- The Washington Times - Saturday, November 5, 2005

Republican gubernatorial candidate Jerry W. Kilgore kicked off a daylong, cross-state campaign swing yesterday in Springfield, rallying hundreds of enthusiastic supporters and calling himself a “pro-gun owner, anti-tax, limited government, anti-illegal immigration, pro-public safety, pro-death penalty … conservative.”

Campaigning for the second day with U.S. Sen. George Allen, a former governor, at his side, Mr. Kilgore criticized Democratic opponent Timothy M. Kaine’s support of in-state tuition for illegal aliens seeking citizenship.

“He said I was being insensitive when I said you shouldn’t use taxpayer dollars to build fancy day-labor sites here in Northern Virginia,” Mr. Kilgore told the crowd. “On the issue of illegal immigration, you can’t trust Tim Kaine to be governor of Virginia.”

Mr. Kilgore will visit churches in Falls Church and Vienna and a Redskins tailgate party in Landover today. Tomorrow night, he will attend a rally in Richmond with President Bush.

Joined yesterday by William T. Bolling and Robert F. McDonnell, the Republican candidates for lieutenant governor and attorney general, respectively, Mr. Kilgore highlighted his fight against MS-13, a gang whose members are thought to be mostly illegal aliens, and he vowed to widen Interstate 66 inside the Beltway.

He appealed to voters’ sense of traditional values and fears of inadequate public safety.

“Virginians are recognizing this is the ticket that is going to bring positive reform from Alexandria all the way down to Abingdon,” Mr. Kilgore said, pledging to secure better pay for better teachers and to grow the economy by expanding businesses.

“On each and every issue, this race is clear; the choice is simple,” Mr. Kilgore said.

He said his opponent’s record “does not match his rhetoric” on the issues of taxation, the death penalty and illegal immigration, and Ken Mehlman, chairman of the Republican National Committee, implied through a comparison to Sen. John F. Kerry, Massachusetts Democrat, that Mr. Kaine, the current lieutenant governor, has flip-flopped on the issues.

Mr. Kilgore also questioned Mr. Kaine’s recent poll of a focus group on whether they would be upset if he broke his word and used footage from the candidates’ televised debate.

“I don’t need a focus group [or a] poll to determine if I’m going to keep my word,” Mr. Kilgore said. “This race comes down to trust. … You can’t trust Tim Kaine to be governor.”

The boisterous crowd chanted “Jerry! Jerry!” and several times booed the mention of Mr. Kaine.

Kate Obenshain Griffin, chairwoman of the Virginia Republican Party, called the Democratic ticket “the most liberal in [Virginia’s] history.”

“Our ticket of Jerry Kilgore, Bill Bolling and Bob McDonnell has stood with hard-working Virginians,” she said. “[They] are the candidates of experience, of intellect, of vision. They have the ideas for solving Virginia’s most pressing problems.”

Before exiting the stage to head to rallies in Virginia Beach and Newport News, Mr. Kilgore tossed a football into the crowd, and caught three return passes.

“Republicans don’t drop the ball. You’re in good hands with Kilgore,” said Eric Lundberg, chairman of the Fairfax County Republican Committee.

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