Virginia’s Democrat gubernatorial candidate, who has often been pitched as a moderate, recently joined a far-left state House delegate on the campaign trail.
Last weekend, Terry McAuliffe campaigned in the Stafford area with Del. Joshua Cole (D-VA-28), knocking on doors with the first-term delegate.
Cole is known for his anti-police sentiments, which include his recent vote to end qualified immunity for Virginia’s police officers, opening them up to civil liability for job-related incidents.
In a bid to remove law enforcement presence from Virginia’s schools, Cole also voted for H.B. 257, which, among other provisions, ends the requirement that school officials report stalking, sexual battery, threats against schools, and threats against teachers to police.
McAuliffe, who served as Virginia’s governor from 2014 to 2018, is seeking his second non-consecutive term as the state’s highest elected official. He squares off with businessman Glenn Youngkin in November.
Youngkin’s campaign responded to McAuliffe’s campaign outing with Cole.
“Terry McAuliffe turned his back on law enforcement, and now is endorsing and campaigning with far-left, anti-police politicians pushing policies that put criminals first and victims last,” Youngkin spokesman Christian Martinez told The Virginia Star. “McAuliffe’s anti-police agenda will lead to law enforcement officers being targeted with frivolous lawsuits and personally bankrupted just for doing their job. That’s why Virginia sheriffs have warned that a McAuliffe victory in November will trigger mass retirements among police officers.”
Aside from linking himself to Cole, McAuliffe has accepted endorsements from two virulently anti-police organizations, New Virginia Majority and the National Abortion and Reproduction Rights Action League Virginia (NARAL).
“Defund the police, fund Black futures,” New Virginia Majority said in a June 2020 tweet.
Defund the police, fund Black futures. https://t.co/XaX1zqviOf
— New Virginia Majority (@NewVAMajority) June 4, 2020
That group has also called police “agents of white supremacy.”
— New Virginia Majority (@NewVAMajority) March 26, 2021
NARAL also blasted police in 2020, during the height of the George Floyd riots that took place nationwide.
“ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. Defund the police. Invest in Black communities. Tell Donald Trump to resign,” the group said.
📣 ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.
— NARAL Pro-Choice VA (@NARALVirginia) June 21, 2020
“Terry McAuliffe proudly accepted the endorsement an extreme organization which supports taxpayer funded abortion, supports late term abortions, and wants to defund the police,” Macaulay Porter, a spokesperson for Republican Glenn Youngkin’s campaign told The Star at the time of the NARAL endorsement. “The majority of Virginians do not support McAuliffe’s extreme pro-abortion and anti-police agenda.”
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Pete D’Abrosca is a contributor at The Virginia Star and The Star News Network. Follow Pete on Twitter. Email tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo “Joshua Cole and Terry McAuliffe” by Joshua Cole.