Va. GOP Won't Use Obama's Middle Name
The Republican Party of Virginia said today it would follow the lead of the party's likely presidential nominee, John McCain, by not using Sen. Barack Obama's middle name in fundraising appeals or other campaign literature.
Earlier this month, the state party sent out a fundraising letter that called the Illinois senator "Barack Hussein Obama."
But Josh Noland, spokesman for the Virginia Republican Party, said today Virginia Republicans now plan to "stick to the issues." Obama is competing with Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D) for the Democratic presidential nomination.
The decision comes amid a controversy in Tennessee after the Tennessee Republican Party sent out a press release mentioning Obama's middle name. On Tuesday, McCain denounced GOP efforts to promote Obama's middle name.
"Any comment that is disparaging of either Senator Clinton or Senator Obama is totally inappropriate," McCain said.
After initially defending the decision, Tennessee GOP officials removed mentions of Obama's middle name from the state party website.
Looking ahead to a possible McCain-Obama campaign, Noland said Virginia Republicans "will just use Barack Obama" but he added, "if you look at the record of the two candidates, or lack there of, there will be plenty of opportunities for Senator McCain to show Americans he is the best American to be commander in chief."
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