Why I’m Not Voting For John Brownlee

John Brownlee, Candidate for Attorney General GOP Nomination I personally spoke to John Brownlee, candidate for the Republican Nomination for Virginia Attorney General, last month at a mixer held in Fluvanna County. Just to be fair, I pledged myself as a Ken Cuccinelli delegate early on in the race before there were any contenders. But I heard there were two more running who called themselves “conservative”, and I wanted to do my homework before locking in my vote…so I attended this event.

Among other issues such as Life and Traditional Marriage, I addressed a concern I had regarding the Constitutional requirement that a President be a “natural born citizen”. This Constitutional issue concerning Barack Obama has been completely ignored by…well, by everyone who has the power to do something about it.

I pointed out how this was an issue for Senator McCain last spring and right or wrong, the Senate unanimously* passed a resolution (SRS 511) declaring Senator McCain was “natural born” partly because he was born to US Citizen parents (PLURAL…both parents were US Citizens at the time of his birth). Yet when questions arose concerning Obama’s “natural born” citizenship, everybody was silent…and still is.

Obama readily admits his father was not a US citizen at his birth. He readily admits he had dual citizenship at birth. How can he be considered a “natural born” citizen (I’m not saying he’s not a US citizen, I’m saying there is serious doubt over him being “natural born”) when both of his parents were not US citizens? There was also grave concern over Obama’s hiding his vault copy of his Birth Certificate. Even with that aside, there is clearly a concern over this Constitutional requirement.

What was Brownlee’s reply? Well, Mr. Obama is our president now, and we need to focus on the issues…that’s where the debate needs to be. WHAT?

When I learned that this man was a Federal Prosecutor and he demonstrated to me this kind of apathy towards defending the Constitution and seeking the truth in the matter, I was appalled. While it seems that this man has a lot of good qualities, I don’t see how on earth anyone can vote for him as our next Attorney General, given his experience as a prosecutor and a military man (which he touts so readily) and his complete lack of concern for the Rule of Law…our US Constitution.

Maybe he was blindsided by my question…I was very calm and informative when I spoke to him. I wanted him to say this was a legitimate concern and that it should be looked into…that the truth should come out concerning this issue. I wanted him to demonstrate that the US Constitution mattered to him. But it seemed like he was trying to be politically correct, and we don’t need anymore “political correctness”. We need people who are willing to stick their necks out and act on principle…not politics.

I haven’t had the chance to speak to Cuccinelli about this yet, but I will before I cast my vote this spring.

*Point of Interest: The Co-Sponsors of this Senate Resolution included both Senator Hillary Clinton and Senator Barack Obama. Hmm. Makes me wonder if there was some political back-scratching here…we declare you Natural Born, you turn a deaf ear to BO’s Natural Born status…deal? Apparently so…because not a single Senator has stuck his/her neck out on this issue as it relates to Barack Obama.

Read US Constitution: Irrelevant Concerning Obama for more on my discovery of this issue.

17 thoughts on “Why I’m Not Voting For John Brownlee

  1. Marianne Skolek

    US Attorney Brownlee is a national hero. He prosecuted a $10 billion pharmaceutical company who criminally marketed a very dangerous drug called OxyContin. This drug was marketed by Purdue Pharma as less likely to be addictive or abused. They did this without a conscience and without a soul. Their actions have been responsible for an epidemic of death and addiction in every state in the country. US Attorney Brownlee is a hero to a young boy named Brian who at 6 years old lost his mom to prescribed OxyContin. Her name was Jill and she was my daughter. Mr. Brownlee is not only a hero to Brian and I and our family, but to countless families throughout the country for his bravery in prosecuting a very high profile pharmaceutical company.

  2. Carrie Wigal Post author

    Thanks, Judah. I’m not sure what you think I need to get a grip on, but like it or not the rule of law in this land is the US Constitution. Every elected federal official (as far as I know) swears an oath to uphold it. While many Americans have either never read it or don’t understand its significance, it is still significant nonetheless.

    Please understand, Marianne. I am in no way attacking this man’s character, and I deeply apologize if I came across that way. I am certainly not discrediting his service to this country or his achievements. I sincerely appreciate his service.

    The concern that I was addressing had to do with folks who have taken an oath to uphold the Constitution, and then turn a blind eye when there is obvious abuse taking place concerning enforcing the Constitution. I can understand if an individual does not know or understand what is happening when it comes to abuses like these. But when the light is shined on the issue and a person who has the power to do something about it, turns the other way…that is disconcerting.

    I hope Mr. Brownlee will reconsider this issue, as it is vital to many Americans, and should be to all Americans. If those who swear to uphold the Constitution, then brazenly don’t when legitimate concerns are laid out in black and white before them, then they are not doing their job. Why not follow this lead? I just gave him a tip that he can research for himself to see if there is any merit to it. Instead of recognizing that it was a legitimate concern, he brushed it aside as insignificant. I think that’s a problem.

    And if Ken Cuccinelli does the same, then that is a problem, too.

