Consequences of ‘Defund the Police’: Big City Police Departments Bleeding Staff, Unable to Recruit

As crime rates climb across the nation, police departments in several major U.S. cities are facing a crisis, namely, the inability to recruit new police officers. As a result, staffing shortages have led to increased overtime, thinly spread patrols, and a rise in crime rates. 

Violent crimes remained higher during the first half of 2023 compared to the first half of 2019, according to the Council on Criminal Justice. The International Association of Chiefs of Police published a paper called “A Crisis for Law Enforcement” that shows 78% of law enforcement agencies have had “difficulty in recruiting qualified candidates” and that 65% reported having “too few candidates applying to be law enforcement officers.”

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Senator Bill Hagerty: The Biden Administration Has Slipped Language into the Continuing Resolution to Transform ICE into a Resettlement Agency

Tennessee U.S. Senator Bill Hagerty joined The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy Thursday, where in a stunning statement of clarity, exposed the Biden administration’s intention to repurpose ICE from an immigration enforcement agency to a resettlement bureau though a manipulation of the Continuing Resolution budget.

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Bishop E.W. Jackson: ‘Al Sharpton Preaching Tyre Nichols Funeral Makes Mockery of the Tragedy’

Bishop E.W. Jackson said in a statement released Monday that Al Sharpton, whom Jackson referred to as “one of the most divisive figures in America,” should not be allowed to preach the eulogy for Tyre Nichols who, police charge, was beaten to death by five, now former, Memphis police officers.

“If the facts as we now know them are proved in a court of law, the former police officers deserve life in prison for their callousness and depraved indifference to human life,” Jackson said in a press statement, adding the current situation does not concern a racial issue, but one of “humanity,” which should be a source of unity rather than division.

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Ohio’s Democratic U.S. Senate Hopeful Projects Police Advocacy While Voting to Defund Them

Ohio Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Representative Tim Ryan (D-OH-13) is projecting a pro-police stance as part of his platform while simultaneously voting to defund them.

On March 3, 2021, Ryan voted against a motion to condemn calls to defund, disband, or abolish the police while at the same time also voting to allow for the federal government to micromanage local police and potentially defund them.

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Far-Left Congresswomen Rally Behind Tennessee Congressional Candidate Odessa Kelly

Odessa Kelly, who is challenging incumbent U.S. Representative Mark Green (R-TN-7) for reelection, is touting the backing of three of Congress’s most left-wing members. 

Representatives Ilhan Omar (D-MN-5), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA-7) and Cori Bush (D-MO-1) issued the endorsements on Monday. The congresswomen are members of what many observers call “The Squad,” a six-member coalition of far-left U.S. House members who advocate for such causes as police defunding, Medicare for All and the Green New Deal.

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Kari Lake Still Waiting for Katie Hobbs to Denounce Organizations Which Oppose the Police

Republican gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake and the Arizona Police Association (APA) have received radio silence from Democrat Katie Hobbs since sending her a letter six days ago demanding she denounce her allies who support defunding the police.

“Arizona voters are finally seeing who Katie Hobbs really is – a radical BLM activist who signs pledges denouncing law enforcement and fraternizes with dangerous ‘defund the police’ activists on the Left. Maybe that’s why she’s so afraid to share a debate stage with me, because she’ll be forced to defend her extreme anti-public safety positions,” Lake said in a press release.

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Kari Lake Says She Will Be the Governor to Back the Police

Arizona Republican gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake spoke at a press conference Thursday in support of Arizona police.

“I want these men and women behind me to know that on your darkest day, on your toughest day, when you’re in the middle of that storm, I will be standing right there by you as your governor,” Lake said. “I will not step away. I will not waiver. I will support you until you have due process. That’s what these men and women deserve.”

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Commentary: To Save Freedom, Defund Pro Sports

In the last few years, the “Defund the Police” cry has reverberated through many of our cities. The police are not serving our communities, we’re told, and they’re wasting taxpayer money on ineffective services and driving racism. “It’s time to get rid of them,” many yell.

They’re barking up the wrong tree. If the public wants to defund something that’s wasting money and not serving the community, then they should look toward pro sports and defund them.

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Another ‘Defund Police’ Group Endorses Katie Hobbs

Another group that advocates for defunding the police has endorsed Arizona’s Democrat gubernatorial candidate, in what is becoming a pattern. 

