Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe’s campaign team accidentally sent their discussion on how they could ‘kill’ a Fox News story – to the very reporter asking for comment.
Fox News editor Tyler O’Neil had contacted McAuliffe’s campaign for comment on how they had reportedly spent almost $54,000 on high-profile attorney Elias Law Group – known for their work in election-related legal challenges.
The email appears to have sparked panic within the campaign, with McAuliffe spokesperson Christina Freundlich asking: ‘Can we try to kill this?’
Unfortunately for Freundlich, and her boss, she did not send the email to colleagues as intended.
Instead, she accidentally sent the email back to O’Neil.
The McAuliffe campaign did not respond to Fox News’ further requests for comment.
Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe’s campaign reportedly spent $60,000 on a high-profile attorney Elias Law Group known for their work in election-related legal challenges, including the investigation came to be known as the anti-Trump ‘dirty dossier’
McAuliffe’s campaign team accidentally replied to emails from Fox News asking for a comment with talks to ‘kill’ the story (pictured)
McAuliffe spokesperson Christina Freundlich (pictured) reportedly mistakenly responded to the email from Fox, which was instead meant for her colleagues
The email snafu came about as Fox investigated reports of McAuliffe’s spending on Elias Law Group.
McAuliffe’s campaign spent $53,680 on the law group’s services less than a month before Election Day, as reported by Fox.
George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley called the move ‘astonishing’ and later tweeted: ‘McAuliffe may be preparing to challenge any win by Republican Glenn Youngkin.’
Elias Law Group was opened by Marc Elias earlier this year, who worked as Hillary Clinton’s general counsel during her presidential campaign and commissioned a research firm to look into Trump’s relationship with Russia on behalf of Democrats back in 2016.
The investigation came to be known as the anti-Trump ‘dirty dossier’ and although Elias falsely denied his involvement in the report it was revealed that he did, in fact, hire opposition research firm Fusion GPS in April 2016 to dig up dirt about Donald Trump.
Republicans notoriously believed that Elias lied so as to not reveal that Clinton’s campaign funded the dossier.
However, the scandal didn’t stop Elias from representing liberal politicians such as Iowa Democratic candidate Rita Hart in the 2020 election.
George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley called the move ‘astonishing’ and later suggested that spending so much money on the law firm may be in preparation ‘to challenge any win by Republican Glenn Youngkin’
Polling has shown that Republican Glenn Youngkin (pictured) is more likely to win if voter turnout is low at the election next week
According to Fox, House Republicans have continued to accuse the lawyer of having a ‘serious conflict of interest’ considering that he and Perkins Coie – the law firm where he worked at up until August 2021 – represented half of the Democratic committee members who would be deciding the case on Texas’ ‘straight-ticket voting law’.
‘There are a host of election lawyers but McAuliffe selected an attorney accused of lying to the media, advancing rejected conspiracy theories, and currently involved in a major federal investigation that has already led to the indictment of his former partner,’ Turley wrote in a blog post on Thursday.
McAuliffe, a former governor of Virginia, has repeatedly gone after his opponent Youngkin in an attempt to serve a non-consecutive second term in the position.
Virginia doesn’t allow governors to run for consecutive terms, so McAuliffe had to sit out four years before running for his old job again.
President Joe Biden crossed the Potomac River to Arlington, Virginia, Tuesday night to campaign for the Democratic candidate.
‘How well do you know Terry’s opponent?’ Biden asked a crowd of McAuliffe supporters. ‘Well just remember this. I ran against Donald Trump. And Terry is running against an acolyte of Donald Trump,’ he said, tearing into.
The president also blasted Trump’s statements following the death of Colin Powell and ripped the GOP candidate for picking up Trump’s election fraud claims.
He called out Trump’s ‘attack’ on Powell ‘unbelievable’ while speaking near the Pentagon in a region filled with military workers and contractors, referring to when Trump called the general a ‘RINO’ – Republican In Name Only – after his death at age 84.
Biden hailed Powell as a decorated American hero.
‘Trump did the same thing about John McCain. That’s who Donald Trump is. All coming from a guy who invented the Big Lie, drove a mob of insurrectionists to breach the Capitol on the sixth of January. And to this day, he incites people all around the country,’ Biden said.
With the tight election in Virginia likely to reverberate across national politics after Election Day next month, Biden pointed to Youngkin’s statement about election ‘integrity’ to paint him as a pawn of Trump.
‘This guy starts that he’s calling for election integrity… Now why did he do that?’ Biden asked the crowd.
He supposed Youngkin did it because he wanted to hear from Trump.
McAuliffe appeared with First Lady Jill Biden (right) at a rally earlier this month in Richmond, Virginia
Former President Barack Obama supported McAuliffe on Saturday in Richmond, Virginia
‘There was a price he’d have to pay for the nomination, and he paid it,’ Biden said. ‘But now he doesn’t want to talk about Trump anymore. Well, I do. Talk about an oxymoron: Donald Trump and election integrity.’
Youngkin has since fired back at Biden, accusing him of having a ‘failed presidency’.
McAuliffe has seen his lead over Republican Glenn Youngkin slip away with one week to go until the election.
A new USA Today/Suffolk University Poll released Tuesday has the candidates essentially tied – with McAuliffe receiving 45.6 percent and Youngkin at 45.2 percent. Five percent of Virginians polls remained undecided.
Emerson and Monmouth University surveys also have the Democrat and the Republican tied.
That’s a big change, as McAuliffe had been comfortably ahead of Youngkin for most of the race – sometimes by as much as nine points, surveys showed.
Now that the race has tightened, Democrats have been forced to send their biggest political stars – such as Joe and Jill Biden, Kamala Harris and Barack Obama – to the state to get McAuliffe across the line.
Polling has shown that Youngkin is more likely to win if turnout is low.