In a new low, this morning Ed Gillespie will campaign with Missouri Governor Eric Greitens — who infamously aired TV spots of him shooting a machine gun while discussing Democrats. The timing of the campaign appearance — which comes just four days after the shooting in Las Vegas — is not just insensitive, it demonstrates just how eager Gillespie’s flagging campaign is to please his gun lobby donors — even after the biggest mass shooting in American history.
The NRA is expected to spend $750,000 on TV ads supporting Gillespie.
Stills from Greitens’ campaign ads.
The connections between Greitens and Gillespie don’t stop with their allegiance to the gun lobby. Indeed the similarities between the two are striking. Last year, for example The Kansas City Star called Greitens “an ideological weather vane spouting fortune-cookie talking points” while the Richmond Times-Dispatch’s Jeff Schapiro has described Gillespie as “a professional talker” who “gets away now with diaphanous platitudes.”
Both men will literally say or do anything to win – and have a history of scandal to prove it. Gillespie has been under fire for weeks for his work for predatory student loan companiesand corporations that laid off Virginia workers — and most damningly for his work as alobbyist for Enron. Although he has a much shorter record in public life, Greitens has managed to rack up his fair share of ethics violations — despite styling himself (like Gillespie) as a champion for ethics reform. Greitens illegally stole a donor list from his veterans charity to raise millions for his campaign. For those violations, the Missouri Ethics Commission stuck Greitens with a $1,000 fine earlier this year.
“It is disgusting that just four days after the Las Vegas tragedy, Ed Gillespie is campaigning with Eric Greitens — the poster boy for machine guns,” said DPVA spokesperson Kevin Donohoe. “Both Ed Gillespie and Eric Greitens have well-deserved reputations as scandal-plagued snake oil salesmen whose opportunism and cynicism knows no limits. Despite being in office for just a few months, Greitens has already been with filled with scandal, incompetence and mismanagement — a chilling preview of a potential Gillespie administration.”