ROBERT FRANCIS MCDONNELL (born June 15, 1954) is an American
politician and lawyer who was the 71st
Governor of Virginia . A member
of the Republican Party , McDonnell also served on the executive
committee of the
Republican Governors Association . McDonnell was a
lieutenant colonel in the
United States Army Reserve . He served in
Virginia House of Delegates
Virginia House of Delegates from 1992 to 2006, and was Attorney
Virginia from 2006 to 2009.
McDonnell was elected
Governor of Virginia after using the campaign
slogan "Bob's for Jobs." He defeated Democratic state Senator Creigh
Deeds by a 17-point margin in the 2009 general election , which was
marked by the severe recession of the late 2000s . McDonnell succeeded
Tim Kaine who was term-limited by
Virginia law. After
taking office as governor, McDonnell advocated privatization and
promoted offshore drilling for Virginia. He moved to extend a contract
to outsource the state's computer operations and sought to fund
transportation improvements from asset sales, including a proposal to
auction off liquor stores operated by the
Virginia Department of
Alcoholic Beverage Control . The state's unemployment rate declined
from 7.4% in January 2010, when McDonnell took office, to 5.2% in
December 2013, comparable to the decline in the national unemployment
rate from 9.8% to 6.7% during the same period. McDonnell's
governorship ended with a 55% to 32% approval to disapproval rating
among registered voters.
On January 21, 2014, McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, were indicted
on federal corruption charges for receiving improper gifts and loans
Virginia businessman. They were convicted on most counts by a
federal jury on September 4, 2014. McDonnell, the first Virginia
governor to be indicted or convicted of a felony, was sentenced on
January 6, 2015, to two years in prison, followed by two years of
supervised release. However, he was free on bond during the subsequent
appeals process. On June 27, 2016, the
United States Supreme Court
unanimously vacated McDonnell's conviction and remanded the case back
to a lower court. Less than three months later, the Justice
Department announced that they would not prosecute the case again, and
moved to dismiss the charges against the former governor and his wife.
* 1 Early life, education, and family
* 2 House of Delegates (1992–2006)
* 3 Attorney General (2006–2009)
* 3.1 Tenure
* 4 2009 campaign for governor
* 4.1 Issues
* 4.3 Energy
* 4.5 Gay rights
* 4.6 Marijuana
* 4.7 Transportation
* 4.8 Transparency
* 4.9 Thesis
* 4.10 Campaign organization and financial support
* 4.11 Endorsements
Governor of Virginia
* 5.1 Social issues
* 5.1.1 Confederate History Month proclamation
* 5.1.2 State health benefits for same-sex partners
* 5.1.3 Death sentence for
* 5.3 Voting rights restoration for felons
* 5.4 Transportation
* 5.5 Health care
* 5.6 Education
* 5.8 Budget
* 5.8.1 Results from 2010 Fiscal Year
* 5.8.2 Liquor sales
* 5.9 Job creation
* 5.10 Redistricting
* 5.11 Executive mansion spending
* 5.12 Federal corruption charges
* 5.12.1 Supreme Court Case
* 6 See also
* 7 References
* 8 Further reading
* 9 External links
EARLY LIFE, EDUCATION, AND FAMILY
McDonnell was born in
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , the son of Emma B.
Meta (née Meiller; 1928–1994) and Lt. Col. John Francis McDonnell
USAF Ret. (1916–2010). His paternal grandparents were Irish
immigrants, and his maternal grandparents were from
what was then the
German Empire . His family moved to Fairfax County,
Virginia , in 1955 when he was a year old. He spent four years of his
early childhood in
Germany when his father, a
United States Air Force
officer, was sent out on assignment. After returning to Virginia, the
McDonnells permanently established residence in Fairfax County.
McDonnell's mother worked at
Mount Vernon . McDonnell graduated from
Bishop Ireton High School in
Alexandria, Virginia , in 1972.
McDonnell attended the
University of Notre Dame
University of Notre Dame in South Bend,
Indiana , on an ROTC scholarship, graduating with a
management in 1976. Immediately following graduation, he served as a
medical supply officer in the
United States Army for four years. His
military posts were medical clinics in
Germany from 1976 to 1979, and
Newport News, Virginia
Newport News, Virginia , from 1979 to 1981. In addition, he took
night classes and received an M.B.A. from
Boston University in 1980.
After leaving active duty in 1981, McDonnell worked for the American
Hospital Supply Corporation, primarily in the custom products regional
His career path shifted from business to law and public policy when
he selected a joint degree program at Christian Broadcasting Network
University now known as
Regent University . He obtained an M.A. /J.D.
there in 1989. During his studies, McDonnell interned under
Congressman Jerry Lewis (R-California).
McDonnell is married to Maureen Patricia McDonnell (née Gardner),
with whom he has five children. The oldest, Jeanine, served as a U.S.
Army Signal Corps officer in
Iraq . Their younger daughter, Cailin,
coordinated youth outreach for the
Republican Party of Virginia 's
election efforts in 2009. McDonnell has twin sons, both of whom
graduated in 2014 from the
University of Virginia
University of Virginia .
HOUSE OF DELEGATES (1992–2006)
McDonnell first ran and was elected to the
Virginia House of
Delegates in 1991, defeating Democratic incumbent Glenn McClanan
53%–47%. He won re-election in 1993 against Thomas Carnes
64%–36%, and was unopposed in 1995, 1997, 1999, 2001, and 2003,
serving seven terms. He represented the 84th district in Virginia
Beach . Under the 1998–2001 power-sharing arrangement between House
Republicans and Democrats , he was Co-Chair of the Committee on the
Chesapeake and its Tributaries in 2000–2001. He became Chair of the
Courts of Justice Committee in 2003. He also served on the Rules
Committee 2000–2005, and was Assistant Majority Leader. While
serving in state office, McDonnell continued to serve in the Army
Reserve as a JAG officer until retiring as a lieutenant colonel in
1997. In 1994, McDonnell supported, and was a major co-sponsor of
George Allen's initiative to abolish parole for those convicted of a
ATTORNEY GENERAL (2006–2009)
In 2005, McDonnell ran for attorney general. He campaigned on issues
including protecting children from sexual predators, drug enforcement,
identity theft, gang violence, and terrorism. The first result showed
him with a victory of 323 votes, out of over 1.9 million votes cast,
over his opponent, Democratic State Senator
Creigh Deeds . Deeds filed
for a recount , which began on December 20, 2005. A court decision
limited the recount to just recompiling vote totals instead of
examining individual optically scanned ballots. After preliminary
figures revealed 37 more votes for McDonnell and that Deeds could not
make up the difference, he conceded the next day, giving McDonnell a
323-vote margin of victory. McDonnell outspent Deeds in the general
election by nearly $1 million. He was inaugurated on January 14,
2006, in Williamsburg , along with Democratic Governor
Tim Kaine and
Republican Lieutenant Governor
Bill Bolling .
