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Republican Chairman Wants Crabill to Step Aside

Rosalind Helderman

No, Bob McDonnell is not attending an upcoming fundraiser with Republican House of Delegates candidate Catherine Crabill. Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling won't be there either. Attorney general candidate Ken Cuccinelli II also will not appear with Crabill.

In fact, the Republican Party of Virginia has formally decided it will be giving Crabill no support for her campaign against Del. Albert Pollard, and chairman Pat Mullins has sent word to Crabill that he would prefer that she step aside and not run for the seat.

Crabill, who is the Republican nominee running in Virginia's Northern Neck, has said the federal government might have played a role in the Oklahoma City bombing. She was caught on video recently advocating "resorting to the bullet box" if her supporters do not win at the "ballot box."

Top campaign aides for McDonnell opponent Creigh Deeds were asked during a press call today about a report, erroneous it turns out, that McDonnell and Bolling would soon be campaigning with Crabill.

Deeds media strategist Mo Elleithee said he had no information about the report but added: "I don't know very many people who agree with that position. Creigh certainly doesn't agree with that position."

And, as it turns out, neither do McDonnell, Bolling, Cuccinelli or the Republican Party of Virginia.

Some Democrats have been hoping Crabill's name would come up on the campaign trail and would like to see the Virginia GOP get tarred with their candidate's "bullet box" comment. Friday's vigorous response from leading Republicans indicates that they plan to do everything they can to avoid becoming associated with her campaign.

To the statements:

From Republican Party of Virginia Chairman Pat Mullins:
"We do not condone or support the comments Catherine Crabill has made. That kind of talk has no place in civil political discourse. She has received no assistance from the state party, nor will she in the future."

From Tucker Martin, spokesman for McDonnell:
"It's absolutely wrong for any candidate of any party to refer to the actions of the President of the United States and members of the United States Congress as 'domestic terrorism,' and to threaten to resort to violence if one fails to prevail in elections," Martin said, in what he said was his first public comment on the issue. "We disavow Catherine Crabill's comments and know that they do not reflect the sentiments of Republicans across the Commonwealth of Virginia. Republicans, Democrats and Independents in Virginia have a history of civil discourse and we will not campaign for or with Catherine Crabill."

From Matt Wells of the Bolling camp:
"Lieutenant Governor Bolling disagrees strongly with Ms. Crabill's comments and he rejects those comments in the strongest possible terms. Comments like these have no place in a political campaign. Ms. Crabill was clearly speaking for herself, not for Lieutenant Governor Bolling, any of our other statewide candidates, or the Republican Party of Virginia. We have no plans to campaign for or with Ms. Crabill."

And, rounding out the denunciations, from Chris LaCivita of Cuccinelli's campaign:
"Our campaign has no intention of campaigning with Catherine Crabill," he said. "Our campaign does not believe in using violence or threats of violence in a manner to entice people to vote."

We've reached out to Crabill for a response and will update when we receive one.

UPDATE: The Democratic Party of Virginia responded to this item with one line Friday evening: "Why did it take 29 days?"

By Rosalind Helderman  |  August 14, 2009; 4:00 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Lieutenant Governor's Race , Bill Bolling , Creigh Deeds , Election 2009 , Ken Cuccinelli , Robert F. McDonnell , Rosalind Helderman  
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What took them so long?

Posted by: gsquared100 | August 14, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

It only took them 29 days to do this. How long did it take Obama to condemn Rev. Jeremiah Wright? YEARS...

Frankly, this was a huge gift to McDonnell / Bolling / Cuccinelli -- their very own "Sista Soulja" moment. Remember when candidate Bill Clinton disavowed her rantings and placed him firmly in the center? Same thing here.

Posted by: JTR555 | August 17, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Well, it would be prudent to gather all facts before writing and publishing an article/commentary. Once again the "bullet box" quote has been taken out of context. Have you not viewed the entire video of the speech Crabill gave at the Tea Party? Crabill was quoting Patrick Henry. Please don't be one of those listed in your article who continues disseminate wrong/misleading information or to believe such. Again, with posting only 1:33 minutes of the speech! Here is the link to the entire video recording of the speech IF you or others sincerely want to hear/know the whole context: Really disappointed but not surprised! Where is your journalistic integrity of finding the truth? Signed, A long time, born + raised, resident of the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Posted by: nltstanley | August 19, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse

When passionate patriots are disenfranchised and marginalized by their own party, it's truly time to vote them ALL ou.t and replace them with more Catherine Crabills. Bob McDonnell and Bill Bolling have been side-stepping the constitution for years but it truly surprises me and is quite disappointing that Cuccinelli would reject the words of a patriot like Patrick Henry being passed on by Crabill.

Posted by: dljholt | August 19, 2009 6:41 PM | Report abuse

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