April 16, 2024

Virginia Democrats Say Youngkin Illegally Appointed DEI Director

Democrats within the Virginia General Assembly insist that Gov. Glenn Youngkin illegally appointed the director of the state’s renamed Office of Diversity, Opportunity, and Inclusion.  And they are saying they’re prepared to present over $2 million extra to business marijuana sellers to dramatize that time.

Created in 2020 below Youngkin’s predecessor, Democrat Ralph Northam, the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion sprang from an idea popularized by the Left and generally known as DEI.

However, in his second week as governor, Youngkin signed an executive order Jan. 19, 2022, eradicating the time period “equity” from the workplace’s title and changing it with “alternative. “ 

In November 2022, the Republican governor appointed Martin Brown, who’s black, as Virginia’s chief variety, alternative, and inclusion officer—in addition to director of the renamed Office of Diversity, Opportunity, and Inclusion.

In response to Youngkin’s title change for the range workplace, Virginia Senate Majority Leader Scott Surovell, D-Fairfax, efficiently supplied an modification to the state’s funds invoice requiring that the workplace revert to its former title. 

Youngkin has criticized the funds handed March 9 by the Virginia General Assembly, and the spending plan awaits the Republican governor’s signature. Democrats maintain a 21-19 majority within the state Senate and a 51-49 majority within the House of Delegates.

In a press release emailed Monday to The Daily Signal, Surovell stated he “introduced the amendment because the governor has refused to hire a chief DEI officer which is a position created and titled in state law.”  

“If the governor is going to violate state law, the money needs to be directed,” the Senate majority chief added, apparently that means “redirected.” 

Surovell’s funds modification requires Youngkin to vary “Diversity, Opportunity, and Inclusion” again to “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” by June 1, or the range workplace’s $2.3 million funding would go to the Virginia Cannabis Equity Business Loan Fund, a program to assist licensed marijuana sellers. 

“Governor Youngkin has been clear that he doesn’t have any interest in a retail market for marijuana; instead, we should be working to fix a backward budget written by Democrats that has $2.6 billion in new taxes on Virginia families,” Youngkin press secretary Christian Martinez stated Monday in a written assertion to The Daily Signal.  

“Since the beginning of the administration, the governor has challenged the groupthink of the progressive Democrats’ pursuit of equity at any cost, instead focusing on advancing equal opportunities, not equal outcomes for all.”  

Surovell didn’t reply earlier than publication to The Daily Signal’s request for touch upon why his modification tied the sale of marijuana to the range workplace’s title change. 

Last yr, Surovell and Virginia House Speaker Don Scott, D-Portsmouth, wrote to Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares, a Republican, inquiring whether or not Youngkin’s title change for the workplace violated state regulation. 

In the letter, the 2 Democrats argued that Youngkin illegally renamed the workplace, saying the motion violated the 2020 regulation that established the workplace within the government department with a director of variety, fairness, and inclusion. 

The Senate and House leaders argued of their letter to the lawyer basic that Youngkin illegally named Brown as director for the reason that governor didn’t appoint him to the workplace named in state regulation.  

In his written assertion to The Daily Signal, Surovell stated Youngkin had “hired someone for that office [and] renamed the person a diversity, opportunity, and inclusion officer who then made offensive comments regarding equity.”  

DEI is dead,” Brown stated final April in a speech at Virginia Military Institute referencing the workplace’s title change. 

“We’re not going to bring that cow up anymore. It’s dead,” Brown stated. “It was mandated by the General Assembly, but this governor has a different philosophy of civil discourse.”

The transfer prompted an uproar within the General Assembly as many Democrats, joined by the Virginia chapter of the NAACP, demanded Brown’s resignation. 

The governor’s workplace defended Brown on the time, saying that Youngkin would “continue to advance equal opportunities—not equal outcomes—for all Virginians.”  

“This is too important of an issue to succumb to those seeking to cancel Chief Brown for challenging the groupthink of the progressive Left’s pursuit of equity at any cost,” the assertion stated. 

Ken McIntyre contributed to this report.