How Corey Stewart is dividing Republicans already

The new Republican nominee for a US Senate seat in Virginia has already caused a great divide within his party in Was...

Posted: Jun 14, 2018 4:00 PM
Updated: Jun 14, 2018 4:00 PM

The new Republican nominee for a US Senate seat in Virginia has already caused a great divide within his party in Washington.

Fewer than 24 hours after Corey Stewart's win Tuesday night, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to endorse his former Virginia campaign chair.

But congressional Republicans are cool to the campaign of the man who has embraced the commonwealth's Confederate past.

"Well look, we have a big map. Right now we are focused on Florida, North Dakota, Missouri, Indiana. Big map. I don't see Virginia in it," Sen. Cory Gardner, the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the campaign arm for Senate Republicans.

Stewart has been campaigning non-stop in Virginia for more than two years. Within days of his narrow primary loss for governor in 2017 to former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie, Stewart announced plans to challenge incumbent Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine. Over the course of those two years, Stewart passionately argued against the removal of Confederate monuments throughout Virginia and defended the actions of some involved in the Charlottesville white supremacist rally that ended in violence.

Stewart is also a vocal supporter of Trump, and served as his campaign chair in Virginia before Trump fired him after he staged a news conference critical of the RNC during the presidential campaign. Trump conspicuously stayed out of the primary, but wasted little time backing Stewart with a tweet Wednesday.

"Congratulations to Corey Stewart for his great victory for Senator from Virginia. Now he runs against a total stiff, Tim Kaine, who is weak on crime and borders, and wants to raise your taxes through the roof," Trump tweeted. "Don't underestimate Corey, a major chance of winning!"

Asked about Trump's support, Gardner tried to downplay the divide.

"Well again, I think my focus continues to be on a number of states that we have candidates who are winning and ahead," said Gardner, a Colorado Republican.

Stewart's opponent, Kaine, was critical of Stewart's embrace of the Confederacy.

"I don't really think it's about Confederate flags and Confederate monuments, I would say it's more about cozying up to people who have a tradition of white supremacy," said Kaine, who was the 2016 Democratic nominee for vice president. "I mean, this isn't about the past, it's about the future."

But he stopped short of calling Stewart a racist.

"I think he is very comfortable trying to stir up bad attitudes in others, but I don't know him well enough to reach that conclusion about him," Kaine said. "But if you don't mind stoking it and praising people who have those views, that's just unacceptable."

Sen. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican and the No. 2 GOP member of the chamber, said of Stewart that he didn't "know him from Adam so I'm interested in learning more and I'll reach my own conclusion."

"I don't really know anything about Corey Stewart," Cornyn told reporters. "I just saw that he won the primary last night. I'm interested in meeting him and learning more about him. Obviously, if we could pick up another Senate seat in Virginia that would be a good thing."

Sen. John Thune, a South Dakota Republican who's also in leadership, also weighed in.

"Sometimes in a primary process, the thing that we try to get done is get the most electable candidate on the ballot in the fall and that doesn't always happen," Thune said.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 96734

Reported Deaths: 2060
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hennepin27177931
Ramsey10985320
Dakota7585126
Anoka6182135
Stearns404524
Washington384155
Scott260333
Olmsted247328
Nobles197516
Blue Earth17146
Wright16647
St. Louis161841
Carver14297
Clay141140
Rice13438
Mower13365
Sherburne116114
Kandiyohi10262
Winona90618
Lyon7134
Waseca6898
Benton5583
Steele5532
Freeborn5444
Nicollet54217
Crow Wing53318
Watonwan5304
Chisago5071
Todd5022
McLeod4942
Le Sueur4724
Otter Tail4454
Beltrami4405
Martin42610
Goodhue3769
Itasca33914
Pine3360
Douglas3262
Polk3164
Isanti3071
Becker2802
Carlton2711
Morrison2642
Dodge2480
Pipestone23010
Cottonwood2270
Chippewa2191
Meeker2072
Wabasha2010
Brown1952
Sibley1953
Yellow Medicine1872
Cass1824
Unassigned18052
Rock1760
Murray1702
Redwood1703
Mille Lacs1653
Renville1568
Jackson1501
Faribault1460
Swift1421
Houston1270
Kanabec1268
Roseau1240
Fillmore1230
Koochiching1233
Pennington1201
Lincoln1150
Hubbard1111
Stevens1051
Pope980
Big Stone830
Aitkin811
Wadena690
Wilkin663
Grant624
Lac qui Parle601
Lake590
Marshall531
Norman530
Mahnomen481
Red Lake451
Traverse310
Clearwater280
Lake of the Woods231
Kittson120
Cook60

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 86239

Reported Deaths: 1307
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk15962262
Woodbury550964
Johnson514727
Black Hawk450090
Linn4078112
Story345317
Dubuque328341
Scott302028
Dallas279838
Pottawattamie214139
Buena Vista199212
Marshall179034
Sioux16463
Wapello133457
Webster127214
Plymouth115521
Clinton112421
Muscatine111155
Crawford10915
Cerro Gordo105821
Warren9656
Jasper84532
Des Moines7978
Marion7637
Henry7464
Tama73231
Carroll6745
Lee6397
Wright5921
Dickinson5286
Boone5118
Bremer4957
Washington46611
Louisa42915
Delaware4103
Mahaska41019
Floyd3523
Franklin35018
Jackson3503
Winneshiek3396
Lyon3324
Clay3284
Hamilton3273
Benton3241
Winnebago31513
Hardin3041
Poweshiek3048
Buchanan2851
Jones2763
Kossuth2740
Butler2712
Shelby2671
Clarke2663
Emmet26510
Allamakee2646
Clayton2613
Chickasaw2570
Sac2570
Cherokee2512
Cedar2501
Guthrie2456
Harrison2413
Fayette2272
Grundy2233
Madison2232
Iowa2131
Palo Alto2030
Mitchell1910
Howard1906
Humboldt1903
Hancock1882
Calhoun1853
Mills1811
Page1700
Cass1692
Osceola1680
Pocahontas1632
Monroe15911
Monona1571
Lucas1566
Appanoose1393
Jefferson1391
Union1373
Taylor1311
Davis1274
Fremont1220
Ida1221
Van Buren1141
Keokuk1091
Worth1080
Greene1010
Montgomery975
Wayne872
Audubon821
Adair721
Decatur670
Ringgold522
Adams330
Unassigned230
Rochester
Clear
46° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 41°
Mason City
Overcast
48° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 44°
Albert Lea
Overcast
48° wxIcon
Hi: 56° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 46°
Austin
Broken Clouds
48° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 45°
Feels Like: 44°
Charles City
Broken Clouds
46° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 43°
Much Cooler Week Ahead
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Chamber golf outing declared another success

Image

Survey: 51% burned out working from home

Image

Future of Silver Lake Pool uncertain

Image

Saving children from sex trafficking

Image

Olmsted County candidates discuss issues

Image

Court of appeals issues landmark ruling

Image

Pigskin Preview 2020: LeRoy Ostrander

Image

Sara's Evening Forecast - Monday

Image

Increase in permit to carry applications

Image

Elder Network aims to improves lives of seniors

Community Events