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Staff Report

Staff Report

Virginia Mercury staff report. For questions, comments or concerns, contact [email protected]

New Virginia diversity officer will serve as ‘ambassador for the unborn’ and more headlines

By: - January 20, 2022

• Gov. Glenn Youngkin is overhauling the role of the state’s diversity, equity and inclusion officer, naming a critical race theory critic to the job who will also serve as an “ambassador for the unborn.”—Richmond Times-Dispatch • More than 750 workers at Ballad Health, which serves Southwest Virginia and eastern Tennessee, missed work Wednesday after […]

Senators reject campaign donation caps and more Va. headlines

By: - January 19, 2022

• At least four of Virginia’s colleges and universities have scrapped COVID-19 vaccine mandates for their employees following Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s executive action.—Richmond Times-Dispatch • A group of Chesapeake parents suing over Youngkin’s order weakening school mask mandates say their families will suffer “irreparable harm” if the action is allowed to stand.—Virginian-Pilot • The conservative-leaning Spotsylvania County School […]

Schools with mask mandates could lose state funds and more Va. headlines

By: - January 18, 2022

• In his first joint address to the General Assembly, Gov. Glenn Youngkin asked lawmakers to work with him on a “sweeping vision of change.”—Associated Press, Washington Post • In a Fox News appearance, Lt. Gov. Winsome Earle-Sears said Youngkin might withhold state funds from school systems that insist on mask mandates.—Fox News • The Virginia chapter of the […]

Youngkin launches fight over school mask rules and more Va. headlines

By: - January 17, 2022

• School systems in Northern Virginia and elsewhere said they’re keeping their mask mandates, despite Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s executive order that seems to make masks optional.—WTOP, Washington Post • Identifying herself as an Arlington County parent, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki publicly pushed back on Youngkin’s mask order.—The Hill • Youngkin said he will “consider all options” […]

Youngkin stands by Wheeler for top environmental job and other Virginia headlines

By: - January 14, 2022

• Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin is standing by Andrew Wheeler, his controversial pick for Virginia’s top environmental job. Youngkin said Wheeler is “absolutely the right person for the job” and insisted he “will be on the Glenn Youngkin team.”—VPM • A harsh tweet about Gov. Ralph Northam from new House Speaker Todd Gilbert drew a rebuke […]

Northam speech meets criticism from new House speaker and more Virginia headlines

By: - January 13, 2022

• Gov. Ralph Northam’s final State of the Commonwealth speech featured calls for unity and a harshly critical tweet from the new Republican House speaker.—Washington Post, Richmond Times-Dispatch • Former Virginia lawmaker Joseph Yost was charged with embezzlement in connection to his work with the Giles County Historical Society.—Roanoke Times • Incoming Lt. Gov. Winsome […]

A parking garage field hospital in Fredericksburg and more Va headlines

By: - January 12, 2022

• Virginia’s 2022 General Assembly session starts today, with newly empowered Republicans looking to change course after two years of full Democratic control.—Washington Post, Richmond Times-Dispatch • Democrat Jackie Glass easily won Tuesday’s special election for a Norfolk House of Delegates seat.—Virginian-Pilot • Mary Washington Hospital in Fredericksburg is opening a field hospital in its parking garage to […]

Past congressional reps’ slaveholding record and more Virginia headlines

By: - January 11, 2022

• In an interview with VPM, Gov. Ralph Northam says he would’ve won if he had been allowed to run for re-election and critiqued Democrats’ 2021 messaging.—VPM • “A staffing crisis has gone from bad to worse at Virginia’s only state mental hospital for children and adolescents.”—Richmond Times-Dispatch • Rep. Ben Cline has COVID-19.—Roanoke Times • A federal judge […]

Northam term draws to a close and more Virginia headlines

By: - January 10, 2022

• Three years after the blackface scandal nearly ended his career, Gov. Ralph Northam is leaving office as what some describe as “the most consequential Virginia governor of the modern era.”—Washington Post • Northam pardoned a man convicted in a decades-old Portsmouth murder case.—Virginian-Pilot • Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin announced cabinet picks for secretary of transportation and secretary of […]

Northam draws criticism for response to I-95 shutdown and more Virginia headlines

By: - January 7, 2022

• Amid questions over how the state handled the snowy shutdown of Interstate 95, Gov. Ralph Northam drew criticism for telling a radio interviewer: “I am getting sick and tired of people talking about what went wrong.”—Washington Post • Rep. Elaine Luria is running for re-election in the redrawn 2nd Congressional District. She isn’t required […]

Northam declares state of emergency as second winter storm approaches and more Virginia headlines

By: - January 6, 2022

• Gov. Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency as a second winter storm heads toward Virginia.—WTOP • The declaration came as calls mount for an investigation into the “catastrophe” that trapped drivers on Interstate 95 overnight.—Washington Post • To help those stuck on the frozen interstate, a Baltimore bakery gave the go-ahead to open […]

Snowstorm fallout continues and more Virginia headlines

By: - January 5, 2022

• Sen. Tim Kaine’s commute from Richmond to D.C. took 27 hours this week thanks to the snowy shutdown of I-95. “It was cold. It was very cold.”—Washington Post • An Amtrak train from Atlanta got stuck in Virginia for more than a day and a half. Passengers reported a depleted snack bar and backed-up toilets.—Atlanta Journal […]