Ralph Northam in 2021 Governor's State of the State speeches


On Crime: It's time to end the death penalty in Virginia

Most countries in the world have turned away from capital punishment. There are a lot of reasons. It doesn't work as a deterrent. It's expensive. And the drug companies refuse to supply the lethal chemicals. There's another important reason: What if the system gets it wrong?

It's time to change the law and end the death penalty in Virginia.

Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Virginia legislature Jan 13, 2021

On Drugs: Time to join 16 others states, make marijuana legal

It's time to join 16 other states and make marijuana legal, and end the current system rooted in inequity. We've done the research, and we can do this the right way, leading with social equity, public health, and public safety. Marijuana has become a cash crop that rivals tobacco--even here in Virginia. But as an illegal crop, it makes no money for Virginia. By legalizing and taxing it, we can use the revenue to help communities most disproportionately impacted by the inequities in our laws.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Virginia legislature Jan 13, 2021

On Families & Children: Fund doula services for pregnant women

Our budget proposal includes funding for doula services for pregnant women. Doulas provide non-clinical support to pregnant women through their pregnancy and after they give birth, and multiple studies show they improve health outcomes for the mother and the baby. We know it means a better outcome for mothers and babies.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Virginia legislature Jan 13, 2021

On Government Reform: $12 million into natural resources agencies

We're also putting nearly $12 million into water quality, air quality, and land conservation initiatives at natural resources agencies. This includes DEQ staffing to make sure the permitting process is more robust and thorough. These are important investments to ensure that we don't fall behind in protecting these critical assets, and ensuring that DEQ can continue to protect our natural areas.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Virginia legislature Jan 13, 2021

On Government Reform: Amend constitution so that ex-cons can vote automatically

Virginia is one of just a few remaining states where, if you have a felony conviction, someone has to act to restore your civil rights to vote or run for office. You shouldn't have to ask for your basic civil rights to be restored. I'm proposing to change Virginia's constitution to make that process automatic. If we want people to return to their communities and participate in society, we need to welcome them back fully. It's wrong to keep punishing people forever.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Virginia legislature Jan 13, 2021

On Principles & Values: Voters deserve the truth, even when it's hard to hear

When elected leaders purposely reject facts and truth, and fan the flames of conspiracy, all in pursuit of power, they are taking dangerous steps. We have a duty to tell the truth. Voters deserve the truth, even when it's hard to hear--not lies that will comfort them. Lies do not quell outrage. They encourage it. And that creates real damage. Americans are better than this, and I pray that we all can summon the better angels of our nature in this new year.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Virginia legislature Jan 13, 2021

On Technology: Broadband is as critical now as electricity in 1900s

We need to take action on broadband. Broadband is as critical now as electricity was in the last century. Making sure more Virginians can get access to it has been a priority since I took office. And the pandemic has highlighted how urgent this is--for workers, for businesses, for students, for telehealth.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Virginia legislature Jan 13, 2021

On Welfare & Poverty: $25 million new dollars to housing trust fund

It's also time to help people by taking more action on affordable housing. We have made record investments in the Virginia Housing Trust Fund that helps make more affordable housing available. We have proposed $25 million new dollars to the trust fund. This record is more than we have ever invested in helping make sure people have stable housing, and we need to get it done this session.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Virginia legislature Jan 13, 2021

The above quotations are from 2021 Governor's State of the State speeches.
Click here for other excerpts from 2021 Governor's State of the State speeches.
Click here for other excerpts by Ralph Northam.
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Page last updated: Feb 11, 2021