WAMU 88.5 Contributors

Michael Pope

Reporter

Pope is an award-winning author and journalist who lives in Old Town Alexandria. He has reported for WAMU, Connection Newspapers, the New York Daily News and the Tallahassee Democrat. A native of Moultrie, Ga., he grew up in Durham, N.C., and graduated high school in Tampa, Fla. He has a master's degree in American Studies from Florida State University, and he is a former adjunct professor at Tallahassee Community College. Pope is the author of Shotgun Justice (2012), Hidden History of Alexandria, D.C. (2011) and Ghosts of Alexandria (2010), all published by History Press in Charleston, S.C.


Articles Written by Michael Pope

WAMU 88.5
The leading state regulatory agency in Virginia operates in the dark, exempt from the Virginia Freedom of Information Act.  That may change soon pending review of legislation submitted in the commonwealth. Members of the Freedom of Information Advisory Council will be meeting in Richmond this week to hear a proposal to open the records of the State Corporation Commission ...
WAMU 88.5
In Virginia, Republican Governor Bob McDonnell is hearing from Alexandria leaders about their frustration over his school reform efforts. The governor appeared at T.C. Williams High School on Thursday to celebrate what he sees as the accomplishments of his administration efforts at education reform. "There were two tough love ideas that I brought to the table, an ...
WAMU 88.5
Virginia Attorney General and Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli is outlining his education platform. For the last two decades, parents have been frustrated by the Standards of Learning — known as SOLs — because of concern that classes are designed to teach to the test. Cuccinelli says he wants to shift attention to student knowledge and problem solving rat...
WAMU 88.5
In Virginia, a federal agency is scrutinizing a state program that provides financial assistance to disabled people. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Service's Office of Civil Rights office says in a letter to Quality Trust for Individuals with Disabilities that it will pursue action in the group's complaint against the state. The group filed a complaint...
WAMU 88.5
By the time the Falls Church Healthcare Center's legal challenge makes its way into the courtroom, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli will no longer be in office. The next attorney general will, and he'll have to decide how to handle strict new regulations on abortion clinics in the commonwealth. The Democrat running for that office is state Senator Mark Herring, who voted agains...
WAMU 88.5
At the Dar AlNoor Community Center in Manassas, Va., thousands of Muslims gathered for Eid, the end of Ramadan, and so have about a dozen candidates for office. Safiya Samman of Woodbridge says every year, more and more candidates come to the community center to court an increasingly important voting bloc. "The Muslims are really part of the American structure, and they are ...
WAMU 88.5
Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has lost his bid to delay a lower court ruling that struck down the state's anti-sodomy law while the U.S. Supreme Court considers whether to hear his appeal. Chief Justice John Roberts is denying the request for a stay. Back in March, a divided three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond declared Virginia's l...
WAMU 88.5
In Virginia, two new lawsuits are challenging the state's constitutional ban on gay marriage. But it may not only be lawyers that decide the case—voters may also play an important role in determining the outcome. Republican Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli says his office will vigorously defend the amendment to the Virginia Constitution that prohibits gay marriage. But Cucc...
WAMU 88.5
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell is refinancing his private residence and restructuring loans as he repays a businessman and political donor who showered him and his family with gifts. Court and government records show real estate transactions that could free up cash for McDonnell. The governor and his family are returning gifts and loans totaling more than $150,000 to Jonnie Will...
WAMU 88.5
An off-duty Arlington sheriff's deputy is facing murder charges now that a General District Court judge has certified the case to a grand jury. Heads turned when one of the benches in the spectator area of the coatroom unexpectedly collapsed during the hearing today, a nervous moment in a tense hearing at a packed courthouse today. The highlight of the case was when prosecuto...
WAMU 88.5
In Virginia, a former assistant attorney general claims in a lawsuit that she was improperly fired after being accused of posting derogatory comments about Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli on a newspaper's website. Samantha Vanterpool filed the complaint against Cuccinelli and his former chief deputy, Charles James Jr., in U.S. District Court. Vanterpool claims sh...
WAMU 88.5
In Virginia, the Libertarian candidate for governor is calling for major changes to how the commonwealth regulates alcohol. Back in April, a University of Virginia student spent a night in jail after state agents with the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control arrested her after mistaking a case of sparkling water for beer. Now Robert Sarvis, the Libertarian can...
WAMU 88.5
For Linda Kaufman, today is not just an important day in the history of civil rights in Virginia. It's also a significant day for her relationship with her life partner. "LeeAnn and I met in 1997, and today actually is the 15th anniversary of our commitment service," she says. They were married in D.C. three years ago, but Virginia does not recognize their marriage...
WAMU 88.5
In Virginia the legal definition of sodomy includes oral sex—even between married couples. So Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli's decision to ask the United States Supreme Court to stay a lower court's decision striking down the state's anti-sodomy law has far-reaching implications into the bedrooms of just about every Virginia voter. Back in March, the Fourth U.S. Circuit ...
WAMU 88.5
In Virginia, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli says he's glad Governor Bob McDonnell is returning all the gifts he received from a major political donor. But for his part, the attorney general says he has no plans to return gifts from the same donor. Cuccinelli says Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams didn't give him the kind of presents that can be returned. Gifts from Willia...
WAMU 88.5
The number of Virginia drunk drivers ordered to install breathalyzers in their vehicles has risen 75 percent over the last year as a result of a new law. About 8,500 drivers convicted of drunk driving were enrolled in Virginia's ignition interlock program during the first 11-month period after the enactment of the tougher law, according to data from the Virginia Alcohol Safet...
WAMU 88.5
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell says that his daughter has returned the $15,000 check that Star Scientific chief executive Jonnie Williams gave her for her wedding two years ago. The governor is under federal and state investi...
WAMU 88.5
For the last five years, justices at Virginia's Supreme Court have denied public access to audio recordings of oral arguments. The sessions are recorded, but the audio files are kept secret in a court that also forbids video recording and does not provide transcripts. Officials in the court's Office of the Executive Secretary even declined our request to be interviewed for ...
WAMU 88.5
In the midst of a covert trip to Afghanistan to visit American troops, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell discussed undisclosed gifts from donor and benefactor Jonnie Williams later. In a telephone interview with The Associated Press from Kabul, Afghanistan on Wednesday, the governor continued on an apology issued Tuesday when he announced he'd repaid more than $124,000 in loans f...
WAMU 88.5
In Virginia, Governor Bob McDonnell is returning $124,000 worth of loans from a wealthy Virginia businessman. In a statement from McDonnell's private legal and communications team, the governor is apologizing for "the embarrassment certain members of my family and I brought upon my beloved Virginia and her citizens." The apology comes along with an announcement tha...