  3. Doug Johnson

    I have two other concerns about Mr. Brownlee:
    1. He has never run for any elected office whatsoever. The A/G office is too important to practice on.
    2. He claims he has a better chance of winning Northern Virginia. To me, that is code for: “I am not the conservative I say I am.” I still remember one supposed conservative republican candidate for state wide election who said one thing in Southside and something opposite in the DC suburbs. He lost.

    In regards to his treatment of Ms Wigal, he showed his lack of campaign skills be belittling a voter’s concern. We all no what a slip of the lip can do to a republican candidate in Virginia.

  4. anon


    In a previous post, Ms. Wigal links to a website about Mr. Berg’s lawsuit that charges Obama is not a natural born citizen.

    Here is the Wikipedia entry on Mr. Berg:

    From Wikipedia:
    Berg has involved himself with several controversial political cases. In 2001 he demanded the disbarment of U.S. Supreme Court Justices Sandra Day O’Connor, Antonin Scalia, and Clarence Thomas due to their participation in the case Bush v. Gore.[2] In 2004, Berg filed a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) lawsuit on behalf of a World Trade Center maintenance worker against President George W. Bush and others alleging that the Bush and certain government officials conspired to bring about the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center, which his complaint alleged were destroyed pursuant to the controlled demolition hypothesis put forward by the 9/11 Truth Movement.[3] The federal district court dismissed the suit. He challenged President George W. Bush on his right to conduct a war against terror and another against Saddam Hussein with only a congressional authorization.[4)

    Both Ms. Wigal and Mr. Berg are nutjobs. End of Story.

  5. Carrie Wigal Post author

    Regardless of what Mr. Berg has done or stated in the past, the fact remains Barack Obama contends he was born in Hawaii, but refuses to produce his long-form vault copy Birth Certificate which indicates the name of the hospital he was born in, who his mother and father are and their place of birth. Nobody has seen it. To this day, nobody has seen it. It is a result of Mr. Berg’s lawsuit that this bit of information came to my attention.

    However, that is not the most disconcerting issue. Let’s just assume for a moment, that what he says is true…he was born in Hawaii. That would make him a US Citizen at birth.

    However, he also contends that his father was Kenyan and under British Rule at the time of Obama’s birth…therefore his father was not a US Citizen. The father’s citizenship passes on to his children at birth. By Barack Obama’s own admission he had dual citizenship at birth.

    The question is How can a person with dual citizenship be considered a “Natural Born Citizen”? At the time the framers were drafting the Constitution they specifically used the term “natural born” which was commonly known to mean born in the country to parents who were citizens of that country (either born there or naturalized).

    There is a passage that clearly defines “Natural Born Citizen” in the book “The Law of Nations”, Or, “Principles of the Law of Nature” By Emer de Vattel, Joseph Chitty, Edward Duncan, which was widely read by the framers of the Constitution.

    It states, “The citizens are the members of the civil society; bound to this society by certain duties, and subject to its authority, they equally participate in its advantages. The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens. As the society cannot exist and perpetuate itself otherwise than by the children of the citizens, those children naturally follow the condition of their fathers, and succeed to all their rights. The society is supposed to desire this, in consequence of what it owes to its own preservation ; and it is presumed, as matter of course, that each citizen, on entering into society, reserves to his children the right of becoming members of it. The country of the fathers is therefore that of the children; and these become true citizens merely by their tacit consent. We shall soon see whether, on their coming to the years of discretion, they may renounce their right, and what they owe to the society in which they were born. I say, that, in order to be of the country, it is necessary that a person be born of a father who is a citizen ; for, if he is born there of a foreigner, it will be only the place of his birth, and not his country.”

    Stating this information does not make me a “nutjob”. For more on this “natural born citizenship” question, visit Leo Donofrio’s blog. Leo is the attorney who brought two cases specifically addressing this issue before the Supreme Court. This man is brilliant.

  6. Carrie Wigal Post author

    Read Article 2 of the US Constitution: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_transcript.html
    “No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.”

    Note the phrase “natural born citizen”. The phrase “…or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution,” was a grandfather clause due to the age of our nation.

    Read Section 1 of the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_amendments_11-27.html
    “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

    Note the phrases “born”, “naturalized” and “citizens”. The 14th amendment refers to being a “citizen”, not a “natural born citizen”.

    Why did the framers explicitly use the phrase “natural born citizen” in Article 2? What does “natural born citizen” mean?

    The Law of Nations defines “natural born” as being “born in the country of parents who are citizens”.

    The Law of Nations was well-read by the Framers of our Constitution. Read more here: http://drorly.blogspot.com/2008/12/law-of-nations-or-principles-of-law-of.html

  7. James

    Doug: I think I am correct that none of the candidates running for AG have ever run for a statewide office. As far as local elections are concerned, I would pick a former United States Attorney over a state senator or school board member anytime. Also, isn’t Ken Cuccinelli a patent attorney? We need a prosecutor like Brownlee to run for AG. Brownlee is from the Southwest. Cuccinelli and Foster are from NOVA.

    Also, Carrie: Thank goodness our AG candidate isn’t going to be wasting his time on nutty conspiracies.

