Gov. McAuliffe delivers final address to lawmakers

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC/AP) — Outgoing Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe delivered his final State of the Commonwealth address to the incoming General Assembly Wednesday evening.

Gov. McAuliffe says his proudest achievement during his four years in office was restoring voting and other civil rights to thousands of felons who had completed their sentences.

McAuliffe discussed his legacy in his final “State of the Commonwealth” address to lawmakers Wednesday evening.

He also touted his record on economic development, announcing Virginia has attracted more than $20 billion in new capital investment since he took office.

That’s a figure McAuliffe says exceeds any previous governor by more than $6.5 billion dollars.

McAuliffe glossed over shortcomings – like a failed development deal with a Chinese company which cost the state’s taxpayers $1.4 million or promises that new express lanes on I-66 wouldn’t be exorbitant. Today, those roadways are often referred to as “Lexus Lanes.”

He said that witnessing the “bigotry and violence” during a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville that turned deadly in August was the lowest point of his tenure. Family members of the three Virginia residents who died that day were present for his speech.

McAuliffe also used the speech to promote his final budget and the policy goals of his successor Ralph Northam.

McAuliffe leaves office on Saturday as Northam is inaugurated.

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