The Weekender (7/16/21)


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

Let’s get started.

Virginia: Terry McAuliffe is delivering substantive policies for Virginia families while GOP nominee Glenn Youngkin flounders. This week, McAuliffe proposed initiatives for increasing accessibility and affordability for higher education, which are garnering support from Virginians across the state. Meanwhile, Youngkin has failed to outline a detailed plan for expanding and improving education in Virginia, as he’s hiding from debates and refusing to answer for his extreme agenda. Most recently, WTVF reported Youngkin is “still not ready to answer questions about abortion” after he got caught on camera admitting he was purposefully hiding his plan to ban abortion and defund Planned Parenthood.

New Jersey: Once again, GOP candidate Jack Ciattarelli has proven how out of step he is with the voters of New Jersey by campaigning with former Trump official Nikki Haley. Ciattarelli’s embrace of far-right campaign surrogates and policies, such as his promise to roll back LGBTQ+ curricula, further demonstrates that he is just another extreme Republican who’s out of touch with New Jersey values. Gov. Phil Murphy couldn’t be more different — Gov. Murphy has, time and time again, demonstrated that Dem Govs Get it Done. This week alone, Murphy joined President Biden and a bipartisan group of mayors and governors at the White House to highlight how the bipartisan infrastructure plan would benefit local communities. Gov. Murphy even received a glowing endorsement from Republican Mayor of Seaside Heights Anthony Vaz and garnered support from even more New Jersey workers. While Murphy champions bipartisan progress and fights for workers across the state, Ciattarelli has barreled right off the gangplank into the deep end of Trumpian extremism.

“MAGA Candidate” Kari Lake Throws Down the Gauntlet, Ensuring Chaotic AZ GOP Primary

In an interview on One America News Network’s “Real America” last week, former Phoenix news anchor Kari Lake branded herself as the one true “MAGA candidate” in Arizona’s gubernatorial primary. Lake’s new title, along with her inflammatory comments, are sure to stir up trouble in what’s already become a messy GOP primary.Lake suggested that other Republicans lie about being pro-Trump when it’s convenient for their political aspirations. Despite her history of supporting Democrats, Lake now (conveniently) fully embraces Trump’s far-right extremism, including hateful social crusade and unpopular policies. The failed-journalist-turned-conspiracy-peddler has already made headlines for spreading Trump’s ‘Big Lie’ and far-right propaganda about border security and mask-wearing.

Dem Govs Get It Done: Under Gov. Northam, Virginia is CNBC’s #1 State for Business
CNBC’s 2021 ranking of America’s Top States for Business declared Virginia the best state for business in the country. Virginia is the only state to earn the top spot in back-to-back rankings. Over eight years, Democratic Govs. Terry McAuliffe and Ralph Northam have made strategic investments in public schools and addressed inequities, including access to health care, education, the business environment, and the voting booth. “When you do the right thing for people, it’s not only right for them, but it’s good for business, and we’ve proven it,” said Gov. Northam.Since public education and inclusiveness helped earn Virginia the top spot, Glenn Youngkin would be bad for business in the Commonwealth. Youngkin has threatened to defund public schools, amplified hateful social crusades, and promoted the ‘Big Lie’ to roll back voting rights. But before Youngkin started bashing the pro-growth policies of Gov. Northam and Terry McAuliffe in this campaign, he praised their strong leadership and “struck the pose of an eager student wanting to learn from McAuliffe.” When it comes to business, Youngkin certainly has a lesson to learn from the Democratic nominee. As governor, McAuliffe rebuilt Virginia after the Great Recession and created 200,000 good-paying jobs. Youngkin brags about “reigniting” Virginia’s economy but has no explanation for how he’ll do so.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom on ABC News with Linsey Davis on how California is adjusting to extreme fire seasons exacerbated by climate change.New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on MSNBC with Andrea Mitchell discussing infrastructure and vaccinations for New Jerseyans.Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam on CNBC with Scott Cohn explaining how the state won CNBC’s #1 state for business by addressing societal inequities and investing in education.

“Folks, this economy is on fire. We’re gonna make sure it reaches every part of Kentucky and most importantly, it benefits each and every one of our families.”

  • Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear on the state’s $1.1 billion surplus this past fiscal year, which will be used to pay for higher quality education, health care, and public safety.

“Now I’m not picking fights with Republican governors. All I’m saying is that we need leaders with grit. That their first instinct is the right instinct.”

Who said it? Send your answer to, and we’ll reveal the answer in the next Weekender!

If you guessed former congressman and Pennsylvania GOP gubernatorial candidate Lou Barletta last week, you are spot on! In an interview with Sean Spicer on Newsmax, Barletta called for an audit and even claimed that “dead people have been voting for a long time” in Pennsylvania.