In 2007, McDonnell "played a key role in early negotiations" on the
transportation package that was the key issue of contention in the
General Assembly. However, subsequently the package was declared
unconstitutional based on a challenge filed by a Republican state
Prior to a performance of the Sex Workers\' Art Show at the College
of William and Mary in 2008, McDonnell forbade the sale of the group's
books on school grounds. McDonnell took the side of defecting
Northern Virginia Episcopalians in a property lawsuit over the right
Episcopal Diocese of Virginia to retain church property.
In February 2009, McDonnell resigned as attorney general to campaign
full-time for the governorship of
Virginia in the 2009 election .
2009 CAMPAIGN FOR GOVERNOR
Virginia gubernatorial election, 2009 and Bob
McDonnell gubernatorial campaign, 2009
McDonnell announced his candidacy for the 2009
election at American Legion's Boy's State of
Virginia 2007, making him
the seventh consecutive elected attorney general to run. The statewide
candidates, including McDonnell as governor, were selected at a
Republican State convention rather than a primary. Less than two
Creigh Deeds won his party’s nomination in a primary,
setting up a "rematch" of the state attorney general's race four years
In early June, Deeds possessed a slight edge, with a 47%–41%
advantage in a Rasmussen poll. As the campaign continued, the polls
shifted toward McDonnell's favor, with several giving him a commanding
lead. However, when the
Washington Post released McDonnell's thesis
from Regent University, McDonnell's lead dwindled to only two
percentage points in Rasmussen polling. As the election drew near,
McDonnell's campaign regained steam. McDonnell defeated Deeds in the
general election by a vote of 59%–41%, receiving the highest
percentage of the vote for any candidate for governor since 1961. At
the same time, the other two statewide offices on the ballot were also
won by Republicans.
In a political and economic climate marked by the late-2000s
recession , McDonnell promised that his priority as governor was
employment for Virginians, with such campaign slogans as, "Bob's for
Jobs." He supported right-to-work laws , low operating cost of
government and a simplified tax code . Having lived in various parts
of the state, his road-side billboard varied with geographic location,
describing him as "Tidewater's Own," "Northern Virginia's Own" and
The McDonnell campaign strategy was cast as focusing on economic
issues, transportation, and public safety. McDonnell's proposals
included new job initiatives, boosting Virginia’s tourism,
hospitality, and film industries, making
Wallops Island the top
commercial spaceport in America, and expanding growth in rural
Virginia. McDonnell proposed measures to move $480 million per year
from school administration, and put it directly into classrooms;
establish more specialized high schools to support high-demand
industries; increase online learning through virtual schools ; and
support educational mentoring programs. McDonnell frequently
expressed his support for President
Barack Obama 's ideas on
increasing parental choice through charter schools .
Identifying as pro-life , McDonnell campaigned as an opponent of
elective abortion. He did not favor standard exceptions on abortion in
cases of rape and incest. As a state legislator, he had been the lead
sponsor for legislation to ban partial birth abortions , as well as
for legislation requiring parental consent for minors' abortions, and
informed consent for women seeking abortions. He opposed state and
federal government funding for elective abortions.
McDonnell advocated making
Virginia the energy capital of the East
Coast. He supported drilling for oil off of the coast of Virginia
while simultaneously developing new technologies for wind , solar ,
biomass , and other renewable energy resources. He also intended to
expand investments in renewable energy sources and incentivize green
Mayors Against Illegal Guns , McDonnell sent personal
letters to the governors of the other 49 states urging them to follow
his state in closing loopholes that allowed mentally unstable people
to purchase guns. After the
Virginia Tech shooting in 2007, Virginia
made this issue a top priority. McDonnell wrote in his letter: "I
believe that we can all work together to help prevent these acts from
occurring again anywhere in our Nation. I write to ask for your
support in providing critical information to the National Instant
Criminal Background Check System ."
However, McDonnell campaigned as a gun rights advocate. He held an
"A" rating from the NRA Political Victory Fund and won their
McDonnell opposed same-sex marriage . He advocated a state
constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one
McDonnell opposed legalizing marijuana . He later signed a bill that
criminalized the use of synthetic cannabis . It was approved
unanimously on both the house and the senate by both political
McDonnell's campaign also turned to transportation, a major issue in
heavily congested areas of Virginia, advocating issuing $3 billion in
transportation bonds that had been approved by the
Assembly in 2007, but not funded with a revenue source, modernizing
Virginia Department of Transportation, and encouraging
public-private partnerships to improve infrastructure. He supported
widening I-66 inside the Beltway, improving I-95, and finishing the
Metrorail to Dulles Airport project.
McDonnell's criticized Governor
Tim Kaine for not disclosing his full
schedule, and for making out-of-state political appearances as Chair
Democratic National Committee . McDonnell stated, "The citizens
must be certain that the governor is attending to the duties for which
he was elected. The governor is Virginia's chief executive, and
represents the commonwealth at all times." However, in March 2010,
McDonnell received similar criticism for disclosing very few meetings
or political appearances on his publicly released schedule.
McDonnell's 1989 thesis for
Regent University was a 93-page
document titled The Republican Party's Vision for the Family: The
Compelling Issue of The Decade. The document explored the rise in the
numbers of divorces and illegitimate births , and examined public
policies that may have contributed to that increase and proposed
solutions. It gained attention in the campaign because it outlined a
15-point conservative agenda, including 10 points McDonnell pursued
during his years in the General Assembly, according to press analysis.
The agenda included opposition to abortion , support for school
vouchers and covenant marriage , and tax policies that favored
heterosexual families. In his thesis, McDonnell wrote "government
policy should favor married couples over 'cohabitators, homosexuals or
fornicators.'" McDonnell "described working women and feminists as
'detrimental' to the family."
McDonnell also "criticized a landmark 1965 Supreme Court decision "
which legalized the use of contraceptives, writing that "man's basic
nature is inclined towards evil, and when the exercise of liberty
takes the shape of pornography, drug abuse, or homosexuality, the
government must restrain, punish, and deter." McDonnell responded to
the article, stating "Virginians will judge me on my 18-year record as
a legislator and attorney general and the specific plans I have laid
out for our future – not on a decades-old academic paper I wrote as
a student during the Reagan era and haven't thought about in years."
The Washington Post
The Washington Post reported that McDonnell maintained: "Like
everybody, my views on many issues have changed as I have gotten
older." McDonnell said that his evolved position on family policy was
best represented by his 1995 welfare reform legislation where he
"worked to include child day care in the bill so women would have
greater freedom to work."
CAMPAIGN ORGANIZATION AND FINANCIAL SUPPORT
McDonnell's campaign headquarters was located in Richmond. His
campaign finance report for September 15, 2009, indicated that he had
nearly 1,500 more new donors than the Deeds campaign had total donors,
a total of 6,239 donors, and 4,946 of them were new. During the
campaign, McDonnell's largest individual donor was former coal magnate
Richard Baxter Gilliam , who was also McDonnell's fifth largest
overall donor after the
United States Chamber of Commerce . McDonnell
received over $1.5 million from the energy and natural resources
sector, including $622,198 from coal mining interests.
