It took a terrorist attack to pull a hate ad in Virginia governor’s race

It took the New York City terror attack Tuesday, in which a truck plowed into pedestrians, killing several innocent people, for The Latino Victory Fund to finally pull their highly controversial and vile ad attacking Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie.

In an eerie similarity, their ad also featured a truck, this one appearing to chase down minority children, while proudly displaying a Confederate flag, a “Gillespie for Governor” bumper sticker, and a “Don’t tread on me” license plate. It ends with a boy waking up from a nightmare and adults watching footage on television of white nationalists marching in Charlottesville, with the line: “Is this what Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpSunday shows preview: Trump sells U.N. reorganizing and Kavanaugh allegations dominate Ex-Trump staffer out at CNN amid “false and defamatory accusations” Democrats opposed to Pelosi lack challenger to topple her MORE and Ed Gillespie mean by the American Dream?”

The ad told voters to “reject hate.”

This ad is hate at its absolute worst, and in its absolute ugliest form.

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Rafi Uddin Ahmed, the former president of the Muslim Association of Virginia, and a self described civil rights activist, who has given money to both Democrats and Republicans over the years, was quick to criticize the Latino Victory Fund this week for trying to paint Gillespie and his supporters as racists, saying that the ad tries to equate Gillespie with the “very same racism and hatred that he quickly spoke out against after the events in Charlottesville.”

Still, the Northam campaign, inexplicably, has yet to disavow the ad. While they said, after the Latino Victory Fund took the ad down, that the campaign believed it was the appropriate thing to do, they also said they never asked them to take it down.

Why is it only appropriate to take the ad down now, and it wasn’t on Monday?  Because, suddenly, you realize your highly inappropriate and hateful ad makes even you uncomfortable when it starts to mimic real life?

One can’t help but get the feeling that the Northam campaign is playing a dangerous game of Russian Roulette that may not end well for them on election day, as yesterday’s terror attack isn’t the only real life horror this ad mimics.

In June, a muslim girl from Sterling, Va., was murdered by a man who first went after her and a group of friends by plowing his vehicle onto a curb, where they were walking after attending an event at a local mosque. He then followed them to a parking lot and chased them with a metal baseball bat, with which he beat her with before abducting her and throwing her in the trunk of his car. Her body was later found in a pond.

The story made national news because it was first thought to be a hate crime, but then turned out to be an incident of road rage committed by 22-year-old Darwin Martinez Torres who, it turns out, was in this country illegally. ICE lodged a detainer on him for deportation, which would have been ignored under the protection of the sanctuary city laws that Ralph Northam so strongly supports.

Instead of supporting common sense immigration laws for those who are here illegally and commit crimes, Northam cast a tie-breaking vote in the state Senate to reject a bill banning sanctuary cities in Virginia, coming down on the side of telling cities they don’t have to cooperate with federal immigration law enforcement.

In Northam’s pro-sanctuary city world, ICE would not have been able to detain Darwin Martinez Torres.

The ad from the Latino Victory Fund was a vile and a nasty display of desperation and hate, and an insult to the people of Virginia. That’s not who we are, and it could very well backfire.

That they pulled the ad only after they saw it play out in real life, in a horrific terror incident which killed several people, betrays a politically tone deaf approach, rooted in the same politically correct fantasy that has badly hurt the Democratic Party between both coasts.    

That the Latino Victory Fund had to see a scenario similar to their ad play out in real time — with real consequences — before it occurred to them that this isn’t a game, and the fact that the Northam campaign has said so little, says a lot about what they really stand for and the people they want to represent.

Attempting to paint Ed Gillespie and his supporters as racists failed miserably this week and it will fail next Tuesday.

Lauren DeBellis Appell was deputy press secretary for Sen. Rick Santorum’s (R-Pa.) successful 2000 re-election campaign, as well as assistant communications director for the Senate Republican Policy Committee (2001-2003).