LYNCHBURG, Va. – Virginia’s Democrats are holding their primary on June 8th, and 10 News is breaking down the statewide races.
For attorney general, it’s a head-to-head battle between the incumbent, Attorney General Mark Herring, and Delegate Jay Jones.
Herring became Virginia’s AG in 2014 and was reelected in 2017.
“I’ve shown that, not only can I do the job, but do it exceedingly and abundantly well,” said Herring.
Jones was elected to the House of Delegates four years ago and currently represents Virginia’s 89th District.
“I have the fresh face, the new perspective, the bold agenda that voters will be looking for in November,” said Jones.
Herring said he created the civil rights office to root out discrimination, and he vowed to continue his work.
“I would say criminal justice, addressing inequities in race, the systemic racism that we know continues to persist around the state,” said Herring.
Justice reform is a priority for Jones, including transparency for law enforcement.
“We’ve got to end qualified immunity, hold police accountability for the instances of excessive force. I’ve been fighting for that in the House of Delegates for the last several years,” said Jones.
He said it’s something Herring refuses to face.
“[Herring] has been silent and sitting on the sidelines, and he refuses to use the power that we’ve given to him to investigate Black men that have been gunned down by law enforcement,” said Jones.
Herring disagreed, saying he’s called on Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice and Policing Act.
“It would do so much to elevate the standards of policing. It would create a national registry for police misconduct, and it would put an end to qualified immunity that, too often, has served as a shield to protect law enforcement from real accountability,” said Herring.
The nominee will face the Republican candidate, Delegate Jason Miyares, in November.