Follow live: Youngkin’s first days in office

Virginia has three new general general officers — Glenn Youngkin as governor, Winsome Sears as lieutenant governor and Jason Miyares as attorney general. The trio were sworn in at a ceremony in Richmond Saturday.

WTOP’s Nick Iannelli has been traveling with the new Governor. Stay with WTOP and for extensive coverage from Richmond. Follow along as he reports from the scene and follow Nick on Twitter at @NickWTOP.

‘No authority at all’: Youngkin’s feud with Arlington Co. intensifies

The situation is escalating between newly-elected Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin and officials in Arlington County.

After Youngkin signed an executive order telling parents that they have the right to decide whether or not their children need to wear a mask in school, the Arlington County public school system responded on Twitter, saying that it would ignore the order and “maintain our current mask requirement for students, staff and visitors.”

Youngkin addressed that Sunday in remarks to WTOP.

“The fact that that tweet came out from Arlington County within minutes of my executive order tells me that they haven’t listened to parents yet,” Youngkin said. “I hope they will listen to parents because we will use every resource within the governor’s authority to explore what we can do and will do to make sure parents’ rights are protected.”

The order is effective Jan. 24.

“I just hope that Arlington County schools and the rest of the school systems around the Commonwealth of Virginia use this week to listen to parents and get prepared,” Youngkin said.

It remains unclear what Youngkin can do to force school systems to follow the order — or what he meant when he said “every resource within the governor’s authority.”

Del. Patrick Hope, a Democrat who represents Arlington County, told WTOP that Youngkin has “no authority at all” to force school systems to comply.

“We are governed by the Virginia code and the Virginia code states very clearly that school districts should adhere by the CDC’s recommendations,” Hope said. “The CDC recommends masks for students over 2 years old.”

Hope added that he was “very concerned” because he is a parent of three kids in the Arlington County public school system.

Winter storm leads to last-minute change for Youngkin

The winter storm that moved into the region Sunday prompted a last-minute change for Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin a day after his inauguration.

Youngkin was scheduled to give tours of the Executive Mansion for the first time, but those plans were abruptly cancelled due to dangerous conditions on the roads. Instead, he decided to focus only on the storm.

“We’ve got the National Guard out along I-81,” Youngkin said.

He met with the now-former Gov. Ralph Northam in preparing for the weather.

“We worked well with the Northam administration earlier in the week,” Youngkin said. “I think the baton was handed off swiftly and cleanly.”

What about I-95?

That was the site of the traffic disaster earlier in the month when drivers were trapped on icy roads in the Fredericksburg area for 24 hours due to icy conditions after a winter storm.

Youngkin said of I-95 “the most important thing we’ve been doing is salting the roads and getting the equipment prepositioned and making sure that we had support from the National Guard today.”

Youngkin met with road crews in Richmond Sunday morning, thanking them and bringing them some food.

Youngkin meets with road crews at Captiol

Snow falling outside the Virginia Capitol

Gov. Youngkin to change Sunday plans to adjust for snowstorm

Youngkin responds to Northern Virginia school systems’ mask requirements

New leadership in Virginia take their oath of office

WTOP Reporter Nick Iannelli breaks down the day’s events

Gov. Youngkin signs first executive orders after taking office


Youngkin speaks at inauguration ceremony

Outgoing Go. Ralph Northam talks to WTOP about leaving office

People arriving at the Virginia Capitol for Youngkin’s inauguration

Morning of Youngkin’s inauguration starts with prayer breakfast

Asked about removing Virginia school mask mandate, Lieutenant Governor-elect Winsome Sears sides with parents’ choice

Youngkin rallies supporters at pre-inauguration celebration

Youngkin brushes off partisan attack from Va. House speaker

Virginia’s Republican Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin refused to get in the middle of a partisan attack launched by the new Republican leader in the state’s House of Delegates.

“Our campaign fully embodied looking forward and that’s what we’re going to do,” Youngkin said, refusing to directly address the incident.

Following the final address from outgoing Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam, Republican House Speaker Todd Gilbert went after Northam on Twitter.

“Ralph Northam is leaving office as his own lost cause, condescendingly lecturing us all,” Gilbert wrote.

“Saturday can’t come fast enough,” Gilbert added, referring to the day when Youngkin is sworn in and Northam leaves office.

Speaking to reporters Friday, Youngkin repeatedly said that he would work to bring the two parties together.

“I am excited about the inauguration and I’m excited about bringing everyone together,” Youngkin said.

When asked whether he had any comment about Gilbert’s message on Twitter, Youngkin did not directly answer, pivoting instead to speaking about his priorities of lowering taxes and achieving “excellence” in Virginia schools.

“That’s what our agenda is about, that’s what we’re going to work on and that’s what we’re going to bring people together around,” Youngkin said. “We’re going to step forward and not look back.”

Gilbert became House speaker after Republicans took control of the chamber following the election in November. He replaced Democratic Del. Eileen Filler-Corn.

Youngkin ‘very encouraged’ by Supreme Court ruling against vaccine mandate

Governor-elect Glenn Youngkin speaks with reporters Friday. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)

Virginia’s Republican Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin came out strongly in favor of Thursday’s Supreme Court ruling striking down a COVID-19 vaccine mandate from the Biden administration.

The mandate would have required people who work at businesses with at least 100 employees to be vaccinated or be tested weekly.

“Overreach from the federal government needs to be met clearly and pushed back upon,” Youngkin said Friday, addressing the media ahead of his Saturday inauguration.

“I was very encouraged by the Supreme Court ruling,” Youngkin said. “Virginia workers were going to suffer unnecessarily.”

Youngkin has vowed that, under his leadership, Virginia would legally challenge vaccine mandates handed down from the White House. He indicated that his efforts to push back against mandates would likely begin immediately after he’s sworn in.

“The first business day for me is tomorrow,” Youngkin said, referring to his inauguration.

While the Supreme Court did strike down the mandate on businesses, it let stand a mandate applying to health care workers who work at facilities that participate in the Medicare and Medicaid programs.

That mandate will affect more than 10 million healthcare employees.

Youngkin said he was worried that that would lead to shortages of doctors and nurses.

“We have a crisis right now in our healthcare system, and the crisis has been caused by a complete lack of staffing,” Youngkin said.

Asked about Gilbert tweet, Youngkin talks about moving forward

Youngkin begins inaugural weekend with service

‘Fresh start’ on COVID-19 response

While Governor-elect Glenn Youngkin said he supports Gov. Ralph Northam’s 30-day state of emergency, he said “Virginians will see our actions as a bit of a fresh start.” Find out more about that, as well as his reaction to the I-95 snowstorm tangle earlier this month, in Nick Iannelli’s exclusive interview.

FAQ: Inauguration Weekend

When is the inauguration? Is it public? Is there a livestream? What about the associated events? Find out the answers to these questions and more on WTOP’s FAQ page.

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