The McDonnell For Governor campaign printed a variety of bumper
stickers appealing to many interest groups, including "Women for
McDonnell," "Sportsmen for McDonnell," and "Independents for
McDonnell." Some appealed to the diverse minority groups throughout
the Commonwealth. Some featured the mascots of select public
universities such as the
University of Virginia
University of Virginia ,
Virginia Tech ,
James Madison University ,
Virginia Military Institute , and Old
Dominion University . "Irish for McDonnell" stickers were printed for
Virginia residents who attended the University of Notre
Dame as well. His road-side billboard varied with geographic location,
describing him as "Tidewater's Own," "Northern Virginia's Own" and
"Fairfax's Own." It was suspected that McDonnell failed to comply
with gift disclosure requirements over a $15,000 gift that a major
campaign donor, Jonnie Williams, Sr., made to cover the cost of
catering for his daughter's wedding. McDonnell himself paid $8,000
towards the catering and a $3,500 refund for overpayment was returned
to McDonnell, rather than to his daughter, potentially giving
McDonnell a financial stake in the donor's gift.
public disclosure of all gifts to public officials over $50.
McDonnell was endorsed by
Sheila Johnson , co-founder of Black
Entertainment Television and owner of the
Washington Mystics ;
Virginia AgPAC: the Political Action Committee of the
Bureau, representing over 147,000 members; the
of Realtors, the largest trade association in
Virginia with over
33,000 members; The
Virginia Credit Union League, a trade association
representing the Commonwealth’s 194 not-for-profit credit unions and
the 3 million member-owners residing in Virginia; The Virginia
Chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), a
group whose membership consists of over 6,000 small businesses across
Virginia; and the
National Rifle Association , which reversed its
pro-Deeds 2005 endorsement for attorney general.
GOVERNOR OF VIRGINIA
On January 16, 2010, McDonnell was inaugurated as the 71st governor
of the Commonwealth of Virginia, succeeding Kaine as governor. This
was the first inaugural ceremony to occur on the newly renovated steps
Virginia State Capitol. In keeping with tradition, McDonnell
signed executive orders after taking the oath. Instead of keeping with
a 30-year practice by signing an executive order banning
discrimination in state employment (which he later signed on February
5), McDonnell signed orders establishing a Commission on job creation
Virginia Commission on Government Reform and Restructuring .
Two of McDonnell's appointments drew criticism. On May 7, 2010,
Fred Malek to chair the 31-member advisory
commission on reforming state government created by one of his initial
executive orders. On May 10, 2010, several Democratic members of the
Legislature criticized the appointment due to Malek's controversial
actions while personnel director in the Nixon administration and due
to a 2007 SEC investigation settlement. On May 25, 2010, McDonnell
was asked about the Malek appointment, and stated that he was unaware
of Malek's role in the Nixon administration, a remark which State
A. Donald McEachin (D-Richmond) told
The Washington Post
The Washington Post that
McDonnell's claim was "absolutely stunning and, frankly, beyond
belief." McDonnell also nominated Robert C. Sledd to Secretary of
Commerce and Trade, but withdrew the nomination in the face of
bipartisan opposition prompted by Sledd's refusal to give up paid
outside corporate directorships.
On January 27, 2010, McDonnell delivered the Republican response to
Barack Obama 's State of the Union Address . The response
was delivered to GOP lawmakers, and invited friends in the chamber of
Virginia House of Delegates
Virginia House of Delegates . Critics argued that the use of
House chamber for McDonnell's speech did not comply with House Rule
After his election as governor, McDonnell shifted his fundraising
activities to his "Opportunity
Virginia PAC" which raised $1,194,934
through June 2010. Many of the donations came from industries
regulated by the state.
In April 2010, McDonnell renegotiated and extended a contract for
outsourcing the state's computer operations to
Northrop Grumman . At
that time, McDonnell proposed legislation, which was passed, to have
Virginia Information Technologies Agency report directly to the
governor instead of to an independent board. Subsequently, McDonnell
was criticized when the Northrup computer systems experienced a
week-long computer outage from August 25 through September 2, 2010.
As a result, 45,000 people were unable to renew their driver's
licenses. Computer systems for nearly a third of the state's agencies
were affected. Over 4,000 people had to return to the Department of
Motor Vehicles to get their photos retaken after an August 25 computer
outage left their original photos unrecoverable. The system had also
experienced a prior unrelated outage on August 9. Subsequently,
Northrop Grumman agreed to pay $250,000 to fund a state investigation
of the computer outage.
The 2010 session of the General Assembly passed a bill exempting
certain veterans' organizations from the registration and reporting
requirements that apply to most charities that solicit donations in
Virginia. The bill was introduced at the request of Bobby Thompson,
director of the U.S.
Navy Veterans Association (USNVA), who made large
contributions to certain Republican candidates. After the bill passed
both the House and Senate, newspaper accounts of that charity's
questionable practices caused a sponsor of the bill to request
McDonnell to veto it, but he signed the bill into law anyway. As a
result, the organization, which was under investigation in New Mexico
(which barred the USNVA before the
Virginia bill was signed),
Florida, and Missouri, as well as other non-profit veterans'
organizations, did not have to report to
Virginia on how they spend
the donations that they receive. McDonnell later donated to charity
the $5,000 campaign contribution that he had received from Thompson.
In August 2010, Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray announced that a
nationwide arrest warrant had been issued for Thompson, who had stolen
the identity and Social Security number of a victim who was not
connected to the USNVA. Corday stated, "We know he bilked Ohioans out
of at least $1.9 million, and we estimate that nationally he collected
at least $20 million."
In January 14, 2011, McDonnell issued a directive ordering the
Department of Conservation and Recreation to cease enforcing
regulations prohibiting the carrying firearms in state parks. He also
gave preliminary approval to amend the regulations to allow people to
carry open or concealed firearms in state forests. The regulations
were already amended in 2003 to allow concealed weapons on park
On August 15, 2011, McDonnell was named chairman of the Republican
Governors Association .
Confederate History Month Proclamation
At the request of the
Sons of Confederate Veterans , McDonnell
issued a proclamation designating April 2010 as "Confederate History
Month" following similar designations by two of his Republican
predecessors, George Allen (in 1995, 1996, and 1997) and James S.
Gilmore , but unlike the two Democratic governors immediately
preceding McDonnell, who did not designate such a month.
Unlike Gilmore's proclamation, which included anti-slavery language,
McDonnell's initial proclamation omitted direct mention of slavery,
drawing criticism from the
Virginia Legislative Black Caucus and the
NAACP . When initially asked why he had made the omission,
McDonnell stated that "there were any number of aspects to that
conflict between the states. Obviously, it involved slavery. It
involved other issues. But I focused on the ones I thought were most
significant for Virginia."
On April 7, 2010, McDonnell conceded that omitting slavery from his
proclamation was "a major omission," apologized, and amended the
document. McDonnell had previously refused to rule out the
possibility that he would run for vice president in 2012; while news
analysts Chris Cillizza, Mark Plotkin, and Teddy Davis speculated that
the mistake may have a significant adverse impact on McDonnell's
chances for a future Vice Presidential nomination, a May 22 Time
Magazine article described McDonnell as "a politician who inexplicably
kneecapped himself is clawing his way back."
