After leading historic progress, Herring running to continue work to ensure justice, equality, and opportunity for ALL Virginians and to expand and secure the civil rights of his fellow Virginians ~
LEESBURG (December 16, 2020)–Attorney General Mark Herring officially announced today that he will seek re-election as Virginia’s attorney general to continue his fight for justice, equality, and opportunity for all Virginians. He begins his re-election campaign with an unmatched record of progressive achievement and a strong network of support in Virginia and around the country.
Herring made the announcement this morning in a letter to Virginians, writing:
“Serving as your attorney general has been the honor of my life. We’ve worked together to promote justice, equality, and opportunity for all Virginians, to expand and secure the civil rights of our fellow Virginians, and to show Virginians a new vision for what their Attorney General can do for them. The progress we’ve made has been historic, but the work isn’t done. And I’m not the kind of person to walk away unless the job is finished. That is why I am seeking another term as your attorney general and running for re-election in 2021.”
Herring also released a video announcing his re-election bid, telling Virginians:
“Together we’ll work to keep you and your communities safe, fighting policies that fuel racism, hate, and violence because we believe in justice for all Virginians. That means dismantling systemic racism, expanding opportunity, and holding law enforcement accountable to the communities they serve. Together, we’ve fought some big fights because these are the fights that matter. And you know the attacks on our rights won’t stop. I’m asking again for your support as attorney general—as the people’s lawyer—protecting and expanding the rights of all Virginians.”
Mark Herring is the most accomplished and consequential Attorney General in Virginia history. During his two terms he has taken on tough fights on behalf of Virginians and won time and time again. He has transformed the role of attorney general after a generation of Republican control, focusing on protecting Virginians and their rights, and helped make Virginia a national leader on progressive priorities like criminal justice reform, police accountability, access to affordable healthcare, gun violence prevention, womens’ rights, and environmental protection.
Mark’s record of progressive leadership and achievement has earned him the endorsement of key Democratic leaders from across Virginia.
“Time and again, Mark Herring has shown Virginians what a bold, progressive attorney general can do on behalf of the people of this Commonwealth,” said Congressman Don Beyer (VA-8). “Mark has never hesitated to stand up for Virginians’ rights, whether it was his fight for marriage equality, his defense of our healthcare, his groundbreaking work on civil rights and criminal justice reform, or taking the Trump Administration to court to stop their unrelenting lawlessness. I remember all too well how Republicans had a lock on the Attorney General’s office for 20 years, and how they used the office to advance their personal causes or ambitions. We can’t go back to those days. When you look at Mark’s record, you have to conclude he’s the best attorney general that Virginia has ever had, and we need him as our attorney general for four more years.”
“In the past year, we’ve made so much progress in Virginia, and my longtime friend Mark Herring has been a full partner in that,” said Senate President Pro Tempore L. Louise Lucas. “He has always stood for progress – going to court to fight for the Affordable Care Act, protecting access to women’s health care, fighting for much-needed criminal justice reform, taking on racism in Virginia public schools, and defending our rights to take down Confederate propaganda. Time and again, Mark Herring has stood for us, which is why I am proud to support him, again, for Attorney General.”
“As attorney general, Mark hasn’t been afraid to take on the big challenges directly and stand up for what is right, even if it wasn’t the easy or the convenient road to take,” said Senator Jennifer Boysko. “He’s gone to court over and over again to protect Virginians rights against dangerous attacks from the Trump Administration. He’s fought to protect DACA and DREAMers, and he’s holding opioid manufacturers accountable. Here in Loudoun, we’re proud to count Mark Herring as one of our own and I can’t wait to see what else he will be able to accomplish with another four years as Virginia’s attorney general.”
“Under Mark’s leadership as attorney general, we’ve watched Virginia transform into the progressive Commonwealth it is today,” said Senator Ghazala Hashmi. “Through his work fighting for marriage equality, defending healthcare and a woman’s right to choose, or championing criminal justice reform – Mark has always fought hard to protect all Virginians. As attorney general, Mark Herring has made Virginia a safer, more just, equal and fair place and I know he can do even more if he stays in office for another four years.”
As Attorney General, Mark Herring has built a record of:
- Leading on Criminal Justice Reform, pushing for criminal justice and policing reforms that will make communities safer, reduce brutality and abuses of power by law enforcement, increase transparency, accountability, justice, and equality, and address disparities throughout the criminal justice system from policing to re-entry. He led the fight to decriminalize cannabis and is pushing for legal, regulated adult use of marijuana.
- Protecting Virginians’ healthcare. Attorney General Herring has fought all the way up to the Supreme Court to defend Virginians’ healthcare in multiple cases, and is in court right now defending the Affordable Care Act and protections from pre-existing conditions against dangerous attacks by the Trump Administration and Republican Attorneys General. He fought for years to expand Medicaid, which has helped hundreds of thousands of Virginians access quality healthcare.
- Protecting women’s healthcare and abortion access. Mark has gone to court to protect women’s access to contraception, abortion, and the full range of reproductive healthcare services. He reversed dangerous and wrong legal advice by Ken Cuccinelli that threatened to close womens’ health centers, and fought efforts by the Trump administration to defund Planned Parenthood.