“As Arizonans grapple with an all out ban on abortion that [Kari Lake] has promised to defend, I’m proud to have [NARAL Arizona’s] endorsement. Arizonans deserve a governor who will fight to let them make their own decisions about their lives, families, & futures,” said Secretary of State and Democrat candidate for governor Katie Hobbs. 

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Arizona Planned Parenthood Demands Candidates Denounce Police Support in Order to Obtain Endorsement

Planned Parenthood Arizona’s political arm demands that candidates denounce the support of law enforcement groups in order to obtain the group’s endorsement.

According to a report from Axios, the group formally adopted a policy to require candidates to deny financial donations from law enforcement organizations and return any donations received.

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Harwell Scorches Liberal Prosecutors and Defund the Police Movement in Comments on Jose Alba Self Defense Situation

TN-5 candidate and former Speaker of the Tennessee House of Representatives Beth Harwell castigated liberal prosecutors and the defund the police movement in comments that she made on the case of Jose Alba where he was charged with second-degree murder that even New York City Democrats said was a clear instance of self defense.

“It seems liberal prosecutors and district attorneys are more focused on cracking down on law abiding citizens than criminals.” Said Beth Harwell.

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Report: Stacey Abrams’ Campaign Spent $450K on Security Despite Backing ‘Defund Police’ Movement

Democratic Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams has doled out hundreds of thousands on private security despite her ties to the Defund the Police movement, according to Fox News.

Abrams’ campaign paid $450,000 to an Atlanta-based security firm called Executive Protection Agencies between December 2021 and April 2022, Fox News reported Tuesday. But Abrams also sits on the board of The Marguerite Casey Foundation — a nonprofit she joined in 2021 that has supported abolishing and defunding police.

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102 Georgia Sheriffs Sign Letter Condemning Stacey Abrams as ‘Soft on Crime’

More than 100 Sheriffs in Georgia signed a letter blasting Democrat gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams as “soft on crime.” 

“Over the last four years, Governor Kemp and his family stood shoulder to shoulder with the men and women serving in Georgia’s law enforcement community,” the letter, touted on incumbent Gov. Brian Kemp’s website, says. “Working alongside our departments, Governor Kemp has championed legislation to recruit and retain more officers into the profession, strengthen penalties for criminals and help keep Georgia’s streets safe, and prevent rogue local governments from stripping critical funding and resources from police.”

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Senator Marco Rubio Scores Another Law Enforcement Endorsement

This past Friday, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio announced he had received the endorsement of the Florida Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) in his U.S. Senate contest against probable opponent, Democratic Rep. Val Demings, a former law enforcement official.

The endorsement comes amid a statewide TV commercial campaign by Demings that seeks to highlight her law enforcement background – which includes 27 years as an Orlando police officer, including  four years as the Orlando Chief of Police – and to defuse attempts to tie her to the 2020 “defund the police” messages pushed by some liberal Democrats.

“In the Senate, I’ll protect Florida from bad ideas,” Demings says in the new 30-second TV spot. “Defunding the police: That’s just crazy.”

However, Rubio has been critical of Demings’ vote on legislation that includes provisions that would strip police of qualified immunity. Qualified immunity protects law enforcement officers against lawsuits over what they do on the job.

A Rubio campaign video shows law enforcement officers expressing outrage over Demings’ vote.

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Ryan Now Blasts Ohio Senate Rival Vance on Law Enforcement, But Once Called Criminal Justice System ‘Racist’

Advertising from Democratic Ohio Senate candidate Tim Ryan, which alleges that his Republican opponent J.D. Vance has disparaged law-enforcement officers, prompted Vance this week to recall Ryan’s own severe criticisms of law enforcers.

A video ad that appears on the Ryan campaign’s YouTube channel features a monologue by Stark County Sheriff George T. Maier.

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Veteran Dave Galluch, in Pennsylvania 5th Congressional District Run, Seeks Restoration of ‘Time-Honored Traditions in American Leadership’

Republicans very recently used to dominate the locale composing much of Pennsylvania’s Fifth Congressional District. Geographically overlapping with much of the erstwhile Seventh District (nixed four years ago by the state Supreme Court), the Delaware-County-based territory had Republican Pat Meehan as its U.S. representative from 2011 to 2018. Before Meehan’s predecessor Joe Sestak (D) won the seat for two two-year terms, GOP Congressman Curt Weldon held it for two decades.

