Home 2024 Elections Former Ron DeSantis Staffer and “Trump Acolyte” Scott Parkinson Declares Himself the...

Former Ron DeSantis Staffer and “Trump Acolyte” Scott Parkinson Declares Himself the Frontrunner in the Republican Primary to Take on Sen. Tim Kaine in 2024

Presumably, Hung Cao and the many other far-right/Trumpy Republicans running will take issue with this.


So if you’ve been following Tim Kaine’s career, you’re probably aware that he’s never lost an election in Virginia (yes, he was Hillary Clinton’s running mate in 2016, and they didn’t win the presidential race overall, but they won Virginia by 5 points). Here’s a quick review of Kaine’s electoral history:

  • 2001 Democratic primary for LG: Kaine won it 40%-31%-29% over Alan Diamonstein and JC Jones
  • 2001 Virginia LG election: Kaine won it 50%-48% over Republican Jay Katzen
  • 2005 Virginia governor’s election: Kaine won it 52%-46% over Republican Jerry Kilgore
  • 2012 U.S. Senate election: Kaine won it 53%-47% over Republican George Allen
  • 2016 U.S. presidential election: Clinton/Kaine won Virginia 49.7%-44.4% over Trump/Pence
  • 2018 U.S. Senate election: Kaine won it 57%-41% over Republican Corey Stewart

So anyway, you’d think that Republicans at this point wouldn’t be particularly eager to run against Kaine, and that if they did, they’d try to run somebody relatively sane, moderate, reasonable, etc., as opposed to a far-right/Trump-style nutjob like “neo-Confederate Corey” (who lost to Kaine by 16 points in 2018). Instead, what we’re seeing so far regarding Kaine’s 2024 reelection race is a mad scramble among faaaaar-right Republicans for their party’s U.S. Senate nomination. Believe it or not, Sen. Kaine now has more declared Republican challengers (9!) than any sitting senator in the country this cycle. Crazy.

And speaking of crazy, arguably the two main Republican candidates for the 2024 U.S. Senate nomination are both really “out there,” let’s just say. For instance, there’s Hung Cao, who launched his campaign last week with a dark, disturbing, unhinged, fear mongering, falsehood-filled video, after running for VA10 in 2022 on a platform of banning abortion (and comparing it to the horrors and atrocities of the Holocaust!), denying climate science, denying the 2020 presidential election, defending January 6th insurrectionists, glorifying guns, etc. In short, Cao’s about as far right as you can possibly get. (UPDATE: Cao just told “Christian nationalist Sean Feucht that he’s running for the US Senate in Virginia because wiccans have taken over parts of California and now there is ‘a lot of witchcraft’ and ‘we can’t let that happen in Virginia'” – completely insane!)

But Cao’s not the only far-right Republican running to take on Sen. Kaine in 2024; also check out former Ron DeSantis staffer Scott Parkinson, who the Democratic Party of Virginia accurately described as a “Trump acolyte” who  “has railed against the Affordable Care Act and Virginians’ right to choose.” So last week, Axiom Strategies (which in 2021 worked for Glenn Youngkin’s gubernatorial campaign, and whose leader has been described as “Ted Cruz’s Karl Rove”) put out a memo about Parkinson, in which it claimed that Parkinson’s “already the front runner to receive the Republican nomination for US Senate in Virginia” and “clearly in the strongest position to not just win the Primary Election, but also defeat Tim Kaine to become the next Senator from Virginia.”

Of course, the other Republican candidates – Hung Cao, Jonathan Emord, Craig Ennis, Eddie Garcia, Gwen Hickman, Kimberly Lowe, Chuck Smith, Ronald Vitiello, and god knows who else – presumably have something to say about these audacious (and far-fetched) assertions. Meanwhile, Democrats presumably are looking forward to these candidates fighting it out with each other to make sure that none of the others beat them in the race to be the most extreme, the most Trump-like, etc. Because, of course, that will make whoever the nominee ends up being essentially unelectable in Virginia. Which is perfectly fine with us, so as Barack Obama famously said to Mitt Romney in 2012, “please proceed!” LOL


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