DAGA Download – March 12
March 12, 2021
ON THE TRAIL
ON THE BALLOT
Virginia AG Mark Herring is on the ballot! AG Herring officially completed the paperwork and submitted the required signatures to seek another term as Attorney General. AG Herring will now appear on the ballot for Virginia’s June Primary. AG Herring emphasizes racial justice and workers’ rights as his priorities in this next term.
VA ENDORSEMENT CORNER
Virginia AG Mark Herring continues to gain endorsements. Most recently Lori Haas, Senior Director of Advocacy for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, endorsed AG Herring. In her endorsement she said, “Mark’s commitment to keeping all of us safe from gun violence is genuine, persistent, and resolute. We need him in the AG’s office as we look to find more solutions to preventing gun violence. I wholeheartedly endorse his candidacy and look forward to continuing our work together in the future.”
REDUCING GUN VIOLENCE
Illinois AG Kwame Raoul led a coalition of 19 Democratic AGs in an amicus brief in support of a Washington state initiative to regulate the sale of semiautomatic assault rifles. AG Raoul said, “States have a responsibility to protect their residents from gun violence and implementing age-based sales restrictions, and background checks have been shown to be effective methods in doing so.” In the brief, the attorneys general argue that states have the right to enact reasonable firearm regulations that would protect public safety and reduce gun violence. Democratic AGs have historically spearheaded efforts in reducing gun violence. Read more about this brief here and Democratic AGs’ previous efforts here.
NEW US ATTORNEY GENERAL
DAGA Co-Chairs Massachusetts AG Maura Healey and Nevada AG Aaron Ford released a statement on the successful confirmation of Judge Merrick Garland to serve as United States Attorney General. In the statement, they highlighted how his confirmation will help restore people’s faith in government and make progress on voting rights, criminal justice, and much more. AG Healey and AG Ford stated, “With so much work to do, we look forward to once again having a partner at the federal level will fight along-side Democratic Attorneys General to create a more just and equitable justice system—one the American people can trust to protect them.” Read the full statement here.
HELP IS HERE!
DAGA Co-Chairs Massachusetts AG Maura Healey and Nevada AG Aaron Ford released a statement following the passage of the American Rescue Plan, President Biden’s COVID-19 relief bill. In the statement, AG Healey and AG Ford applauded their Democratic colleagues in Congress for passing legislation that will provide financial aid to millions of people across the country suffering from the COVID-19 crisis. They said, “This is a major turning point in the fight against COVID-19 and the economic crisis gripping our nation. Thanks to President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and congressional Democrats, we are showing people across the country that government once again works for the people. We look forward to using these new and desperately needed resources to help our communities build back better.” Read the full statement here.
Maryland AG Brian Frosh and District of Columbia AG Karl Racine wrote an op-ed calling attention to the 43 states that have introduced voter suppression bills as well as to HR1, a voter protection bill passed by the House earlier this week. In the op-ed, the AGs emphasized that “American democracy is at a crossroads.” Further, they cautioned against the many anti-voting bills that are quickly advancing in state legislatures following the historic turnout of the 2020 election. They called HR1 a “stark alternative to this regression to Jim Crow, building on the best and most effective practices from states around the country — red and blue — to strengthen our multiracial, inclusive democracy.” AG Frosh and AG Racine stated their support for the “swift passage of the bill” as well as the support of 21 other state and local attorneys general. Read the op-ed here.
BONUS: AG Frosh and AG Racine wrote another op-ed last month, outlining the importance for the Senate to pass the HR1 bill.
Virginia AG Mark Herring wrote an op-ed highlighting his commitment to workers’ rights in Virginia. AG Herring noted that Virginia’s weak worker protection laws have allowed workers to be exploited and stated, “I have sought partnerships to create a commonwealth where workers feel welcome to start their careers and safe to grow their families, no matter where they come from.” Workers’ rights are a priority for AG Herring. Last week AG Herring announced that his new Worker Protection Unit will investigate, stop, and prosecute the exploitation of Virginia workers.
BONUS: AG Herring secured nearly $40 million in a settlement with a cigarette manufacturer that will be transferred into the Virginia Health Care Fund.
TWEET OF THE WEEK
The American Rescue Plan was signed into law this week, and all thanks to the millions of people who helped elect President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and Democratic majorities in the House and the Senate.