Gilmore Repays Loan; Campaign Calls Warner a "Liar"
Republican U.S. Senate candidate James S. Gilmore III has repaid himself the $50,000 he lent his campaign last month, according to campaign finance reports.
On May 11, Gilmore lent his campaign the money as he prepared to face Del. Robert G. Marshall (R-Prince William) at the state GOP convention. At the time, Ana Gamonal, a Gilmore spokeswoman, said the loan was meant to "show his supporters and his donors his own commitment to electing a steady and common-sense senator for the commonwealth of Virginia."
But the money has been repaid, according to the finance reports. "That was just something we did to get a little cash flow to get ready for the convention and we raised the money so we paid it back," M. Boyd Marcus, a Gilmore strategist, said today.
According to Gilmore's finance reports, Gilmore raised about $480,000 from April 1 to June 30, about half which he collected after May 21. Gilmore has about $117,000 in the bank after repaying his personal loan. His Democratic opponent, Mark R. Warner, has $5.1 million in the bank. Warner is using his 44 to 1 cash advantage to launch a new round of television ads on his energy policies.
Unable to respond with an ad of its own, Gilmore's campaign has taken to calling Warner a "liar."
"When you look at Warner's disdain for the truth, it makes you think that you are watching the Jim Carrey move 'Liar, Liar'," Gamonal said, referring to Warner's claim in his ad that he supports more domestic oil production.
Warner has stated in the past that he supports drilling offshore for natural gas, but he was hesitant to embrace drilling for oil. Gilmore wants to drill for both.
Warner's ad includes footage of an offshore oil rig.
"As far as Mark Warner is concerned, there apparently is no lie too big to tell to the voters of Virginia when he's running for election," Gamonal said of Warner's ad.
Kevin Hall, a Warner spokesman, responded, "The ad is consistent with Governor Warner's clear position that offshore drilling is simply one tool in a broad range of actions we should take to reduce our country's dependence on foreign oil. However, Jim Gilmore is the only one who claims that it's some kind of silver bullet to lower gas prices today."
But Del. Jeffrey M. Frederick (R-Prince William), the chairman of the Virginia Republican Party, called Warner's ad "pure fiction" and "nothing short of a high-priced fantasy."
"This commercial is an insult to Virginians' intelligence," Frederick said in a statement. "Once again Mark Warner has read the polls and changed course. He may try to erase peoples' memories, but he cannot erase his sorry record on energy independence."
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