As a tea-party-sponsored debate just outside Richmond wound down, and following some predictable clashes over cutting taxes, the question became whether front-runner Ed Gillespie doesn’t like Trump enough, or whether brash challenger Corey Stewart loves him too much.

Stewart, chairman of the Prince William Board of County Supervisors and a onetime Virginia leader of the Trump campaign, accused Gillespie of being insufficiently committed to the president. He cited Gillespie’s reluctance to support Trump last fall after a 2005 video was unearthed in which Trump was recorded making lewd remarks about women on the set of the TV show “Access Hollywood.”

“In the wake of the ‘Access Hollywood’ scandal,” Stewart said, “Ed was among the first Republicans in the country to kick him when he was down. . . . You refused to be anywhere near Donald Trump and refused to be on his leadership committee.”

Gillespie, a longtime Republican consultant and former adviser to President George W. Bush, at first avoided addressing his feelings toward Trump. “I supported our ticket as I always support Republican tickets,” he said.

As he went on to call for party unity and mentioned times he had introduced Vice President Pence at public events, someone in the crowd of about 275 tea party activists yelled out, “What about Trump?”

Finally, Gillespie responded: “I did take exception to the comments he made in the ‘Access Hollywood’ tape,” he said, mentioning that he has a wife and two daughters. “Corey’s the only one who thinks they’re great comments,” he said, as some in the crowd booed and others cheered. “I want to make sure we try to respect all Americans, and I found those comments to be offensive.”

This exchange took place during a Republican debate among the gubernatorial candidates.   Only Corey defended the indefensible.  Kudos for Ed Gillespie for taking the high road.  Is Corey so morally bankrupt that he will defend Trump’s misogynistic, offensive, vulgar remarks?  Apparently so.

Apparently Corey isn’t counting on garnering a lot of votes from the women of Virginia.  I don’t know many women, conservative, moderate or liberal who can excuse Trump’s coarseness and hideously disrespectful behavior towards women.  Do any such women exist?

Corey couldn’t resist name-calling, once again, while puckering up to Traveler and draping himself in  everything southern.  Our new faux son of the south had these words:

“I know controversy, and I know a lot of weak-kneed Republicans don’t like it. That’s tough,” Stewart said, and as supporters began to cheer he added: “Weak-chinned, weak-jawed establishment Republicans. . . . He lost,” he said, referring to Gillespie, “because he has no leadership skills. He’s wishy-washy. . . . If you’re looking for a winner, I’m your candidate.”

Supporters responded with chants of “Cor-ey! Cor-ey!”

But it wasn’t enough. In a straw poll taken before and after the debate, Gillespie won with 125 votes to 79 for Stewart and 20 for Wagner. Fourteen were undecided.

After this election cycle, I am just not sure Corey can come home again.  The people of Prince William County aren’t going to forget that he defended sexual assault, vulgarity and generally bad behavior out of someone (Trump) who just should have known better.

Again, good for Ed Gillespie for standing up to bad behavior and denouncing it.

3 Thoughts to “Kudos to Ed Gillespie”

  1. It looks like our Republican sheriff as well as 4 Republican board members agree that Corey has stepped over the line just a little too far this time.

    Forget worshipping Donald Trump’s bad behavior.

    Draping himself in a hijacked flag that has been used for over a century to not-so-gently nudge others with a not-so-subtle message that the south will rise again is probably not in the best interest of finding common ground. Corey’s defense of what should only be a museum piece causes many of us to draw our own line in the sand.

    He should know that any object or symbol used to propagate hatred whether that was the original intention or not simply cannot be extolled without serious political fallout.


  2. Clara Barton

    Of course its about the Confederate flag. We can see and hear. Corey, you can’t have it both ways. Meanwhile, I think Corey is being called out for equivocating.

    [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-rM293MRp7Y&w=560&h=315%5D

  3. WaPo:

    Last week, a Stewart supporter flew a plane over an outdoor political gathering that streamed a Confederate flag and a banner reading, “Vote Corey Stewart June 13.”

    That was a tipping point for Prince William County Supervisor Ruth M. Anderson (Occoquan). She said she immediately picked up the phone and offered her endorsement to Gillespie.

    I don’t think Corey realizes how toxic he is becoming.

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