Reprinted with permission from Shareblue.
The crowd at Virginia’s Senate debate Saturday erupted in a mixture of laughter and boos after Republican candidate Corey Stewart claimed Trump “is standing up to the Russians.” In reality, Trump’s inability to stand up to Russia’s attack on America’s election is looking like a problem for Republicans seeking office in 2018.
Stewart is currently seeking the U.S. Senate seat held by Democratic senator Tim Kaine. He’s been part of the Republican chorus playing down the investigation into Russia’s election hacking, and has indicated that if he’s elected he would work with the rest of the party to undermine it.
When the topic came up at the debate, Kaine said Congress had a role to play in protecting the independence of investigators like special counsel Robert Mueller.
As part of his response, Stewart defended Trump and asserted, “We have a president who is standing up to the Russians.”
The obviously false assertion was a bridge too far for the audience, who laughed in shock at Stewart and his claim.
Republicans who align themselves with Trump are being held accountable as Trump fecklessness trickles down on to their individual campaigns.
Stewart is definitely in the mold of a Trump Republican. And after Steward won his primary, Trump praised and endorsed him. Trump wrote, “Don’t underestimate Corey, a major chance of winning!”
Like Trump, Stewart is a racist.
He wouldn’t condemn the white supremacists who rioted in Charlottesville, Virginia. He called Paul Nehlen, the self-described “pro-white” candidate running for Paul Ryan’s Wisconsin seat a “personal hero.”
And Stewart has repeatedly defended keeping up monuments to the pro-slavery Confederacy.
Now on the campaign trail, Stewart has defended fellow traveler Trump from criticism about his weakness on Russia. And he was laughed at for doing so.
This is the state of the Republican Party under Trump.