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ICYMI: Amanda Chase Mounts Spoiler Independent Run After Being Shoved Out Of VA GOP Nominating Process
In case you missed it, the Virginia Republican Party on Saturday voted to hold a nominating convention rather than a primary this year. Far-right, firebrand candidate Amanda Chase, who had said she would only seek the Republican nomination through a primary, has already announced she will run as an independent, setting up a nasty fight for the Trump base from now until November – something sure to doom Republican prospects of winning in 2021.
In fact, the VA GOP mudslinging has already started with Kirk Cox calling Chase’s antics “tiresome” and declaring that “principled, conservative Republicans will never tolerate the demagogue she has become.” Doesn’t seem like the words of a confident candidate to us. Meanwhile, Chase told her supporters that the VA GOP has “demonstrated consistently that they are out of touch with the people of Virginia.” Even outgoing U.S. Rep. Denver Riggleman, who has tossed around the idea of his own independent bid got in the fun calling the VA GOP “a raging dumpster fire.”
With 11 months to go, the fight to try and secure the extreme wing of the VA GOP will only intensify and, with tensions as high as these, there seems to be no chance that the party base will ever unify around a single candidate. As Chase herself described the fight after the VA GOP’s controversial decision, “I’m not the one splitting the vote — they are.”
Read more about the VA GOP Civil War here:
The Washington Post: Va. Republicans pick convention over primary to navigate Trumpism in 2021 governor’s race
The GOP’s State Central Committee — some spooked by the notion that state Sen. Amanda F. Chase (R-Chesterfield) might snag the party nod in a primary — approved the nomination method in a virtual Facebook meeting after about five hours of debate and parliamentary gymnastics.
Independent bids are typically long shots in Virginia, but some Republicans fear that Chase, a flamboyant figure who at a summer rally paired an elephant-patterned skirt with an AR-15, could pull away enough votes from the GOP nominee to hand the Executive Mansion to the Democrats.
Richmond Times-Dispatch: Chase says she’ll run for governor as independent after GOP votes to pick nominees in convention
“It’s the only way to bypass the political consultants and the Republican establishment elite,” [Chase] wrote in a Facebook post, stressing that she remains a Republican but will not seek the party’s nomination in a convention.
An independent bid by Chase could split the GOP vote with the Republican nominee, whether that ends up being former Speaker of the House Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, or another Republican who has not yet entered the contest.
The Virginian-Pilot: Virginia GOP will hold convention to pick 2021 candidates, leading Chase to announce independent bid
Former House Speaker Kirk Cox, who is seeking the Republican nomination for governor next year, unleashed the most blistering attack of the campaign on his opponent, saying her decision to run as an independent now is the latest in a series of “antics” that “have long grown tiresome” and that loyal conservatives would not put up with “the demagogue she has become.”
Virginia Mercury: Amanda Chase says she’ll run as independent for governor, rejecting GOP convention
An independent run by Chase would almost certainly hurt the GOP’s chances in the general election, a point Chase acknowledged, writing that the party “has known since February that I will only run in a primary. If a convention is chosen, it will be the (Republican Party of Virginia) that splits the vote.”