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Two days before the Virginia Democratic primary, Commonwealth voters are taking a closer look at the candidates running for attorney general, the post soon to be vacated by Ken Cuccinelli as he makes his bid for governor.
Justin Fairfax is a former Assistant U.S. Attorney who prosecuted violent crimes, drug and human trafficking, fraud, and financial crimes. The Annandale resident says federal law empowers attorneys general to do more to protect families.
"People need safe communities, so that would be my first bullet point," Fairfax says. "But I think my second and third and fourth would be under the umbrella of economic security and opportunity. And it would be: protecting homeowners would be one, protecting students in the private student lending market so they have greater access to higher education. And then also making sure that folks have access to capital to start and grow small businesses."
Mark Herring has served in the state Senate since 2006. The Loudoun lawmaker sponsored bills to expand Medicaid, form a federal partnership on healthcare exchanges, and criminalize designer drugs.
"What I would like to do is use the powers of the office to help keep Virginia's families safe," Herring says. "I would work to protect people's civil rights. And that means making sure that women are allowed to make their own private health care decisions. It means making sure that we have someone who will protect voting rights."
The winner will face off against GOP Senator Mark Obenshain.