July 12, 2017 Press Releases and Announcements

Traffic Jam: Ed Gillespie and Kirk Cox Remain in Gridlock Over McDonnell Transportation Bill

by Kevin Donohoe

As Ed Gillespie campaigns alongside Kirk Cox today, most Republican legislators are still standing by Governor McDonnell’s 2013 transportation package that Ed Gillespie is now using to attack Ralph Northam’s record, despite the Republican nominee’s outspoken criticisms of the bill.

The Richmond Times Dispatch wrote over the weekend that Gillespie, who was Governor McDonnell’s 2009 campaign chairman, has been attacking his own party for what was oncedescribed as “a historically important piece of legislation that GOP officials wrote, championed and signed into law.” The $6 billion 2013 transportation was seen as a critical mechanism for providing much-needed transportation improvements in Virginia.

Kirk Cox was one of the strongest supporters of the law. He once said that “doing nothing now would only increase the cost of fixing our roads later on,” and that the “comprehensive transportation plan addresses the maintenance funding shortfall, provides the investment needed to significantly reduce gridlock in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads.”

Other Republicans agree with Cox. Former Senator John Watkins called Gillespie “a political opportunist” for attacking the transportation bill, and former Speaker Bill Howelltold the Times Dispatch that “I think what we did as was right.” John Fredericks slammedGillespie yesterday, wondering whether Gillespie understood the basics of transportation policy and that “Virginia. Needs. Roads.”

“Ed Gillespie is proving once again to Virginians that he will say and do anything to get elected, even if it means throwing his own party under the bus and attacking Virginia’s largest transportation accomplishments,” said DPVA spokesman Kevin Donohoe. “More and more conservatives are piling on against Gillespie for his misleading and cynical attacks on Governor McDonnell’s signature accomplishment. If Ed Gillespie is going to let this type of gridlock happen within his own party, then there is little hope that he will steer Virginia on the right road as Governor.”