Va. governor-elect McAuliffe to reinstate order protecting LGBT state employees

Terry McAuffile

Terry McAuffile

TYSON’S CORNER, Va. — Virginia‘s newly elected Democratic governor said Wednesday that among his first priorities when he takes office is to reinstate an order prohibiting discrimination against LGBT state employees.

Terry McAuffile

Terry McAuliffe

At a news conference Wednesday, Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe said he would sign two executive orders the moment he is sworn in.

The fist would be to reinstate former Gov. Tim Kaine’s order to end discrimination against LGBT individuals in state government, and the second order will be to limit gifts and honorariums to elected state officials to $100.00 or less to avoid fiscal scandals and improprieties.

The 56-year-old McAuliffe defeated Republican Ken Cuccinelli on Tuesday in a campaign that was driven by a crush of negative advertising, non-stop accusations of dodgy dealings and a tea party-backed nominee who tested the limits of swing-voting Virginia.

In winning, McAuliffe broke a stubborn streak in state history. During the past nine governor’s races, the party that controlled the White House at the time has always lost.

McAuliffe’s narrow victory in Virginia rested on a 9-point edge among women, while the two major party candidates split men about evenly, according to exit polls. McAuliffe carried liberals and moderates, Cuccinelli independents and tea party backers.

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In the state’s other top races, Democratic state Sen. Ralph Northam defeated Republican E.W. Jackson for the office of Lieutenant Governor, a race sharply defined by social issues.

Jackson, a Chesapeake, Va., minister with a track record of vehemently anti-gay remarks and who has called LGBT people “perverse,” and pedophiles, said “homosexuality is a sexual behavior and it is a behavior that the Bible says is wrong and unacceptable.”

The contest between state Sens. Mark Herring (D-Loudoun County) and Mark Obenshain (R-Harrisonburg) for Attorney General remains too close to call.

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