Donald Trump’s Virginia chairman Corey Stewart called Hillary Clinton’s running mate, Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA), a “non-factor” in Virginia ahead of Kaine’s hometown event in Richmond, Virginia Monday night.
“Virginia voters view Tim Kaine as a non-factor. In Virginia, which is right next to the nation’s capital, we really don’t pay much attention to our federal delegation,” Stewart explained during an interview with Breitbart News on Friday morning, expressing criticism of Kaine as Virginia’s 70th governor. “Virginians love their governor, but they quickly forget them.”
Stewart, who is serving as the Trump for President Virginia Chairman is also Chairman of the Prince William Board of County Supervisors. According to the Washington Post, Stewart plans to campaign in 2017 to be Virginia’s governor.
Kaine served as governor of Virginia between 2006 and 2010. “He wasn’t hated in Virginia, but he wasn’t loved either…I would be very surprised if he’s much of a factor at all,” Stewart speculated.
But retired Democrat Virginia state senator Henry Marsh, who was volunteering at the Clinton campaign headquarters on Sunday ahead of Kaine’s rally on Monday night told the local CBS affiliate in Richmond, Virginia, WTVR, that he thinks Kaine will be received well in his home state.
“I have a theory: candidates don’t win or lose elections. It’s the supporters, supporters of the candidate. That’s why I’m here volunteering,” Marsh explained, adding that he thinks Clinton and Kaine will win the state in November.
Trump is currently behind Clinton by roughly five points in the state, according to the Real Clear Politics Virginia polling average.
“Virginia voters are very concerned by the hollowing out of jobs in the coal industry, of the decline of America’s military,” Stewart explained when asked what issues Virginia voters are paying the most attention to in this election. “There are over 800,000 veterans in Virginia. They’re very concerned about the VA and the lack of adequate healthcare for veterans.”
Stewart also added that the leaked Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails, which showed the DNC favoring Clinton over her rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), have turned some Sanders supporters into Trump voters.
“In northern Virginia in particular, the main stream media and the Clinton campaign have really downplayed — tried to downplay — the significance and the anger the people feel who were Bernie supporters,” he explained. “I have spoken to several former Bernie supporters who are just so disgusted with Hillary Clinton that they are actually going to vote for Donald Trump and a lot more who are just going to stay home.”
Stewart also went after Kaine’s record in Virginia, telling Breitbart News there were “tens of thousands” of manufacturing jobs lost in Virginia under his watch.
“During the Kaine administration, unemployment went up four percent and he’s largely seen in Virginia as a failed governor and then you add on top of that the scandals — involving $160,000 worth of gifts, including a trip to the Caribbean, to people that were doing business with the governor and with the state,” he added.
“There was a transaction in the Charlottesville area where there was a failed development and Tim Kaine got the state government to purchase the property from his friend at an inflated price,” Stewart alleged, referencing a controversial sale of land several years ago that became Biscuit Run State Park.
In 2011, Kaine said he thought the sale “was a very good deal.”
A recent Morning Consult poll showed that when voters were told about Kaine’s political perks — receiving gifts and a vacation from Virginia investors — they’re view of him became less favorable.
“All of this is going to make Hillary Clinton very much regret choosing Tim Kaine as her running mate,” Stewart declared.
Kaine is holding an event Monday evening in his hometown of Richmond, Virginia, but Stewart doesn’t think it will draw much of a crowd.
“It will be interesting because I’d be surprised if 20 people go to that Tim Kaine event in Richmond,” Stewart jabbed.“There’s such a low level of energy for the Democrats this time around.”
“All the energy in the room is with the Trump campaign — I’ve never seen anything like it,” he added.