On September 24, 2010, McDonnell addressed an academic conference on
slavery and announced that he will declare April 2011 as "Civil War in
Virginia" month rather than "Confederate History Month." He also
called the April 2010 proclamation an "error of haste and not of
State Health Benefits For Same-sex Partners
In December 2009, Governor Kaine had started a process to extend
Virginia employee health benefits to same-sex partners. At
McDonnell's request, Attorney General
Ken Cuccinelli issued a legal
opinion that this change to the coverage of the state's health plan
could not be made without explicit legislation authorizing it, thereby
halting the administrative process to make the change. However,
McDonnell signed a law which to allow
Virginia employers to offer
private insurance coverage for employees' same-sex partners, after the
bill passed with bipartisan support.
Death Sentence For Teresa Lewis
In a decision that drew controversy, McDonnell declined to commute
the death sentence to life imprisonment in the case of
Teresa Lewis ,
who was executed on September 23, 2010. She was the first woman
Virginia since 1912. Calls had been made for leniency,
citing her below average mental capacity.
In 2012, national attention was focused on a bill before the Virginia
state legislature, controlled by Republicans, to require a
trans-vaginal ultrasound for any woman contemplating an abortion in
Virginia. McDonnell initially supported the bill, but backed off after
public protests. He persuaded the legislators to pass instead a
slightly watered-down version requiring a less invasive abdominal
ultrasound before an abortion and exempting women who were pregnant as
a result of rape or incest, provided they reported it to the police.
The redrafted bill was opposed by pro-choice groups and a minority in
the legislature, but McDonnell signed it into law on March 7, 2012.
McDonnell was called "Governor Vagina", "Governor Ultrasound", and
other similar pejorative monikers by legislators opposing the
VOTING RIGHTS RESTORATION FOR FELONS
In April 2010, McDonnell drew criticism from black leaders and civil
rights groups when a draft policy proposal was mistakenly sent to 200
felons, informing them of his decision to require a written essay from
each applicant seeking to have voting and other civil rights restored.
Previously, applicants were required to fill out a one-page
Virginia and Kentucky require the governor to act
on individual requests for restoring voting rights.
On May 21, McDonnell announced new policies on the issue of
restoration of rights, imposing a 60-day deadline for his
administration to act on an application once all of the required
documentation was received from the applicant and the courts; reducing
the time nonviolent felons must wait to apply for restoration of
rights from three to two years, and cutting the waiting period for
reapplication if a request is denied from two years to one.
Democratic Delegate David Englin commented, "By establishing a timely
and more clearly defined process for non-violent ex-offenders seeking
to have their rights restored, the Governor’s new policy has the
potential make an important step in the right direction." By the end
of his term on January 11, 2014, McDonnell had restored the rights of
8,013 ex-felons; more than any governor in
On April 30, 2010, McDonnell authorized issuing $493 million in
transportation bonds in May 2010 and an additional $1.493 billion over
the five years to finance previously approved transportation projects.
The bonds were a part of a transportation package enacted three years
previously, but had not been issued while Republican State Delegate
Robert Marshall filed a lawsuit challenging the their
constitutionality while certain transportation notes issued during the
Gilmore Administration had not yet been paid off. Critics noted that
Virginia lacked a revenue source to amortize the bonds. On December
9, 2010, McDonnell announced a revised transportation funding plan
which included both $1.8 billion in bonds that had been approved in
2007, as well as an additional $1.1 billion which he proposed to pay
back from future federal transportation funds. He also proposed to
spend $150 million of the 2009–2010 budget surplus and $250 million
in reserves to protect against gasoline tax revenue shortfalls. On
January 9, 2011, McDonnell proposed funding projects to address
traffic congestion in
Northern Virginia and Hampton roads by diverting
0.25% of the sales tax collected in those areas from the General Fund
into the transportation fund. Legislation was required to implement
the proposal, and Democrats responded that the revenues were needed in
the General Fund for schools and public safety and that the projected
revenues were insufficient to make a difference on highway needs.
On May 10, 2010, McDonnell filed an application with the Federal
Highway Administration seeking permission to collect tolls on
Interstate 95 near the North Carolina border. The highway had been
constructed with taxpayer funds, 90% from the federal government and
Virginia gasoline taxes. However,
Virginia claimed that they
did not have sufficient revenues to maintain I-95 at a safe level and
proposed the toll to raise a projected $30 to $60 million annually.
McDonnell asked the
Federal Highway Administration to authorize the
toll under its "Interstate System Reconstruction and Rehabilitation
In 2008, the federal government and the Washington Metropolitan Area
Transit Authority had reached an agreement for federal funding of $1.5
billion in capital improvements contingent on
District of Columbia
District of Columbia pledging to develop dedicated funding for
the Metro system. WMATA was created by an interstate compact , a kind
of agreement between states similar to a treaty or contract which must
also be approved by the U.S. Congress, and founded in 1967 with a
board of directors whose members are appointed by each local
jurisdiction in its service area, including four from Virginia
appointed by the
Northern Virginia Transportation Commission (NVTC).
In June 2010, McDonnell threatened to withhold Virginia's WMATA
funding unless the composition of WMATA's board was modified to allow
Virginia's governor to appoint two of the seats. The interstate
compact establishing WMATA specified that its
Virginia members were
selected by the NVTC. In turn,
Virginia law specified that local
jurisdictions appointed that Commission's members. Rather than
proposing to amend either law, McDonnell merely threatened to withhold
Virginia's "dedicated" matching funds if the NVTC did not appoint two
people that he selected instead of appointing representatives from
local jurisdictions. On June 17, 2010, Federal Transit
Administrator Peter Rogoff required a formal commitment from Virginia
to match its share of the federal funds if the federal funding were to
continue. On June 24, 2010, McDonnell withdrew his request to appoint
two members of the Metro Board as a precondition for making the
scheduled "dedicated" payment under the 2008 agreement. On July 1,
2010, the WMATA Board of Directors approved an agreement with Virginia
to provide matching funds without regard to McDonnell's request for
board seats. Based on that agreement, the federal funds were
reconfirmed, and WMATA signed a $886 million contract for 428 new
In April 2010, McDonnell signed a bill seeking to nullify the
insurance purchase requirement in the then proposed federal health
care legislation . On March 10, 2010, before Congress finished its
final consideration of the package, a bipartisan
Freedom Act passed the General Assembly by an 80–17 majority, which
McDonnell signed on March 24, 2010. McDonnell supported Virginia's
legal challenge to the constitutionality of the final Patient
Protection and Affordable Care Act . Although abortion funding was
not debated during the regular session of the General Assembly,
McDonnell raised the issue through the use of his amendatory veto
power. During the April 21, 2010 veto session , the Virginia
legislature passed restrictions on state public funding for elective
abortion except in the instances of rape, incest, life of the mother,
or life-threatening fetal anomaly.
In April 2012 McDonnell vetoed HB 399, which sought to improve
neonatal care by fast-tracking implementation of newborn screening for
life-threatening congenital heart malformations.
In Virginia, public schools are funded from both local real estate
taxes as well as state general funds under a formula that attempts to
assure minimum statewide standards called "The Standards of Quality".
