Education issues have come to the fore in the race for Virginia governor, and new polling shows that Republican Glenn Youngkin has surged ahead of Democrat Terry McAuliffe by 8 points before next Tuesday’s election. Reports show that a law firm connected to McAuliffe is actively fighting Virginia students who allege they have been sexually assaulted in the state’s public schools.
McAuliffe served as a senior advisor from 2019 until recently for the Hunton Andrews Kurth law firm. The firm is based in Richmond and has 20 locations around the United States and abroad.
The Hunton firm is fighting a woman who alleges that she was repeatedly abused on the campus of her middle school run by the Fairfax County school system when she was 12 years old. In court, she has claimed that she was gang-abused, cut with a knife, and burned with a cigarette lighter at school.
The McAuliffe-affiliated firm is attempting to have the complaint dismissed because it was filed under a pseudonym to protect the identity of the injured plaintiff. There was no dispute that the defendant’s school district knew her identity, and the trial court rejected the law firm’s argument. However, the Hunton firm appealed the decision to a different court.
The Hunton firm and McAuliffe failed to respond to requests for information from the Daily Wire about whether McAuliffe is still on the Hunton payroll. McAuliffe’s financial disclosures required to run for office indicate that he reported income connected to Hunton in 2021.
The Daily Wire also reported on a separate case filed against Fairfax County schools in which a female student claims that she told school officials of an abuse incident on a band trip. She alleges that a school security officer told her there was “no point” in asking for a criminal charge to be filed and that the system gave an award to her attacker.
In that case, the Hunton firm argued that the system had lost the documentation related to an investigation of the plaintiff’s report of abuse. It appears that the school system failed to use a database for allegations it had agreed to use in settling another physical assault case.
The Fairfax County school system was joined in its defense by the National School Boards Association (NSBA). The same organization wrote to Attorney General Merrick Garland asking the federal government to investigate parents who protest or speak out at local school board meetings around the country as “domestic terrorists.”