See below for video of State Sen. Janet Howell (D-SD32) and Del. Alfonso Lopez (D-HD49), who earlier this afternoon (in a meeting with the Arlington County Board) laid out the top priorities for the 2020 Virginia General Assembly.
First, Sen. Howell – who will be the powerful Senate Finance and Appropriations Committee Chair – listed the following:
“Clearly, ERA is going to pass very quickly. We’re going to get a number of gun safety bills through…[The budget] will be a major focus. Climate change is a high priority for many of us…and I think criminal justice reform, including some marijuana reforms…and preserving women’s health and rolling back some of the restrictions…I think at the end of the session, Virginia is going to have moved forward in very positive progressive ways, and I’m excited to be going back”
As for Del. Lopez – who will be Majority Whip in the 2020 session – he laid out the priorities as follows:
“A lot of the stuff that we’ve been working on for literally decades now is going to come out…from gun violence prevention…[to] some fairly comprehensive climate and renewable energy legislation in five major buckets…things like the ERA and protecting a woman’s right to choose, and then also some immigration protection issues that we simply haven’t addressed…will be tackled finally…It is a time of change…these are definitely interesting times…”
Good stuff, and clearly with strong – even overwhelming – support by the public. So let’s do it!
P.S. It’s important to point out that there are many other priorities than the ones mentioned by Sen. Howell and Del. Lopez. For instance, expansion of voting rights, anti-LGBTQ discrimination, teacher pay, Metro funding, environmental protection (e.g., preserving tree canopy, reducing plastic pollution), raising the minimum wage, cracking down on predatory lending, etc, etc.