Virginia also earmarks revenues from its state lottery for education.
Tim Kaine proposed $11.4 billion for K-12 education
in the 2010–2012 budget. On February 17, 2010, McDonnell proposed
$268.8 million in cuts. McDonnell's cuts included changing the
formula for measuring the ability of localities to pay for education,
reducing funding for technology expenditures, and reducing funding
under the Standards of Quality.
The House adopted $620 million in education cuts, and the Senate
adopted a budget with $133 million in education cuts. The final,
signed budget cut over $646 million for public schools.
Because K-12 education comprised 37% of the general fund budget,
critics noted that McDonnell's proposal to fund transportation bonds
from the general fund would have resulted in further education cuts in
future years. McDonnell disagreed, saying he could lean heavily on
growth in revenues rather than pulling from existing money.
Although McDonnell supported the
Race to the Top federal education
funding program during his campaign for governor, on May 26, 2010, he
Virginia from the second round of "
Race to the Top ".
Virginia had finished 31st out of 41 states in the first round;
McDonnell decided that
Virginia should not file its application for
the second round because he erroneously believed the competition
required the use of multi-state education performance standards
instead of Virginia's standards. However, the use of common
performance standards were not required and counted for 40 points out
of a possible 500 total points in evaluating state proposals.
McDonnell later stated on MSNBC that the
Race to the Top rules
precluded participating states from adopting more rigorous standards
in addition to whatever multi-state standards they join. However,
the "Race to the Top" regulations award the points even if states
adopt standards more rigorous than the optional, common standards.
Previously, the General Assembly passed a bill in 2006 to allow
offshore exploratory gas drilling outside a 50-mile limit. On March
11, 2010, McDonnell signed into law bipartisan legislation to allow
the drilling for oil and gas in federal waters 50 miles or more off
Virginia coast if also permitted by the Federal government. (see
Offshore drilling on the US Atlantic coast ). The plan was criticized
by some environmentalists and Democrats who argued that tourism and
wildlife would be threatened and that oil drilling would not make a
difference in achieving long-term energy independence. Congressman
James P. Moran
James P. Moran (D-Va), chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee
with jurisdiction over the Interior Department, and others, argued
further that most of the proposed drilling area was located in an area
reserved for naval operations.
McDonnell advocated drilling off the
Virginia coast of the Atlantic
Ocean as a possible revenue source for the state. However, according
to the law,
Virginia could not receive any revenues from drilling in
federal waters, which included all drilling sites more than 3 miles
off the coast. On May 6, 2010, the Department of Interior suspended
the proposed auction of offshore
Virginia leasing rights. Congressman
Moran issued a statement commending the decision. On May 18, Moran
forwarded to McDonnell a Department of Defense report finding that the
proposed lease site would interfere with naval operations. On May 25,
McDonnell reaffirmed his interest in having oil drilling off the
Virginia coast notwithstanding the British Peteroleum oil spill and
the inability of
Virginia to get any of the royalty income. On May
27, President Obama announced that the offshore
Virginia lease sale
was cancelled. Subsequently, McDonnell proposed continuing a federal
environmental study of drilling off the
Virginia coast or drilling for
just gas and not oil. However, a consulting firm said that liquids are
almost always produced with gas offshore and so the proposed idea may
not be possible.
On December 18, 2009, outgoing Governor Kaine proposed $76.8 billion
of expenditures for adoption by the incoming state legislature.
Kaine's budget proposed to rationalize state revenues by increasing
the income tax while lowering property taxes and other fees. As
incoming governor, McDonnell refused to publicly recommend any
modifications to Kaine's budget and instead worked with the House of
Delegates to bring Kaine's plan up for a quick vote and defeat.
Privately, McDonnell advocated cutting $300 million from health
programs, $730 million from K-12 education, changing the state
retirement system, and requiring 10 days of furloughs for state
employees, to offset budgetary shortfalls for 2010–2012. On
February 17, 2010, after political pressure, McDonnell publicly
released his proposed cuts. The Senate adopted a budget which
restored a number of cuts to education, health and human services, and
a House-Senate conference managed to work out a compromise on March 14
containing about $250 million in cuts before the expiration of the
legislative session. However, a number of interest groups lobbied the
governor to use his amendatory veto power to alter the adopted budget.
On April 14, 2010, McDonnell proposed 96 budget amendments to the
two-year 2010–2012 budget resulting in $42.1 million in spending
increases and $51 million in additional budget cuts, tax increases,
and court fees for criminals. He proposed to increase spending by
$15 million to give incentives for
SRI International and Bank of
America to keep offices in Virginia. To boost revenue, McDonnell
proposed raising $7.2 million by increasing the fines on motorists who
exceed the speed limit. He proposed to cut an additional $9.9 million
from state funded programs for at-risk and troubled children and
proposed cutting $600,000 from state grants to public radio and
television stations. McDonnell also issued amendatory vetoes on
non-budget legislation. For example, although
Virginia has provided
free electronic filing of tax returns for years, his veto outsourced
electronic filing to firms that charge a fee for that service.
McDonnell also amended a bill to prohibit Planned Parenthood from
spending funds raised from its affinity license plates on abortions.
The Legislature met to vote on the Governor's amendments on April 21.
A bipartisan majority accepted some of McDonnell's proposed cuts while
rejecting others including those to public broadcasting, the funding
for at-risk and troubled children, and the shifting of Virginia
Medicaid mental health program to a managed-care plan.
Results From 2010 Fiscal Year
The first budget enacted under the McDonnell administration took
effect on July 1, 2010. Two of McDonnell's legislative initiatives
increased the surplus for the 2009–2010 fiscal year. First, the
budget bill accelerated the payment of state sales taxes resulting in
a one-time shift of revenues to be collected in July 2010 into the
previous fiscal year. Second, the budget bill deferred a $620 million
payment to the
Virginia Retirement System to future years. The end of
year surplus triggered the payment of a 3% bonus to state employees in
December 2010. Members of both parties called on McDonnell to use
the surplus to reverse the
Virginia Retirement System deferral.
In August 2010, McDonnell embarked on a promotional tour advocating
legislation to sell Virginia\'s liquor stores to private owners.
McDonnell held eight town hall meetings around the state to discuss
the plan. He argued that retail alcohol sales is not an appropriate
state activity and proposed that any sales proceeds could be used to
finance transportation needs. Opponents noted that the liquor stores
generate $248 million per year for Virginia's general fund.
On September 8, 2010, McDonnell presented his plan for auctioning
liquor licenses to his government reform commission. He proposed
tripling the number of stores selling liquor to 1,000, with the
licenses to operate these new stores being auctioned. According to the
Richmond Times-Dispatch, "Of the 1,000 licenses, 600 would be
available to big retailers, whose lawyers and lobbyists helped craft
the governor's proposal. An additional 150 licenses would be reserved
for package stores, with 250 for small retailers, such as
convenience-store operators." McDonnell estimated that winning
bidders would pay $265 million for the licenses, and that the state
could receive $33 million from selling existing state-owned liquor
store properties. In addition, $160 million would be collected in
wholesale license fees. To make up from the annual loss of general
fund revenues from the current state-owned stores, McDonnell proposed
a $17.50 per gallon excise tax (which is above the national average
and above that charged in neighboring states) and to charge an annual
fee of $500 to $2,000 to each store license holder, imposing a new 1%
gross receipts tax on wholesalers of liquor, and a 2.5% tax on
restaurants and bars that chose to purchase alcohol from wholesalers
instead of retail outlets. Just before the presentation, McDonnell
dropped his proposed 1.5% fee on all restaurants and retail
establishments that was in earlier drafts of his plan. McDonnell
proposed to call a special session of the
Virginia legislature in
November 2010 to consider the proposal.
