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Healey on WPI Case: “Fire Those Lawyers”

Clinton’s Democratic Nomination for President

There are victories, and then there are historic victories, like the one we just witnessed in the Democratic primary.

“It may be hard to see tonight but we are all standing under a glass ceiling right now…Thanks to you, we've reached a milestone. The first time in our nation's history that a woman will be a major party's nominee for President of The United States.”-Hillary Clinton

Eight years to the day after she gave her concession speech during Barack Obama's '08 path to victory, and 100 years after the first woman was elected to congress, Hillary Clinton was beaming last night. But it appears Bernie Sanders still hasn't gotten the memo.

“…we will continue to fight for every vote and every delegate we can get. Our vision will be the future of America.”- Sen. Bernie Sanders

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey (@MassAGO) endorsed Clinton way back in August. Not only is Healey happy for Clinton’s win because she was her candidate and a woman, she (Healey) is excited because Hillary Clinton will make a “fantastic” president. She asks,”who is going to make the next for years better for you? We now have a choice, Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump.” There are stark differences between the two candidates and what they bring to the table. For Healey, Hillary Clinton will be the person to make it better.

Clinton announced during her speech that she is the first woman of the party to reach this point. Other people who were the ‘firsts’ in their positions, including Healey being an openly gay attorney general, did not have to announce those milestones themselves. 

Healey’s response to Clinton announcing herself as the first woman nominee, “This is a historic moment. I think it’s important to acknowledge the fights that many have waged, not just for decades but for centuries, Jim. You know, when it comes to gender equality and advancement of women’s equality and rights in this country.”

Transgender Bill

The MA House of Representatives version of the Transgender Accommodations Bill “Requires the A.G.’s office to ‘issue guidance or regulations for referring to the appropriate law enforcement agency or other authority for legal action any person who asserts gender identity for an improper use…” This is the version that Charlie Baker approves of endorses. 

Healey finds that both the house’s version and the senate’s version of the bill are both going in the right direction. Her office will be prepared to follow either version of the law. Healey says, 

“The important thing, Jim, is that we get the we get this law in place. It’s been a priority for our office. This will make such a difference- a fundamentally profound difference- in the lives of transgender kids, families, and transgender people in the state. We need to get it done, and we need to get it done now.”

In response to the efforts behind this bill, the AGO started the “Everyone Welcome” campaign a few weeks ago.

Gun Violence 

Healey joined 13 other attorneys general, as well as other law enforcement members at the White House to discuss gun violence issues. A main issue they focused on was the legislative bar against the CDC from doing research on gun violence. “People probably don’t realize this, but years ago through intense lobbying by the NRA, congress essentially took away the [CDC’s] ability to study the effects of gun violence and trauma,” Healey said. These studies would help with identifying strategies on approaching the issue. 96% of the funds were removed. 

As representatives of law enforcement, Healey and the other officials find that this is something that needs to be changed. The CDC needs the support to study this issue. She adds,“ we have for far too long had a decisive debate about the second amendment. It’s over. Respect the second amendment, but recognize that we have a public health crisis on our hands. 90 Americans die a day from guns and another 200 are shot.” The AG’s are currently framing this as a public health crisis.

Sexual Violence

In response to the recently publicized cases of sexual violence on students, including the Worcester Polytechnic Institute case Healey says, “Fire those lawyers. It’s outrageous. This is part of the problem and part of what we need to change when it comes to the culture around sexual assault, domestic violence, it is outrageous that would be offered as some kind of defense in this case.” 

Healey’s working on the issues of sexual violence and domestic violence everyday, and she finds what the lawyers for WPI said to be unacceptable. 

Copyright 2016 GBH