Meet the Republican Party’s minority and female candidates; Ocasio-Cortez pressures the likes of Spanberger; Military officials confused by President Trump’s plan and more headlines

NEWS TO KNOW
Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere.

• Republicans in the General Assembly say Democrats’ scandals put “a new spring in our step.” Democrats, meanwhile, are thrilled by an announcement that Vice President Pence will be in the state campaigning on behalf of Republicans. “We welcome Donald Trump and Mike Pence to visit Virginia as many times as their schedules allow,” said a party spokesman.  – The Washington Post

• The GOP is making a bid to hang on to their former suburban strongholds with seven minority and female candidates. “At the end of the day, people care about having good representatives. But we have been stuck with a monolithic mold of what a typical Republican looks like.” – Richmond Times-Dispatch

• A jury in Abingdon found a state police special agent guilty of pressuring his informants into having sex with him by threatening to send them to jail. “Based on evidence, the defendant can be accurately described as a predator with a badge,” prosecutors said. – Bristol Herald Courier

• The Coast Guard says it will no longer shut down the entire Potomac River near the Trump National Golf Club in Loudoun County when the president is visiting the property. A canoe association had sued to maintain access. – Loudoun Times-Mirror

• The father of the Roanoke reporter shot and killed on live television has spent the past three years battling Google and other online platforms to keep people from sharing the video footage and says he’s now taking legal action. “The onus should not be on me or any families who have gone through a tragedy to remove these videos.” – The Roanoke Times

• Three men charged with violent rioting in Charlottesville argue their actions are protected by the First Amendment. Prosecutors strongly disagree. “Labeling one’s actions ‘political’ to invoke First Amendment protection no more immunizes one from the legal consequences of violent actions than does wearing an ‘I Love the Second Amendment’ T-shirt shield an individual from the legal consequences of shooting another person.” – The Daily Progress

• High profile Democrats like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are putting pressure on moderate members of the party like Rep. Abigail Spanberger, D-7th District, who was peppered with questions at a recent town hall about how she was any different than the rest of her party. – NPR

• Attorney General Mark Herring says Arlington County can sidestep the state legislature in its long running effort to change the name of Jefferson Davis Highway and simply ask state transportation commissioners for permission instead. – The Washington Post

• The former superintendent of a regional jail in Staunton is under investigation for allegedly using an inmate to do work at his home and then lying when questioned about it. – News Leader

• Charlottesville police charged a 17-year-old from Albemarle County with making violent, racist threats online that closed the city’s school system for two days. – Associated Press

• Officials in Hampton Roads are surprised by a plan by the Trump administration to mothball a Norfolk-based aircraft carrier halfway through its 50-year service life. “I just don’t think it’s a strategically smart decision.” – Daily Press

• The Vatican refused to defrock a priest in 2016 that the Diocese of Richmond told them had been credibly accused of physical and sexual abuse, saying too much time had passed since the allegations, which date to 1960s Lynchburg. – The News & Advance

• VDOT is studying the possibility of a 40-mile bike trail from Ashland to Petersburg. – Richmond Times-Dispatch

• There’s a creepy 100-year-old mannequin that’s stared out the window of an Alexandria apartment building off and on since at least the 1920s. – The Washington Post