The plan drew immediate opposition from conservative lawmakers as a
"tax increase". It was also opposed by the
Virginia Retail Federation,
Virginia Beer Wholesalers Association, and the
Wholesalers Association. The Baptist General Association of Virginia
Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy opposed the plan
out of concerns that it would increase alcohol consumption. The plan
was endorsed by the Fraternal Order of Police, the Virginia
Transportation Construction Industry, and the
Merchants Association and the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce.
On the eve of McDonnell taking the plan to the restructuring
commission for their endorsement, the
Washington Post reported that he
modified it by dropping the restaurant tax and certain other proposed
fees. He also proposed to set aside over 100 licenses for companies
that employ less than 50 people in order to help small family owned
stores, and wanted to give small businesses several years to pay off
their auction bids. The Post suggested that "he might call off plans
for a November special session" of the General Assembly. On October
4, the Malek commission voted 22 to 3 to endorse McDonnell's modified
plan. The Commission proposed a number of cost savings in government
operations to offset the projected $47 million annual revenue loss
from selling the ABC liquor stores.
In October 2010, McDonnell's modified plan drew criticism from
Republican members of the House of Delegates, including Del. Thomas D.
Gear who chaired the House subcommittee that considered the proposal,
and Del. Timothy D. Hugo, chairman of the House Republican caucus.
Concerns heightened when Phil Cox, who headed McDonnell's political
action committee, threatened to withhold campaign funds from
Republican delegates who failed to support the modified plan.
According to the Washington Post, "Delegates have privately complained
that the plan was developed with too little input from legislators and
too much from lobbyists for retail and alcohol interests." On October
22, 2010, McDonnell decided not call a special session, but to instead
appoint a "working group" to further refine the plan so that
implementing legislation could be on the first day of the 2011
legislative session. McDonnell's working group of Republican
legislators, wholesalers, distillers, and retailers sought to develop
a compromise designed to win adoption by the legislature.
On November 23, 2010, the Joint Legislative Audit and Review
Committee released a report which found that the McDonnell proposal
had overstated the expected proceeds of liquor store sales and
licenses. In response, McDonnell's spokesman said that he was
committed to privatization and was considering alternative plans.
McDonnell hired a consultant at a cost of $75,000 to formulate a new
privatization plan prior to the legislative session in January 2011.
The auditors found that McDonnell's proposal would have increased the
retail price of distilled spirits 11 to 26 percent, which in turn
would have led to a drop in liquor sales that could have resulted in a
loss of as much as $15.4 million in sales tax revenues.
In what the
Washington Post described as "the biggest legislative
defeat of his tenure", both houses of the
Virginia General Assembly
refused to hold hearings on McDonnell's plan during the 2011
legislative session. Both the Republican-controlled House and the
Democratic-controlled Senate killed the bill implementing McDonnell's
proposal without a vote. McDonnell's director of policy, Eric
Finkbeiner told the Post, "Whether we do it this year, next year or
the year after, it's going to get done in this administration."
McDonnell amended the budget to increase the incentives that a
governor was able to provide employers to relocate to or remain in
Virginia. He campaigned to have
Northrop Grumman move its 300-job
headquarters to Virginia, but stated that the renewal of Virginia's
computer outsourcing contract was not linked to the relocation
decision. When Defense Secretary
Robert Gates announced the closing
of the 6,000-job Joint Military Command in August, 2010, McDonnell
sought private meetings to seek to preserve the jobs.
However, McDonnell was disappointed that Secretary Gates did not meet
with him to discuss the issue. McDonnell was later included in a
meeting between Gates and Virginia's congressional delegation on
November 23, 2010.
McDonnell played a significant role in the redistricting conducted in
response to the 2010 census. In a special session of the General
Assembly, the redistricting of both the House of Delegates and the
State Senate were passed in single bill that was approved by the House
with an 86 to 8 vote and the Senate with a 22 to 18 vote. The bill
was developed without regard to the advisory commission's
recommendations. On April 15, 2011, McDonnell vetoed the bill on the
grounds that "the Senate plan is the kind of political gerrymandering
that Virginians have ask that we leave in the past." Although
McDonnell had the power to amend the bill with his veto, he simply
sent it back for the General Assembly to either over-ride the veto or
adopt a different bill. Because the Democrats lacked the 2/3 majority
necessary to override the veto, the State Senate had to adopt a new
plan. At first, Senate Majority Leader Richard L. Saslaw promised to
merely readopt the vetoed redistricting map, but then began
negotiations with the governor's office about a new plan. Republican
members of the House and Senate criticized the Governor for
overturning the timetable for approval of new districts prior to the
2011 elections. After lengthy negotiations, on April 28, both houses
passed a revised set of district maps and McDonnell announced that he
would sign the revised bill.
EXECUTIVE MANSION SPENDING
In June 2013, McDonnell and his wife were the subject of a critical
Washington Post article detailing their improper spending at the
Executive Mansion , for items such as energy drinks, dog food, and a
"detox cleanse". Following the report, a McDonnell spokesman explained
that energy drinks were a standard part of their breakfast routine.
In July 2013, according to the Washington Post, McDonnell reimbursed
the state about $2,400 for the food and other items that the
governor's children had removed from the Executive Mansion to take to
their college dorms.
FEDERAL CORRUPTION CHARGES
On January 21, 2014, McDonnell and his wife were indicted on federal
corruption charges. The charges followed a months-long federal
investigation into gifts McDonnell received from a political donor.
They were charged with fourteen different counts relating to their
acceptance of more than $135,000 in gifts, loans, trips and other
items from Jonnie Williams Sr., former CEO of
Star Scientific , a
company developing a compound called anatabine as a dietary supplement
and as a drug . In 2013, McDonnell repaid more than $120,000 to
Williams and apologized for bringing "embarrassment" to the state.
McDonnell insisted he did not break the law and vowed to fight "these
false allegations". He became the first
Governor of Virginia to be
indicted for actions committed during his tenure. In July and August
2014, Williams testified at McDonnell's federal corruption trial.
After a five-week trial and three days of jury deliberations in the
United States District Court for the Eastern District of
McDonnell and his wife were found guilty of public corruption charges
on September 4, 2014. He was convicted of honest services wire fraud
, obtaining property under color of official right, and extortion
under color of official right. His wife was convicted of honest
services wire fraud, obtaining property under color of official right,
extortion under color of official right, and obstruction of a federal
United States District Judge
James R. Spencer set
sentencing for January 6, 2015. The
United States Probation Office
recommended sentencing between ten years and one month to twelve years
and seven months.
