DAGA Download – September 11
September 11, 2020
ON THE TRAIL
Leading up to the Montana AG debate this week (taped Friday and airs next weekend), DAGA released a new memo outlining key questions Republican nominee Austin Knudsen must answer about his extreme record. The memo puts Austin Knudsen’s anti-public lands, anti-health care agenda on notice, and highlights the momentum building for Raph Grabybill, the Democratic nominee. Read the full memo to learn more about why Montana is a top race for Democrats this cycle.
UP ON TELEVISION
NORTH CAROLINA: Democratic AG Josh Stein released his first ad highlighting his work to keep kids safe, his leadership in the state’s effort to eliminate the sexual assault kit backlog, and his partnership with law enforcement to keep the public safe.
PENNSYLVANIA: Democratic AG Josh Shapiro released his first ad featuring a powerful story from Pennsylvanian Bob Corby, who was sexually abused by a priest when he was 11 years old and “did not tell a soul for more than 60 years.” Corby thanked AG Shapiro for his leadership on the Catholic Church investigation and his support for survivors.
INDIANA HEATS UP
Even the Indiana GOP knows Democratic Jonathan Weinzapfel is the best choice for state AG. Weinzapfel picked up a key endorsement from Republican Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Jennifer McCormick. Dr. McCormick reinforced Weinzapfel’s strong bipartisan leadership and his ability to get the job done for Hoosiers. Jonathan also earned the Indiana State Teachers Association endorsement this week.
PROTECTING THE PLANET
A coalition of 15 Democratic AGs announced a lawsuit against the Trump administration’s decision to sell drilling rights in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). Washington AG Bob Ferguson said, “America’s Arctic Refuge is a national refuge. This is the latest unlawful action in President Trump’s four-year assault on our environment.” Democratic AGs have taken more than 300 major actions to protect our environment and combat climate change. Read more about the leadership of Democratic AGs on the environment in Bloomberg here.
VOTE! BUT ONLY ONCE
All 25 Democratic AGs led by North Carolina AG Josh Stein issued a joint statement on the importance of election integrity following President Trump’s repeated suggestions that voters “vote twice” this November. “It’s against the law to vote twice in the election … To voters: we want each of you to vote and to know that state Attorneys General are here to ensure your vote is counted, your voice is heard, and our elections have integrity” said the Dem AG coalition. While Republican AGs refuse to hold Trump accountable, Democratic AGs continue to lead on the issues of election integrity and voter participation, including protecting voting by mail.
DAGA Co-Chairs Massachusetts AG Maura Healey & Oregon AG Ellen Rosenblum called on U.S. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy to “step aside immediately” after it was revealed by The Washington Post that he allegedly pressured employees at his former business into making political contributions and later reimbursed them, a potential violation of state and federal campaign finance laws. “If true, they call into question DeJoy’s leadership and compliance with the law yet again, this time revealing a pattern of potentially criminal misconduct,” the DAGA Co-Chairs said. Read the full statement here.
As families and communities across the country grapple with the uncertainty of the current economic and public health crises, Labor Day 2020 was a particularly important moment to reflect on workers in this country and the Democratic AGs who are supporting their rights.
A recent Philadelphia Inquirer article highlighted how Democratic Attorneys General are banding together to protect workers’ rights. The article spotlighted hometown AG Josh Shapiro and his commitment to labor issues and the effort by his office to bolster its labor portfolio.
In a piece for the American Prospect, Terri Gerstein details how Democratic AGs are helping workers during this time of crisis—especially as the Trump administration continues to be absent in the fight to protect worker safety.
If you care about workers’ rights, electing a strong Democratic AG makes a huge difference.
ANOTHER CENSUS WIN
A federal court in New York ruled that the Trump administration cannot exclude undocumented immigrants from the 2020 Census count. A coalition of 20 Democratic AGs led by New York AG Tish James sued after the Trump administration said that it would leave millions of undocumented immigrants out of the Congressional apportionment count. Following the ruling, AG James tweeted the news saying “[n]o one ceases to be a person because they lack documentation, period.”
This week, Democratic AGs participated in policy panels as part of DAGA’s Fall Policy Conference. In case you missed these important conversations, check out the links below.
“Filling the Leadership Void: How Democratic AGs are Protecting Communities during COVID Pandemic,” a panel moderated by DAGA Co-Chair Massachusetts AG Maura Healey featured Michigan AG Dana Nessel, Minnesota AG Keith Ellison, North Carolina AG Josh Stein & Pennsylvania AG Josh Shapiro. Watch the full conversation here.
“Reigning Supreme: How Democratic AGs are Fighting – and winning – in the U.S. Supreme Court,” a panel moderated by the Dean of Berkeley School of Law Erwin Chemerinsky featured California AG Xavier Becerra, Colorado AG Phil Weiser and New York AG Tish James. Watch the full conversation here.
TWEET OF THE WEEK
VIDEO OF THE WEEK
DAGA released the first installment of a veterans’ video series focused on the importance of public lands to voters and veterans in Montana. Learn more from Spencer Keck, a Combat Corpsman who served in the Persian Gulf War and Afghanistan, about why public lands and the AG race matter.