Sending Them PAC-ing
Political-action committee aims to redefine meaning of
Free Press, January 14, 2005
By Chris Graham
What consenting adults do in the privacy of their own
homes should be their business.
But that’s not always the case in what the pollsters
and pundits, among others, call the land of moral values
“One issue that unites people of all political stripes
is the frustration that we all feel with respect to how government intrudes
into people’s bedrooms in Virginia,” said Waldo Jaquith, the president of
the Virginia Family Values PAC, a nonpartisan political-action group that aims
to redefine what it means to be pro-family.
“This seems to be the one consistent issue that knows
no party line. The right to privacy is a fundamental issue for Virginia
families,” Jaquith told The Augusta Free Press.
Jaquith, the founder and editor of www.cvillenews.com,
a popular news-discussion Web site devoted to coverage of events with a
Charlottesville focus, jumpstarted the PAC with a small board of directors
dedicated toward achieving a common goal.
“There is not a more fundamental family right than the
right to be able to determine when you want to have children and how many you
want to have,” Jaquith said.
“We’re not talking about abortion. Every single
person should have the right to decide if they want to use contraceptives as
part of their family-planning strategy. But some legislators would like to see
to it that you don’t have that right. They see sex as something that should
only be allowed for the purposes of procreation.
“That’s not Virginia values. That’s not American
values,” Jaquith said. “Contraceptives are a normal part of any family’s
life. And families should have the right to have them at their disposal.”
The Virginia Family Values PAC “wants to bring these
issues regarding privacy into the limelight,” Jaquith said.
The PAC has targeted four members of the House of
Delegates—Dave Albo, R-Springfield, Dick Black, R-Sterling, Bob Marshall,
R-Manassas, and Bob McDonnell, R-Virginia Beach—for removal from office
because, Jaquith said, the four “have consistently voted against family and
parental rights, and have introduced bills that would increase the size of
government while decreasing family freedoms and privacy.”
“Every time that these legislators have been given the
choice between family values and bigger government, they’ve chosen wrong.
They’re way out of touch with Virginia values, and we intend to show them
the door,” Jaquith said.
“Our goal financially is to use the money that we have
at our disposal to help attract talent,” Jaquith said.
“We’re not going to be able to bankroll anybody. But
we can offer incentives to candidates who do challenge those in office who
promote the anti-family agenda. And we expect that we’ll be involved on both
sides of the aisle, in nomination battles and general campaigns,” Jaquith
The PAC also aims to commit resources to public-education
and candidate-education campaigns, Jaquith said.
“We’ll try to draw attention to incumbents in ways
that challengers won’t be able to,” Jaquith said. “We’ll share
information about their values and their radical agendas so that voters can
make informed decisions about who they want to support.
“A political candidate can’t stand up as easily and
say that they think that laws related to contraception and what goes on in the
privacy of a married couple’s bedroom are too restrictive. There’s always
the risk of a backlash there,” Jaquith said.
“But a PAC can say that. We can stand up for what we
believe 95 percent of Virginians agree is the right thing to do,” Jaquith
The committee is going to stay away from issues involving
gay rights and abortion—two hot-button matters in the family-values sphere.
“We’re focusing our attention on those issues that we
feel most intelligent minds can agree on. There’s certainly a lot of room
for intelligent minds to disagree on gay rights and abortion,” Jaquith said.
“This PAC is nonpartisan. I’m a progressive Democrat,
but members of our board represent all parts of the political spectrum. And
actually, the mission of the PAC is conservative, when you think about it. Our
mission is to keep government out of our bedrooms and out of our personal
lives. There’s nothing liberal about that,” Jaquith said.
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