The district today is, well, different: Republicans’ old stronghold of Delaware County has flipped Democratic (though the GOP still fares well in some municipalities). And anyone waging a general-election campaign against Democratic Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon must also make inroads in south Philadelphia, Lower Merion, Upper Merion, Narberth, Bridgeport and Norristown — all places where “blue” voters have long outnumbered “red” ones. 

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Stacey Abrams Sits on Board of Organization That Donates Millions to Radical Far-Left Professors

Georgia’s Democrat gubernatorial candidate sits on the board of a far-left organization based in Seattle, that has handed out millions of dollars in grants to radical left-wing professors. 

Stacey Abrams is listed as a Board Member of the Marguerite Casey Foundation, a group that says it “supports leaders, scholars and initiatives focused on shifting the balance of power in society — building power for communities that continue to be excluded from shaping how society works and from sharing in its rewards and freedoms.”

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Cambria County Prosecutor: Difficulty Recruiting Police Is Fueling Pennsylvania Crime

FBI data currently indicate that Pennsylvania’s violent crime rate exceeds any other northeastern state’s, and a county prosecutor told state senators this week he attributes much of that reality to difficulty recruiting and retaining police officers.

Cambria County District Attorney Gregory Neugebauer testified before the Senate Republican Policy Committee alongside other law-enforcement professionals to illuminate what is driving up crime in the Keystone State and what can be done about it. The hearing, held at the Cambria County Courthouse in Ebensberg, was the first of several the panel is hosting this week to address crime prevention in conjunction with National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.

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Commentary: Democrats Can’t Hide from Their Record on Defund the Police

In January, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki mocked those concerned about crime, laughing and flippantly asking “soft on crime consequences…what does that even mean?”

For Tennesseans, it means 346 homicides in Memphis last year alone, the deadliest year on record for drug overdoses in Nashville at 712 reported overdoses, and more lives at risk from senseless violence.

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Soros Family Continues to Support ‘Defund the Police’ Candidates

George Soros

Far-left billionaire George Soros, along with his daughter Andrea Soros Colombel, is continuing to donate to organizations that bankroll radical candidates who support defunding the police in the United States.

As reported by Fox News, the Soros family has still been donating to a joint fundraising committee that oversees multiple other PACs. The committee, called Lead The Way 2022, includes the Way to Lead PAC, the campaign committee of radical Congresswoman Cori Bush (D-Mo.), and the campaigns of up to 12 other far-left political candidates running for the U.S. Congress.

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U.S. Civil Rights Commissioners to AG Merrick Garland: U.S. Attorneys Must ‘Increase Prosecutions in Cities Where Local Prosecutors’ Are Soft on Crime

Attorney General Merrick Garland

In a letter obtained by The Star News Network, four commissioners of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights express their “urgent concerns” to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland about the radical increase in violent crime in America, and ask him to direct the Department of Justice to escalate prosecutions of violent criminals.

U.S. Civil Rights Commissioners Peter Kirsanow (R), Gail Heriot (I), J. Christian Adams (R), and Stephen Gilchrist (R), wrote to Garland Thursday, “not on behalf of the Commission as a whole,” of their concerns about the significant rise in crime “that has affected our nation over the past two years.”

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Arizona Congressman Tom O’Halleran Received Donation from PAC That Demands Candidates Support Defunding the Police

Congressman Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ-01) accepted thousands in campaign donations from a super PAC that encourages candidates to support measures to “reduce the annual budget for law enforcement and defense spending.”

The Courage to Change PAC, connected to Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, donated the money to O’Halleran’s campaign in early 2021, according to disclosures filed with the Federal Election Commission.

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After Defund the Police Changes Local Sex Offender Policies, Students Feel ‘Compromised’

With cops in Austin, Texas, not supervising “hundreds of sex offender cases” due to Defund the Police budget cuts, Campus Reform spoke with students at the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) about their safety.

“The situation in the city of Austin has been critical for some time ever since the city of Austin council decided to defund the police unanimously in the summer of 2020, and reduce their police budget by one-third,” sophomore Carter Moxley said.

