August 9, 2021 News & Press Releases

New Reporting Reveals That Glenn Youngkin and Winsome Sears Paid Firm With Ties to the Proud Boys

by Democratic Party of Virginia

Richmond, VA — This afternoon, it was revealed that Glenn Youngkin and Winsome Sears hired a firm with ties to the white nationalist Proud Boys in their far-right campaigns for governor and lieutenant governor. The firm Youngkin and Sears chose to do business with was reportedly involved in an effort to recruit members of the Proud Boys for a rally contesting the results of the 2020 election. 

This appalling news comes right after Glenn Youngkin headlined an “election integrity rally” hosted by a GOP official who was at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th.

See key excerpts below and read the full report here.

Virginia Scope: A consultant firm that previously worked for Winsome Sears tried to recruit Proud Boys for a post-election rally last year in Nevada
By Brandon Jarvis

A Nevada-based consultant firm that previously worked for Virginia’s Republican lieutenant governor nominee Winsome Sears was involved in an effort trying to recruit members of the Proud Boys, a far-right, neo-fascist group, to participate in a Nevada rally contesting the 2020 presidential election results.

McShane LLC was paid more than $90,000 by Sears’ lieutenant governor campaign between January and May of this year. That means that more than 18% of the money spent in total by Sears during the first six months of this year went to McShane LLC, where a high-ranking member of the firm was directly involved in seeking out Proud Boys to protest the 2020 election results.

A spokesperson for Sears’ campaign originally said McShane LLC was terminated in May when they were made aware of the firm’s actions. But Monday afternoon, the Sears campaign clarified that they mutually parted ways with the firm after the convention and prior to the news of their affiliation with the Proud Boys. They blamed a staff change that happened since that time for the miscommunication on the timeline.

Additionally, Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin purchased $20,500 worth of Virginia voter lists from McShane LLC in February and April. Youngkin’s campaign did not provide comment for this article.

The Nevada Current originally reported that the vice president of McShane LLC sent messages to a party operative on Nov. 4 encouraging her to invite the Proud Boys to a rally.

“Sarah what are you doing tomorrow? Might need use of your fairy dust,” wrote Woodrow Johnston, a VP at McShane LLC, at 10:17 p.m.

Sarah Cirillo, a Nevada Republican operative at the time, responded three minutes later: “For you… Free.”

Cirillo then sent another message one minute later to Johnston saying “Anything. Just tell [me].”

“Not sure yet, don’t pull the trigger. But Gosar is leading the charge on a ‘Brooks Brothers Riot’ down in AZ,” Johnston responded at 10:23 p.m. One minute later, Johnston sent: “We might need to do the same here in Nevada. Which means we need to get the Proud Boys out.”

Cirillo then talked about living in Florida during the 2000 presidential recount and how that prepared her for this. “So I’m ready,” she said. [...]

The last payment to McShane from the Sears campaign was in May according to the latest financial reports from the Virginia Public Access Project.

Requests for comment from McShane LLC have not been returned. [...]