Ralph Northam

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam is calling state lawmakers back to work next month to pass a state budget.

Northam, a Democrat, announced Tuesday that he's calling a special session on April 11. The move comes after lawmakers adjourned the regular 2018 session last week without passing a state spending plan.

The GOP-led General Assembly is split on whether to expand Medicaid to about 300,000 low-income Virginians. The House supports expansion while the Senate does not.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia lawmakers finished up the 2018 session Saturday without doing their most important job: passing a state budget.

They hit a stalemate because Republicans legislators can't agree on whether to expand Medicaid to about 300,000 low-income adults.

The GOP-controlled House backs it, while the Republican-led Senate opposes it. Lawmakers will go home while negotiations continue. The state government will shut down July 1 if no budget is passed.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A bill intended to bring Virginia into compliance with an interstate body's decision regarding Atlantic menhaden catch limits has died in the House of Delegates.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports Del. Barry Knight made a motion Tuesday to send his bill back to committee, effectively killing it for the year.

The bill would have committed the state to pursuing an appeal of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission's decision to adopt new catch limits.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The Virginia Senate has passed a bill aimed at preventing so-called "sanctuary cities" despite veto promises from Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam.

The GOP-controlled Senate voted Tuesday to approve legislation that would ban localities from restricting the enforcement of federal immigration laws.

Republicans said the bill is needed to show that Virginia respects the rule of law and that undocumented immigrants are not entitled to special privileges.

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The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality is being asked to impose an injunction on 83 chicken farms in Accomack County.

The three page letter was sent by five residents of the Virginia Eastern Shore.

And a copy of the letter was also sent to Governor Ralph Northam.

The group is asking that there be an immediate injunction on any current and future groundwater taken from the Upper or Middle Yorktown aquifer until the chicken operations receive groundwater permits.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A sanctuary cities bill was passed even though the governor of Virginia has vowed to veto the bill.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that the sanctuary cities bill initially failed Tuesday on a 50-50 deadlock.

However, the vote against the bill by Del. Gordon Helsel was apparently a mistake and, on the second try, the bill was passed 51-49 on party lines.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia's long-running debate over whether to expand Medicaid has new life after a Democratic wave in last year's election. Several successful candidates campaigned directly on the issue and advocates are hopeful that Virginia will join a majority of other states to pass expansion after years of opposition.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A push to bring Virginia in line with almost every other state and ban the personal use of campaign funds has little chance of success this year.

Elected officials in both parties have advocated for a ban, including Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam.

But a Senate panel voted Tuesday against a bill to prohibit using campaign funds for personal use, instead sending the measure for further study. The move signals that there aren't enough votes in the Senate to pass the measure this year.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A series of bills to facilitate the removal or relocation of Confederate statues has been voted down after top Virginia Democrats called for Confederate statues to be taken down.

A House of Delegates subcommittee overwhelmingly voted down the series of bills.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that Wednesday's vote means that the state won't be getting rid of its memorials to the lost cause anytime soon because another panel already voted down a similar bill in the Senate.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A push to bring Virginia in line with almost every other state and ban the personal use of campaign funds has little chance of success this year.

Elected officials in both parties have advocated for a ban, including Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam.

But a Senate panel voted Tuesday against a bill to prohibit using campaign funds for personal use, instead sending the measure for further study. The move signals that there aren't enough votes in the Senate to pass the measure this year.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Republicans are softening their opposition to expanding the state's Medicaid program.

House Speaker Kirk Cox sent a letter to Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam on Monday saying his caucus is willing to begin a dialogue on healthcare.

But Cox says Republicans still oppose a "straightforward" expansion of the publicly funded healthcare program for the poor and disabled, and that any discussion must include work requirements and other reforms favored by the GOP.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Gov. Ralph Northam has announced $1 million in grant funds is available to law enforcement agencies seeking to upgrade their technology and equipment.

The grants are federal funds awarded to the state by the U.S. Department of Justice from the Edward Byrne Justice Assistance Grant Program.

In addition to upgrading technology and equipment, law enforcement agencies can also use the funds to enhance officer recruitment efforts and create programs to help officers effectively cope with work-related stress.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - New Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam is asking the Republican-backed General Assembly to pass a progressive agenda that includes expanding Medicaid, stricter gun regulations and protecting abortion rights.

The governor made his remarks in a major address to state lawmakers Monday, saying that voters sent a clear message in last November's election when Democrats made major gains.

His remarks came the same day a GOP-led legislative panel defeated a top Northam priority to expand background checks on gun buyers.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A Virginia state Senate panel has defeated a Democratic push for stricter gun laws.

A Republican-led panel voted Monday to block legislation that would allow cities and counties to ban firearms at certain public events. The bill came in response to a violent white nationalist rally in Charlottesville last summer where several participants were heavily armed. Former Gov. Terry McAuliffe enacted similar rules on a temporary basis last November.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Democratic Gov.-elect Ralph Northam says curbing gun violence and expanding Medicaid will be two of his top legislative priorities after he takes office Saturday.

Northam spoke with outgoing Gov. Terry McAuliffe at a press conference Tuesday, one day before the start of the General Assembly session. The two laid out a joint legislative package.

It includes legislation that would implement universal background checks for gun purchases. It also calls for Medicaid expansion to cover more low-income Virginians.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The Virginia General Assembly is set to kick off its 2018 session.

Lawmakers will officially convene at noon Wednesday, and a host of new faces will fill the House of Delegates, where Democrats picked up 15 seats in the November elections.

