Gun Safety, Metro Funding, Reproductive Rights Top Boysko's To-Do List
Gun Safety, Metro Funding, Reproductive Rights Top Boysko's To-Do List

Gun Safety, Metro Funding, Reproductive Rights Top Boysko's To-Do List

RICHMOND, VA — Like many other people in her district, State Sen. Jennifer Boysko (D-Herndon) was shocked by the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 2022 ruling on the Dobbs case that struck down Roe V. Wade.

“Everybody that I talked to was completely shaken, losing the federal protections for abortion at the federal level,” Boykso told Patch earlier this week from her office in the Virginia State House.

During the 2023 General Assembly session, Boysko and state Sen. Jennifer McClellan (D-Richmond), who is now the congresswoman representing Virginia’s 4th District, introduced a constitutional amendment to protect the fundamental right to reproductive freedom.

Find out what's happening in Herndonwith free, real-time updates from Patch.

“We do constitutional amendments in the year preceding an election and a year following that election,” she said. “While I will be presenting the bill this year to talk about it and continue to work on it throughout the year, the fact that it will really come under consideration for passage next year. Then we have another election in the House of Delegates and then the following year would present exactly the same bill, and then it would go to referendum to the public. It has to be a general assembly ballot.”

Two days after the Nov. 7. 2023 general election, Boysko declared her intention to run for the 10th District seat in U.S. House of Representatives. She hopes to succeed U.S. Rep. Jennifer Weston (D), who announced in September that she would not be seeking reelection due to health reasons.

Find out what's happening in Herndonwith free, real-time updates from Patch.

Although Boysko will still represent Herndon, Reston, McLean and parts of Loudoun in the 2024 legislative session, she will participate in the June 18 Democratic Party primary to determine if she will be on the November 2024 ballot. She will make a decision about whether or not to resign from the state senate after the general election.

In the meantime, her main focus is on the challenges of current legislative session, which runs through April.

What are your priorities for the 2024 General Assembly?

I am the new chair of the transportation committee, so I am certainly going to be laser-focused on transportation on the Metro funding. Secondly, there is a rumor that there will be a bill to put a casino in our area. I am, without question, going to be opposing that. I have talked to so many of my constituents. In fact, I was at the doctor’s office, and my doctor, before he asked me how I was that he said, “Thank you so much for your work to stop this casino. We don’t want this here.” People are very fired up about that.

What are some of the broader issues you’ll be working on that will affect people across the state?

All Virginians want to protect children. I’m carrying a bill that will require all adults who have a gun in their home to safely store them so that they are out of harm’s way for any child who might be in the household or someone who is prohibited from having a gun. I carried this bill last year. The House Republicans refused to even give it a real hearing.

With the Democrats controlling both the houses down in Richmond, do you think this is something the general assembly will pass this year?

I expect that we will be able to pass it. This is something that is proven with data-driven, metrics that it really does help reduce harm for children and other people. Last year, there was a 6-year-old who brought his mom’s gun to school and shot his teacher in the stomach and we’re still hearing about that. That had happened after I had dropped the bill, to say that I was carrying it, and that still didn’t change the hearts and minds of my colleagues on the Republican side, which was really disappointing.

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