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David Sherfinski

David Sherfinski

David Sherfinski covers politics for The Washington Times. He can be reached at

Articles by David Sherfinski

Virginia GOP flexing muscle to advance legislation

About a quarter of the way through the state's General Assembly session, Republicans thus far have flexed their strengthened muscles to advance legislation on redistricting, abortion and gun rights — with many Democrats left simply to stand and protest. Published January 29, 2012

Gov. Bob McDonnell

Community care boosted in agreement on disabled in Virginia

Virginia has reached a wide-ranging settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice over its system for treating the intellectually and developmentally disabled, forestalling a federal lawsuit on charges the state needlessly institutionalized many people instead of placing them in community-based care. Published January 26, 2012

Va. House advances repeal of HPV mandate

The Virginia House of Delegates on Thursday gave preliminary approval to a bill repealing a mandate that young girls receive a vaccination against the human papillomavirus (HPV), which is known to cause cervical cancer, before they enter the sixth grade. Published January 26, 2012

Bill requiring ultrasound before abortion advances in Va. Senate

The Senate Education and Health committee on Thursday advanced a bill that would require women to first undergo ultrasound imaging before having an abortion, a measure that had routinely died in the previously Democrat-led committee. Published January 26, 2012

** FILE ** Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Virginia, DOJ reach settlement on care for disabled

Virginia has reached a wide-ranging settlement with the Justice Department over its system for treating the intellectually and developmentally disabled, agreeing to close four training centers, downsize another and provide thousands of additional waiver slots to help move people from institutional-based settings to community care. Published January 26, 2012

** FILE ** State Sen. Charles W. Carrico Sr., is a Republican. (Associated Press)

Va. Senate panel backs gun buy limit repeal

A key Senate committee on Wednesday voted to repeal Virginia's law banning the purchase of more than one handgun a month, a longtime priority of gun-rights activists and a measure that now has the backing of Gov. Bob McDonnell. Published January 25, 2012

Delegate Benjamin L. Cline, Augusta Republican, is leading a bipartisan push in the General Assembly to simplify the state tax code and make it more fair. (Richmond Times-Dispatch via Associated Press)

Bills take aim at tax code to improve accountability

Billions of dollars in tax credits, incentives and exemptions which in many cases were poorly targeted or ineffective have prompted a bipartisan push in the Virginia General Assembly for greater disclosure and better accountability in the state tax code. Published January 25, 2012

** FILE PHOTO ** Senate Democratic Leader Richard L. Saslaw (right), Fairfax Democrat, talks with Sen. Thomas K. Norment Jr., James City Republican. (Associated Press)

Partisan rift stalls judicial elections

The Virginia General Assembly postponed a squabble over judicial appointments after a partisan standoff Tuesday in the state Senate threatened to shut down the upper chamber for up to three days. Published January 24, 2012

Delegate Christopher T. Head, left, talks with reporters after the bill calling for drug testing of welfare recipients passed the House Health, Welfare and Institutions committee at the General Assembly Building in Richmond on  Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012. On the right, Del. Vivian E. Watts, D-Fairfax, walks past. (AP Photo/Richmond times-Dispatch, Bob Brown).

Va. House panel backs drug testing, repealing HPV mandate

A Republican-controlled House committee Tuesday passed bills that would subject recipients of welfare benefits in Virginia to drug testing and repeal a mandate that girls receive vaccination against the human papillomavirus (HPV). Published January 24, 2012

Kitty Boitnott

Va. teachers' groups push back against GOP education proposals

House Republicans on Monday morning pre-emptively protested the Virginia Education Association and the Virginia PTA, touting their own education proposals that have been roundly denounced by the teachers' groups, which later gathered for their traditional "lobby day" at the Capitol. Published January 23, 2012

Father of suicide victim seeks change in Va. school policy

Steve Stuban's son, Nick, committed suicide last January in the wake of school disciplinary proceedings that Mr. Stuban said he found out about only after it was too late. Now Mr. Stuban, with the help of several Northern Virginia legislators, is pushing for an overhaul of the state's parental-notification policy to ensure that the same doesn't happen to other parents. Published January 23, 2012

** FILE ** Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, Republican (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Va. Gov. McDonnell leads way in restoring ex-cons' rights

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, in the first two years of his term, has restored the voting rights of more than 2,500 ex-convicts — putting the former prosecutor and state attorney general on pace to eclipse both of his Democratic predecessors. Published January 22, 2012

"We're going to challenge [the congressional redistricting plan] in court," said Virginia state Sen. J. Chapman "Chap" Petersen, Fairfax Democrat. (Associated Press)

Virginia Assembly's redistricting plan still facing lawsuits

More than nine months after a congressional redistricting map for Virginia was introduced in the General Assembly, a plan has finally cleared the House and the Senate, but legislators insist the matter is still far from settled. Published January 22, 2012

Va. Senate approves House-drawn redistricting map

The Republican-led Senate on Friday muscled through a House-drawn map drawing new lines for the state's 11 congressional districts in one of the GOP's first noteworthy displays of their newfound power. Published January 20, 2012

** FILE ** Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (left) with then-Virginia gubernatorial hopeful Bob McDonnell in May 2009.

McDonnell endorses Romney; will head to S.C. to campaign

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell on Friday endorsed Mitt Romney for president and will head to South Carolina to campaign for the former Massachusetts governor ahead of Saturday's Palmetto State primary. Published January 20, 2012