County Chairman Corey Stewart (R-Prince William) is being criticized for calling his primary opponent in the Virginia governor's race a "cuckservative."
Stewart, who is facing former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie this year, participated in an "Ask Me Anything" forum on Reddit and made the remark when introducing himself:
Hey Reddit, I'm Corey Stewart. Republican Candidate for Governor of Virginia and former State Chair for Donald Trump for President.
The primary election is June 13th. I am opposing the establishment's handpicked candidate, former Bush guy, RNC chairman, and cuckservative, Ed Gillespie.
I led the nation's toughest crackdown on illegal immigration in the nation and have been attacked by the left and establishment Republicans. I need your help.
The term "cuckservative" has been used by the so-called "alt-right" movement to label any fellow Republican or conservative as someone who appears to disavow their conservative credentials, derived from the term "cuckold."
Stewart, a conservative running on a platform of tax cuts and illegal immigration enforcement who has described himself as "Trump before Trump was Trump", has regularly criticized Gillespie as "Establishment Ed" for his ties to GOP establishment.
Virginia Republican Party chair John Whitbeck slammed Stewart's use of the term, telling the Washington Post the epithet is also often used by white nationalists.
A spokesman for Gillespie called the incident "sad", adding that it was an inappropriate way for Stewart to try to forward conservative principles.
Stewart responded to Whitbeck, asking if he was the "word-pope", adding that he saw the term as a more contemporary version of "RINO" [Republican in Name Only].
Stewart is well known in Virginia for his steadfast views on illegal immigration, recently asking his county's police force to work with ICE to deport illegal immigrants who have been previously arrested.
He was fired as state co-chair by the Trump campaign after holding a protest rally in front of the Republican National Committee, accusing then-Chairman Reince Priebus and Speaker Paul Ryan of working to "sabotage" Trump.
In Charlottesville, Stewart recently drew protests when he held a rally opposing plans to remove the city's statue of General Robert E. Lee, in the name of "defending Virginia's heritage" and opposing "political correctness."
The winner of Stewart and Gillespie's four-way primary will face Lieutenant Gov. Ralph Northam (D-Va.) or former Rep. Tom Perriello (D-Albemarle).