Moxley also discussed UT Austin President Jay Hartzell’s decision last November to “increase [University of Texas Police Department] patrol in the west campus area and develop additional options to enhance safety for [the] students” after a violent incident near campus.

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Commentary: The ‘New Normal’ and the Assault on Reason

Our political situation is so chaotic and strange right now that we can’t take anything for granted—including what is normal. So it’s often necessary to explain what may seem obvious to readers of American Greatness, but is regarded as strange or almost incomprehensible to other people. 

For example, it is obvious to me, and probably to you, that today’s “progressive” agenda is actually pushing our country back to a more primitive past. 

Consider some of the most urgent priorities of woke ideology:

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Wokeness Is a Multi-Billion Dollar Business in America, and It Has Some Dems Scared

An outpouring of grants to activist groups promoting race-based ideology is causing problems for some Democrats by highlighting the most unpopular beliefs of party members, according to an op-ed published in The New York Times.

Charitable support for “racial equity” projects skyrocketed after the death of George Floyd in June 2020. These projects received $3.3 billion from 2011 to 2019, then $12.7 billion and $11.6 billion in 2020 and 2021, respectively, according to the NYT op-ed.

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Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine Blames Capitol Protestors for Officers’ Suicides

A U.S. Senator from Virginia, known for his far-left anti-police sentiment, finally began supporting police officers Thursday. 

“Officer Howie Liebengood and Officer Jeffrey Smith, Virginians who died because of the insurrection, deserve the official officer’s line-of-duty death designation,” Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) said on Twitter, attaching a column from The Washington Post.

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Minneapolis Mayor Says Violent Juvenile Crime Increasing During Pandemic

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey (D) says schools must stay open despite the latest surge in COVID-19 cases in order to keep youth residents from committing violent crimes. 

“We’ve gotta keep the schools open. This is very clear to me,” Frey reportedly said. “Yes, we need to make sure we’re abiding by the necessary safety precautions. Yes, we need to make sure anyone from parents to teachers to students are protected in full from the dangers associated with a global pandemic, and we need to make sure the students are in the schools and that they’re able to learn.”

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Minneapolis to Increase Police Department’s Budget, Effectively Ending ‘Defund the Police’ Movement

On Friday, the Minneapolis city council approved a budget that would increase funding for the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD), restoring the department’s budget to what it was prior to the beginning of the “Defund the Police” movement, as reported by the Epoch Times.

The $1.6 billion budget, approved by the city council and Mayor Jacob Frey (D-Minn.), includes an allocation of $191 million for the MPD, marking a dramatic shift from just one month earlier when activists were on the verge of completely eliminating the department altogether.

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Minnesota Rep. Angie Craig Took Part in Fundraiser with Group That Supports ‘Defunding the Police’

Angie Craig, a congresswoman from Minnesota, recently appeared at a fundraiser hosted by an organization known for its repeated calls to “defund the police.”

The Washington Free Beacon reported that the fundraiser, hosted by the Heart of LA Democratic Club, took place last Thursday at a home in Culver City. The group required proof of COVID-19 vaccination for entry and offered “contribution levels” of $50, $100, $250, $500, $1,000, and $2,900 to support Craig’s reelection to the U.S. House.

Craig, for her part, has not aligned herself with efforts to “defund the police,” unlike many other progressives in Minnesota and throughout the United States in 2020. The congresswoman faced heavy progressive backlash after openly opposing the Minneapolis charter amendment to replace the police department, even though her district doesn’t include any of Minneapolis.

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Ellison Admits ‘Defund Police’ Slogan Was a Tactical Mistake for Progressives

Keith Ellison speaking

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison apparently thinks Democrats should have sought to defund the police without saying “defund the police.”

“I think allowing this moniker, ‘defund the police,’ to ever get out there, was not a good thing,” he recently told Washington Post reporter David Weigel. This comment followed an election in Minneapolis in which voters rejected a measure that would have replaced the police with a largely unarmed “Department of Public Safety.”

While Ellison’s most recent comment has drawn significant media attention, this position is not new — the AG has long wanted to reduce policing, only taking issue with the slogan his fellow progressives often use.

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George Soros, Unions, Other Far-Left Entities Donated Heavily to Defeat Pro-Police Ballot Measure in Austin, Texas

Police lights on top of car

A ballot measure aimed at increasing the number of police officers in the city of Austin, Texas was defeated in Tuesday’s election after hundreds of thousands of dollars was spent against it by George Soros, unions, and other organizations from outside of Texas, as reported by Fox News.

