“He needs to come out today and say it was wrong to do Pledge of Allegiance to that flag, and I want him to come out and say [the] Jan. 6 insurrection was wrong,” McAuliffe added.
While Youngkin was not in attendance at Wednesday’s rally, former Trump administration chief strategist Steve Bannon did address the crowd. Trump addressed the crowd, as well, telling rallygoers via telephone that “Glenn Youngkin is a great gentleman,” before delving into his long-debunked claims that last year’s presidential election was stolen.
“We won in 2016. We won in 2020 — the most corrupt election in the history of our country, probably one of the most corrupt anywhere. But we’re gonna win it again,” the former president said, rehashing claims for which there is no evidence.
On Thursday, McAuliffe’s campaign ran an ad blasting the Youngkin campaign for Trump’s call. The ad laid out what it called the “Trump-Youngkin agenda,” citing issues such as public education, vaccine mandates and abortion in Virginia.
“Glenn Youngkin has shown once again he is all in on Donald Trump’s dangerous, divisive, conspiracy theory-focused agenda and that his top priority is bringing Trump’s agenda to Virginia,” a press release from McAuliffe’s team said.
Youngkin’s running mate, lieutenant governor candidate Winsome Sears, was scheduled to address the rally but left before the program, according to The Washington Post. Youngkin has yet to comment publicly on Wednesday’s rally, and spokespeople for his campaign did not respond to an email about McAuliffe’s remarks.
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