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Often times, the downticket races get the least attention, and in this case, the downticket of the three major offices up for election in Virginia is the one that is closest in the polls, and depending on who wins it will have major consequences as far as women's rights and the rights to equality for all.

The Democratic nominee for Attorney General in the Commonwealth of Virginia is State Senator Mark Herring.   He is running against a Republican State Senator who is as anti-choice as eventual gubernatorial loser and historical footnote, Ken "The Cooch" Cuccinelli.  That Republican is Mark Obenshain.  Below the fleur-de-Kos is info on Herring and how to help win the Attorney General's office for the good guys(and gals)

Obviously, Senator Herring is fighting for women.   His top issue on the Issues Page is women.   From his page specificially on why women can trust him for Attorney General:

As Attorney General, Mark will take politics out of the office and apply laws evenly and fairly. Unlike our current Attorney General, Mark will never intentionally misinterpret the law or misuse his position of power in order to achieve a particular policy outcome. Mark will work to repeal the extreme policies by:

    Issuing an opinion affirming that the Virginia State Board of Health does have the legal authority to grandfather existing women’s health centers under the licensing standards in place in 2011;
    Supporting legislative efforts to repeal the TRAP law altogether;
    Continuing to support the efforts to repeal the legislation mandating a medically unnecessary transabdominal ultrasound prior to an abortion; and
    Fiercely opposing new legislative threats to women’s reproductive rights such as measures designed to restrict access to contraception.

Herring would also fight to promote equally across the Commonwealth.  His Equality Agenda is to 1.) protect LGBT from discrimination using his powers as Attorney General.
He will reverse the opinion issued by then Attorney General Bob McDonnell that says the Governor does not have the authority to issue an executive order protecting LGBT workers in state government from discrimination. Mark believes that the Governor, as chief personnel officer, clearly has this power as exercised by both Governors Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, [emphasis added by diarist] and he will issue an opinion that confirms that the new Governor is authorized by law to offer the protection of an executive order to all state employees.

Mark will adopt a nondiscrimination policy for the Office of Attorney General that protects all employees from discrimination and includes sexual orientation and gender identity. As a member of the State Senate, Mark has co-sponsored legislation that would codify protections against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity for all public workers. He will continue to support this legislative effort as Attorney General.

2.) fight against bullying and attempts to ban Gay Straight Alliances and 3.) fight for equal rights for same-gender families
Mark Herring believes that civil marriage is a fundamental right, and he supports marriage equality for same-gender couples. In addition, as he works to change the current law prohibiting such marriages, Mark will work with state and local agencies to define ways to allow same-gender couples to access state-provided employee health and life insurance benefits without violating the current constitutional prohibition on relationship recognition.

Mark Herring supports changing Virginia law to permit second-parent adoptions. Second-parent adoption would guarantee a child who is adopted by same-gender couples critical rights such as:

■ Legally protected financial support from both parents

■ The ability to be covered by either parent’s health insurance plan

■ The ability of both parents to make key decisions regarding the child’s health and welfare

■ The guarantee that in the event of the death of one of the parents, the other parent retains legal custody

Herring's opponent, Obenshain is very anti-choice.   He once tried to require women to report miscarriages to the police within 24 hours of it happening.  Obenshain also believes that forcing women to go an invasive, medically unnecessary ultrasound is "common sense".

Obenshain is also very anti-LGBT.  Like his soulmate The Cooch, Obenshain refuses to acknowledge Lawrence v. Texas and would fight to restore Virginia's bigoted anti-sodomy law.  And there's this classy gesture:

In January, 2013, Obenshain walked off the Senate floor rather than support former Richmond prosecutor Tracy Thorne-Begland, who is openly gay, for a Richmond General District Court judgeship.  In 2012, other GOP extremists in the House of Delagate blocked Thorne-Begland’s appointment but were out maneuvered by the Richmond Circuit Court judges who appointed him on an interim bases after Thorne-Begland received unanimous backing from the five largest mega-law firms based in Virginia.
There are of course other issues where Herring is right and Obenshain is very wrong like gun safety, but the proof in in the putting as far as Mark Herring being the only choice that we have for our brothers and sisters in Virginia.   Let's make it a clean sweep this November, and take back the Commonwealth from extreme Tea-Party Republicans and get Virginia back to the 21st Century.

Mark Herring for Attorney General site
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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (14+ / 0-)

    I agree with President Obama, our country's journey is not yet complete. We must continue the work that our forebearers at Seneca Falls started, and put the Equal Rights Amendment into our Constitution.

    by pistolSO on Wed Oct 23, 2013 at 08:44:07 AM PDT

  •  we don't need another cooch!....n/t (4+ / 0-)

    An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

    by don mikulecky on Wed Oct 23, 2013 at 08:51:52 AM PDT

  •  Folks -- this is the race that scares me. (5+ / 0-)

    The governor's race seems to be working out fine, but people are not paying attention to the AG race.  And it is very uncomfortably close:

    "Cuccinelli 2.0: The GOP Candidate Who Might Win VA's Atty General Seat."

    Turnout should be pretty low, and lots and lots of Democrats don't bother voting for anything other than the top-line race.  The only advertising I've seen for the AG race is an adorable commercial in which Obenshain's lovely and charming daughter talks about what a great guy "Dad" is.