Later in the day, outgoing Gov. Terry McAuliffe will give his final State of the Commonwealth address.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Turnout among young voters has been rising in Virginia. The change could signal trouble for Republicans nationwide.

The Washington Post reported Friday that young voters came out in historic numbers in Virginia's gubernatorial election earlier this month. They overwhelmingly supported Democrat Ralph Northam, who won by 9 points.

Republicans were already wrestling with an aging demographic. But analysts say the unpopular actions of President Trump are pushing away younger generations.

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LYNCHBURG, Va. (AP) - U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine says the Democratic success in last week's Virginia election was like what he had hoped to accomplish when he ran on the Democratic presidential ticket last year with Hillary Clinton.

"Tuesday night was like the celebration I wanted to have a year ago," Kaine said Saturday, during a speech hosted by the Lynchburg College Democrats.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - This week's groundswell of political change in Virginia has improved the odds of Medicaid expansion becoming law there. The long-stalled liberal priority gained new life after Democrats nearly wiped out Republicans' overwhelming majority in the House of Delegates.

It had repeatedly failed when Republicans controlled two-thirds of the chamber.

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Democrat Ralph Northam swept to victory by a margin of 53 percent for 45 percent over his Republican challenger Ed Gillespie in yesterday’s gubernatorial election in Virginia

After an acrimonious race the Democrat told supporters last night that he will seek to be a healer of divisions and political rancor when he takes office.

Northam said in his victory speech that the eyes of the nation were on Virginia on Election Tuesday.

He said that voters had told political leaders to end the divisiveness and bigotry.

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(AP)- A friendly crowd greeted Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ralph Northam and his wife as they arrived at their local polling station to cast their ballots.

Northam hugged cheering voters Tuesday morning at a Norfolk community center, thanking them for their support during the closely watched race. A few dozen voters were there.

He and Republican Ed Gillespie have been locked in a heated battle to succeed Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who cannot seek a second term.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Polls have opened in Virginia as the state picks a new governor in a race that's being closely watched nationwide.

Republican Ed Gillespie and Democrat Ralph Northam have been locked in a heated race to succeed Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who cannot seek a second term. The contest is viewed by many as a referendum on President Donald Trump and a possible preview of the 2018 midterm elections. Libertarian Cliff Hyra is also running.

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - Republican Ed Gillespie and Democrat Ralph Northam both claim momentum is on their side in the final days of Virginia's high-stakes, closely watched race for governor.

Gillespie and Northam are racing across the state Monday after a weekend spent trying to rally supporters ahead of Election Day.

Allied groups and political parties on both sides are touting unprecedented get-out-the-vote efforts.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Political observers say Virginia's race for governor has become one of the state's most racially charged campaigns in recent memory.

Shaped by President Donald Trump's moves to crack down on immigration and a deadly white nationalist rally over Confederate monuments in Charlottesville, the contest's most notable feature has been its bare-knuckled rhetoric on issues involving race, made by both candidates and their allies.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The two major-party candidates in the nation's marquee gubernatorial contest are getting record amounts of cash in the final weeks of the campaign.

Campaign finance reports filed late Monday show Republican Ed Gillespie and Democrat Ralph Northam combined to raise more than $20 million between Oct. 1 and Oct. 26 in their race to become Virginia's governor.

Northam raised $11 million and ended the period with $1.7 million on hand. Gillespie raised $9.7 million and reported $1.4 million in the bank.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Tuesday is the last day Virginia voters can ask for an absentee ballot to be mailed to them.

Voters have until 5 p.m. Tuesday to request a ballot for the Nov. 7 election.

Virginia is one of only two states electing a new governor this year. Republican Ed Gillespie, Democrat Ralph Northam and Libertarian Cliff Hyra are vying to replace outgoing Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who cannot seek a second term.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Big names in both political parties are flocking to Virginia as the state's closely watched race for governor enters its final days.

Former Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. and U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris of California rallied Virginia Democrats over the weekend to support Ralph Northam and other Democrats.

Republican Ed Gillespie has an event scheduled Sunday evening with U.S. Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio and a Monday event with U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP)- Both major party candidates in Virginia's closely watched race for governor are promising to improve the state's health care system.

But Republican Ed Gillespie and Democrat Ralph Northam differ sharply on how to curb costs and increase care.

Their biggest difference is on Medicaid expansion.

Northam wants to expand the health care program for the poor to cover more low-income Virginians, with the federal government picking up most of the cost.

Gillespie opposes Medicaid expansion, saying its long-term price tag will be unsustainable.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The two major party candidates in Virginia's race for governor sharply disagree when it comes to guns.

Republican Ed Gillespie has an A rating from the National Rifle Association and pledged to "oppose any and all attempts to weaken the Second Amendment."

Democrat Ralph Northam said he favors stricter controls on gun ownership. He's backed by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's group as well as by former Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was grievously wounded in a 2011 shooting.

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WASHINGTON (AP) - Former President Barack Obama is returning to the campaign trail to stump for Democratic gubernatorial candidates in New Jersey and Virginia as they gear up for next month's elections.
Obama will first drop in on campaign workers in Newark, New Jersey, on Thursday for a private "canvass kickoff" for Democratic candidate Phil Murphy. He will then head to Richmond, Virginia, to rally support for Democrat Ralph Northam.
Murphy is leading in polls against New Jersey's Republican Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno in the race to replace Gov. Chris Christie.

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