Now that Democrats control the White House and Congress, the Republican Party is looking to state attorneys general to help them mount a defense against President-elect Joe Biden’s progressive policies on business, healthcare, the environment, and immigration.
“If we lose the Senate, we are not the last line of defense; we are the only line of defense,” warned Adam Piper, executive director of the Republican Attorneys General Association. “It’s going to be first and goal at the half-yard line, and we are going to have to hold the line.”
The strategy, dubbed “Save and Defend” will utilize policy and communications components to influence lawmakers and inform voters.
“Save and Defend is going to be a pretty comprehensive initiative that we Republican attorneys general will engage in,” explains Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr. “Once we get a chance to roll that out and put some meat on the bones, it is going to be a primary focus for us Republican AGs.”
Legal arguments will not be based on political expediency, but on the potential impact of policy, explains Carr. “During the Trump years, our Democratic colleagues just sued constantly. We don’t want to file lawsuits just based on headlines. We are going to look at it in terms of quality, not quantity.”
Democratic AGs sued the Trump Administration 138 times and won 79% of the suits, though 60 are still under review. To compare, Republican AGs sued the Obama Administration 78 times and won 60% of the suits
Upcoming lawsuits are expected to focus on:
- Attempts to pass the Green New Deal
- Attempts to overturn Trump’s immigration reforms
- Attempts to cut law enforcement funding
- COVID responses that violate constitutional rights
- Minimum wage increases
Republican AGs have also teamed up to support the NRA in a counter-suit against New York AG Letitia James (D), who is trying to dissolve the organization based on the gross misuse of funds.
The NRA claims the lawsuit is politically motivated and thus a violation of the First Amendment.
Arkansas AG Leslie Rutledge (R) has described the lawsuit as a “political stunt by a liberal attorney general who promised in her campaign to go after the NRA.”
There are currently 26 Republican AGs and 25 Democratic AGs (including Washington, DC).
Author’s Note: The political process is designed to be contentious and this group will challenge Biden at every turn, just as Democrats challenged Trump. The lawsuits will slow his radical progressive agenda but won’t be enough to stop it.