The campaign for Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe has hired a high-profile attorney known for masterminding election-related legal challenges and it wanted to “kill” the story that Fox News did on it.
The campaign spent $53,680 on the services of the Elias Law Group which is a group that was started by Marc Elias, Fox News reported.
When Fox News reached out to the McAuliffe campaign for comment, McAuliffe spokesperson Christina Freundlich responded to the email with a message apparently meant for colleagues, not for Fox News.
“Can we try to kill this,” Freundlich wrote.
“To dispute the challenges of the election,” she clarified, ostensibly responding to an email that did not go through to Fox News.
The McAuliffe campaign did not give any response to Fox News on the record.
Elias had formerly worked as a partner at the law firm Perkins Coie, which the Hillary Clinton campaign hired in 2016 in order to conduct opposition research on Donald Trump – research that included the infamous Christopher Steele dossier. Republicans have accused Elias of lying to hide the Clinton campaign’s role in funding the dossier.
George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley said that the hiring of the law firm is astonishing.
“McAuliffe may be preparing to challenge any win by Republican Glenn Youngkin,” he said. “He has given $53,680 to the Elias Law Group. McAuliffe does not appear disturbed by Elias’ highly controversial career or his possible exposure in the Durham investigation.
“There are a host of election lawyers,” he said. “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.”
And the Virginia Democrat has been having the big members of his party come to help him, even if they have not been a major help to him.
Barack Obama on Saturday claimed that Glenn Youngkin, the GOP gubernatorial candidate in Virginia, is a wealthy out-of-touch elitist who can’t relate to work-class people, though the former president himself is worth tens of millions of dollars.
Obama made his remarks during a campaign event for Youngkin’s Democratic challenger, Terry McAuliffe, who is making his second bid to become Virginia’s governor after serving a four-year term from 2014-2018.
“As far as I can tell the big message of Terry’s opponent is that he’s a regular guy because he wears fleece and he’s accusing schools of brainwashing our kids,” the 44th president said, citing Youngkin’s opposition to the teaching of critical race theory in Virginia public schools.
Obama went on to ridicule Youngkin’s campaign, which frequently touts his work experience that ranges from being a dishwasher to the co-CEO of private equity firm the Carlyle Group.
“I’m glad that the guy can play basketball,” Obama joked, referencing Youngkin’s collegiate play. “I’m less convinced that the co-CEO of the largest private equity firm in the world spends his time washing dishes and going grocery shopping, but who knows. Maybe.”
Obama also compared Youngkin to other wealthy politicians, though the CEO has never run for public office.
“You do notice that whenever a wealthy person runs for office, they always want to show you what a regular guy they are,” he said.
The Washington Times adds:
Mr. Youngkin, who has an estimated net worth of over $400 million, has poured much of his own money into his gubernatorial campaign.
Mr. Obama’s own net worth is around $70 million, according to International Business Times.
The former president also attacked Mr. Youngkin on his anti-abortion views and proposals to enhance election laws to include measures like voter ID.