Virginia Gubernatorial Roundup: Policy Plans and Public Appearances


GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin rolled out a plan to combat human trafficking in Virginia. Youngkin’s plan calls for ramped up enforcement, survivor resources, and expanded education about human trafficking.

When I am governor, we will not only bring the full weight of the law down on traffickers and buyers, we will also equip survivors to heal and flourish,” Youngkin said in a Thursday night stop in Falls Church.

“Human trafficking is slavery in our time. It leads to the tragic consequences of lives lost to addiction and suicide. I commit to ending this exploitation and abuse, and ridding our state of this evil criminal enterprise,” he said, according to a press release.

“Illicit massage businesses are the largest sector of human trafficking in Virginia,” a policy fact sheet from the campaigns says.

The sheet says there are 339 suspected illicit massage businesses in Virginia, mostly in northern Virginia, Richmond, and Hampton Roads. The largest section of Youngkin’s plan focuses on ramped up enforcement, including creating a Governor’s anti-trafficking task force, more prosecutions with jail time, training for law enforcement, and collaboration with law enforcement, a council of survivors’ advocates, landlords, and social media.

The plan comes as the GOP ticket and the Virginia GOP are highlighting a tough-on-crime stance in their messaging.

Terry McAuliffe Announces Affordable Health Care Plan

This month, McAuliffe rolled out a policy plan to fight disparities in access to coverage through Medicaid expansion, adopting a reinsurance program, protect reproductive freedoms, and hold drug companies accountable for rising prices.

“No Virginian should have to choose between getting the care they need or putting food on the table, and that is why one of my top priorities as governor will be making health care more affordable. I know we can do this because I have done it before,” McAuliffe said in a June 15 press release posted by Blue Virginia.

Part of the plan includes passing a Prescription Drug sunlight law and price-limiting some drugs.

“As Virginia’s 72nd Governor, I laid groundwork for the expansion of Medicaid that gave half a million Virginians critical health coverage. Unsurprisingly, extremist Trump-Republican Glenn Youngkin thinks it’s ‘sad’ that nearly 13,000 people were able to receive cancer treatment thanks to Medicaid expansion,” McAuliffe said in the release.

Trading Blows Over Public Appearances

McAuliffe has committed to five gubernatorial debates, but Youngkin has only scheduled one, and said he is open to two more, according to The Washington Post.

McAuliffe has launched an ad attacking Youngkin: “Glenn Youngkin doesn’t want you to know that he’s Donald Trump’s hand-picked candidate. He doesn’t want you to know where he stands on abortion. That’s why he’s refusing to debate Terry McAuliffe.”

Youngkin’s campaign replied with a statement to The Post: “Only weak incumbents like McAuliffe need to debate five times in the hopes of making up lost ground.”

On Thursday, the Virginia Police Benevolent Association held a candidate screening event and invited candidates from both parties for governor, lieutenant governor, and attorney general. Only the GOP candidates attended, according to Fox News.

“Terry McAuliffe abandons the police,” states a Friday Republican Party of Virginia press release. “[N]ow he’s snubbed a major partner in tackling Virginia’s crime problem by skipping a meeting with the Virginia Police Benevolent Association, which represents thousands of police officers in the Commonwealth.”

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Eric Burk is a reporter at The Virginia Star and the Star News Network.  Email tips to [email protected].
Background Photo “Virginia Capitol” by Martin Kraft. CC BY-SA 3.0.








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