A super PAC supporting Sen. Rand Paul on Thursday will release a video that urges voters to choose Nick Freitas over Corey Stewart in next month’s Republican primary for the U.S. Senate in Virginia.
Stewart, chairman of the Prince William Board of Supervisors, is the most well known of the three primary hopefuls, but Freitas, a two-term delegate from Piedmont Valley, has picked up support from Paul (R-Ky.) and other elected officials.
Chesapeake minister E.W. Jackson is also seeking the nomination to challenge Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) in the fall.
The 30-second digital ad refers to a February news conference where Stewart compared fellow Republicans to toilet paper for supporting Medicaid expansion months after the party was trounced in the governor’s race and legislative contests.
“This June, Republicans have a choice: a guy who carries around toilet paper or a Green Beret who carried a rifle in combat,” the ad says.
Photos of Army veteran Freitas in uniform in the desert appear as the narrator says he served two tours in Iraq and supports gun rights — a reference to an incendiary floor speech Freitas made weeks after the Parkland school shooting.
The ad concludes, “If you want change in Washington, don’t send a boy to do a man’s job. Send the Green Berets. Send Nick Freitas.”
The founder of America’s Liberty PAC, which paid for the ad, is John Tate, who worked for Stewart in his early supervisor campaigns and was former Texas congressman Ron Paul’s campaign manager in 2012.
In response, Stewart’s campaign manager, Matt Brown, doubled down on Stewart’s earlier rhetoric.
“Corey Stewart will clean up the sewage in D.C. that swamp-dwelling Delegate Freitas — who’s in the pocket of GOP leadership — has been unwilling to clean up in Richmond, and just like Nick’s mess in Richmond, toilet paper will absolutely be required,” he said.