South Carolina Snub? Trump Skips NJ and VA to Campaign with McMaster
Guadagno and Gillespie Both Said They’d Campaign with Trump
With less than a month left in the 2017 election season, President Trump is finally hitting the road for a gubernatorial candidate.
But oddly enough, he’s not headed to Virginia or New Jersey, the states with races in 2017. Instead, he’s flying to South Carolina to raise money for Gov. Henry McMaster, who isn’t up for election until 2018.
By doing so, he’s snubbing New Jersey Republican Kim Guadagno and Virginia Republican Ed Gillespie, both of whom said they wanted President Trump’s help. And both candidates have decided to model their campaign messaging like Trump’s. For whatever reason, he seems uninterested in taking them up on their invitations.
And it’s not like he’s abandoning them for a surefire winner. By all accounts, McMaster is struggling candidate who may not even win his own primary as a sitting governor – which has prompted some to question whether he’s the “Luther Strange” of South Carolina.
“The big political question of 2017 is whether Donald Trump will campaign with the Republican gubernatorial candidates before November 7th,” said DGA Communications Director Jared Leopold. “It’s unprecedented for a president to skip both New Jersey and Virginia – yet the president seems to already have his eyes on 2018. Ed Gillespie and Kim Guadagno have asked Trump for his help, but so far, he’s ignored them. What is keeping him from participating in the two most important races of the year?”
Guadagno: “We Should Be Lucky to Have Him [Trump] Come Into Our State and Took Look at This Campaign Quite Frankly as Something That is Important Enough for Him to Come in and Campaign for Us.” During a NJTV debate, Guadagno was asked if she would campaign with Trump:
Kim Guadagno: I don’t think we should argue with that. I think we can agree on something there. I think that he is the President of the United States, he is duly elected President of the United and we should be lucky to have him come into our state and took look at this campaign quite frankly as something that is important enough for him to come in and campaign for us. Because we know he does have a golf course here.” [NJTV Primary Debate, 5/18/17]
Gillespie Said He Would Accept President Trump’s Help Campaigning, “Help From President Trump, Vice President Pence, I’m Happy To Have All The Help I Can Get.” In May 2017, while on NBC4, Gillespie was asked about Trump’s campaigning in Virginia. “Reporter: The frontrunner Ed Gillespie has kept his distance, rarely mentioning Trump. Though he did tell me last week that he’d accept the President’s help, if he becomes the GOP nominee as expected.Gillespie: I want to have everybody who’s willing to help me come in and help. You know, this is going to be a tough race and so obviously help from President Trump, Vice President Pence, I’m happy to have all the help I can get.” [NBC4, 5/18/17]