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January 17, 2022

Glenn Youngkin Goes to Work

Virginia’s new governor and his team wasted no time in undoing the ruinous policies of his Democrat predecessor.

Glenn Youngkin isn’t wasting any time. Nor is Jason Miyares. Nor is Winsome Sears.

Youngkin, who in November whipped former Virginia Governor and Clinton bagman Terry McAuliffe in a state that Joe Biden had carried a year earlier by 10 points, got to work quickly after being sworn in as the commonwealth’s 74th governor Saturday.

According to a news release from the governor’s office: “Youngkin signed nine Executive Orders and two Executive Directives at the Virginia State Capitol, acting on several of his Day One promises to Virginians. The actions include an executive order ending the use of inherently divisive concepts — including Critical Race Theory — in public education, an executive order affirming the rights of parents to make decisions on masks in schools, and an executive order terminating the Virginia Parole Board and requesting the Attorney General begin a full investigation of the Board’s actions.”

Youngkin and his administration will be closely watched, not only to ensure that he keeps the promises that propelled him into office but also to assess the political winds between now and November’s midterm elections. The Virginia governor’s race was the nation’s first real referendum on the Biden administration, and a Republican sweep in Richmond was its consequence. If Republicans can run anywhere near 10 points ahead of their performance in 2020, the Democrats will be looking at a historic bloodbath. If Democrats can cut that gap in half, they’ll merely be looking at a shellacking.

“It’s Day One,” said Youngkin, “and we are going to work just like we promised … restoring excellence in education, making our communities safer, opening Virginia for business and reinvigorating job growth, and making government work for the people, and not the other way around.”

Among other things, Youngkin’s nine executive orders are intended to restore excellence in education by ending the use of divisive concepts such as Critical Race Theory; empower Virginia parents in their children’s education and let them decide whether their children will wear a mask in school; declare Virginia open for business; combat human trafficking; and withdraw from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.

In addition, Youngkin announced two executive directives that will cut job regulations by 25% and rescind the coronavirus vaccine mandate for state employees.

These are bold initiatives — not unlike something Florida’s Ron DeSantis might put forth. And Youngkin’s ouster of CRT in Virginia’s public schools sends a strong message to Big Education. Youngkin’s lieutenant governor, Winsome Sears, the first black woman to hold that position, seemed to second that message just two days ahead of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. “I think I am a visible success story that says to people, ‘You can do it. You will do it. No matter your gender, no matter your color, even no matter where you were born,’” she said. “Too many of our political leaders [try to] divide us [and] say, ‘You’re a victim, you’re always going to be a victim, and the other people are the oppressors and so you need us.’”

Sears, a Jamaican immigrant and a former retired U.S. Marine, is proof positive to the contrary.

And so is Miyares, the state’s first Hispanic attorney general, who promptly laid off 30 members of the AG’s office and announced the aforementioned investigations of the Virginia Parole Board and the Loudoun County public schools.

“One of the reasons Virginians get so fed up with government is the lack of transparency,” said Miyares, “and that’s a big issue here. The Virginia Parole Board broke the law when they let out murders, rapists, and cop killers early on their sentences without notifying the victims. Loudoun Country Public Schools covered up a sexual assault on school grounds for political gain, leading to an additional assault of a young girl.”

There’s much to do for the Old Dominion’s new executive trio, but they’re off and running. “It’s a new day in Virginia,” said Youngkin, “but the work is only beginning.”

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