The final message from opponents of Republican Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie is that he is a racist. Seriously.
Gillespie, a former D.C. lobbyist, was attacked during the primary by his opponent Corey Stewart for not being right-wing enough when it comes to illegal immigration or Confederate statues. The Republican has since campaigned on keeping up Confederate monuments and attacked his Democratic opponent Ralph Northam for casting a vote in favor of sanctuary cities.
“MS-13 is a menace, yet Ralph Northam voted in favor of sanctuary cities that let dangerous illegal immigrants back on the street, increasing the threat of MS-13,” a narrator said in a highly criticized ad the Gillespie campaign ran. “Ralph Northam’s policies are dangerous.”
According to Democratic Virginia Gov. Terry McAullife, these ads about MS 13 violence are “mean spirited, bigoted, racist.”
McAuliffe isn’t alone in this rhetoric. “Ed Gillespie’s pre-’17 reputation as a genial, establishment Republican is getting him too much of a pass on his shamelessly racist campaign,” former Hillary Clinton spokesman Brian Fallon tweeted.
And Democratic pollster Matt McDermott tweeted, “This election is simple enough: Ed Gillespie is a racist. Ralph Northam is not a racist. Virginians deserves a governor who is not a racist.”
Even “never Trumper” and failed independent presidential candidate Evan McMullin is joining the trend.
.@EdWGillespie was one of the good guys, but now he peddles fear and white nationalism. It’s better for VA and America that he not prevail.
— Evan McMullin (@Evan_McMullin) November 7, 2017
Patrick supports Gillespie despite his racist campaign, insists Gillespie isn’t Trump-like, but couldn’t fill a tweet with real differences. https://t.co/VpmCQCSbp7
— Brian Beutler (@brianbeutler) November 7, 2017
— Oliver Willis (@owillis) November 6, 2017
If Ed Gillespie wins then every single Republican in 2018 will replicate his racist, hate-filled playbook. We can’t let that happen.
— Leah Greenberg (@Leahgreenb) November 4, 2017