Democratic Virginia Governor Ralph Northam in the US capital
Northern Virginia: Virginia’s tight governor’s race heats up as Trump teases last-minute rally for Youngkin
Last week: On Wednesday, ESPN, a unit of Disney which also owns Disney News, pulled its “Monday Night Football” TV special live from Virginia after determining that right-wing leader Candace Owens planned to be among the speakers.
On Friday: Dr Daniel Youngkin, a Republican who lost the most recent election to Democratic incumbent Governor Ralph Northam, tweeted that President Donald Trump will soon campaign for him and give a key-note address for Virginia’s Republican Governors Association.
And on Tuesday: Two hours after all other GOP candidates had wrapped up their speeches, Virginia’s Republican gubernatorial nominee Ed Gillespie found himself on the defensive after it was revealed that a recorded phone call in which he makes a joke about the “Black Lives Matter” movement gave the other side ammunition.
When US Senator John Cornyn made an appearance at a political rally in North Caroline this week, he ended up setting off a huge controversy by suggesting that America may be capable of moving beyond racism.
In an interview for an episode of his podcast, aired this week on The Volokh Conspiracy, the Texas Republican said the nation has “improved more than other societies in that regard.”
“In America, in particular, we are healthier, we are more mobile, we are better educated, we’re more tolerant and diverse, and I think that has allowed our country to overcome some of the demons that were alive, latent or present in so many other societies where we’ve seen this rise of extremism, where some of these ideologies have risen to the present day and become something that has to be confronted in our society,” Cornyn said.
“And I think we have, as a country, answered them, and you can still see that progress, to a point that other societies haven’t quite been able to.”
Cornyn’s comments came shortly after the justice department accused Germany and Austria of adopting far-right ideologies.
In April, US Attorney General Jeff Sessions described a US judge as a “hater” for ordering Confederate monuments to be removed in Charlottesville, Virginia.
President Donald Trump often touts how a free press applies “equal time” when it comes to analysing political campaigns, but he has taken particular aim at the news outlets that amplify unsubstantiated claims and illegitimate opposition research.
But as the road toward Election Day comes to a close, and an unprecedented race between a Democrat and a Republican led by President Donald Trump in Virginia heats up, the growing splintered GOP appear to be pulling more in one direction than the other.
Watch: Geoffrey Dickens and Walt Roland