Democratic AGs Fight The Rise of White Nationalism

April 9, 2019

While the House Judiciary Committee holds an important hearing on “Hate Crimes and White Nationalism,” Democratic AGs are leading efforts in the states to combat the recent upswing in hate crime activity. Here’s a quick spotlight on how Democratic AGs are addressing the rise of hate crimes and white nationalism in their respective states:

  • Michigan AG Dana Nessel launched a new Hate Crimes Unit within the Michigan DOJ last month to investigate crimes motivated by hate and bias. “Hate crimes are not just an attack on a specific individual but a message to an entire group,” said AG Nessel in a statement, “that’s why they’re so damaging to communities and why we need to partner with our local authorities if we hope to eradicate them.”
  • Oregon AG Ellen Rosenblum testified in front of the Oregon Senate Judiciary Committee last month in support of Senate Bill 577, a bill created by AG Rosenblum’s Hate Crime Prevention Task Force. The legislation proposes a targeted investment in a model of service that gives assistance to individuals and communities impacted by hate, regardless of whether the incident is ultimately prosecutable. “The stories we heard in Portland, Eugene and Medford about how local residents were impacted by hate-motivated conduct in these communities informed the recommendations in this bill today before the Oregon Senate,” said AG Rosenblum.
  • Virginia AG Mark Herring introduced legislation in the Virginia General Assembly to update Virginia’s definition of a hate crime to include gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability – bringing the definition into line with the federal definition. His legislation would restrict the kind of paramilitary activity by white supremacists militias and similar groups that came to prominence after the riots in Charlottesville. “It is time for the General Assembly to take action to protect Virginians and make sure that we prevent the kind of paramilitary activity that we saw in Charlottesville from ever happening on our streets again,said AG Herring. This effort stems from a series of roundtables in late 2018 spearheaded by AG Herring to hear from the community the different types of action he needed to take.

Democratic AGs will continue to take proactive measures to protect their constituents – including fighting back against the Trump Administration’s lack of actions in combating white nationalism and hate crimes more broadly throughout our country.

Democratic Attorneys General currently hold office in 27 states, represent the majority of Americans, and the states responsible for the majority of the U.S. GDP (63.1%). REMINDER: Mississippi, Kentucky, and Louisiana are holding Attorney General elections in November of 2019.

For more information about the work the Democratic Attorneys General are doing to fight back against the rise of White Nationalism and Hate Crimes, or to get in touch with a Democratic AG, reach out to

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