House Speaker Bill Howell has donated $10,000 of his hefty war chest to a group that is trying to persuade minorities to vote for Republicans and “preserve America’s republic by advancing the Christian worldview in politics.”
Howell (R-Stafford) previously endorsed the No Excuses Ministry political action committee, which appears to have been formed this month by Terry Beatley, a financial consultant. She could not immediately be reached for comment.
The contribution is about one fourth of the $40,865 that Howell donated in the last reporting period that ended Aug. 31, according to the Virginia Public Access Project, a nonpartisan tracker of money in politics.
Many minority groups, including African Americans, usually vote for Democrats, but in recent years Republicans have been trying to make inroads into those communities.
The No Excuses Ministry aims to “defeat any incumbent who has voted to advance or inflict the abortion industry’s agenda on minorities and children, undermine or usurp parental rights, redefine marriage, or prevent school choice,” according to its Web site.
Specifically it wants to “expose liberal legislators’ voting records; teach the real Democrat Party’s history of opposing civil rights; disclose the 70 years of missing black political history removed from textbooks; introduce voters to The Frederick Douglass Foundation” and show who is voting to “promote the culture of death; oppose school choice; destroy “traditional” marriage and promote homosexual behavior indoctrination; usurp parental rights; perpetuate the government’s welfare entrapment system.”
Campaign finance reports due last week show that House Republican candidates have $3.8 million in the bank, compared with the Democrats’ $2 million, according to an analysis released by VPAP. Howell has $240,000 in the bank, but that doesn’t include the more than $1 million he had in his separate leadership PAC as of June 30.
Senate Democrats have $3.7 million cash on hand compared with Republicans’ $2.9 million, but those numbers do not include the PACs of the state’s three top Republicans — Gov. Bob McDonnell, Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II.
Legislative candidates this year raised $4 million less than they did in 2007, the last time both chambers were up for re-election, according to VPAP.
Candidates have raised about $20 million this year, a 17-percent drop from $24 million in 2007 when the economy was better and the state boasted more contested races.