The Los Angeles Times ran a story on Wednesday reporting that California State Senator Steven Knight (R-Palmdale) had told fellow Republican Assemblyman Tim Donnelly “not to participate” in walking “precincts for him in Santa Clarita this weekend.”
Donnelly is, in fact, campaigning for Sen. Knight in his bid for Congress to succeed Rep. Howard McKeon (R-Santa Clarita), who announced his retirement in January of this year. Donnelly sent out an email on Tuesday in which he stated “I am writing to let you know that I am supporting Senator Steve Knight for Congress.”
Breitbart News reached out to both Sen. Knight and Assemblyman Donnelly to get their statements on the Times story, and both men blasted the newspaper.
Senator Knight issued the following statement to Breitbart News:
What began as a mix up between our campaign staffs over a walk, became something more when stoked by my opponent demanding that I renounce Tim Donnelly. Instead, when I said that there was no walk scheduled, and that I’d communicated it to my former colleague, that he would not be walking with me this weekend, my desperate opponent worked to turn this into a headline. The fact is, people support me because of my stance on economic impact, education, and issues that affect their lives and understand that this community is my home and first priority.
The Times piece also suggests that Knight may have intentionally distanced himself from the assemblyman by writing that Donnelly is “arguably the Legislature’s most outspoken conservative.
Donnelly issued the following response to Breitbart News:
It is amazing how brazen the leftists who run media outlets such as the LA Times. They are not content to report the truth, but instead they tell half-truths, call it “reporting,” while completely ignoring other stories that are legitimate news stories, but don’t fit the narrative they’ve decided to push.
Steve Knight is my friend, and I am committed to helping him win this election over the anti-hunting establishment candidate, Tony Strickland, who is backed by the Karl Rove wing of the GOP that will do or say anything to get into power.
Knight is seeking election against former state legislator and fellow Republican Tony Strickland. The Times wrote that Strickland “also weighed in Wednesday, imploring Knight to ‘cancel the appearance of such a divisive, out-of-the-mainstream figure as Donnelly,'” according to a statement they had received from Strickland’s campaign manager Evan Handy.
Donnelly expressed in Tuesday’s email to his constituents that Strickland’s views on the Second Amendment stand in stark contrast with those held by Knight and as both men “have fought shoulder-to-shoulder to defend our 2nd Amendment Constitutional Civil rights in the California State Assembly.”
Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz