The 2017 Republican Primary demonstrated that Virginia Republicans have an opportunity this year to expand our voting base and grow the tent to new heights. Gubernatorial primary contender Corey Stewart surged on a platform of ending illegal immigration, disposing of criminal alien gangs, and standing up for our shared history, blazing a trail for other Republican candidates to embrace those issues.
Many months ago, this blog and others published an endless stream of articles condemning Stewart’s platform and deriding his supporters as rednecks and white nationalists. That arrogance (thankfully) gave way to humility and introspection, and a more rational perspective has taken root.
That’s no anomaly: despite early protest, the Republican Party of Virginia and its candidates have embraced Virginia’s history and taken a combative stance against the scourge of illegal immigration and criminal alien crime. Internal polls have confirmed what Stewart’s campaign anticipated: Virginians overwhelmingly oppose the radical left’s prescription of sanctuary cities and total political correctness. By standing up for them, and against the radical left, the RPV has earned the advantage it needs to carry the Republican ticket across the finish line this November – with record social media engagement and the polling to prove it.
Today, we have a more confident, united, and expanded party – and no candidate has embraced the opportunity it presents better than Jill Vogel.
While Stewart primary voters in Western, Southwest, and Central Virginia largely supported LG primary candidate Bryce Reeves, Corey’s voting base in Northern Virginia – where both Stewart and Vogel reside – overwhelmingly supported Jill Vogel. As a result, Jill was uniquely positioned to reach out to Team Stewart, several members of which she subsequently hired for the general election.
The involvement of staffers Jack Morgan and Waverly Woods, and the engagement of Stewart voters and activists, contrary to the assumptions of the wailing few, has made Jill the favorite to win the Lieutenant Governor’s race. Just as importantly, the Vogel campaign has set the standard by which campaigns can benefit from embracing Stewart’s voters and the issues they care about and expand the Republican tent.
This Saturday, Jill is scheduled to speak at Corey Stewart’s annual fall festival; on Sunday, she, along with Stewart and Adams, headlines the “Bikers for Trump” rally in Hampton Roads. On display will be a bigger, bolder Republican party, led by the candidates, operatives, and activists who understand the importance of fighting for its voters. That’s significant and sets the tone for the final month of this election, and the battles we have ahead.
Now let’s win.