[Image description: two volunteers stand outside a store window with a piano in downtown Staunton, holding clipboards that say “Register to Vote.”]
1. TODAY is the deadline to register to vote in the June primaries! On June 13th, the primaries for governor and lieutenant governor are being held, and if you want to be able to vote in those primaries, today is the last day to get registered. If you’re not yet registered, head down to Staunton City Hall and go in to the registrar’s office (on your right when you come in the front door) and get registered. If you’re already registered, put up a Facebook status reminding your friends to register, and of the upcoming primaries.
2. TONIGHT you have an opportunity to get to know the democratic candidates for governor and lieutenant governor! There is a Live Candidate Forum & Live Stream of the Northam-Perriello Debate this evening in Francis Auditorium on Mary Baldwin’s campus. The Staunton, Augusta County, and Waynesboro Democratic Committees are hosting a live candidate forum for Justin Fairfax, Gene Rossi, and Susan Platt – all of whom are running for the lieutenant governor nomination. There will also be a live stream broadcast of the debate between Tom Perriello and Ralph Northam. During the course of the evening you’ll have the opportunity to hear from our local candidates running for the State House of Delegates, Angela Lynn and Michele Edwards. The event will begin at 5:30 with light refreshments and time to mix and mingle. The candidates for the House of Delegates will make their presentations and take questions promptly at 6:15 PM campaign materials from all of the candidates will be available as well. This is the perfect event to educate yourself for the upcoming June 13 primary. Please pass along this invitation and feel free to bring friends; the spirit of engagement is infectious. We look forward to seeing you there! Check out the Facebook event here.
3. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is spouting rhetoric and promoting policies that we’ve been working hard to put in the past. With near-consensus that the War on Drugs was a failure on all levels, the country is ready to move to smart and commonsense reforms to our broken criminal justice system. Except for one man: our top law enforcement official, Jeff Sessions.
Sessions has reversed an important charging policy that instructed prosecutors to avoid getting caught in the stranglehold of mandatory minimum sentencing. Mandatory minimums are widely understood as racist, destructive to families and communities, and fundamentally unfair. So why is our attorney general actively undoing policy in order to encourage the harshest possible punishments? Jeff Sessions has a history of endorsing ineffective policies and positions based on political rhetoric. He wants to put as many people as possible behind bars. And not just anyone – the War on Drugs policies Sessions is rolling out target and harm Black and Brown people and communities. This has to end. We need smart criminal justice reforms – not regressive, recycled policies. Contact the Department of Justice to leave a message for the office of Jeff Sessions.
- Department of Justice: phone comment line: 202-353-1555; online comment form here.
- Suggested script: “Hello, my name is _______, and my zip code is ________. I’m contacting the office of Attorney General Jeff Sessions to ask him not to return to the unnecessarily cruel sentencing policies of years past. Doubling down on the failed War on Drugs takes our country backward by decades. From the halls of state legislatures to the ballot box, the American people have said with a clear voice they want commonsense sentencing policy reform – and that the policies you have proposed are anything but sensible. Please pass this message on to the Attorney General. Thank you.”