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WaPo's McCartney: Virginia Elections, New Federal Winter Weather Dismissal Strategy

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Bob McCartney, Washington Post columnist

After the season's first snowfall last week, the federal government is announcing a new winter weather dismissal strategy. And this Tuesday's election in Virginia is a big one for both Democrats and Senates. Washington Post columnist Robert McCartney gives an analysis on this week's news.

High stakes for both parties in Virginia's election on Tuesday

There's just a few days left before Virginia's election next Tuesday, Nov. 8, and there's a lot at stake.

Virginia's election is next Tuesday, Nov. 8, and Republicans only need two seats to win the state Senate. To reach out to voters, Republicans are stressing the need for economic growth.

"In a lot of ways, they're running against President Obama and other Washington Democrats, says McCartney. "[They're] saying that big governments are the cause of the nation's economic problem, so you should vote Republican to fight back against that."

The state's Democrats are fighting back by distancing themselves from Washington. According to McCartney, they're trying to get the public to focus on issues the GOP is downplaying. Despite their efforts, McCartney says he thinks the overall climate favors the Republicans because they only need to take away two seats in order to win control of the Senate.

Government announces new winter weather dismissal strategy

The Federal Office of Personnel Management announced a new inclement weather policy this week, with dismissal deadlines to try and prevent some of the traffic nightmares that states have seen during past storms.

"I think it's more effective than some of the initial commentary and reaction is suggesting," says McCartney.

There are three parts to this policy. First is to encourage more telework from home. Second is to make earlier decisions more often, and third is to implement something called 'shelter in place,' which basically means if a storm is coming, especially during a work day, employees should leave by a certain hour in to avoid the bad roads. But if employees haven't left before the roads are bad, then they should stay at their office.

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