Buried in GOP Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan’s 12-minute speech at a Hotel Roanoke fundraiser this month was the prediction that Congressman Bob Goodlatte, R-Roanoke County, would be selected as the new chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary next year.
Today, Politico has a story about the scramble on Capitol Hill to secure chairmanships of several House committees for next year. Republicans look likely to retain control of the chamber, and seven different chairman will step down due to committee term limits. Those term limits, if you remember, were the reason Goodlatte had to step down after four years as chairman of the Agriculture Committee and two years as its ranking member (meaning he was top Republican when Democrats were in the majority and therefore controlled the chairmanship).
When Republicans retook control of the House in 2010, Goodlatte was left without a chairmanship, though he was given the Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet (though given the subcommittee’s key role in shaping the Stop Online Piracy Act, that may not have been the best thing from a political perspective).
But with the turnover atop the committees, Politico now reports: “Judiciary Chairman Lamar Smith of Texas will almost certainly be replaced by Rep. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia.”
This all assumes, of course, that Goodlatte defeats Democratic challenger Andy Schmookler of Shenandoah County and wins re-election to an 11th term. You can read the Q&A those two candidates submitted to the Roanoke Times Editorial Board, which ran on Sunday.
Schmookler’s campaign, by the way, is touting a video of his Labor Day speech in Harrisonburg as going “viral,” as it’s been viewed nearly 90,000 times on Youtube. You can read that news release from the Schmookler campaign and watch an embedded copy of that video after the jump.
Otherwise, weigh in with your thoughts on what a Goodlatte chairmanship in the Judiciary Committee might mean.
– Mason Adams
Schmookler’s Labor Day Speech Goes Viral
YouTube Video nearly 90,000 Views
*FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE*
An audience nearly twice the size of the population of Harrisonburg and and approaching the size of the population of Roanoke has tuned in to watch a brief but powerful speech that 6th district congressional candidate Andy Schmookler delivered over Labor Day weekend. That is 23 times more viewers than the most-watched YouTube video posted by his Republican opponent, and nearly four times more viewers than all 205 of his opponent’s videos combined have gathered.
The video of Andy Schmookler speaking on Labor Day in Harrisonburg was posted by a campaign supporter. Here is a URL: http://bit.ly/AndyHarrisonburgLaborDay. Schmookler delivered a strong statement on the current political climate. Below is a quote from the video:
[A] dark and sick and broken spirit…has taken over a once great [Republican] Party… A spirit which never has enough of either wealth or power. Even though we have the greatest income inequality that we’ve had in living memory, this force is working to widen that gap still further– with the Ryan budget…with Mitt Romney’s tax proposals. All of them take from average Americans to give to those who already have the most… The only way a force like this can have power is by deceiving people into believing that they are something that they are not.
Schmookler, who runs on a message that his campaign and supporters say is not about liberal vs. conservative but about constructive vs. destructive, charges that today’s Republican Party makes a fight over everything, citing their rejection of initiatives from President Obama and Democrats based on proposals that were originally Republican.
Schmookler, running in what is usually considered a “safe” Republican district , has been reaching out to conservative and libertarian voters by invoking his own passion for upholding the Constitution, defending individual liberties, and fortifying the foundations of the American democracy. He has reached these viewers through ingenious use of social media. Schmookler has over 2,100 likes on Facebook, and over 2,200 followers on Twitter, respectively. Follow Andy on Twitter at @AndySchmookler.
“I am thrilled that this video has gone viral, kindling the interest of nearly 90,000 viewers so far. This strengthens my hope that this truth is ready to catch fire among our people and to help us surmount our present dangerous political crisis,” says Schmookler.