of Education. Sandy is serving her second term, and Greg his first. They began the program by answering questions which had been submitted to the speaker chairperson. Questions revealed their backgrounds and why they ran for office on the schoolboard. It was interesting to hear of their liflong dedications to education and to the welfare of the children. They are very much so in their rightful, and chosen vocations.

They then took questions from the large group of interested attendees, who were most interested in the division of responsibility between the Board of Education and the administration. Questions probed the decision making responsibilities during this year of Covid-19 exceptions to almost every rule. Attendees wanted to know the reasons and causes behind the current virtual environment, and when it was thought that things could begin to return to more normal classroom teaching. They commented on the demands by the organized teachers versus the demands of Richmond. Comments to the issues of resolving safety requirements for all, and the plans about how to return students to fulltime classroom instruction were discussed.

The attendees were very much concerned with the role of the Board to be determining policy and managing budget as its primary goal where that is not what seems to be occurring from newspaper and media articles. The two members were clear that these lines, in lieu of Covid, have blurred some.

Both members were thanked for their clarity and willingness to discuss tough issues. The fathers and grandfathers in the audience were very pleased with the discussions.

 


The January 21st Luncheon Speaker was Gary Porter
Founder and Executive Director of the Constitution Leadership Initiative

porterpic
Gary Porter & as James Madison in a classroom

Gary Porter is Founder and Executive Director of the Constitution Leadership Initiative, Inc. (CLI) a project to encourage a better understanding of the U.S. Constitution among the American people. CLI provides courses on the U.S. and Virginia Constitutions, and promotes the use of other, online and live courses as the needs of the audience dictate.

Gary also re-enacts James Madison, in period costume, distributing pocket Constitutions to school children and explaining his (Madison’s) role in creating the Bill of Rights. Bio continues after the Luncheon Summary._______________________________________________________________________________________________________

Gary Porter provided copies of the original constitution to all luncheon attendees. He then presented quite a lot of information regarding election law, following a syllabus that he also provided which discussed the various pieces of the laws that are relevant to elections. Federal elections are overseen by the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) and they establish the guidelines for which elections are to conducted, and then hand them off to the 50 states who then are supposed to incorporate them into their state guidelines. According to Gary, sometimes this works and sometimes it doesn't. He posed the question early in his talk about "...are we fit for liberty?" And, "...are we willing to fight for it?" He repeated on a number of times during his discussion that now is the time to act. Silence will not work, and loyal conservatives must now begin to speak up.

He mentioned that the liberals and radical left are willing to do anything to win. They don't ever again want to be challenged in an election and will take steps to insure that future elections cannot be challenged by the GOP or conservative groups. He mentioned that the original constitution was about 4,800 words, and that today, with all of the SCOTUS rulings, it fills a book of over 3,000 pages. This is a rewriting or redefining of almost every sentence in the original constitution. For anyone interested in the details of all this, he recommends the "Heritage Guide To The Constitution" available on the Heritage Foundations website for $20.00.

Gary Porter then took questions from the attendees:

1. Do you think it would be a good idea for members of Congress to be required to have a Security Clearance? Absolutely. They are privied to information that the people in the agencies and departments who manage it, are required to have secret and top secret clearances. It just makes sense.

2. Asked about books and references regardting the Constitution: Rick Green's website, "Constitutional Literacy" by Mike Ferris.

3. Asked to comment on the Georgia election and runoff election: The runoff was in direct conflict with the Georgia Constitution. It allows for those who voted in the original election to vote in the runoff, however, 350,000 more voted in the runoff. Asked if there should be a constitutional challenge, he replied yes, and was surprised there hasn't been one yet.

4. Asked about the SCOTUS decision not to take up the Texas and other election cases. He stated that the SCOTUS and especially Chief Justice Roberts had made decisions based on perceived welfare and equitable nature of the country rather than on the legal statutes that were in question. Asked if a SCOTUS can be impeached, he said only for actions taken outside of the court, not for legal rulings and only for grievous behavior.

5. Asked about a possible Kamala Harris timeframe to assume the presidency: Timing to allow for her to run for election for two terms after serving as VP, would be for her to assume the presidency after serving as VP for 2 years and 1 day. Under these conditions she could be president for 1 day less than 10 years, assuming being relected.

6. Asked to comment on the Pennsylvania election rules this past November. They were adopted by the Governor and affirmed by the courts. PA constitution says these should be enacted by the legislature.

Gary Porter offered the opportunity for any group that could be formed to teach a Constitution 101 class. He said they are found to be informative and eye opening. Gary was thanked for his candid remarks, the handouts, and was presented with the CARMA Crucible.

Attached here is the "Election Law Primer/Luncheon Syllabus" that Gary Porter handed out: CLICK HERE

An additional Resource is "The President's 1776 Advisory Commission Report" dated January, 2021. A report about the freedoms guaranteed in the Constitution and some history about challenges and affirmations. CLICK HERE

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

Gary retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1989 after a 21-year career flying the F-15, F-105 and several different models of gray steel desk. After another 21 years of working for various defense contractors, Gary retired for good at the end of 2012 to devote his full energies to CLI.

In his spare time, Gary serves as Chairman of the School board for Hampton Christian Academy and is a founding board member of Hampton Roads Classical, a newly opened classical school in Smithfield. He is a volunteer docent at the Foundation for American Christian Education (FACE) in Chesapeake, Virginia and a frequent speaker in FACE’s “Lessons in Liberty” lecture series.

For the last three years, he has helped judge the Virginia State High School Finals competition of We the People, a program sponsored nationally by The Center for Civics Education. Gary daily answers questions about the Constitution and politics in general on Quora.com and contributes to Constituting America’s annual “90-Day Study” Project.

He has spoken on constitutional issues to regional and national conferences, hosted his own radio show: “We the People, the Constitution Matters,” and spoken before a committee at the Virginia Assembly. Gary can be reached via email at constitutionlead@gmail.com or by calling 757-867-9120.

 

04/16/21