'Treated Trump Like He Had Typhoid': VA GOP Senate Candidate Rips Gillespie Campaign, State Party
Prince William County, Va. board chairman Corey Stewart (R) ripped Ed Gillespie's campaign and called for the resignation of the state party chair after Republicans suffered several electoral losses in Virginia.
Stewart, who launched a 2018 bid against Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) after losing to Gillespie in the 2017 primary, called Tuesday's election a "tremendous loss for the Republican Party."
Old Dominion Republicans lost about a dozen seats in the state assembly, and suffered losses in the races for governor, lieutenant governor and Commonwealth attorney general.
Stewart characterized the evening as Virginia Republicans' "house burning down," adding that the loss is "an opportunity to build a new home."
He called for the resignation of Virginia Republican Party Chairman John Whitbeck after Gillespie's loss.
He criticized Gillespie's campaign, saying the candidate did not do enough to court Trump voters, as well as Stewart's own base in the state.
Stewart said that State Sen. Jill Vogel (R-Winchester), who ran for lieutenant governor, received more votes than Gillespie.
He said Vogel's example showed that the Trump-supporting segment of Virginia Republicans was not swayed to support Gillespie over a perceived lack of proximity to the president.
Stewart also dismissed claims that Gillespie's loss was a "referendum on Trump," saying that it would've been so if Gillespie had further embraced the president.
"Ed treated the president like he had typhoid," Stewart said, adding that he observed a decline in voter turnout in more Trump-supportive areas like the Interstate 81 and US-11 corridor.
Stewart appeared to place most of the blame on the "establishment" wing of the Republican Party.
Previously, Stewart was dismissed from his post as Trump's Virginia co-chairman after holding a protest in front of the RNC HQ on Capitol Hill over what he considered the establishment's "sabotage" of Trump.