Corey Stewart has been receiving a lot of attention for his campaign’s decision to give away an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, but he’s also getting some unwanted attention from his fellow Republicans. As Steve Albertson points out over at the conservative blog The Bull Elephant, staffers from Donald Trumps campaign said Stewart had a negative impact on the campaign’s chances in Virginia.
Most Virginia political insiders have already heard about how Stewart was fired as head of Trump’s campaign in Virginia after organizing a protest outside the Republican National Committee’s headquarters. The public reasoning for the event was to protest the RNC’s decision to abandon Trump (you might remember stories about how the GOP needed to focus on keeping control of Congress) and there was talk about how this showed the campaign was falling apart. But the firing came because the rally was supposedly an example of how Stewart was acting in direct opposition to the wishes of the Trump campaign.
In reality, if you take the word of Trump’s staffers, this was simply the latest example of Corey Stewart putting his own ambitions ahead of the Trump campaign. The national stories about the campaign pulling out of Virginia, for instance, was supposedly another attempt of Stewart’s to make the RNC look bad.
All of this was apparently because the idea of the RNC working against the grassroots was something Stewart thought would help his gubernatorial campaign. While I wouldn’t want to piss off the RNC if I was a Republican trying to run for governor, the current fundraiser he’s having and other tactics he’s using show that Stewart’s really trying to run as the outsider.
You also have to consider that Ed Gillespie, the current front runner for the GOP nomination, used to serve as the Chairman of the RNC. So maybe Stewart thought going after the RNC would be an attack on the “establishment” and Gillespie in particular.
In the end, Stewart’s tactics appear to have done nothing but cause him to be criticized by both the establishment and the outsiders who supported Trump.