DAYBREAK DAILY: E.W. Jackson tries different tack in latest debate

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‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the reports – The latest on the government shutdown; Caps open home schedule tonight; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m. M-F.

MEET THE NEW E.W. JACKSON: That other stuff? Never mind, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “In a second showdown at Old Dominion University in Norfolk on Wednesday, the two candidates running for lieutenant governor again underscored their ideological differences. But with less than six weeks until Election Day, E.W. Jackson, the Republican candidate, made an attempt to moderate himself, reaching across the aisle to Democrats -- the same party who he had previously called the “anti-God Party.”

“What the lieutenant governor should be focused on is not attack(ing) people with different visions and values, but work(ing) on those issues where we have common ground,” Jackson said. “I am going to reach out to Democrats -- let’s find a way to work together. Focusing on divisive issues is not the way to get things done.” State Sen. Ralph Northam of Norfolk, for whom the debate was a home game, did not leave Jackson’s attempt to paint himself as a bipartisan candidate unanswered. “Your words have not suggested that you want to work with people,” Northam said. “We don’t need people to talk about others’ sexual orientation or makings statements that we are anti-God.”

MEANWHILE: The race for AG, per the Washington Post, “Virginia’s attorney general candidates debated each other at a Loudoun County forum Wednesday and often defined themselves in comparison with a third person who was not on stage: Ken Cuccinelli II, the current attorney general and Republican candidate for governor.

“State Sens. Mark R. Herring (D-Loudoun) and Mark D. Obenshain (R-Harrisonburg) engaged in a spirited but mostly courtly debate hosted by the Loudoun County Chamber of Commerce that highlighted their different approaches toward defending the commonwealth’s laws against federal encroachment and other legal challenges.”

OF A ‘STAMPEDE’: For guns, per the Baltimore Sun, “Maryland gun dealers have sold more firearms in the first nine months of this year than in all of 2011 and 2012 combined, the state police said Wednesday. Buyers have applied to purchase 117,009 guns this year as lawmakers debated and enacted some of the toughest new gun laws in the country. More than 15,000 gun purchase applications were sent to the state police in the 10 days before Maryland's ban on assault rifle sales and a new handgun licensing requirement took effect Tuesday.

"Maryland is armed to the teeth," said Del. Luiz Simmons, a Montgomery County Democrat who voted for the law but argued that the assault rifle ban was not strong enough. "We caused this rush, this stampede really, to purchase guns."

METHANE GAS: And Virginia’s 2013 gubernatorial race, per the Roanoke Times, “A group of far Southwest Virginia landowners say they feel betrayed by Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli’s support of two natural gas companies that they believe are trying to profit from the valuable methane gas that lies beneath their land. At a news conference Wednesday in Roanoke, Virginians for Clean Government called on Cuccinelli to return the approximately $100,000 in campaign contributions he received from one of the company’s corporate parents.

“. . . Kicking off a statewide tour, the newly formed group hopes to bring more attention to what it calls a conflict-of-interest issue involving Cuccinelli, the Republican candidate for governor.The controversy stems from a series of lawsuits in which landowners contend that two natural gas companies, EQT Production Co. and CNX Gas Co., bilked them out of royalties from methane gas removed from coal seams beneath their land.”

GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN: Of a brief chat, per the New York Times, “In their first meeting since a budget impasse shuttered many federal operations, President Obama told Republican leaders on Wednesday that he would negotiate with them only after they agreed to the funding needed to reopen the government and also to an essential increase in the nation’s debt limit, without add-ons.

“The president’s position reflected the White House view that the Republicans’ strategy is failing. His meeting with Congressional leaders, just over an hour long, ended without any resolution.”

MEANWHILE: A dare, per The Hill, “The House approved three targeted spending resolutions to the Senate on Wednesday, daring Senate Democrats to vote against measures to immediately fund the District of Columbia, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Park Service. The bills are part of the House Republican plan to pass spending bills in areas where there is bipartisan agreement in order to spare some pieces of the government from the shutdown.

