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Does Creigh Deeds Have a Stutter?

Rosalind Helderman

As the National Stuttering Association releases a statement condemning comments made recently by McDonnell supporter Sheila Johnson, in which she mocked Democrat Creigh Deeds's speaking style, his consultants fielded question after question this afternoon about whether the Democrat, in fact, has a stutter.

"It's something he's dealt with his whole life," said senior adviser Mo Elleithee in a call with reporters. "He's never sought any type of medical attention for it."

So does he have a stutter? "He sometimes stumbles over his words. He's spoken that way his entire life. He's never sought medical attention for it. There are people out there who have much worse problems. Many of them stutter," Elleithee went on to say.

"Whether or not Creigh has a speaking issue is less important than their blanket indictment about people who have speech impediments," he said.

Which, by the way, is the stance of the association as well: "Do you also make fun of people in wheelchairs, or do you believe that stuttering is the only disability it's okay to ridicule?" the group wrote in a statement.

By the way, wondering how that video got out on the Internet to start with? Elleithee acknowledged it was shot by a Deeds tracker and supplied to blogger Ben Tribbett. "We get this footage and share it in an number of ways. That's how we put it out today," he said.

By Rosalind Helderman  |  October 5, 2009; 4:06 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , Creigh Deeds , Election 2009 , Robert F. McDonnell , Rosalind Helderman  
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Next: Sheila Johnson Apologizes for Deeds Remark

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