Following his conviction, McDonnell lost his Liberty University
teaching job. In November 2016,
Liberty University welcomed him back
as a distinguished full professor, announcing plans for him to
establish a federalism and civility center.
On January 6, 2015, Judge Spencer sentenced the former governor to
two years in prison, followed by two years of supervised release.
Prior to sentencing, the judge agreed with the defense counsel ,
believing McDonnell's gifts were overstated, and reduced McDonnell's
potential sentence. In arguing for leniency, McDonnell's attorneys
Jones Day megafirm produced over 400 letters, including ones
from McDonnell's predecessor,
Tim Kaine , and a group of 44 former
attorneys general, arguing that McDonnell lead an exemplary public
life marred by one mistake.
Supreme Court Case
Main article: McDonnell v.
On January 26, 2015, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered
that McDonnell remain free pending appeal, but on July 10, 2015, the
court affirmed McDonnell's conviction. On August 31, 2015, the U.S.
Supreme Court ordered that McDonnell remain free pending a decision
from that court to hear or not hear the case. On December 8, 2015,
the U.S. Solicitor General and others filed a brief with the Supreme
Court requesting the court not to hear the case. In January, 2016,
the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case.
The Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the case on April 27, 2016,
and unanimously vacated McDonnell's conviction on June 27, holding
that the trial court's construction of the statutory term "official
act" was too broad, encompassing activities such as setting up
meetings, hosting parties and calling
Virginia officials to discuss
Williams' business. Chief Justice
John Roberts , writing for the
court, left open the option for retrying McDonnell under a more
restrictive construction of the disputed term, writing, "If the court
below determines that there is sufficient evidence for a jury to
convict Governor McDonnell of committing or agreeing to commit an
'official act', his case may be set for a new trial. If the court
instead determines that the evidence is insufficient, the charges
against him must be dismissed. We express no view on that question."
There was criticism of the decision, some noting that all of the
justices themselves had each received expensive gifts or travel while
serving on the Supreme Court at the time that the decision was handed
After reviewing the Supreme Court decision and the response of the
original prosecution team, which wanted to retry the case, the Justice
Department announced on September 8, 2016, it would move to dismiss
all charges against McDonnell and his wife.
* Biography portal
* Politics portal
United States Army portal
Electoral history of Bob McDonnell
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Content.usatoday.com. 15 August 2011. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
* ^ Walker, Julian (17 January 2010). "Can McDonnell\'s proposals
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* ^ A B "
Bob McDonnell in Va.: From Conservative to Pragmatist".
Time. 22 May 2010.
* ^ "National Implications: McDonnell\'s Win Is a Model for
Conservative Revival". Richmond Times-Dispatch. 4 November 2009.
Retrieved 8 September 2014.
* ^ "Unemployment in the U.S. – Google Public Data Explorer".
Google.com. Retrieved 19 July 2013. ; "Local Area Unemployment"
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* ^ "Approval Rating Status Quo" (PDF). NBC4 .
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. Retrieved 4 September 2014. Cain, Andrew, and Frank Green. "Appeals
court panel upholds former Va. Gov. Bob McDonnell\'s convictions",
Richmond Times-Dispatch, 10 July 2015.
* ^ A B Liptak, Adam (June 28, 2016). "Supreme Court Vacates
Virginia Governor’s Graft Conviction". New York Times. p. A1.
Retrieved 26 August 2016.
* ^ A B de Vogue, Ariane (8 September 2016). "No new trial for
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell". CNN. Retrieved 8 September 2016.
* ^ Bernstein, Adam (3 November 2010). "John F. \'Jack\' McDonnell,
retired Air Force officer and father of Va. governor, dies at 94". The
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Bob McDonnell ancestry".
Freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
* ^ A B C D "Session 2005; McDonnell, Robert F. (Bob)". Virginia
House of Delegates. Archived from the original on 25 May 2009.
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* ^ A B Queen, Karen Haywood (2006). "Commonwealth Conservative; As
Attorney General, Regent graduate
Bob McDonnell is poised and
present.". Christian Leader. Regent University. Retrieved 26 November
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Bob McDonnell – US News and
World Report". Usnews.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "Bob McDonnell". Wavy.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "Robert F. McDonnell – Bio". Retrieved 23 July 2012.
* ^ "Governor Robert F. McDonnell\'s bio". Governor.virginia.gov.
Archived from the original on 4 March 2010. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "McDonnell appoints daughter to an advisory council".
Tmcnet.com. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
* ^ "Jeanine McDonnell". LinkedIn. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
* ^ "Headlines @ U.Va.". Archived from the original on 2012-08-05.
* ^ "Candidate Data for 1991RVAHH84". Vavh.iath.virginia.edu.
Retrieved 19 July 2013.
* ^ "Candidate Data for 1993RVAHH84". Vavh.iath.virginia.edu.
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* ^ "Session 2003; McDonnell, Robert F. (Bob)".
Virginia House of
Delegates. Archived from the original on 25 May 2009. Retrieved 26
* ^ "Session 2000; McDonnell, Robert F. (Bob)".
Virginia House of
Delegates. Retrieved 26 November 2008.
* ^ Morello, Carol (22 December 2005). "McDonnell Clinches Attorney
General Race". Washington Post. Retrieved 12 November 2010.
* ^ O'Neil, John (8 November 2006). "A
Recount Would Not
Come Soon". New York Times. Retrieved 26 November 2008.
* ^ "Attorney General".
Virginia Public Access Project. Archived
from the original on 11 January 2012. Retrieved 25 May 2009.
* ^ Nuckols, Christina (5 April 2007). "General Assembly approves
compromise transportation plan". The Virginian-Pilot. Retrieved 26
* ^ "Court rules transportation taxes unconstitutional". News &
Messenger. 1 March 2008. Archived from the original on 9 August 2011.
Retrieved 8 September 2014.
* ^ Barnes, Lindsay (February 7, 2008). "Lust bust: Porn case
prompts statewide crackdown?". The Hook.
* ^ Benton, Nicolas (May 29 – June 4, 2008). "Battle for
Episcopal Properties Back in Court". Falls Church News-Press. p. 5.
* ^ Kumar, Anita (3 February 2009). "McDonnell Resigns To Run for
Governor". The Washington Post.
* ^ Kumar, Anita (31 May 2009). "Robert F. McDonnell Accepts GOP
Virginia Governor". Washington Post. Retrieved 4 March
* ^ "Toplines –
Virginia Governor Election – June 10, 2009 –
Rasmussen Reports". Rasmussenreports.com. 10 June 2009. Retrieved 4
* ^ "Election 2009:
Virginia Governor Election".
Rasmussenreports.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "Toplines –
Virginia Governor Election – September 16, 2009
– Rasmussen Reports". Rasmussenreports.com. 16 September 2009.
Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "Can the Clinton Coalition Survive Obama?". RealClearPolitics.
