President Trump gets bump in approval ratings

(ABC News) Donald Trump’s job approval rating advanced to its second-highest of his career in a new ABC News/Washington Post poll, but not by enough to erase a double-digit Democratic lead in midterm  election vote preferences.

Boosted by comparatively strong ratings on the economy, Trump has 41 percent approval for his work in office overall, up from 36 percent in late August. Still, 54 percent disapprove – a problem for the Republican Party given that most potential voters say they’re looking for candidates who share their opinion of the president

Democratic candidates for the House lead Republicans by 11 percentage points among registered voters, 53-42 percent. That holds among likely voters across a range of turnout scenarios, with 12- to 14-point Democratic leads. It’s difficult for Democrats to hold their vote share in the shift from registered to likely voters, especially in midterms– a testament to Democratic motivation this year.

Va ramps up for Medicaid expansion

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – The state agency overseeing Medicaid expansion in Virginia is set to roll out an advertising campaign seeking eligible patients in the next two months. The [Charlottesville] Daily Press reports the Department of Medical Assistance Services has set aside $750,000 to advertise Medicaid expansion through radio spots, billboards, digital advertising and bus ads ahead of the Jan. 1 implementation. It will spend another $250,000 on brochures and posters.

The department’s director, Dr. Jennifer Lee, tells the newspaper she’s also relying on local social service agencies who will help screen patients to get the word out. Eligible patients can enroll in a number of ways, including by visiting their local social service agency, calling the Cover VA call center or online . As many as 400,000 new adults will be covered under the expansion.

Northam Declares State of Emergency in Advance of Tropical Storm Florence

Gov. Ralph Northam

RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency today in anticipation of the potential impact from Tropical Storm Florence. The order is designed to mobilize resources in preparations of the storm and to help Virginia mitigate any damage and to streamline the process that the Commonwealth uses to provide assistance to other states vulnerable to Florence. “While the impacts of Tropical Storm Florence to Virginia are still uncertain, forecasts increasingly expect the storm to strengthen into a major hurricane that could seriously affect the East Coast and Virginians,” said Governor Northam. “Accordingly, I am declaring a state of emergency so that we can begin to prepare state assets, and I encourage Virginians to monitor forecasts and make their own preparations now.”

A state of emergency allows the Commonwealth to mobilize resources, including the Virginia National Guard, and pre-position people and equipment to assist in storm response and recovery efforts. While the track of Tropical Storm Florence is still uncertain, it appears increasingly likely that Virginia may see significant impacts from this storm next week. Impacts include possible flooding, high winds, and potential storm surge.

Fatal shooting in Bedford County

(Bedford County release) September 07, 2018, Bedford County 911 received a call from 1034 River Oak Dr. at 11:44 a male subject stating that his roommate had been shot. Bedford County Sheriff’s deputy arrived on scene at 11:50 p.m. and found a male subject in the floor with multiple gunshots to his body. Deputies started CPR until Rescue arrived and took over. Aaron Robert Brumfield, age 22, 1034 River Oak Dr. Forest Va. was pronounced deceased by the rescue squad at 12:06 am. The witness stated that three people came into the house and gunfire was exchanged hitting the male victim. The witness stated that the suspects then ran out the side door.

Anyone with information on this crime can call Bedford County Sheriff’s Office at 540-586-7827 or Central Virginia Crime Stoppers at 1-888-798-5900 or go online to Crime Stopper callers remain anonymous and could receive a cash reward up to $1,000.00.

Warner comments on Trump aide sentencing

U.S. Sen. Mark Warner

U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA), Vice Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, released the following statement after George Papadopoulos, a former Trump campaign adviser, was sentenced for lying to the FBI about his interactions with suspected Russian intermediaries during the 2016 presidential campaign:  “Despite constant attacks by the President and his allies, Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his team have once again demonstrated that they are conducting a serious, professional investigation into the Trump campaign’s contacts with Russians during the 2016 election.

 “As an influential foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign, Mr. Papadopoulos was informed that Russia had ‘dirt’ on Hillary Clinton in the form of ‘thousands of emails’ at a critical time during the campaign. He also had access to, and communications with, the campaign’s top leaders. That’s not conjecture – that is according to Mr. Papadopoulos himself. “I still have significant questions about how high that information went, and I know the Senate Intelligence Committee would like to hear directly from Mr. Papadopoulos.”

Kaine will oppose Kavanaugh nomination

U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement today on his decision to vote against the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court:  “I will oppose the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court. I have diligently studied his record of academic writings and judicial opinions. I have read the limited documents we’ve been provided from his time working for Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr and the Administration of President George W. Bush. I have interviewed him face-to-face in my office. And I have observed his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee. I conclude that Judge Kavanaugh should not be confirmed to the Supreme Court, particularly at this pivotal time in our nation’s history, because he cannot be counted on to serve as an independent check on the President or to uphold critical precedents that affect the well being of millions of Americans.

Two shot in Lynchburg early today

(from Lynchburg PD) On August 12, at approximately 1:45am, the Lynchburg Police Department responded to the area of King Street and Terminal Street for reports of shots being fired. Officers were then advised that two males had just shown up at the Lynchburg General Hospital ’s Emergency Department with apparent gunshot wounds. Officers then arrived at the hospital and found a 19 year old male (Lynchburg resident) and an 18 year old male (Gladys resident), both with non-life threatening injuries. The males advised that they had been in the area of King Street and Terminal Street when they were shot. This incident remains under investigation by the Lynchburg Police Department’s Criminal Investigation Division

Charlottesville, DC hold rallies today

(AP)  A day after tensions between police and community activists nearly boiled over on the University of Virginia’s campus, the city of Charlottesville plans to mark Sunday’s anniversary of a deadly gathering of white supremacists with a rally against racial hatred. But 115 miles away in Washington, the principal organizer of last year’s “Unite the Right” event will hold a “white civil rights rally,” and police are preparing for counterprotesters.Jason Kessler abandoned plans for a similar anniversary event in Charlottesville. His Washington permit application says he expects 100 to 400 people Sunday afternoon in Lafayette Park, near the White House.

But some leading figures in the white nationalist movement have said they won’t attend or encouraged supporters to stay away. And the events likely will be dwarfed by counterprotests, for which permits also have been issued.

Kaine, Stewart trade barbs at first debate

(AP) The candidates in Virginia’s U.S. Senate made President Donald Trump a focal point as they sparred in their first debate. Republican Corey Stewart accused Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine of hurting Virginia’s interests by reflexively opposing Trump’s agenda. Kaine said Stewart would blindly follow the president, particularly when it comes to the U.S.’s relationship with Russia. The pair debated Saturday at an event sponsored by the Virginia Bar Association held at the posh Homestead Resort in Bath County. The candidates clashed on a variety of issues like taxes, immigration and abortion. They also often traded personal jabs. Stewart said Kaine was “too weak” and “too liberal.” Kaine accused Stewart of repeatedly lying during the debate.

Northam to visit RAM Clinic

Ralph Northam

WISE, Va. (AP) – Gov. Ralph Northam is set to visit a health clinic in Southwest Virginia that’s expected to draw thousands of people seeking free care. Northam’s office announced that he will attend the Remote Area Medical clinic at the Wise County Fairgrounds on Saturday. Northam is a pediatric neurologist who has treated patients at the clinic in the past. This is 19th year the event will be held at the fairgrounds. Patients will receive provide dental, medical and vision care. All care is offered free of charge. Registration begins at 6 a.m. daily from July 20 through July 22. Services are offered on a first-come, first-served basis.