Ex-GOP Sen. Warner Endorses Democrat over Gillespie in Va. Senate Race

Monday, 27 Jan 2014 01:31 PM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

Former Republican Sen. John W. Warner on Monday endorsed his Democratic successor over a past national GOP chairman in the race for the U.S. Senate seat he held for 30 years.

Warner told The Associated Press in a telephone interview that he is supporting Sen. Mark Warner, who is being challenged by Ed Gillespie in November's election. The Warners are not related.

John Warner, a moderate, earned a reputation as a party maverick by bucking the conservatives who gradually won control of the GOP during his decades in office. He refused to endorse GOP home-schooling advocate Mike Farris for lieutenant governor and backed an independent candidate over Iran-Contra figure Oliver North in the 1994 race against Democratic Sen. Chuck Robb. But this is the first time he has endorsed a Democrat outright.

"There are times you must, I think, recognize that certain individuals are superior in their talents and in what they have done and can potentially do for your state," John Warner said.

He praised his successor, also a centrist, for seeking bipartisan solutions.

"Mark Warner, if I may say with a sense of humility, like John Warner crosses the aisle and makes things work," he said. "We come from the old school. The Senate works best when there's collaborative effort between the two parties."

John Warner also said it's important to keep the incumbent because he's had six years to learn how the Senate works and start to build seniority.

Mark Warner said he is grateful for his former opponent's support.

"John Warner is the gold standard in Virginia," he said. "I learned a lot of things from John Warner, but the most important is Virginia always comes first."

Gillespie said in a written statement: "I respect Senator John Warner for his service to our country and our commonwealth, and respect his right to support the candidate of his choice in this race."

John Warner, the former Navy secretary, defeated Mark Warner in the Democrat's first Senate campaign in 1996. Mark Warner, a multi-millionaire cellphone pioneer who had served as state Democratic Party chairman and helped run L. Douglas Wilder's campaign to become the nation's first black elected governor, lost by only 5 percentage points to the popular incumbent.

The surprisingly close race established Mark Warner as a rising Democratic star in a then-reliably Republican state. He was elected governor in 2001, then soundly defeated former Republican Gov. Jim Gilmore in 2008 for the Senate seat after Warner announced his retirement.

Gillespie chaired the Republican National Committee from 2003 to 2005. He also served as counselor to President George W. Bush and as an adviser to Mitt Romney's 2012 presidential campaign. He faces a little-known candidate, Shak Hill, for the GOP Senate nomination.

"If he receives the nomination, Ed brings a lot of experience — but it's a different kind of experience," John Warner said. "I respect him — he's a fine person — so nothing negative about him at all. It will be a good, strong, two-fisted, competitive race."

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

With GOP Senate Runoff Over, Perdue and Nunn Face Off

Wednesday, 23 Jul 2014 16:16 PM

Within hours of David Perdue's GOP Senate nomination, the real battle began with supporters of the new Republican nomine . . .

For GOP, Odds of Senate Takeover Are Good - Or Not That Good

Wednesday, 23 Jul 2014 15:10 PM

The odds of winning enough races to regain control of the Senate remain in Republicans' favor, but how favorable depends . . .

North Carolina Senate Candidates Seek Help From Outside Groups

Wednesday, 23 Jul 2014 12:46 PM

With the power of the North Carolina state party in decline, supporters of Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan, have created a sep . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved