Newsflash:
Rep. Barbara Lee Wayne Powell Powell slams Cantor at open town hall meeting
Thursday, 23 August 2012 13:39

Powell slams Cantor at open town hall meeting

Written by  Allison Brophy Champion | Culpepper Star Exponent

A Richmond native and attorney like his opponent, Powell is otherwise very different from 49-year-old Cantor, Majority Leader in the U.S. House since 2011, and Culpeper County’s congressional representative since 2000.

Cantor’s name came up a lot during Thursday’s “Open Town Hall Meeting” hosted by Powell, who was articulate and well received by local constituents in attendance.

Local Democrats energized for the upcoming election packed Raven’s Nest Coffee House on Davis Street Thursday night to welcome and hear from congressional candidate Wayne Powell.

A U.S. Army veteran, Powell, 61, is running as a Democrat against longtime Seventh District incumbent Eric Cantor, R-Richmond.

A Richmond native and attorney like his opponent, Powell is otherwise very different from 49-year-old Cantor, Majority Leader in the U.S. House since 2011, and Culpeper County’s congressional representative since 2000.

Cantor’s name came up a lot during Thursday’s “Open Town Hall Meeting” hosted by Powell, who was articulate and well received by local constituents in attendance.

“I love this country and we’ve got a lot of problems,” said Powell of why he is running for elected office for the first time.

“But I’m not a whiner and am not a person who thinks fear and loathing is the way to run a country. I think you’ve got be constructive, you’ve got to be engaging and you’ve got to get the facts to find the problem and solve it.”

Powell listed his top three issues if elected as: 1) the economy and jobs; 2) changing the way Congress operates and 3) transparency in government while weeding out the influence of money.

“The economy is off the cliff because we have a Congress that’s dysfunctional. Mr. Cantor is part of that,” Powell said. “We have a difficult debt, but it’s not intractable. It wasn’t made overnight – it can’t be paid off overnight, but we need to pay off the debt. That is not a democrat or republican issue, that’s an American issue.”

According to the Democratic candidate, the budget proposed by GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his VP pick, Paul Ryan, calls for a 2.7 percent increase in the budget over 10 years.

“That’s $6 trillion more in debt. They won’t tell you that, but that’s a fact. We don’t need deficit spending to pay for the services the people of this country need,” Powell said.

The U.S. Defense budget is equivalent to the total budgets of 26 other countries, including China and Russia, he said, noting it as excessive. A veteran himself, whose son served in Iraq and is now in Afghanistan, Powell said he did not and does not support either conflict.

“I opposed the Iraqi War. I was totally against it from the get-go,” Powell said. “Iraq was never a risk or a threat to us. They were never involved with 9-11 – as an intelligence officer I can tell you that. Once we ejected al-Qaeda and the Taliban in December 2001, January 2002 we should have left.”

He went on to say he was against the ongoing war in Afghanistan, where U.S. servicemen continue to be shot dead by the Afghani security forces they are training.

Powell called the war “a waste of time, money and people,” noting al-Qaeda is in Pakistan.

“If there has been no war declared we should leave immediately – that is in the constitution,” he said.

Powell said he wanted to change the way Congress operates, reversing the “dysfunction and obtrusiveness personified by Eric Cantor.”

“It’s been nothing, but nothing getting done since he became Majority Leader in 2011,” he said. “Everybody in this room knows Congress is not working. If you try to govern on an ideological basis and not as an American then we’re not going to prosper as we should.”

Finally, the Democrat referred to “the absolute obscene influence of the glut of money in politics” in Washington, receiving enthusiastic applause.

“You can look at my FEC report, you can ask us who’s giving us money and we’re always going to tell you where it comes from. I am intending to be a public servant, your servant, not the servant of a pharmaceutical industry or some hedge fund on Wall Street,” Powell said.

He called Cantor “the poster child as one who facilitates corruption in Congress.”

“We need disclosure, we need transparency,” Powell said. “When I am in Congress, you are going to know who I am meeting with. And it’s not going to be lobbyists first, it’s going to people first. Mr. Cantor forgets that representation means you have to represent somebody.”

Answering various questions from the local crowd, Powell said, if elected, he would remain committed to being an advocate for women’s issues, including equal pay as outlined in the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, one of President Barack Obama’s first pieces of legislation.

“Of course Mr. Cantor voted against it,” Powell said, keeping up the attack on the incumbent.

“My two basic platforms are economic fairness and social justice. You cannot have justice for everybody if you don’t have justice for both sexes. That means everything needs to be equal – equal pay for equal work. Period. No exceptions. It’s all about human rights.”

Talk of the Ledbetter Act fired up Col. Samuel Glasker, of Culpeper, longtime member of the Culpeper County Democratic Committee. He said once people learn “the facts” about Cantor’s record in Congress they can then make an informed decision on Election Day.

“Cantor voted against equal pay for women,” Glasker said. “That is a disgrace, discrimination and everybody in the streets of Culpeper should understand that, every female who works should be willing to vote against him for that. We know his record – the public does not know his record. People here who are voting for Cantor are doing so because he’s been in there since the beginning. He doesn’t have the courtesy to come and meet the people and they still vote for him. I can assure you when the facts get on the ground about his record, how it affects you personally, you’re not going to vote for him.”

Powell spoke about his support of affordable healthcare for all, saying he supported “a progression toward” Medicare for all U.S. citizens while expressing concern about the cost in light of the national debt and deficit.

Powell took aim at the big banks and persistent lack of financial regulation.

