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DLCC: The Stakes of the 2023 Legislative Elections For Virginia’s Future Could Not Be More Clear

"When Democrats get elected, they improve lives and grow the middle class. When Republicans get elected, they take away fundamental freedoms."

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From the DLCC:

RELEASE: The Stakes of the 2023 Legislative Elections For Virginia’s Future Could Not Be More Clear

When Democrats get elected, they improve lives and grow the middle class. When Republicans get elected, they take away fundamental freedoms.

WASHINGTON —  As the Virginia elections draw closer and closer, the stakes of electing Democratic majorities on Nov. 7 could not be clearer. If Republicans secure a trifecta, GOP state legislators and Gov. Youngkin have vowed to roll back progress in Virginia, in line with how Republicans are governing across the country. Two years of unchecked Republican power would be a devastating blow to progress and the DLCC is sounding the alarm to make sure that Democrats understand what is at stake at our level of the ballot and why Virginia’s election is a critical fight.

When Democrats are in the majority, they move quickly to improve their constituents’ lives.  In two states where Democrats took full control in 2022, the results have been clear:

In Michigan, Democrats moved quickly to pass both a red flag law and a law to require safe storage of firearms, taking a proactive step to protect their citizens from gun violence.  Michigan Democrats also eliminated asset tests for food aid, which could help over 700,000 Michigan households receiving benefits by eliminating red tape for those in need. Legislators also prioritized health care for the most vulnerable by passing a package of legislation aimed at streamlining and expanding access to the state’s Medicaid program. After repealing a near-century-old abortion ban earlier this year, Michigan Democrats are now moving to eliminate hurdles to abortion access, including the 24-hour waiting period and other regulations that abortion clinics face.

In Minnesota, Democrats passed legislation to fund free breakfast and lunch for K-12 students, ensuring students won’t go hungry in school and can learn to their full potential. Democrats also increased funding for mental health services, and expanded MinnesotaCare to undocumented residents, granting access to more than 40,000 people in the state. DFLers also passed a paid family and medical leave program so that workers don’t have to choose between their health and a paycheck. Finally, DFLers passed legislation to protect Minnesotans’ access to abortion care.

Meanwhile, when Republicans control legislatures and have governing trifectas, fundamental freedoms get taken away. For example:

Since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year, 21 states, all with Republican-led legislatures, have let abortion bans go into effect or taken additional action to restrict abortion access.

Republicans have also focused their energy and power on attacking LGBTQ+ people. GOP legislators across the country have pushed over 500 anti-LGBTQ+ bills this year alone, with Nebraska Republicans taking the opportunity to ban abortion and gender-affirming care in one fell swoop.

And GOP legislatures have made it a priority to undermine our democratic process to protect their own political power. In North Carolina, the Republican supermajority recently robbed voters of fair representation with new maps that are a blatant gerrymander. Meanwhile, Wisconsin Assembly Republicans are threatening to impeach state Supreme Court Justice Janet Protasiewicz for hearing a challenge to Republican-proposed gerrymandered maps.

Responding to the high stakes in Virginia’s election, DLCC interim President Heather Williams issued the following statement: 

“Democrats are campaigning to protect Virginia from the GOP’s extreme agenda, and we need all hands on deck for the upcoming election on Nov 7. There is a clear choice in outcomes for this election: a Republican trifecta that has been bankrolled by billionaires and has promised to roll back fundamental freedoms, or Democratic majorities that can provide a check on Gov. Youngkin and protect our progress in Virginia. We’ve seen Democratic power deliver freedom, progress, and safety for our communities across the country and we need all hands on deck to propel Virginia Democrats to victory.”

The DLCC is the official Democratic Party committee dedicated to winning America’s state legislatures. Last year, the DLCC defied the odds by not losing any state legislative majorities, flipping four key chambers, and creating four new Democratic trifectas – the best midterm year for the party in power since at least 1934. State legislatures are the building blocks of our democracy and pass the policies that have the biggest impact on Americans’ day-to-day lives.

 

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