Virginia Gov. Northam delivers his final State of the Commonwealth address

Published: Jan. 13, 2022 at 2:01 AM EST
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BLUEFIELD, W.Va. (WVVA) - Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam delivered his final State of the Commonwealth address Wednesday evening in Richmond, just days before Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin’s inauguration.

Along with thanking state employees, cabinet members and legislators among others for their work during his term, Northam offered some kind words toward Virginia’s next governor.

“Next Monday, Governor-elect Youngkin will speak to you in just this same way. By then he will be your governor,” said Northam. “I wish him the best, and I am confident he will lead this commonwealth well. When he succeeds, Virginia succeeds.”

Formalities aside, the outgoing governor moved to his achievements while in office. Northam proudly told the legislature and Virginians he’s leaving them with the “strongest state budget Virginia has ever seen.”

Northam thanked his administration and legislators for their work on issues ranging from criminal justice to voting rights as well. He also touched on some key issues from the state’s recent gubernatorial race.

“We cannot pick and choose history based on how it makes us feel. We need to understand the full and true story, and put a Black child’s right to have her history included in our textbooks before our own desire to feel comfortable,” said Northam.

Despite strong political divide though, Virginians saw legislators on both sides of the aisle rise and applaud the state’s broadband plan. Northam said the state is “on track to have universal broadband on its way to every community by 2024.”

Northam plans to return to his medical practice shortly after leaving office. Gov.-elect Youngkin’s inauguration is set for Saturday, Jan. 15.

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