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Commentary – Mumpower is Strong Leader – Has Support of Community

Voters in the January 11 special election for the House of Delegates have a clear choice.  Ginger Mumpower, owner of Ginger’s Jewelers and proven creator of local jobs, is running against mostly-unknown liability lawsuit lawyer from Salem, Greg Habeeb.

Mumpower was elected Vice-Mayor of Radford in the 1980s.  A southwest Virginia native, Mumpower has lived in Roanoke County since then.  She knows and cares about our community, and knows how to make tough choices and stand firm on an issue.  Her opponent has never held elected office.

Mumpower demonstrated strong, bold leadership when she held a press conference last week to announce her opposition to Governor McDonell’s controversial plan to privatize Virginia’s ABC stores.  The plan would put local small businesses at a disadvantage, would hurt Virginia’s budget, and might increase student-to-teacher ratios in our schools by reducing school funding.

Habeeb has flip-flopped repeatedly on this issue.  Habeeb wrote last year that he saw “almost no cons” in the privatization plan and said “it’ll be a HUGE cash bonanza for the state.” When he announced his campaign last month, Habeeb surprisingly said he hadn’t taken a position on the liquor privatization plan. A few weeks later, Mumpower boldly announced her opposition to the plan.  Later that day, Habeeb tried to imitate her and said he was against it, too.  He stated mostly the same reasons Mumpower had stated. Then when he was criticized by conservatives for not supporting the plan, he said he does support it but opposes linking it to transportation funding.

The funniest part of this flip-flop, dubbed “ABC Gate,” is that when Habeeb wrote so glowingly of staunchly supporting the plan, he referenced State Senator Mark Obenshain’s privatization bill.  Obenshain has stated, “Privatizing the ABC stores and using the revenue to help fund transportation is one of Governor McDonnell’s priorities, and I look forward to working with the Governor to make this a reality.”There is a clear link between transportation funding and Obenshain’s bill.

While Habeeb’s verbal acrobatics are hilarious, they are also very serious.  Our state’s economy is in rough shape.  We need mature, principled, honest leaders who are willing to make tough choices.  We don’t need flip-flopping politicians who don’t know how to create jobs and change their positions depending on who’s asking.

Many local business leaders and teachers from across the political spectrum are supporting Ginger Mumpower.  If you value small businesses and strong schools, and you want a strong, principled leader representing our region in the House of Delegates, vote for Ginger Mumpower on January 11.

-Tom Mall (Retired Teacher and Small Business Owner), Vinton

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  1. I see nothing in these comments that support the idea of “a strong leader”. As to a “creator of jobs”, from what I have read the retail stores employed from 10 to 19 people. She closed both and went to selling on the web with a staff of most likely one….herself.
    As to the liquor issue, it’s complex and easy to see how one would favor it based on some info and yet given additional time to study it, move away from supporting it.

    She also needs to stop using those 15 year old photos of herself. A babe of long ago is no more!

  2. Bubba hits the nail on the head. Mr. Mall, if you’d like an idea of a great endorsement letter, take a look at Bob Goodlatte’s letter endorsing Habeeb on this same website. No attacks on Mumpower, no accusations. Just positive can-do statements about Greg’s qualifications for the job. That’s the type of campaign Habeeb is running, and judging from his support, it’s the type of campaign voters prefer. I know I do.

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