The Republican primary in Virginia’s 2nd Congressional district is quickly becoming a messy race to the far right as candidates hustle to prove their extreme and out-of-touch bona fides. This weekend, Jarome Bell is attending an endorsement rally with QAnon favorite Michael Flynn, who has recently been pushing the conspiracy that a military coup could reinstate President Trump in office. Bell has previously said that people involved in election fraud should be sentenced “to death.”
But he’s not the only extremist in the race. Jen Kiggans has still yet to say whether Joe Biden won the 2020 election and has “pledg[ed] to crack down on voter fraud, rebuild ‘election integrity’ and support more voting restrictions” based on baseless conspiracies of election fraud.
The Virginia candidates’ race to prove their extremist credentials comes as Steve Bannon vowed that the Big Lie that the election was stolen will be a “litmus test” for candidates in Republican primaries.
“Republican candidates in VA-02 are making clear their toxic brand of extremism and conspiracies, including pushing the baseless Big Lie that the election was stolen, is out of touch with Coastal Virginia,” said DCCC spokesperson Elena Kuhn. “Virginians deserve an independent voice in Congress who will stand up for our Democracy, not far-right extremists like Jen Kiggans and Jarome Bell who will do anything to foster division at the behest of party leaders.”