  8. Carrie Wigal Post author

    Hi James,

    I appreciate your comment. However, if you wanted to try and persuade me or anyone else reading this post to vote for Brownlee, discrediting an issue of a concerned citizen as a nutty conspiracy is not the wisest strategy. Sure, state the reasons why you think this candidate is the best choice. I can respect that. But as soon as you write off a concern of a fellow citizen that has been laid out in reason, and label it as something whacko, that diminishes your argument.

    I’m not sure what you’re implying by pointing out that Cuccinelli and Foster are from NOVA. While I haven’t done my homework yet on Foster, I have heard Cuccinelli speak on a few occasions. Yes, he’s from NOVA, but he’s a conservative candidate who is willing to stand on principle despite liberal influences that surround him, and he’s won on several occasions. Unlike some candidates who try to appeal to the liberal/moderate segment of the state by getting squishy on conservative values (for example, as it relates the 2nd amendment and property rights). I’m not saying Brownlee is like that. I’m just saying that you can’t judge a person by the jurisdiction he served or hailed from. You need to look at his record.

    One thing that Cuccinelli has that the other candidates don’t have is a record as a politician. With the politicians we have in office these days, their actions speak louder than words. Oftentimes they are quick to make promises or tickle your ear with what they think you want to hear just to capture your vote. Then when they get into office it’s like they acquired amnesia overnight.

    Cuccinelli has proven himself to be a person of principle in a political environment. Again, I’m not saying Brownlee is not a principled candidate, I’m just saying he doesn’t have the political record to back it up.

    I think a point that Doug was making was that, with a state race as heavily watched as the Virginia races this year (the Democrat party is going to throw everything its got at this state to turn it even more blue), this is not the time to test your campaigning skills on a statewide level for the first time.

    From what I can tell, all of the candidates are “good” candidates, each having something unique to bring to the position. It’s just a matter of picking which one you think is best.

  9. Doug Johnson

    Running for statewide office was not my concern. My concern was he never ran for ANY office. The other two candidates did run and were elected for the respective offices they ran for.

    The US Constitution was written by “nutty conspiritors” who believed that the leader of our country should not have mixed allegences nor dual citizenship but be a “natural born” citizen of this country. Our A/G should hold the US Constitution to be the controlling document concerning such a vital issue.

    You can count me in with the “nutty conspirators” who founded this country!

  10. James

    So, you think running for the school board is better experience than serving as a United States Attorney? I remind you both that these guys are running for ATTORNEY GENERAL and not the state senate and not the school board. Brownlee is the GOP’s only hope to keep this seat, especially against Steve Shannon — who is a prosecutor. As far as going after Obama on his citizenship, that has been tried and failed. I suggest we move on or we will keep losing elections.

  11. Doug Johnson

    Running for school board gives more experience in running for office than not running for anything.

    Clearly not running for any office whatsoever is a negative for Mr. Brownlee.

    The delagate voters will decide whether he will overcome that negative. To me, that is significant.

    The question of Obama’s dual citizenship, which he admits to, is quite significant to me. Mr. Brownlee’s apparent belittling of that concern makes that a negative for him.

  12. Zach Kitts

    Look guys, the bottom line is that the OAG is a job for a real lawyer with high-level experience. No one ever got appointed AG of the United States without significant legal experience, and I think we should use the same standard for our Virginia AG.

    Does anyone here think Cuccinelli would ever be appointed AG of the United States? No? Well then, I wouldn’t want him for our Virginia AG either.

    Brownlee has litigated against the biggest of the big boys–including Eric Holder, Rudy Guiliani and many, many others in the Purdue Pharma case. Were you guys aware that Purdue Pharma had won hundreds and hundreds of cases before Brownlee took them on? The only case they had resolved was one brought by the West VA AG, and then they only paid $10 million or so. Purdue thought there were going to get away that cheap with Brownlee also, but no dice.

    Brownlee took on Eric Holder, Guiliani, and all the rest with one of the smallest US Attorney’s offices in the country, and won.

    Brownlee has experience at the highest levels of the legal profession, and he has the respect of those folks. Ask yourself this: if you were being sued by a team of top-notch lawyers from across the country, who would you want as your lawyer?

  13. anon


    What if it turns out that Cuccinelli shares Brownlee’s views on the Obama natural born citizen issue? Will you still support him?

    If this is such an important issue to you, why didn’t you “do your homework” before pledging yourself as a delegate to Cuccinelli? If there wasn’t anyone else in the race, what was the rush?

    Just wondering.

  14. Carrie Wigal Post author

    I pledged to be a delegate for Ken Cuccinelli a year ago…before this whole issue of Natural Born Citizenship as it pertained to Obama became apparent to me. From what I heard at that time, I liked what he had to say and his achievements and felt I could vote for him.

    While I didn’t get to ask him this question face to face this weekend, I did hear him speak at a GOP breakfast in Charlottesville (I had my three youngest kids with me, and they were getting way to antsy for me to stick around to ask questions through the throng). He has a strong dedication to the US Constitution, specifically right to life, liberty & pursuit of happiness, right to bear arms and exercising the 10th amendment. I would be surprised if this issue was of no interest to him.

    But I still intend to ask him, nonetheless.


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