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Gilbert-Athey, Mexican restaurant owner, Vogel


Winners and Losers column by Chris Graham

WINNERS: Clay Athey and Todd Gilbert raise issue with immigration appointment
We’ll call them winners for now, anyway – because the two Republicans have been scoring political points for their party with their noise over the appointment of Esam Omeish to the Virginia Commission on Immigration.
Public pressure initiated by Gilbert, R-Shenandoah, led to the forced resignation of the controversial Muslim leader from the commission – and Gilbert and Athey don’t seem to be intent on letting up the pressure just yet.
I say we’ll call them winners for now because I wonder if they might not be better off pulling back the reins on the pressure now that they’ve got their pound of flesh.
But … hey, maybe they’re onto something bigger.
Time will tell there.

LOSER: Juan Lopez-Aguirre
I hear this news, and I just hope it isn’t true – that Lopez-Aguirre, the driving force behind several successful Mexican restaurants in the Greater Augusta area, is alleged to be one of the driving forces behind a multimillion-dollar meth ring.
Another loser in this one is the chowderhead who posted a comment on a News Leader forum that made the issue involving Lopez-Aguirre into an excuse for a round of immigrant-bashing.
So we have to do this kind of thing now every time someone who is an immigrant is accused of committing a crime?

WINNER: Vogel earns Post endorsement
The Washington Post offered endorsements in eight Northern Virginia Senate races, and Jill Holtzman Vogel in the 27th (which stretches from Winchester into NOVA) was one of two Republicans to get the paper’s backing.
I have to wonder what kind of impact this will have on the race in the 27th – which insiders were saying was looking to be one that was Democrat Karen Schultz’s to lose heading into the home stretch.


Chris Graham is the executive editor of The Augusta Free Press.



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