Republicans blame Democrats for ‘uncivil discourse’

Chadds Ford Republicans held their annual luncheon over the weekend and a strong message was to get out the vote.

“Voter motivation, who is motivated to vote, we’re lacking in that,” said Andy Reilly, secretary of the Pennsylvania GOP.

Reilly said the lack of motivation in the Republican ranks is understandable because they have the White House. When Obama was in office, he said Republicans had more motivation. But Reilly went on to accuse the Democrats of leading the uncivil discourse running through the country today.

“But I have to tell you,” he said, “if you like the civil discourse or the lack of it that you’re seeing now, if you like what you see in Washington, stay home. But we need to get out the vote.”

Alluding to an incident involving Sen. Jeff Flake late last week, Reilly called it “appalling” that an elected office holder would be shouted down in a public elevator “likely by paid volunteers.”

He said it was also appalling that someone who wanted to go out to dinner with his wife would be shouted out of a restaurant. That was in reference to an incident involving Sen. Ted. Cruz.

“Regardless of what side of the issues you’re on, the lack of civil discourse today is crazy and that’s because the Democrats are paying their people,” Reilly said.

U.S. House of Representatives candidate Pearl Kim talks with Chadds Ford residents during the township Republican party luncheon at Brandywine Catering on Saturday.

He added that the atmosphere surrounding the hearings over Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court is a “mindless assault on civil decency and civil discourse. We have to get motivated and take this back.”

Reilly repeated the need to get the vote out for the mid-term elections next month and urged those who might not be in town on election day to take one of the absentee ballots he brought to the luncheon.

Other speakers included Pearl Kim, running for U.S. House of Representatives, and state Rep. Stephen Barrar.

Kim, a former Delaware County prosecutor, will be on the ballot twice in November. She’s on the ballot to serve the last two months on the 7thDistrict seat vacated when former U.S. Rep. Pat Meehan stepped down amid allegations of sexual harassment earlier this year. And she’ll be on the ballot for a full two-year term for the 5th Congressional District seat because of the redistricting. She jokingly told the crowd they could vote for her twice.

Kim spoke very briefly, for only about 3 minutes before leaving early. She simply gave her background as a former special victims’ prosecutor in the office of the Delaware County District Attorney, prosecuting domestic abuse cases and then becoming chief of the Human Trafficking Unit, and saying she obtained the first human tracking conviction in the state.

She added that she’s also worked to combat the opioid crisis as well as mental health, alcohol abuse and campus sexual assault issues.

She said it was during that time she realized that many of the issues she was working for were actually federal issues and that led to her running for federal office.

In the 7thCongressional District special election, Kim will face Democrat Mary Gay Scanlon, Green Party Brianna Johnston and Libertarian Sandra Salas. For the 5thdistrict race, Kim will face Scanlon.

Barrar, running for his 12thterm in Harrisburg, said he’s proud of his office staff for their efforts and professionalism in helping his constituents and hopes “things go good” in the election so they’ll still have jobs.

As did Reilly, Barrar also addressed the lack of civility in public discourse and that the Democrats are working hard to get their voters out in November.

“Our civil discourse has taken a turn in such an ugly way. I just can’t believe how ugly things have become in politics today. They will attack you and say things about you that aren’t true. They don’t care. The truth means nothing to them,” he said adding that he sometimes wonders what it would be like to have some sort of truth in advertising law when it comes to politics.

Without naming him by name, Barrar acknowledged Anton Andrew as his opponent in the upcoming election and that Andrew is “out there working. The Democrats are motivated in our district. The Democrats are working very hard.”

Barrar added that he and his campaign staff are also working hard, going into neighborhoods and getting, what he said was positive feedback. He said there were no negative comments but added there was one person who said he hated Republicans.

That comment was offset, at least somewhat, during a shredding event at his district office, he said some Democrats told him they were disgusted with their own party after watching television news about the Kavanaugh hearings and the reactions by fellow Democrats.

The general election this year is Nov. 6. The last day to register is Oct. 9.



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About Rich Schwartzman

Rich Schwartzman has been reporting on events in the greater Chadds Ford area since September 2001 when he became the founding editor of The Chadds Ford Post. In April 2009 he became managing editor of ChaddsFordLive. He is also an award-winning photographer.



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