RICHMOND, VA – On May 11, Glenn Youngkin’s top elections official, Susan Beals, wrote a letter announcing Virginia would withdraw from the Electronic Registration Information Center, or ERIC, a bipartisan multistate partnership to keep voter rolls updated and encourage states to register new voters.
ERIC had support from both Republican and Democratic governors of Virginia, but the group has recently become the subject of far-right conspiracy theories, which Youngkin and Beals, a former top aide to Amanda Chase, have repeatedly bought into.
Today, Delegates Don Scott, Rodney Willett, Mike Mullin, Marcus Simon, Betsy Carr, and Senators Mamie Locke, Ghazala Hashmi, and Lamont Bagby held a press conference to condemn the Youngkin administration’s latest attack on voting rights and democracy:
“Every Virginian — no matter their race or zip code — has a fundamental right to vote, and leaders in Richmond have a responsibility to make sure voting is as easy, safe, and accessible as possible to all Virginians…But now Republican leaders – including Glenn Youngkin – are buying into Trump’s lies and conspiracy theories and pulling out of this interstate agreement, weakening our election systems and Democracy,” said Senate Chair Mamie Locke.
“The Virginia GOP has gone to the other side – the MAGA extremists have taken over, and they want to make it harder for us to vote,” said Leader Don Scott. “From quietly changing the restoration of rights progress to this surprising departure from ERIC, everything they do is trying to disrupt our election process. These destructive changes harm voters and undermine faith in our system.”
“There is no basis in fact for any of the attacks on ERIC…it comes from the original ‘big lie,’ which is that the 2020 election was stolen…It’s clear that here in Virginia our Republican leaders are buying into Trump’s lies, they are buying the big lie, they’re running with it, and they’re making policy based on it,” said Delegate Marcus Simon.