Ed Gillespie: Republican Candidate
This isn’t the first time I’ve advocated for Ed Gillespie for a school assignment. In 8th grade, for my “International Studies” class, I created a mock political campaign ad for Gillespie, in his Senate race against Mark Warner. He lost then, but by a margin much less than he was supposed to, presumably giving hope for his gubernatorial aspirations.
During the primaries, I first thought I supported Corey Stewart. I’d been riding the anti-establishment train, and Stewart seemed like my guy. However, he soon proved to not only be in support of keeping confederate monuments, but almost in support of confederates themselves, which is disgusting to me (my family is from New Jersey, I have no personal connection to “southern pride”).
Though I supported him in the 8th grade, I had a hard time coming around to rallying behind Gillespie this time around. He seemed to live up to Stewart’s characterization of “establishment Ed.” However, I came to realize that Gillespie isn’t just my default support, he’s actually a fantastic candidate.
He is a likeable guy, though not overly charismatic. He certainly can’t claim to be anti-establishment, or even an outsider, and his message is far different from the populist campaigning of President Trump. Still, he’s run a campaign that puts forward realistic policy solutions over flashy soundbites. He’s talked honestly about a variety of issues facing Virginians, and unlike his opponent, hasn’t shown ambiguity on important issues facing our state, like the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley pipelines. Nor has Gillespie flip-flopped on issues like Northam, who just this week switched his longstanding stance on Sanctuary cities. Where Northam has shown unwillingness to take a stand for fear of alienating voters, Gillespie has given outlined and definitive stances on almost every issue.
Virginia has been plagued with corruption for far too long, from the McDonnell scandal to the Clinton-McAuliffe political machine. It is time for a change. Ed Gillespie will bring integrity and honor back to the Executive Mansion. Though not perfect, Ed Gillespie will prove to be an effective, sensible, and able governor for all Virginians.
Read about his opponent, Northam, here