Democratic candidates running to replace Attorney General Maura Healey weighed in on public records law, racism, qualified immunity and unemployment issues on Greater Boston as they make their case to voters.
Former Boston City Councilor Andrea Campbell, former nominee for Lieutenant Governor Quentin Palfrey and attorney Shannon Liss-Riordan joined Jim Braude to discuss the issues, often aligning in their positions.
All of the candidates expressed a willingness to open up the commonwealth's notoriously tight public records laws that shield top officials such as the governor from releasing records to the public.
"Transparency is key to our democracy and I will do everything I can to make sure that we have a transparent state government on all levels," Liss-Riordan said.
There was only a difference in tone about a state clawback of unemployment payments that were doled out in error. Federal officials changed eligibility rules after the state began dispersing funds. Palfrey and Liss-Riordan firmly said the state should not take back the money, which many people used to pay rent or buy groceries.
Campbell said, "I do think when government makes a mistake, we need to own that it was the government's fault, while at the same time seeing how we can sort of right that wrong."
When asked about qualified immunity, a legal doctrine that shields public employees such as police officers from liability, Campbell and Palfrey said it should be eliminated. Because police are shielded from liability, few suits are filed, or many of those that are never reach trial.
"I think one of the issues that really needs to be looked at with qualified immunity," Liss-Riordan said, "is that you don't have enough decisions out there that are actually written decisions, which would establish what the law in the area is."
Each candidate took their own approach when asked to explain how they will combat systemic racism. Campbell mentioned having "hard conversations" with voters and looking at issues such as housing, health care and the environment through an equity lens.
Palfrey said, "We imprison too many people for too long for doing too little. Race has too much to do with who ends up in the criminal justice system, and I think the AG is one of the key figures who can fight back against that racial injustice."
Liss-Riordan said racism is "creeping into so many aspects of our society," adding that she will advocate for workers and consumers.
There are currently no Republican candidates running for attorney general. Maura Healey announced a run for governor last month.
WATCH: Meet the candidates for Massachusetts Attorney General