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Herring, Jones vie for Democratic AG nomination

Updated: Jun. 2, 2021 at 8:42 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ) - With more than 30 candidates competing for statewide office, the race between an incumbent and a single challenger is among the most closely-contested.

Mark Herring and Jay Jones are squaring off as they pursue the Democratic nomination for Attorney General.

“There are just so many opportunities now to build on this progress that we’ve been making,” Herring told WDBJ7 in an interview. “And we have been making a lot of progress.”

Herring is completing his second term as Virginia’s Attorney General, and is running for a third.

“I’m asking again for your support as Attorney General as the people’s lawyer,” Herring said in a campaign video, “protecting and expanding the rights of all Virginians.”

He said a review of his record shows he has been out in front on issue after issue important to Virginia voters.

“Whether it was winning a landmark case on marriage equality, or protecting people’s health care from legal attack, protecting the Affordable Care Act not once but twice in the Supreme Court, ending the backlog of untested rape kits in Virginia, which has meant so much to survivors,” Herring said.

“We need an Attorney General who is going to be proactive not reactive, lead and not follow, particularly on the issue of criminal justice reform,” Jones countered in an interview.

Jones has represented Norfolk in the House of Delegates since 2018.

“We’ve won big fights in the House, expanding Medicaid and giving teachers a raise, and now I’m running for Attorney General to lead the fight for equal justice,” Jones said in a campaign ad.

During a time of reckoning on issues of racial justice, Jones said Virginia needs fresh faces and new ideas.

“We have the opportunity to take Virginia to the higher level, to reach for higher heights. We can’t settle for the bare minimum,” Jones told WDBJ7.

“And I think we do that by highlighting voices that understand the challenges of this moment, understand where Virginia is headed as it relates to justice reform, worker protection and the environment.”

The Democratic primary is Tuesday, June 8.

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