DAGA Download – August 1

August 1, 2020

ON THE TRAIL

REPUBLICAN AGs ON NOTICE
With fewer than 100 days remaining until the election, DAGA released “Emergency,” a new video highlighting efforts by Republican AGs to deliberately and willfully mislead citizens about the growing COVID-19 crisis for political gain. The video highlights Republican AGs falling in line with President Trump’s ridiculous and dangerous response to the pandemic including contradicting Trump’s own public health experts on the importance of mask wearing, abandoning the concerns of teachers and students about school openings, and continuing to attack access to affordable health care when people need it most. Read the full press release here.

WIN THE ERA: INDIANA EDITION
Former mayor and 2020 presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg endorsed Jonathan Weinzapfel, Indiana’s Democratic nominee for Attorney General. “As Attorney General, Jonathan will help make Indiana a more inclusive and prosperous state, while protecting us from attempts to take health care away from millions of Hoosier families,” Buttigieg said in his endorsement.

NEXT WEEK’s PRIMARIES
Believe it or not, there are still three primary elections remaining in states with 2020 AG races. Two are next week:

  • The Missouri primary is scheduled for Tuesday, August 4. Two Democrats, Rich Finneran, a former federal prosecutor, and Elad Gross, a former assistant attorney general, are competing to go head-to-head with incumbent Republican AG Eric Schmitt in November. Learn more about Finneran and Gross and where they stand on the issues here, along with their pre-primary statements here.
  • The Washington state primary is also scheduled for Tuesday, August 4. Democratic incumbent Washington AG Bob Ferguson is running unopposed for re-election. However, next week’s primary will determine which of the three Republican AG primary candidates he will beat in November.

AWARDS SEASON
The Oregon chapter of Planned Parenthood announced that DAGA Co-Chair Oregon AG Ellen Rosenblum is the organization’s 2020 Pro-Choice Champion and will be receiving the Marilyn Epstein Pro-Choice Champion Award. AG Rosenblum tweeted, “It’s an honor to be receiving @PPAdvocatesOR Pro-Choice Champion award this year. Ensuring Oregonians can assert their basic rights to control their bodies and their life decisions is paramount to me and to my work as AG.” AG Rosenblum is running for re-election this Fall.

ENDORSEMENT CORNER

  • MONTANA: AG candidate Raph Graybill was endorsed by Fight for Reform, the state level affiliate of End Citizens United & Let America Vote.
  • PENNSYLVANIA: AG Josh Shapiro was endorsed by Fight for Reform, the state level affiliate of End Citizens United & Let America Vote.

COMING UP

  • August 4: Missouri Primary
  • August 4: Washington State Primary
  • August 13: Netroots Nation Panel featuring Minnesota AG Keith EllisonCalifornia AG Xavier BecerraColorado AG Phil Weiser and DAGA Co-Chair Massachusetts AG Maura Healey.

 

MULTISTATE MOMENTS

DEM AGs TO TRUMP: “NOT ON OUR WATCH”
In response to President Trump’s tweet attacking vote-by-mail and threatening to delay to the November 2020 election, DAGA Co-Chairs Massachusetts AG Maura Healey and Oregon AG Ellen Rosenblum released a statement defending free and fair elections. “To President Trump: Not on our watch! Democratic AGs will fight ANY effort to delay the November election or deny people the right to vote—and we will win,” AGs Healey and Rosenblum said in a statement. Read the rest of their statement and find links to other Democratic AGs responses here. For more on the Democratic AG response, read Buzzfeed’s article here.

PROTECT OUR CARE
California AG Xavier Becerra 
led a coalition of 21 Democratic AGs in filing a reply brief in the U.S. Supreme Court that defends the Affordable Care Act against a lawsuit filed by Republican AGs and the Trump Administration. If Republican AGs win, the entire Affordable Care Act could be eliminated. “As the nation weathers an unprecedented public health crisis, the Trump Administration continues to gamble with Americans’ health,” AG Becerra wrote in a statement. “The president, like a professional hustler, vows to ‘always protect people with pre-existing conditions’ as he actively argues in the Supreme Court to strip away those very protections and much more. America can’t afford double-talk. As unemployment rises along with COVID-19 infections, access to quality, affordable healthcare is more important than ever.” Read more about how access to affordable health care is playing in the 2020 state AG elections here.

ADD IT TO THE WIN COLUMN ROUND 1: PROTECTING IMMIGRANTS
New York AG Tish James,
 Connecticut AG William Tong and Vermont AG TJ Donovan secured a major victory for immigrants and public health and safety by securing an injunction to block Trump’s dangerous “Public Charge” rule from taking effect during the COVID-19 pandemic. The “Public Charge” rule allows the Trump Administration to reject entry or legal status for immigrants who are labeled as “likely” to need government assistance. “For nearly five months, the Public Charge Rule has further exacerbated the public health crisis the country faces by punishing New York and other immigrant-rich states — stripping families of their ability to access basic services. Immigrants have been on the front lines fighting this pandemic from the start, and today’s injunction will ensure they are not targeted for obtaining health coverage or other vital services, as they continue to battle COVID-19. This order is vital to our national health, as every person who doesn’t get the health coverage they need today risks infecting another person with the coronavirus tomorrow,” AG James said in a statement.

 

AG SPOTLIGHT

ADD IT OT THE WIN COLUMN ROUND 2: PROTECTING STUDENTS
Pennsylvania AG Josh Shapiro secured a victory in his lawsuit against a student loan servicer this week. The company is accused of deceptive lending practices and steering borrowers into more expensive repayment plans. AG Shapiro said, “The decision also makes clear consumers won’t be left unprotected when the Federal government fails to step up as has happened all too often during the current administration.” Learn more about this lawsuit and AG Shapiro’s pursuit of justice for student loan borrowers here.

 

TWEET OF THE WEEK

Actress and activist Piper Perabo retweeted DAGA’s new video “Emergency,” urged people to find out who their state AG is, and emphasized state AG elections in November.

 

VIDEO OF THE WEEK

North Carolina AG Josh Stein released a new Civics With Stein video in which he detailed how to vote in North Carolina. Watch it here.