ON THE TRAIL
KEEPING UP WITH THE CANDIDATES
- INDIANA: Both Democratic AG candidates in Indiana, State Senator Karen Tallian and former Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel received notable endorsements from local figures this week as they both hold events around the state to connect with Indiana voters ahead of the upcoming party convention in June. Read more about the endorsements on Senator Tallian’s Twitter and Weinzapfel’s Facebook accounts.
THE STATE OF HEALTH CARE
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court announced it would consider taking up an important case concerning the survival of the Affordable Care Act. In an effort to end any uncertainty in the health care system that might be caused by the Republican-led lawsuit to dismantle the ACA, Democratic AGs asked the Supreme Court to hear the case this term, which ends in June 2020. In his State of the Union speech, President Trump claimed that his administration is protecting patients with pre-existing conditions. As Axios pointed out, that claim is “misleading at best.” Currently, the Trump administration and Republican AGs are trying to dismantle health care, including removing protections for pre-existing conditions. Dem AGs – led by California AG Xavier Becerra – are fighting back in court to save the ACA. Read more about the ongoing lawsuit in The Hill here and check out DAGA’s fact check on Republican lies about health care here.
- Last week, 15 Dem AGS teamed up to sue the EPA for new efforts to gut the agency’s Risk Management Program regulations. Originally put in place by President Obama, the protections are meant to reduce the threat of toxic chemical spills and accidents. “The Trump EPA is gutting critical safeguards against explosions, fires, poisonous gas releases, and other accidents at these facilities,” said New York AG Tish James. Read more about the lawsuit here in The Hill.
- This week, a coalition of 18 Dem AGs filed a comment letter with the EPA urging the agency to list PFAS chemicals on the EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory (TRI). The TRI is a list of toxic chemicals that pose a threat to human health and the environment. PFAS chemicals, according to the AGs filing the letter, clearly belong on this list, due to their adverse health effects on humans. “The EPA must stop dragging its feet and do its job to protect our communities from the risks of PFAS,” said AG Becerra. Learn more about harmful “forever chemicals” and the AGs’ letter here.
STANDING UP FOR THE ERA
Now that 38 states have ratified the Equal Rights Amendment some are asking if the amendment is even still necessary given the progress made over the last 50 years on women’s rights. The answer is yes! (and Nevada AG Aaron Ford agrees) Just last week, AG Ford joined his colleagues from Virginia and Illinois to filed a lawsuit to compel the archivist to adopt the ERA on the U.S. Constitution). A local columnist for Nevada’s Elko Daily Free Press opined this week in agreement too, noting “Frankly, in addition to the questions about whether the ERA should be recognized, [the] concerns Ford cited are far more real and possible today than when the ERA passed Congress in 1972.”
STANDING WITH SURVIVORS
This week is National Gun Violence Survivors Week, and Democratic AGs took to Twitter to recognize survivors and the families of survivors. Democratic AGs are leaders on gun safety in their states—protecting strong gun laws, challenging dangerous policies that put families and communities at risk. Pennsylvania AG Josh Shapiro highlighted the stories of Pennsylvanians like Roxy, a Philadelphia woman who suffers from PTSD and anxiety after narrowly surviving a drive-by shooting as a teenager. Read survivors’ stories here on Moments That Survive, an online tribute to survivors and their families from Everytown for Gun Safety.
TWEET OF THE WEEK
This week, as President Trump delivered the State of the Union, he falsely claimed he was responsible for protecting people who have pre-existing conditions. Of course, that’s not true and DAGA took to Twitter to remind the American people that it is in fact Democratic AGs who are in court defending these critical protections from attacks by the Republican AGs and the Trump administration. Planned Parenthood chimed in and thanked Democratic AGs for the work they are doing not just for leading the fight on health care but specifically on reproductive rights.
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
DAGA Co-Chair Massachusetts AG Maura Healey was back in court this week… but a different kind of court. AG Healey took a brief recess to celebrate National Girls and Women in Sports Day. Shoutout to AG Healey for always keeping her head in the game!