Latino Group Runs Smear Ad Against Ed Gillespie

Minority children run from a pickup truck flying a Confederate flag in this Virginia governor's race advertisement

In likely one of the most controversial advertisements to have been made in recent history, a Latino voter group has suggested President Donald Trump and the Republican gubernatorial candidate in Virginia terrorize children.

On Monday, Latino Victory, an independent group aligned with the Democrats, posted an ad online that suggested Trump and supporters of Ed Gillespie, the Republican candidate for Virginia governor, are violent racists.

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Not just racists — but racist terrorists who threaten children with pickup trucks.

In the ad, two children — a young black boy and a girl wearing traditional Muslim garb — can be seen walking down a street on a sunny day. Two other children can be seen playing in a neighborhood.

A pickup truck with a Confederate flag waving is seen driving menacingly toward a boy.

Are you embarrassed that Joe Biden is our "president"?

Inside the Ford F-150 FX4, a white man wearing sunglasses and a baseball cap is driving, turning corners as he zeroes in on the four children.

He drives the truck, which has an Ed Gillespie bumper sticker displayed, toward the group of four children. They flee into an alley. They are cornered as the truck approaches, in what is now apparently nighttime.

Two of the children then wake up from the nightmare. A couple of parents can be seen watching the white supremacist march in Charlottesville, Virginia, on August 12, which resulted in the death of one counterprotester.

A narrator asks: “Is this what Donald Trump and Ed Gillespie mean by the American dream?”

The ad was immediately denounced by the Republican National Committee as a smear tactic in the closing days of the Virginia gubernatorial contest. Gillespie faces Democrat Ralph Northam.

“The Democrats’ closing argument is that Virginians not supporting their candidate are racist neo-Nazi sympathizers who want to chase down and murder minority children,” wrote RNC spokesman Michael Ahrens in a blast email to the press. “Not only is this ad disgusting, but it’s further evidence that Team Northam is in total panic mode a week out from Election Day. Northam’s own campaign just released a statement endorsing the vile attack.”

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John Whitbeck, chairman of the Virginia GOP, said the ad smeared the people of the commonwealth.

“This is an all-out attack on the people of Virginia,” said Whitbeck in a tweet, citing a Washington Post story.

Whitbeck also slammed Democratic gubernatorial candidate Northam, whose campaign did not produce the ad.

“Virginia: a place where you are a racist if you are concerned about the threat of MS-13,” tweeted Whitbeck.

In recent weeks, Gillespie has raised the issue of the violent MS-13 gang, which is based out of Central America. Trump has made deporting MS-13 gang members a top mission of the Department of Homeland Security.

Gillespie has highlighted the number of MS-13 gang members living in Virginia, something that has drawn Democrats’ ire.

Latino Victory made no apologies for the ad. In fact, its Twitter account posted supportive tweets throughout the afternoon.

“I’ve watched a lot of powerful TV ads in my career and this new one about Gillespie/Trump ranks near the top. Watch. Share. Vote,” tweeted Jesse Ferguson, the former deputy spokesman for the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign. The tweet was shared by Latino Victory.

The Virginia gubernatorial election is November 7.


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Political reporter, LifeZette. Indiana University journalism grad. Boston U. business grad. Former Indiana, Alabama statehouse reporter, Daytona Beach editorial writer.

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