Republican Congressman Scott Taylor should be a shoo-in for re-election from Virginia’s Second District.
Instead he seems to be on a kamikaze mission.
Taylor’s a smart, photogenic and personable 39-year-old former Navy SEAL who’s demonstrated a strong independent streak since he arrived in Washington. How he got there was remarkable, too. Taylor stunned long-time congressman and district switcher Randy Forbes in the Republican primary in 2016. Then, in the November election that sent him to Congress, Taylor won with 61 percent of the vote.
That’s a landslide.
Naturally, Taylor’s a strong supporter of the military and the Second Amendment, yet he also opposed the ban on transgenders in the armed services and urged President Trump not to torpedo DACA.
Furthermore, during the government shutdown, Taylor donated his salary to a veterans’ charity. He explained that he didn’t think it was right to get paid while not working.
A terrific gesture.
Lately, however, Taylor’s bleeding from self-inflicted wounds.
In June, The Virginian-Pilot reported that Taylor, a real estate investor, was delinquent on real estate taxes for rental properties in both Virginia Beach and Norfolk. He owed almost $12,000.
Taylor said it was an oversight. He quickly paid the overdue amounts.
Geez. Talk about gift-wrapping ammo for your opponents. No politician should have so much as an unlicensed dog or an unpaid parking ticket, let alone an outstanding tax bill.
No one likes paying taxes. Most of us do it, though. On time.
If that weren't enough, it’s now alleged that several of Taylor’s paid campaign workers gathered signatures to help get Shaun Brown, the Democrat he beat in 2016, on this November’s ballot as an independent.
Every incumbent dreams of facing two opponents. And encouraging a weak candidate to jump in as an independent is right out of the bare knuckles politicians’ handbook.
Of course, if you get caught engaging in this kind of chicanery, you look foolish or scared.
Worse, a special prosecutor has been appointed to investigate possible fraud and forgery regarding the signatures. Among the signees is at least one dead man.
Good Lord. Are these people lazy? Collecting actual signatures is not that hard.
Taylor says he had nothing to do with the tawdry episode and sacked his campaign manager before this even happened. He’s recently disassociated himself from the consultant who may have been behind the latest mess.
Won’t matter. Democrats smell blood in the water. They’re coming for Taylor.
And his opponent, Elaine Luria, is solid. She’s a Naval Academy grad and retired Surface Warfare Division Officer.
Voters who came out for Taylor last time now face a dilemma. Do they stick with the guy who votes the right way? Or do they support a woman who’s been endorsed by a predictable array of left-wing groups, including gun control and pro-abortion lobbyists and labor unions? Oh, and who could help put Nancy Pelosi back in the Speaker’s seat in the House?
This shouldn’t be a difficult choice.
Thanks to Taylor, for some, it will be.