13 November 2009. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ Tyler Whitley (4 November 2009). "McDonnell leads GOP sweep of
statewide races". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Archived from the original
on 7 November 2009. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
* ^ "McDonnell for Governor Issues". Bobmcdonnell.com. 26 March
2008. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ A B Kumar, Anita (13 August 2009). "
Virginia Notebook: Where Is
McDonnell From?". Washington Post. Retrieved 12 May 2010.
* ^ A B "Bobby McSlick: Virginia\'s Own – Zelig?". 28 August
2009. Retrieved 12 May 2010.
* ^ ""Fairfax’s Own" Bob McDonnell". 28 August 2009. Retrieved 12
* ^ A B McCartney, Bob (October 8, 2009). "Can Northern Virginia
trust McDonnell\'s promises?". Washington Post. Retrieved 12 May 2010.
* ^ "McDonnell: "I am focusing on the economic issues" « Decision
Virginia". Nbc12.wordpress.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "Candidate
Bob McDonnell promotes tourism in the Commonwealth".
WDBJ7 Roanoke News and Weather NRV Lynchburg Danville. Archived from
the original on 22 March 2010. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
* ^ "McDonnell Releases
Virginia Education Funding Plan
NewsChannel 8". News8.net. 2 September 2009. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "McDonnell for Governor Issues". Bobmcdonnell.com. Retrieved
4 March 2010.
* ^ Kunkle, Fredrick (23 August 2009). "Fact Checker". Washington
Post. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "
Bob McDonnell on Abortion". Ontheissues.org. Retrieved 10
* ^ "News and Features". Richmond Magazine. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ A B "McDonnell for Governor Issues". Bobmcdonnell.com.
Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "McDonnell Asks Candidates to Support Offshore Drilling".
Whsv.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ NRA endorses McDonnell for Va. governor Washington Times. 14
* ^ Kumar, Anita (May 10, 2011). "McDonnell: Gay marriage ban was
"the right decision"". The Washington Post.
* ^ Walker, Julian (24 March 2011). "Va. gov. signs bill
criminalizing synthetic marijuana HamptonRoads.com
PilotOnline.com". HamptonRoads.com. Retrieved 7 October 2013.
* ^ "Medical Marijuana Bill Goes Before
Virginia House Committee
Marijuana and Cannabis News". Toke of the Town. 24 January 2012.
Retrieved 7 October 2013.
* ^ "Virginia\'s Transportation Mess". washingtonpost.com. 29 July
2009. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ A B Kumar, Anita (7 March 2010). "McDonnell\'s public schedule
omissions draw complaints". Washington Post. p. C1.
* ^ "The Republican Party\'s Vision for the Family: The Compelling
Issue of The Decade" (PDF). The Washington Post. 1989.
* ^ A B C "\'89 Thesis A Different Side of McDonnell: Va. GOP
Candidate Wrote on Women, Marriage and Gays" by Amy Gardner,
Washington Post, August 30, 2009. Retrieved 8/30/09.
* ^ Gardner, Amy (30 August 2009). "Va. Candidate McDonnell Says
Views Changed Since He Wrote Thesis". Washington Post. p. 2. Retrieved
4 March 2010.
* ^ A B Gardner, Amy (30 August 2009). "Va. Candidate McDonnell
Says Views Changed since He Wrote Thesis". washingtonpost.com. p. 1.
Retrieved 27 April 2010.
* ^ Kumar, Anita (15 September 2009). "
Virginia Politics Blog –
McDonnell: $2.9 Million in July–August". Washington Post. Retrieved
4 March 2010.
* ^ "
Virginia Public Access Project; Bob McDonnell". Retrieved 26
* ^ "
Virginia Public Access Project; Bob McDonnell". Retrieved 26
* ^ ""Fairfax\'s Own" Bob McDonnell". 28 Aug 2009. Retrieved 12 May
* ^ Helderman, Rosalind (April 9, 2013). "New documents raise more
questions about financing of McDonnell\'s daughter\'s wedding". The
* ^ "McDonnell for Governor Press Releases Sheila Crump Johnson
Bob McDonnell for Governor". Bobmcdonnell.com. Retrieved 4
* ^ "McDonnell for Governor Press Releases McDonnell Endorsed
Virginia AgPAC: the Political Action Committee of the
Bureau Fed". Bobmcdonnell.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "McDonnell for Governor Press Releases McDonnell Endorsed
Virginia Realtors". Bobmcdonnell.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ "McDonnell for Governor Press Releases
Union League Endorses Bob McDonnell". Bobmcdonnell.com. Retrieved 4
* ^ "McDonnell for Governor Press Releases
Endorses Bob". Bobmcdonnell.com. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ Helderman, Rosalind (10 February 2010). "
anti-bias order removes language regarding sexual orientation".
Washington Post. Retrieved 10 June 2010. McDonnell is the first
Virginia governor in more than 30 years not to sign an order on the
issue of discrimination on the grounds covered by federal law as one
of his first acts in office.
* ^ "Governor McDonnell Signs First Executive Orders".
Reform.virginia.gov. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
* ^ "Governor McDonnell Announces Members of Governor\'s Commission
on Government Reform and Restructuring". Reform.virginia.gov.
Retrieved 10 April 2012.
* ^ A B "Va. delegate says commission chair anti-Semitic". WTOP.
May 10, 2010. Retrieved 29 May 2010.
* ^ "McDonnell unaware of reform chairman\'s past". WTOP. May 25,
2010. Retrieved 26 May 2010.
* ^ Helderman, Rosalind (May 26, 2010). "McDonnell Says he didn't
know of Malek disputes: Made List of Jews for Nixon". Washington Post.
* ^ "Nixon aides discussed job offers to get candidates out of
primary races". The Washington Post. June 3, 2010. Retrieved 9 June
* ^ Smith, Jeffrey (June 3, 2010). "New memos detail Republican
Frederic Malek\'s role in Nixon campaign against Jews". The Washington
* ^ Kumar, Anita (June 1, 2010). "Malek apologizes for his role in
compiling a list of Jews for Nixon". Washington Post. Retrieved 10
* ^ Bowman, Rex (31 December 2009). "McDonnell commerce appointee
intends to keep corporate board positions". Roanoke Times. Archived
from the original on 3 January 2010. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
* ^ Whitley, Tyler (18 January 2010). "McDonnell withdraws Sledd
nomination for commerce post, makes him unpaid adviser". Retrieved 26
* ^ Whitley, Tyler (18 January 2010). "McDonnell withdraws Sledd
nomination for commerce post". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved 4
* ^ Condon, Stephanie (21 January 2010). "
Bob McDonnell to Give GOP
State of the Union Response – Political Hotsheet". CBS News.
Retrieved 4 March 2010.
* ^ A B Kumar, Anita (February 2, 2010). "Howell challenged on use
of House chamber". Washington Post. p. B4. Retrieved 8 April 2010.
* ^ A B Slipek Jr., Edwin (February 9, 2010). "Hollow Hall". Style
(Richmond, VA). Retrieved 8 April 2010.
* ^ "Opportunity
Virginia PAC". Retrieved 5 September 2010.
* ^ "Opportunity
Virginia PAC". Retrieved 7 June 2010.
* ^ A B Helderman, Roslind (April 7, 2010). "Va. revises irksome
Northrup contract". Washington