    Please -- if you're in VA, canvass: and when you canvass always remind people to vote for Herring for VA.  Tell them that Obenshain is Cuccinelli 2.0.  It's important.

    Thanks.

    "We reject as false the choice between our safety and our values." Barack Hussein Obama

    by jem6x on Wed Oct 23, 2013 at 09:23:22 AM PDT

  •  Women are far more likely than men to be killed (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oortdust, pistolSO

    by someone they know. And are 3 times more likely to be killed if there is a gun in the home.

    From his issues page. DV is on the rise in Virginia. This is especially troubling when overall violent crime is going down across the country.

    3. Combating Sexual and Domestic Violence

    As Virginia’s next Attorney General, Mark will shift the focus away from divisive social issues and instead focus on keeping Virginians and their families safe. As a member of the Senate, Mark has fought to protect victims of sexual and domestic violence and to implement programs designed to prevent these heinous crimes from occurring.

    Mark serves as a member of the Governor’s Domestic Violence Response and Advisory Board, and in 2012, he championed legislation to strengthen penalties for strangulation, one of the most lethal forms of domestic violence. For his efforts, he received a “Champion of Justice” award from the Virginia Association of Commonwealth’s Attorneys.

    Unfortunately, reports of domestic violence are on the rise in many areas of Virginia. Arrests are up 277% in Northern Virginia from six years ago according to statistics from the Department of Criminal Justice Services. In Fairfax County, they increased from 489 in 2006 to 1,984 in 2010. In Alexandria, they doubled during that same five-year period. This past October, the state Medical Examiner reported that family and intimate partner homicides rose 22.3% from 2009 to 2010, and comprised 43.5% of all Virginia homicides.

    Mark believes the state can and should do more to ensure that Virginia women can live free of fear of becoming a victim of sexual or domestic violence. As Attorney General, Mark will immediately lead the effort he began during the 2013 General Assembly session to establish a lethality assessment program in Virginia.

    Lethality assessment programs feature evidence-based screening tools to determine whether victims of domestic violence are at risk of greater violence, together with protocol referrals providing direction for first responders to help victims into services, enhancing their chances of survival. Some localities in Virginia, particularly the City of Norfolk, are already undertaking this successfully.

    Fourteen other states currently have established lethality assessment programs and Mark will work with the Board of the Department of Criminal Justice Services to establish such a program in Virginia, encourage participation by localities, and work with the General Assembly to provide the necessary funding so that local programs can apply for grants from the Sexual and Domestic Violence Victim Fund.

    Additionally, Mark will continue his work with the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance and the Virginia State Police to pass legislation that would prohibit any person who is convicted of stalking, sexual battery, or assault and battery of a family member that results in serious bodily harm from possessing, transporting, or carrying a firearm for a period of at least five years following the conviction. Women are far more likely than men to be killed by someone they know, generally a spouse or partner, and women with a gun in the home were nearly three times as likely to be the victim of homicide than women living in a home without firearms, according to a 2003 study in the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

    "They did not succeed in taking away our voice" - Angelique Kidjo - Opening the Lightning In a Bottle concert at Radio City Music Hall in New York City - 2003

    by LilithGardener on Wed Oct 23, 2013 at 10:28:24 AM PDT

  •  Mark Herring is a good guy who used to be my (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pistolSO

    state senator.  Came to my house canvassing once. Of course, my district has been redistricted, but it worked out okay. Although I lost Ken Plum, who was and is a good guy, I'm hoping Jennifer Boysko will become the delegate for my district after the election. Janet Howell is now my state senator and she's great--always has been.

    Of course I'll vote for Mark Herring and against Mark "Open Shame" Obenshain.

    That thing about requiring women to report their miscarriages to the police within 24 hours--you have to be a flaming seven-letter word meaning "anal aperture" to even conceive (dare I use that word?) such a vile idea.

    I hope Mark Herring wins and Open Shame goes down in defeat. And Jackson and the Kook as well.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Wed Oct 23, 2013 at 10:47:22 AM PDT

  •  Mike Bloomberg (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pistolSO, VirginiaBlue

    should spend some money on this race. Herring could really use the help here, especially on the airwaves in Northern Virginia.

    The Republican party is now an extreme right-wing party that is owned by their billionaire campaign contributors. - Bernie Sanders

    by ehstronghold on Wed Oct 23, 2013 at 11:15:49 AM PDT

  •  Herring needs name rec (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    VirginiaBlue

    I've known Mark Herring since he got elected to county board of supervisors. He's a great guy, super well qualified. With us since dirt on all the big issues.

    Please send him some love. And get his name out there. Obenshain is a scary dude, a Kookinelli clone.

    Dems need more yard signs out there in NVA!

  •  Obenshain refused to regulate puppy mills (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    VirginiaBlue

    ANIMAL LOVERS: In the state legislature, Obenshain voted against a bill to regulate puppy mills.

  •  I'm with you here! (0+ / 0-)

    The GOP has had a stranglehold on this office for too long ( we haven't won it since 1989!)

    "I would rather the man who presents something for my consideration subject me to a zephyr of truth and a gentle breeze of responsibility rather than blow me down with a curtain of hot wind." - Grover Cleveland.

    by lordpet8 on Thu Oct 24, 2013 at 09:32:12 PM PDT

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