“But while Democrats support these priorities, they mostly opposed attempts to pass them in the House. Democrats said Republicans were using the bills as part of a political strategy to mitigate the effects of the shutdown when they should instead pass a Senate spending resolution that funds the entire government.”

POLITICO PLAY: “Ted Cruz faced a barrage of hostile questions Wednesday from angry GOP senators, who lashed the Texas tea party freshman for helping prompt a government shutdown crisis without a strategy to end it.

“At a closed-door lunch meeting in the Senate’s Mansfield Room, Republican after Republican pressed Cruz to explain how he would propose to end the bitter budget impasse with Democrats, according to senators who attended the meeting. A defensive Cruz had no clear plan to force an end to the shutdown — or explain how he would defund Obamacare, as he has demanded all along, sources said.”

MEANWHILE: Just the facts, per the Washington Times, “Sen. Ted Cruz is scheduled to speak Saturday night in Richmond at the Family Foundation’s annual gala as Democrats continue to try to link the Texas Republican to Virginia gubernatorial candidate Kenneth T. Cuccinelli. Cuccinelli, who is running against Democrat Terry McAuliffe, is also scheduled to be at the dinner. The Republican attorney general said during a debate last week that he doesn’t want to see a government shutdown and kept a Mr. Cruz’s strategy of ‘defund Obamacare or bust’ at arm’s length.”

AWKWARD IN D.C.: Of “an impossible position,” per City Paper, “(Wednesday) afternoon, Republicans in the House of Representatives passed a bill over Democratic objections that would appropriate money to keep the District government running during the shutdown. That's as far the bill will go, though. Opposed to "piecemeal" bills that get around the shutdown's effects, the White House says Barack Obama won't sign the bill.

“That's awkward for District Democrats like Mayor Vince Gray and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton. They want the District to be able to spend its own money—the contingency fund that's keeping the city open is expected to last only through Oct. 13, though the White House could allow D.C. to remain operational by considering all its workers essential—but supporting the bill means siding with the Republicans. In an anguished speech on the House floor yesterday, Norton complained that the shutdown puts her in "an impossible position."

MIXED RESULTS: Of the SAT, per the Frederick News-Post, “Frederick County students fared better in state and nationwide SAT averages this year, though scores dropped for the second year in a row. Local seniors earned an average combined score of 1538 for critical reading, math and writing, according to College Board data. The combined score is six points lower than in 2012 and seven points lower than in 2011.”

STREAMLINING: In P.G. County, per Gazette.Net, “Getting permits to build a deck or swimming pool soon won’t require a trip to a Prince George’s County government building. Instead of waiting in lines, residents will be able to file permit applications online, thanks to a new mobile application and feature on its website. . .The upcoming feature is among a list of online services officials are incorporating on the county’s website,, to provide faster service — despite a shrinking technology budget.”

IT’S OFFICIAL: Just the facts, per the Los Angeles Times, “Cory Monteith's death has been ruled accidental -- that according to the final coroner's report released Wednesday by Canadian authorities in Vancouver, B.C., where the "Glee" star was found dead July 13. Monteith died of "intravenous heroin use in combination with ingestion of alcohol," according to the report.

“The 31-year-old was found collapsed on the floor in a room at the Pacific Rim Hotel, the report detailed, where investigators found drug paraphernalia, including a spoon with drug residue and a used hypodermic needle, the report said. Also on hand were two empty Champagne bottles and multiple glasses. The actor had a blood alcohol level of 0.13%.”

TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: “Unsure when they’ll get a paycheck, federal works in the D.C. area are filing for unemployment benefits. Maryland's Department of Labor said it received 4,000 unemployment claims from federal workers Tuesday - more than the state usually receives all year from federal workers.”

NEWSTALK: Among today’s guests (10 a.m., NewsChannel 8) are Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) and former Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.), who will be asked about the federal government shutdown.

--Skip Wood