Mount Vernon On July 13, Del. Scott Surovell (D-44th District) posted his views on his blog regarding recent allegations concerning Governor Robert McDonnell. Delegate Surovell called upon the Governor to resign at this time and opined that he didn't want anyone to interpret his previous silence as acquiescence to alleged actions on the part of the Governor. In so doing, he quoted state Sen. Chap Petersen although not revealing that Senator Petersen is his law partner.
Don't worry Delegate Surovell. I doubt anyone would believe that your silence as a Democratic delegate means that you acquiesce to any possible scandal involving a Republican Governor. Since you are a practicing lawyer and a member of the Virginia Bar, I presume when you represent clients accused of criminal activity, you demand that they be accorded their presumption of innocence. Why should you feel any differently about the Governor unless it is for purely partisan advantage? As a commenter to your blog posting stated, it appears that none of the Governor's actions technically violate any Virginia law.
In analyzing your pronouncement about the Governor, I imagined that he hired you as his attorney. In that capacity, I have no doubt you would be demanding that the media refrain from convicting the Governor in the press until the investigation is complete.
I don't keep close track of your various public statements, so I was wondering if you have ever congratulated Governor McDonnell on his superb record of achievement? As the same commenter to your blog posting pointed out, every year of his governorship, Virginia has achieved a surplus. Since he took office, over 170,000 net new jobs have been created in our state and the unemployment rate has fallen from 7.3 percent to 5.3 percent, over 2 percentage points below the national average. If you haven't said anything about these remarkable achievements, I look forward to hearing you do so in the near future. After all, you have served as a delegate during that time period and perhaps your various votes have contributed to that success. You could confirm for your constituents whether your votes supported or opposed the policies of the Governor that are the underpinnings of a superb economic record.
In the meantime, presumably, the investigation of Governor McDonnell will run its course and if any wrongdoing is confirmed, you would be fully justified in commenting at that time, including if he is exonerated.
H. Jay Spiegel