It’s MLK day in Richmond. A hundred miles to the north, the President is being inaugurated. But there’s no holiday built into our 45-day “short” session. Instead, here’s the daily schedule:
7:30 a.m. Arrive at the Assembly building. Review the Times-Dispatch and email In Box.
8:00 a.m. Make presentation to the Senate Courts of Justice Committee on two bills, SB 738 (creating an Appellate Defender office) and SB 853 (assaulting a peace officer). Lots of witnesses are here to testify. One bill passes, one is “passed by.”
8:30 a.m. Back in office. Sit down with reps from Dominion to review SB 852, my bill to require “Virginia based” projects to meet our renewable energy goals. Lots to talk about here — I’ll make it a separate post.
9:00 a.m. Guns Save Lives. So say the orange buttons of the first of many groups visiting the Capitol (and me) on lobbying day for gun rights advocates. I meet with “carrying” constituents from Centreville, Oakton and Fairfax.
9:15 a.m. Here’s another group from Disease Disorders to discuss Medicaid expansion and funding for hemophilia treatment. More constituents.
9:45 a.m. It’s my friends from ABATE, an advocacy organization for motorcylists. We pause for a photo. I’m the one guy without facial hair.
10:30 a.m. I take a break from meeting constituents to dash downstairs to our on-site studio. I’m taping a TV program (“Capitol Reports”) with Woody Evans, the well-known news anchor from Hampton Roads. Twenty eight minutes later we’re done. We’ll post it on Facebook when it’s ready.
11:10 a.m. Back in the office. A few more gun supporters. And the Fairfax County Taxpayers Alliance. Everyone is here (or in D.C.)
Noon. Normally we begin session at noon. Today, however, is Inauguration Day. I watch the ceremony from the “big screen” in the chamber, while eating lunch. Afterwards, I ask the Clerk to change to “NBA Game of the Week.” No luck.
It’s 12:47 p.m. We’ll begin session at 1:00 p.m. Afterwards, I have General Laws Committee this p.m., followed by a Northern Virginia delegation meeting at 5:00 p.m. Then it’s dinner with the Senate Democratic Caucus at 6:30 p.m., before the day (mercifully) ends.