The Republican Attorneys General Association (RAGA) is the only national organization whose mission is electing Republicans to the Office of State Attorney General. RAGA supports our 29 current Republican attorneys general and recruits outstanding candidates, providing them with research and financial support as well as assisting in message development.
In 1999, a few Republican AGs formed RAGA to address the lack of commitment by some state attorneys general to defend federalism, adhere to the law, and apply a common sense, free market approach to governing. In its first election year, RAGA made its mark on American politics by emerging as the only Republican organization to gain seats during the hard-fought 2000 elections. Since then, RAGA has multiplied its effectiveness, culminating most recently with the 2016 elections, when we grew the number of Republican attorneys general from 27 to 29, the most Republicans have held than at any time in history. This success was a direct result of our high-quality candidates and strong financial support from our members.
Key Victories in 2016
- Republican attorneys general led the fight against President Obama’s overreaching, illegal EPA regulations, resulting in the Supreme Court to halt implementation of Obama’s signature climate change initiative, the Clean Power Plan.
- Republican attorneys general won an injunction against the Department of Labor’s overtime rule, a victory for taxpayers, employers and workers.
- Republican attorneys general led the fight against President Obama’s unlawful immigration plan, successfully securing an injunction against implementation of the President’s program, known as DAPA.
- A Texas federal judge granted an injunction barring the Obama administration’s transgender bathroom directive from the DOJ and DOE.
- 10 states blocked the enforcement of the Department of Labor’s Persuader Advice Exemption Rule.
Republican AGs have also fought against several examples of executive overreach, including: Obamacare, the EPA’s “WOTUS” rule; power plant mercury rules (Michigan v. EPA); Bureau of Land Management’s fracking rules; Expansion of background checks for firearms purchases; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service prairie chicken designation; Denial of Keystone XL Pipeline permit; and the EPA “Sue and Settle” Strategy.
Under the current leadership of RAGA Chairwoman, Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge, RAGA works with attorneys general across the country to support the rule of law, limited government, cooperative federalism, legal reform, free enterprise, aggressive crime fighting, equal opportunity, and the preservation of conservative values.
Through robust candidate recruitment RAGA brings effective public servants to the office of AG and deepens our Party’s talent pool from which many future Governors and U.S. Senators will be drawn. Currently, three Republican U.S. Senators, three Republican Governors, and a member of President Trump’s Cabinet once served as their state’s attorney general.
In 2016, all incumbent Republican attorneys general held their seat and two blue seats went our way. West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey won a hard-fought re-election against a self-funder. In addition, we welcomed two new AGs: Attorney General Curtis Hill of Indiana and Attorney General Josh Hawley of Missouri. Both are committed to defending the rule of law and protecting our constitutional values. Lastly, Republican New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu appointed Gordon MacDonald as the state’s attorney general, bringing our total to 29 Republican Attorneys General.
Looking back at the historic 2016 election year, Republican attorneys general are now committed to governing in a responsible and effective manner, fighting to protect free enterprise, our liberties and the Constitution.
RAGA has repeatedly shown to be a strong vessel for fundraising. In 2016, RAGA’s political spending totaled over $14 million. For the cycle to date, RAGA has raised $23.2 million. That number overwhelms the $8.2 million raised by the Democratic Attorney General Association in the same period.
The 2018 general election, which will see 30 states hold AG races, present a challenge of recruiting strong candidates and raising money to ensure success. Our directive is to ensure that RAGA is in the best position possible to continue to play a critical role in the election of Republican state attorneys general.
Under the Trump Administration, the role of the Republican attorneys general transitions from “the last line of defense” to “the tip of the spear.” Republican attorneys general are committed to work to unravel the numerous burdensome regulations employed by the previous administration that hamper our way of life and our way of governing, as well as serve as a counterbalance to the Democrat attorneys general and their liberal job-killing agenda in activist’s courts. Republican attorneys general will continue to uphold the Constitution and defend the rule of law, no matter who is in the White House.