July 31, 2020

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Latest News, Weekender

The Weekender (7/31/20)

Welcome to the Democratic Governors Association’s Friday newsletter, The Weekender.

Let’s get started.

North Carolina: Last week, we said “Gov. Roy Cooper Was Right” – this week, it turns out the voters agree with us by a 2:1 margin. A new NBC News/Marist poll shows voters overwhelmingly agree with Gov. Cooper’s decision to follow the advice of public health experts and stand strong against pressure from Republicans like his opponent Lt. Gov. Dan Forest to hold an in-person Republican National Convention. Gov. Cooper also released a very soothing new TV ad, encouraging North Carolinians to wear a mask.

Montana: Good Jobs MT, an independent organization backed by the Democratic Governors Association, released a new TV ad in Montana, “Understands.” The ad grounds Lt. Gov. Mike Cooney as a fourth-generation Montanan who has spent his career fighting to protect public lands. Cooney also worked with both Democrats and Republicans to help expand Medicaid to nearly 100,000 Montanans. Cooney is running for governor to keep bringing Montanans together to get results and to keep protecting what matters to Montanans.

Allegations Of Corruption Continue To Dog Mike Parson’s Re-election Chances

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson just can’t escape the allegations of rampant corruption that benefits well-connected Jefferson City insiders  – and they are seriously hindering his chances in the governor’s race this fall.

Parson’s issues were highlighted in a piece by POLITICO, which outlined the myriad of accusations surrounding the Parson administration’s handling of medical marijuana licensing. The Parson administration’s rollout of the medical marijuana program was so suspicious that even members of Parson’s own party demanded an investigation into the state’s medical marijuana program.

The allegations center around Parson’s relationship with his long-time friend and advisor Steve Tilley, a lobbyist with medical marijuana clients. While other Missourians tried and failed to navigate the complex application process for a medical marijuana license, Tilley received special treatment for more than a dozen clients involved in the medical marijuana industry.

All of these investigations do not bode well for Parson in an election year. Recent polling shows Democratic candidate State Auditor Nicole Galloway has eliminated Parson’s early lead and multiple ratings agencies have moved the race towards Galloway.

New Poll Shows Virginians Have Confidence in Gov. Ralph Northam’s Pandemic Response

A Hampton University poll had two main takeaways: the majority of Virginians approve of the job Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam is doing, and nearly 3 in 4 Virginians disapprove of President Trump.

The pollsters found “many Virginians have confidence” in Gov. Northam. The majority of Virginians feel the governor issued his stay at home order at the right time. Gov. Ralph Northam, who is the nation’s only doctor governor, has used his experience in health care to guide his approach to COVID-19.

Gov. Northam was one of the first to cancel the school year and implemented one of the nation’s longest stay at home orders. He continues to lead with a fact-based approach to COVID-19, recently enacting new policies in the Hampton Roads region to curb the rapid spread of the virus. Gov. Northam holds frequent press conferences and offers clear, in-depth communication to Virginians. He tries to treat the public like he treated his patients, and “people want the truth.”

Gov. Northam’s no-nonsense approach to COVID-19 is quite the contrast to President Trump, who peddles conspiracy theories and blatantly lies to the American people.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on CNN’s Erin Burnett OutFront, responding to Attorney General Bill Barr’s lack of awareness on the threats reopen protestors made against her life.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown on MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show with Ali Velshi, announcing a gradual withdrawal of federal troops from Portland.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear on MSNBC’s Meet the Press Daily, explaining the measures he’s taking in his state to avoid a resurgence of cases like Oklahoma, Texas, and Florida.

Missouri gubernatorial candidate State Auditor Nicole Galloway on Cheddar Business, discussing the importance of access to affordable care and Gov. Mike Parson’s “cavalier and cruel attitude” towards the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s completely irresponsible. I don’t know what country they’re looking at frankly. And this isn’t a blue state issue, it isn’t a legacy state issue, it’s an American issue.” 

“We are a red state with a big blue doughnut hole.”

Who said it? Send your answer to press@dga.net and we’ll reveal the answer in the next Weekender!

If you guessed Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp last week, you were right! When discussing his plan for reopening schools with reporters, Kemp compared the risks of a COVID-19 outbreak to “a stomach bug or a flu or anything else.”