Va. Attorney General: More federal funds needed in fight against extremism

National

Virginia Attorney Mark Herring in 2014. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

RICHMOND, Va. (WJHL) – The Virginia Attorney General is calling for federal help in the state’s fight on militia extremism.

According to a press release on Wednesday, Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring sent a letter to Representative Jamie Raskin (D-MD) and chairman of the House subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, to consider increased federal assistance during Wednesday’s hearing on white supremacy and extremism.

“I have been sounding the alarm on the rise in right-wing extremism, white supremacist violence, and militia activity for years” said AG Herring. “What we are seeing in Virginia and around the country should frighten everyone.”

In the letter Herring describes a brief history of the state’s recent brush with extremist violence, citing the “Unite The Right” rally of Charlottesville, Gun Lobby Day and the recent declarations of “2A Sanctuary” cities.

In the letter Herring requests that the federal government begins:

  • “Creating incentives for federal and state cooperation in identifying and countering dangerous paramilitary activity”
  • “Treating states as a full partner, sharing information, breaking down information silos, and ensuring that we counter criminal activity before it erupts into large-scale violence”
  • “Allocating more funding for training for law enforcement officers so that they can better handle these kinds of groups”

According to the release, attorneys general of Michigan, New Jersey and Oregon sent similar letters ahead of the hearing.

AG Herring’s full statement can be found below.

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