A spat in the Lieutenant Governor’s race has moved out front and center in a couple guest posts at Bearing Drift this week.

On Wednesday, former chairman of the Virginia Citizens Defense League PAC and Current VCDL Executive Member Dennis Fusaro unloaded on LG Candidate Jeannemarie Devolites-Davis over her stand on Second Amendment rights:

I’ve been one of many Virginia grassroots advocates on the 2nd Amendment and gun-owner rights since 1987, and I thought I’ve seen it all in my time, but I continue to be amazed by the contradictory actions, attacks and position changes of Jeannemarie Devolites-Davis.

Now that Jeannemarie wants to get back into office, does she really think we are all fools with no memory of her anti-gun attacks. In her current campaign for Lt. Governor, she claims to be a conservative, this is after she described herself as “non-partisan” and even a RINO (Republican In Name Only) to audiences and the media in 2007. Davis has claimed on several occasions during forums to be against “gun free zones” and even had the audacity to attack one of her Republican opponents at a debate in the 9th Congressional District, of all places, on this issue.

The exchange from the forum is available here:

Jeannemarie Devolites-Davis took issue with Fusaro’s article and responded with a missive of her own, citing her Second Amendment credentials while turning her guns on Pete Snyder directly (Note, Fusaro never mentioned Snyder by name, Davis does so 11 times):

As for Fusaro’s defense of Pete Snyder, the minutes of the William and Mary Board of Trustees meeting on December 9, 2011 are clear. They prove conclusively that Mr. Snyder voted to prevent any law-abiding citizen from carrying a weapon for self-defense on campus. This wasn’t a surprise vote, as the Resolution that they voted on was discussed at the previous meeting in September and the Board members were told that they would be voting on the Resolution at the December Board meeting. The minutes reflect that he did indeed participate in that vote. If you look at the minutes of the February 8, 2012 meeting, you will see that Mr. Snyder voted “no” on a voice vote. It’s right there in black and white in the minutes. To my knowledge, this is the only time Mr. Snyder has been asked to vote on a 2nd Amendment issue, and he did not vote with law-abiding citizens.

The problem with Davis’s attack?

It’s wrong.

The minutes from the December 9th, 2011 William & Mary Board of Visitors meeting are available for anyone to read here. While the minutes do list Pete Snyder as present for the meeting, the vote for what was Resolution 8(R) does not explicitly nor conclusively (to use Davis’s term) list how each member of the BoV voted. In fact, the decision was made by a voice vote:

Screen shot 2013-03-28 at 12.07.34 PM

A voice vote, for those who aren’t aware (Davis), is when the presiding officer puts the question to the group, asking all those in favor to say so verbally (“aye” or “yes”), then asks all those opposed to say so (“nay” or “no”) and then decides which one had the most.

So this conclusively (again, to use Davis’s term) shows that a majority of the W&M BoV voted for Resolution 8(R) but shows in no manner how Pete Snyder voted on the issue.

Davis also points to minutes for a meeting on February 8, 2012 that, well, doesn’t exist:

Screen shot 2013-03-28 at 12.08.26 PM

In answering Davis at the forum, Snyder states that even the Rector of William and Mary knows he is a strong defender of our rights under the Second Amendment. In fact, this statement is backed up by Rector Jeff Trammell himself, in a statement obtained by Craig Orndorff at Race To Richmond:

“As Rector, I am aware that the minutes of the Board of Visitors meetings at the College of William and Mary do not reflect the comings and goings of Board members through out the day. I have no recollection of Pete Snyder being present for the vote on our revised campus weapons policy. I would add that I have long been aware of Pete’s views that any limitations on the Second Amendment are unconstitutional,” said Jeffery Trammell, Rector of the College of William and Mary. “I know from past conversations with Pete Snyder that he has long opposed the type of policy regarding weapons on campus that was adopted by William & Mary and other Virginia universities. He has asked that the Board of Visitors debate and amend the current policy as it relates to the question of whether civil liberties of faculty and staff are violated by this policy. I respect the right of any member of the BOV to make such a request and will take that into consideration, depending, as is always the case on the agenda of the board as dictated by the timing of the academic year calendar. I would underscore that I know that Pete strongly believes this policy is an imposition on the Second Amendment, and that there are other board members who feel strongly that is not the case.”

Jeannemarie Devolites-Davis has doubled down on information that does not support her statements. Not only that, they run in direct conflict to her own record and past statements on the issues.

While Davis is today trying to attack Snyder for William and Mary banning concealed carry on campus, in 2007 she attacked her then opponent (and soon to be State Senator) Chap Petersen for voting to allow concealed handguns on school property (at the 0:26 mark):

A stand she reemphasized during an appearance on CNN with the NRA labeled “Nation’s Most Anti-Gun Mayor” Michael Bloomburg (4:28 mark):

In 2007 she attacked her opponent for not banning concealed carry on school grounds.

In 2013 she’s trying to attack her opponent for supposedly banning concealed carry on school grounds.

But her evidence doesn’t add up.

Facts are sneaky. Facts are hard. But facts are facts, and they are not in Jeannemarie Devolites-Davis’s favor on this issue.

  • Another failed politician swinging in the wind. JMD insults us all with her nonsense.

  • This is a little tit-for-tat, and I tend not to get worked up about posts by one candidate’s staff against another candidate, but there is one thing.


    This was from the Feb 1, 2012 minutes, page 7, where the regulation against guns on campus was accepted. No dissenting vote was recorded, and no statements against this were recorded either. For someone with almost no public record before running for a statewide office, there is precious little to go on… and that does make this question relevant.

    • The rector of W&M’s statement is pretty ironclad. The omission of dissenting statements in the minutes doesn’t mean that dissent wasn’t voiced — governing bodies simply don’t do that sort of thing.

      Of course, the public record of some candidates is enough to make one wonder whether they’re running in the right party… but alas, I’ll leave well enough alone (for now).

  • David Adams

    I read Jeanmarie’s response over on Bearing Drift yesterday. No matter how many votes she cites that she cast in support of the 2nd Amendment, that picture of her with Bloomterd is what every gun owner is going to remember. I’m not sold on Snyder either. There are enough candidates running for Lt. Governor with verifiable solid records on the Second Amendment from which to choose.