Northam, Campaign Deny Approving Race-Baiting Ad; Column Shows Otherwise

Every day that goes by continues to generate more controversy for Ralph Northam, the Democratic candidate for governor of Virginia, regarding a minute-long commercial that attempts to portray Republicans in the Old Dominion as race-baiting, Confederate flag-waving villains.

Even though the Latino Victory Fund has pulled the hostile ad, the controversy has reached the point when Northam had to personally go on television and claim that “the commercial did not come from our campaign, and it’s certainly not a commercial that I would have wanted to run.”

All the while, American Commitment President Phil Kerpen did some digging and found that, in reality, the Northam campaign was more linked to the infamous ad than they've been letting on. Of course, the news media could have discovered this too, but that's not how the liberal media operates.

Also in that video, a male journalist from Norfolk NBC affiliate WAVY-10 quoted Republican gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie as stating: “It is outrageous that Lieutenant Governor Northam continues to embrace that ad. It reveals a disdain for his fellow Virginians.” The narrator then asked Northam: “Does he repudiate this ad?”

Northam avoided answering the question by asserting that Gillespie “has run a campaign of negativity, of divisive ads, and it’s been offensive to a lot of communities in Virginia, and so these communities have responded, and that’s their right.”

“We pressed Northam to clarify more why he isn’t distancing himself from the Latino Victory Fund ad,” the narrator continued.

“That commercial did not come from our campaign. It’s certainly not a commercial that I would have wanted to run.”

However, a Thursday article by Kerpen on Medium.com did yeoman's work that the liberal media have refused to do in this election. In his piece, Kerpen asserted that the “murder-truck ad was a coordinated communication worth $62,769.”

As if things weren’t bad enough for Northam, Kerpen reported that on the very same day he tried to distance himself from the controversy, his campaign made a filing that officially disclosed the commercial “was accepted as an in-kind contribution” to the Northam for Governor campaign.

Kerpen explained the situation:

Virginia campaign law is very different from federal law. In federal races, outside groups conduct independent expenditures and are strictly prohibited from coordinating with official campaigns.

In Virginia, independent expenditures are allowed -- but so are communications that are directly coordinated with the campaign.

“As a result,” Kerpen noted, “the in-kind disclosure from the Northam campaign confirms that the murder-truck ad was not independent of the campaign, but was a coordinated communication.”

“The Northam campaign was asked about the glaring discrepancy between their public statements and official filings,” Kerpen stated, “and offered this curious response: ‘We did not authorize the ad. They have held fund-raisers for us.'”

“Everything they have done in this race, including the murder-truck ad, was coordinated with the Northam campaign and disclosed by the Northam campaign,” he added.

“Why would a campaign allow coordinated communications to go out without reviewing their content?” the columnist asked. “The only reason I can think of is to preserve willful ignorance.”

Kerpen then stated:

The plain fact is Ralph Northam thought this ad would work to boost flagging turnout among Democrat-leaning minority voters in Northern Virginia.

Even when he was faced with initial public backlash, he refused to disavow the ad -- doing so only after an actual murder-truck attack took place, driven not by a Gillespie-supporting tea partier, but by a jihadi immigrant.

As NewsBusters previously reported, the minute-long ad -- entitled “American Nightmare” -- depicted a large pick-up truck with a Gillespie campaign sticker, flying a large Confederate flag and displaying a “Don’t Tread on Me” front license plate while chasing down a group of minority children, including a Muslim girl wearing a hijab, an African-American boy and two young Latinos.

Then on Tuesday, responses to the make-believe ad indicated that it mirrored an actual murder involving a 17-year-old Muslim girl wearing a hijab who was chased down in Sterling, Virginia, by a suspect in a vehicle. According to police reports, the suspect then abducted and murdered the young girl with a baseball bat, and he is actually an illegal immigrant.

The elections in New Jersey and Virginia also drew the attention of the National Public Radio All Things Considered program, where GOP candidates were criticized for releasing attack ads claiming their Democratic opponents would not enforce immigration laws and would endanger people living in those states.”

Apparently, for the people in the Northam campaign, next Tuesday -- Election Day -- can’t arrive soon enough. Check back on the NewsBusters site for further developments on this controversy.


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