Last edited: January 22, 2005

Sending Them PAC-ing

Political-action committee aims to redefine meaning of pro-family

Augusta 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, 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 said.

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 said.

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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