- Helping Virginians navigate the COVID crisis. Throughout the COVID pandemic Attorney General Herring has worked to keep Virginians safe and help them get through this health and economic crisis. He has successfully defended Virginia’s COVID safety measures in court more than a dozen times, secured the first moratorium on utility disconnections, has helped address evictions during the pandemic, and has worked to stop price gouging and to get more PPE into the hands of those who need it.
- Combating Gun Violence and Standing Up to the Gun Lobby. Even in the NRA’s backyard, Mark has been a proud champion for commonsense gun safety laws, like universal background checks, bans on high-capacity magazines and bump stocks, reinstatement of Virginia’s one-handgun-a-month law, and a “red flag law,” and has gone to court to successfully defend Virginia’s new gun violence protection laws from legal attack by the NRA and the gun lobby. He has sued to block untraceable, undetectable 3D guns from hitting the streets, and launched innovative campaigns to reduce violence in Virginia communities.
- Standing with Survivors, Transforming Virginia’s Approach to Sexual and Domestic Violence. Attorney General Herring led a multiyear, multimillion dollar project to completely eliminate Virginia’s backlog of untested rape kits, testing more than 2,600 kits and leading to new charges against perpetrators. He chaired Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s Task Force on Combating Campus Sexual Violence, which helped make Virginia a national leader on the issue. He has helped implement Lethality Assessment Protocol, an innovative tool to prevent domestic violence and homicide, in dozens of communities around the Commonwealth.
- Protecting Virginians’ Hard-earned Money. Attorney General Herring has worked nonstop to defend the rights of Virginia taxpayers, seniors, veterans, and military families. He has secured more than $300 million in restitution for Virginia families and payments from companies who ripped off consumers, and his best-in-the-nation Medicaid Fraud Unit has recovered more than $1 billion for taxpayers. He secured the largest multistate consumer settlement ever led by Virginia and the largest ever non-healthcare settlement for claims under the Virginia Fraud Against Taxpayers Act. He has helped secure hundreds of millions of dollars in refunds for Dominion and APCo customers, fought back against their efforts to overcharge customers, and refused their political donations.
- Ensuring a Welcoming and Inclusive Virginia. One of Mark’s first acts as attorney general was to take an historic stand for the rights of LGBT Virginians to marry, and he won. Since then he has sued to get the Equal Rights Amendment added to the U.S. Constitution, helped DREAMers get an affordable education in Virginia, won the nation’s first preliminary injunction against Donald Trump’s Muslim ban, limited the reach of ICE in Virginia, and sued to block Donald Trump’s nonstop attacks on immigrants and immigration. He has a taken concrete steps to remove Confederate propaganda from public spaces, and has been the leading voice in Virginia against white supremacist violence and the rise of hate crimes.
- Preserving Virginia’s Environment and Natural Resources. Just four months into his first term Attorney General Herring took on big industrial agriculture interests to protect the Chesapeake Bay. Since then he has secured the largest environmental damages settlement in Virginia history, held pipeline developers and others accountable for damaging Virginia’s land and waterways, sued to block Trump’s attempts to rollback President Obama’s efforts to address climate change, and he is in the process of suing the Trump EPA to protect the Chesapeake Bay from the administration’s negligence.
- Addressing the Opioid Crisis and Holding Big Pharma Accountable. For more than six years, Attorney General Herring has spearheaded the Commonwealth of Virginia’s response to the heroin and opioid crisis that is touching so many families in Virginia and around the country. He has relentlessly pursued a comprehensive strategy that emphasizes education, prevention, and treatment alongside enforcement against dealers and traffickers who profit off addiction. He has been recognized by the recovery community for his efforts and is considered one of Virginia’s foremost authorities on the crisis. He and his team have been relentless in cracking down on those who profit off addiction and threaten Virginians’ lives, including narcotics traffickers and big pharma companies. He has sued multiple pharmaceutical companies, including Purdue Pharma, the makers of Oxycontin, for their dangerous and unlawful practices that helped create and prolong the crisis.
- Protecting Virginians from Donald Trump. Eleven days after Donald Trump took the oath of office, Attorney General Herring sued to block his unconstitutional Muslim ban, eventually winning the nation’s preliminary injunction against the offensive measure. Since then, Attorney General Herring has continued to lead and support efforts to keep the Trump Administration in check, filing lawsuits to block his unlawful attempts to attack immigrants, kill the Affordable Care Act, limit women’s rights, roll-back climate change mitigation efforts, weaken consumer protections, undermine Title IX, sabotage the census, undermine the United States Postal Service, and reduce nutrition assistance.
- Leading the Democratic Ascent in Virginia. Before Mark was elected, Democrats hadn’t held the Attorney General’s Office for two decades. Instead of playing it safe, he took on hard fights and big opponents, making the case for progressive policies and showing others that Virginians will reward elected officials who stand up for their rights and work to improve their lives. Attorney General Herring drew the ire of Republicans and threats of impeachment for taking action on issues like LGBT equality, immigrants’ rights, gun violence prevention, and protection of the Affordable Care Act. During his two terms, Attorney General Herring has redefined the role and permanently changed Virginians’ expectations of what their attorney general can and should do for them.