Dawn Adams Doesn’t Know How To Be a Legislator
Delegate Dawn Adams, challenged this year by Garrison Coward, was one of many Democratic challengers swept into the House of Delegates in 2017 after Virginians turned out to vote against anything with an R next to its name as a statement to the Trump administration.
Since then, Del. Adams has had difficulty being a legislator and it’s difficult to tell whether it’s because she has a caucus that doesn’t care to help her understand, she’s unwilling to figure it out, or both just don’t give a damn about Virginians having reasonable representation in Richmond.
It started day one with Adams refusing to step down from her position as Director of Office of Integrated Health with Developmental Services for the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services – a job paying $117,810 a year by funds that she, as a legislator, helped manage.
Despite pledges during her campaign that she would leave her job should she be elected, Adams was bailed out by a partisan Attorney General ruling that seemed to relive her of constitutional concerns within the Commonwealth (even if it was a stretch). Adams still finds herself violating the Hatch Act, but Democrats in Richmond didn’t seem to care.
So not only did Adams LIE to voters in Virginia’s 68th District, but she then potentially violated TWO laws to keep her state job.
Adams would leave her job as the director of the Office of Integrated Health on October 1, 2018, nearly a year after being elected to the House of Delegates and four months after she began her own private consulting firm, Integrate Health Consulting. Remember this name….
Fast forward to 2019 when Adams co-sponsored a bill that would have legalized infanticide in Virginia. After this horror was publicly revealed, Adams REVERSED her position and told voters that she wouldn’t have co-sponsored the bill had she actually read it.
Once more for the people in the back: Delegate Dawn Adams co-sponsored legislation she had failed to actually read.
This past July Adams got served when her former legislative assistant and campaign manager, Maureen Hains, filed a lawsuit against Adams for illegally accessing Hains’ personal accounts. In summary, the lawsuit alleges:
– Adams hacked into Hains’ Gmail account and deleted files related to her work with Adams’ consulting firm
– Adams sought Hains’ personal Facebook password to strip her of administrative access of Adams’ official Facebook page
And this week it got even worse as the Richmond Times-Dispatch obtained emails that showed Adams shared private health records including names, birth dates, medical diagnoses, and hospice statues via Gmail with no encryption or any protection, potentially in violation of federal HIPPA laws.
Not only did she share patient information willy-nilly, but Adams may be facing issues concerning her state job and her consulting firm. Integrated Health Consulting was formed in June, 2018, and she began working with health care facilities using the IHC name in July 2018. While she was still employed with the state. Without filing a conflict of interest agreement:
In response to an Aug. 21 request from The Times-Dispatch, a spokeswoman for the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Maria Reppas, said the department was not in possession of a conflict of interest agreement related to Adams’ work for Integrated Health Consulting. Reppas said the department does have agreements related to other outside work by Adams, but said those are protected by a FOIA exemption.
A pile of unforced errors can tell us something about Delegate Dawn Adams. This could all be a series of bad judgment calls, from failing to keep a campaign promise to being overzealous in trying to get information from a friend who was sick and in the hospital to double-dipping her state job with her job as a delegate and then again her job as a consultant to sending patient information over unsecured email. Not to mention co-sponsoring legislation she didn’t even read.
This snowball of issues shows a lack of ability of Dawn Adams to thoroughly and respectfully represent the voters in the 68th District. It also shows the absolute inability of Democrats in the House of Delegates and Virginia to guide and police their own.
If Democrats and Adams can’t make the right decisions, voters in the 68th will have that opportunity on November 5th.