“If they were too big to fail they’re just too doggone big. And what happened to the anti-trust created by this Republican guy Teddy Roosevelt? I mean when is the last time any of the big banks were tested to see why are so big. I think they ought to be auditing to see where this money is going. When you have all these billions of dollars given to these folks and then they give hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses because they don’t want to lose the talent, hey with talent like that, hey, you know what I mean,” he said.

The last time 1 percent of the country controlled 25 percent of the country’s wealth was in 1929, right before the Great Depression, Powell said. The candidate said he would disclose his tax records, and encouraged Cantor to do the same, saying outright that the incumbent has benefited from insider trading.

The Virginia Chamber of Commerce recently announced a Sept. 28 debate between Cantor and Powell at a member business in the district. According to the chamber, the debate will be open to chamber members and the media.

Asked in Culpeper what one question he would ask Cantor, Powell replied, “Why are you selling out your country? Is all the money worth it? It’s not worth it.”

The Culpeper County Democratic Committee, located on the second floor of the A.P. Hill Building at Main and Davis streets, hosts a grand opening of the Wayne Powell for Congress northern office Aug. 23, starting at 7 p.m.

Cantor strategist Ray Allen laughed and laughed when asked about Powell in a recent phone interview with the Star-Exponent.

“Wayne Powell wouldn’t know the truth if the truth walked up and shook his hand,” Allen said.

Link to original article from Star Exponent

Read 3825 times

ERA Legislation in your State

Unratified states Gold - Ratified States Purple

Latest News from the Lee Campaign

Latest News from the Grayson Campaign

Latest News from the Schapira Campaign

  • Standard-Bearer in Pivotal Arizona Congressional Race
    Standard-Bearer in Pivotal Arizona Congressional Race

    With early ballots in the mail, and only three weeks from the August 28th primary, State Senator David Schapira has emerged as the Democratic standard-bearer in a closely watched and increasingly nasty three-way congressional race in Arizona that many observers see as a litmus test for national Democratic chances to pick up critical seats in Congress.

    Written on Thursday, 09 August 2012 01:45 Read more...
  • Harry Mitchell Endorses David Schapira for Congress
    Harry Mitchell Endorses David Schapira for Congress

    “The primary in Congressional District 9 has pitted three of the brightest members of the Democratic Party in Arizona against each other. All three candidates are leaders in our state and I am honored to call them friends.

    Written on Thursday, 26 July 2012 12:14 Read more...
  • A Guest Post From Arizona Progressive State Senator David Schapira
    A Guest Post From Arizona Progressive State Senator David Schapira

    Endorsements are a funny thing. Most of them aren't worth anything at all. I have two friends running in the Democratic primary in Arizona's brand new 9th CD, Kyrsten Sinema and Andrei Cherny. Kyrsten is a progressive and Andrei is somewhere in his own world ideologically. But the third guy... well, he's the one who's been endorsed by Raúl-- and by PDA. Whomever wins the August 28th primary is, likelier than not, headed to Congress. That third guy is David Schapira, the Senate Democratic Leader.

    Written on Saturday, 30 June 2012 13:38 Read more...
  • David Schapira Receives PDA Endorsement
    David Schapira Receives PDA Endorsement

    On the May Inside the Party call, David Schapira (AZ-9) received the PDA National endorsement. Currently David Schapira is the Arizona State Senate Democratic Leader.

    Written on Thursday, 24 May 2012 00:00 Read more...
  • Arizona Communications Workers of America State Council Endorses David Schapira for Congress
    Arizona Communications Workers of America State Council Endorses David Schapira for Congress

    The Arizona Communications Workers of America (CWA) State Council announced today their endorsement of Senate Democratic Leader David Schapira, D-Tempe, in the race for Arizona’s Ninth Congressional District. The state council is comprised of the Arizona Correctional Peace Officers Association (AZCPOA), the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA and multiple CWA local affiliates.

    Written on Thursday, 17 May 2012 19:55 Read more...
  • Congressman Raúl Grijalva Endorses David Schapira
    Congressman Raúl Grijalva Endorses David Schapira

    Congressman Raúl Grijalva, AZ-07, today announced his endorsement of Arizona Senate Democratic Leader David Schapira, D-Tempe, in his campaign for Arizona’s Ninth Congressional District. “Voters are looking for candidates who stand up for what they believe in and can win, not by hiding their values, but by sharing them with voters. David is that candidate,” said Rep. Grijalva.

    Written on Monday, 30 April 2012 00:00 Read more...
  • Arizona Union Rights Stripped

    Arizona Governor Jan Brewer pushes the country's most anti-union agenda yet. David Shapira, Democratic leader of the Arizona state senate, slams his Republican colleagues. Welcome back to "The Ed Show." Jan Brewer and the Arizona Republicans are on a tear. they are on the offensive. they are on a mission to completely destroy public employee unions. have you heard the story before?

    Written on Thursday, 02 February 2012 00:00 Read more...
  • State Senator David Schapira Jumps Into District 9 Congressional Race
    State Senator David Schapira Jumps Into District 9 Congressional Race

    As predicted, former state Senator Kyrsten Sinema's not the only Democrat with her eye on Arizona's new Congressional seat -- this morning, state Senate Minority Leader David Schapira announced that he, too, will run in Arizona's newly formed 9th Congressional district.

    Written on Tuesday, 17 January 2012 00:00 Read more...

Sign the Petition - Sen. Sanders Run as a Democrat in 2016

Button-SandersPetition

Like Rep. Barbara Lee

Lori Wallach on the TPP from PDA Progressive Roundtable

Progressive Roundtable with Reps. Ellison and Pocan and Lori Wallach on TPP

TPP: The Biggest Threat to the Internet You've Probably Never Heard Of