The question before voters, known as Prop A, would have required the city to hire two police officers for every 1,000 residents, and would subsequently increase officer training to accommodate the new hires. The measure was put on the ballot in response to a surge in violent crime in the wake of last year’s violent race riots, and a subsequent decline in the number of officers due to the “defund the police” movement as well as increasingly strict vaccine mandates.

The bulk of the money spent against Prop A came from outside the state of Texas. Chief among them was the far-left Equity PAC, which was given $500,000 by George Soros’s Open Society foundation, contributing to a total war chest of around $1.2 million. Other culprits include the equally far-left group known as the 1630 Fund, which spent $100,000 against Prop A, and the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Philanthropies, which spent another $100,000. Another Soros-linked group, the Fairness Project, spent $200,000 to defeat Prop A.

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Cleveland Residents to Vote on Measure to Give Citizens Power over the Police

Cleveland police sudan

Residents of Cleveland will vote in November on Issue 24, an amendment to the city’s charter that would give citizens the power of oversight of the police force.

The amendment, which has been endorsed by several progressive groups, would establish an “independent” council of community members to review “everything from disciplinary oversight to recruiting and training.”

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Georgia Senate Committee Weighs Pension Changes to Attract and Retain Troopers

A committee established this year to examine retirement security for Georgians focused on public servants’ retirement needs in a hearing Thursday, particularly those of law-enforcement officers strained by heightened crime and a hostile media.

Members of the Senate Retirement Security for Georgians Study Committee examined pension reform—specifically the potential shifting from the current 401(k) system to an entirely defined-benefit plan for state law-enforcers—to attract and retain more personnel.

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New Poll Shows Virginia Gubernatorial Race in a ‘Dead Heat’

A new poll announced Thursday has Virginia’s gubernatorial race in a statistical tie, with early voting beginning Friday. According to an Emerson College poll commissioned by WRIC, Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe has the support of 49 percent of likely voters while GOP candidate Glenn Youngkin has 45 percent. That’s within the margin of error: plus or minus 3.4 percent.

“Statistically speaking, the poll isn’t telling you that McAuliffe is going to win or Youngkin is going to lose. It is really saying it is a dead heat,” Emerson College Polling Director Spencer Kimball told WRIC.

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Senate Unanimously Votes Against Defunding the Police

The Senate early Wednesday unanimously approved an amendment to its proposed budget that opposed defunding the police.

The amendment, offered by Alabama Republican Sen. Tommy Tuberville, came during the Senate’s overnight vote-a-rama, a marathon session during consideration of Democrats’ $3.5 trillion budget where members can offer unlimited amendments. While the votes are non-binding, they can sometimes be politically tricky for senators as their colleagues force on-the-record positions on contentious issues.

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Battle to Replace Minneapolis Police Department Heats Up With Ballot Explainer Lawsuit

Minneapolis Police officer with dog and children

The battle over a November ballot measure to replace the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) is now subject to a lawsuit, as anti-police activists cry foul.

“The Yes 4 Minneapolis campaign filed a lawsuit against the city and the city clerk’s office,” Fox 9 reported. “The group accuses the city of ‘attempting to mislead voters’ about a proposed amendment that would replace the MPD with a department of public safety.”

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Tennessee Representative Rose Calls Out Biden Claim That ‘Crime Is Down’

In House floor remarks on Thursday, Representative John Rose (R-TN-06) called out President Joe Biden for insisting in a CNN Town Hall with host Don Lemon a week ago that “crime is down” even as murder rates rise.

The current rise in violent crime has been broadly acknowledged by an array of journalistic and academic observers, and even by liberal outlets like the Atlantic Monthly.

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Virginia Gubernatorial Candidate McAuliffe Accepts Endorsement from Another Far-Left Group

Terry McAuliffe

Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D), the current Democrat Party nominee for the same position, accepted an endorsement from another radically far-left group this week.

“Proud to be endorsed by [New Virginia Majority]. Together, we are going to keep Virginia moving forward. That starts with building a more inclusive Commonwealth that lifts up working people across Virginia. Onward!” McAuliffe said on Twitter. 

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