Welcome to today’s edition of the Dogwood Daily. We’ve got a round-up of all of today’s Virginia news coming right up. And if you’re a fan, please forward to three friends who need to know what’s going on in the Commonwealth and tell them to subscribe here

But first …

As people who have been following the election know, Virginia could be the last state needed to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment into law. The Pledge Podcast, which just launched a new season focusing on Virginia politics and activism, has an episode with host Alison Daskal Housman discussing just what is at stake with the activists working to get the ERA passed.

Five things you need to know today …

  1. Virginia Democrats out-raise Republicans— Virginia Democrats have raised more than Republicans for this upcoming election, with the most significant difference coming from out-of-state donations. In September alone, Democratic candidates received almost $3.34 million from outside Virginia, compared to the Republican candidates’ $900,000. With the possibility of Democrats taking control of Virginia’s General Assembly for the first time since 1993, the election has garnered interest from several national organizations like Emily’s List and Everytown for Gun Safety. Democrats also significantly out-raised Republicans with in-state donations. –Faquier Times
  2. Former Charlottesville mayor launches project to fight hate groups— Mike Singer, who was mayor of Charlottesville during the city’s 2017 riots, launched a new project aimed at preventing extremism on Monday in D.C. The report, titled “Communities Overcoming Extremism: The After Charlottesville Project,” collected ideas from government leaders, non-profits, and faith communities on how best to prevent violent hate groups in communities. Among those in attendance was Susan Bro, whose daughter Heather Heyer was murdered in the 2017’s Unite the Right rally. –NBC29
  3. In 2018, almost 7,000 absentee ballots turned in too late— The Virginia Department of Elections says 6,771 ballots were returned too late to be counted in last year’s election. Absentee ballots must be turned in to the VDE’s registration office by 7 PM on Election Day. This year, Virginia voters have already turned in more absentee ballots than in 2015, the last time the entire General Assembly was up for grabs. On Monday, almost 74,000 of the 123,459 absentee ballot applications had already been returned. -The Washington Post
  4. Judge orders race question removed— A federal judge ordered Virginia to stop requesting marriage applicants to identify their race. The order came from U.S. District Judge Rosie Alston after three couples challenged the requirement. Alston had already ruled in favor of the couples earlier this month but was asked to clarify when state officials argued couples could refuse to answer. Alston’s most recent ruling clarifies that the decision must be removed from the application entirely. –Shore Daily News
  5. William and Mary Workers’ Union demands better pay– William and Mary Workers’ Union, which represents graduate student workers, is starting a campaign to demand better working conditions and compensation. Jasper Conner, a spokesperson for the union, said in a news release that the organization is calling to have the employees’ health, vision, and dental insurance covered by the University. Conner also said that the union is fighting for a living wage for all employees of the university, even those not represented by the union. -Williamsburg Yorktown Daily