Republican Glenn Youngkin, a former personal fairness govt who by no means earlier than held public workplace, signed 11 executive orders on Saturday simply hours after he was sworn in as 74th governor of Virginia.
He ended masks mandates in public faculties, dropped vaccine necessities for state employees, and barred the educating of vital race principle.
He additionally withdrew the state from the Regional Greenhouse Gasoline Initiative, which is aimed toward decreasing carbon air pollution together with neighboring states, and declared Virginia “open for enterprise.” Youngkin has named Andrew Wheeler, Donald Trump’s former chief of the Environmental Protection Agency, to the state’s high environmental submit.
The string of orders appeared to be an about-face on Youngkin’s message of bipartisanship and optimism.
He pledged to “restore belief in authorities and to revive energy to the folks” at his swearing-in ceremony in Richmond.
“No matter who you voted for, I pledge to be your advocate, your voice, your governor,” he added. “It’s a brand new day in Virginia.”
Youngkin led the closing prayer himself.
“Father, we invite you into the subsequent 4 years,” prayed Youngkin, the primary Republican governor of the state since 2009. “Convey Virginians collectively.”
However Virginians have been already divided over his new orders.
“The war they have declared on Black history is harmful to say the least,” state Delegate Lamont Bagby (D), head of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, instructed reporters, The Washington Submit reported. Bagby was referring to vital race principle, which supplies a educating framework to look at slavery in America.
One other delegate, Democrat Elizabeth Guzman, who had praised Youngkin’s “unifying tone,” later referred to as his actions “divisive and disappointing.”
Youngkin must negotiate enterprise with a Republican-majority Home of Delegates and a Democrat-controlled state Senate.