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Democrats Protest Cuccinelli Fundraiser in Old Town Alexandria

Opponents criticize candidate's record on guns and social issues outside members-only cigar club.

Democrats from Northern Virginia held signs outside a fundraiser for Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli in Old Town Alexandria, Oct. 14, 2013. (Photo credit: Drew Hansen)
Democrats from Northern Virginia held signs outside a fundraiser for Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli in Old Town Alexandria, Oct. 14, 2013. (Photo credit: Drew Hansen)

Democrats from Northern Virginia protested a campaign fundraiser for Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli Monday at CXIII Rex, a members-only cigar club located in the heart of Old Town Alexandria.

The event was co-hosted by Tony Makris, an NRA consultant who came under fire last month for shooting an African elephant on a safari hunt that was televised on NBC Sports.

The NRA-sponsored hunting show was canceled after Makris compared the hunt’s critics to Hitler, according to The Washington Post.

The focus of the protest Monday was more or less pointed at Cuccinelli, who trailed opposing Democrat Terry McAuliffe by seven points in a recent poll.

Old Town Alexandria resident Marianne Anderson held a sign outside the club’s King Street entrance that read “Cuccinelli: So last century.”

“I’m really worried about the future of the state,” Anderson said. “I’m worried about going back, particularly on social and women’s issues. And I feel like he and his cohorts are just another faction to create dissidence.”

Josh Horwitz, an Arlington resident and executive director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, held a poster of a vigil for the Virginia Tech shooting massacre that listed the number gun deaths in the commonwealth since that April 2007 day in Blacksburg.

“When Cuccinelli was a state senator, he voted against background checks five times,” he said.

Laura Sonnenmark from Mount Vernon echoed Horwitz’s concerns about the candidate’s opposition to increase background checks and took issue with Cuccinelli for sponsoring legislation in 2004 to repeal the prohibition on carrying a concealed handgun in a restaurant.

Some pedestrians stopped to have their photos taken with the protestors, while others took offense with some of the signs. Some of the signs read, “We don’t want a corrupt attorney general for our next governor!” and “Women’s rights & trust in science are good for Virginia Business.”

“These are the typical hackneyed complaints that the opponents have thrown out there throughout the campaign,” said Tom Fulton, chairman of the Alexandria Republican City Committee. “I think the record of governance itself tells a different story… [Cuccinelli] doesn’t fit the model the Democrats are trying to portray. From what I understand, he’s done good work on ethics reform and has a good jobs plan and his opponents have not put forth any sort of depth into examining his proposals.”

Cuccinelli was scheduled to attend the event, but the protestors did not see the candidate. Several protestors said Cuccinelli entered the club through a nearby alleyway. Alexandria police had parked several cruisers at the alley’s west entrance.  

Larry McDorchester October 19, 2013 at 10:30 PM
A liberty candidate wouldn't limit academic freedom at the commonwealth's flagship university. Not would a liberty candidate use government resources (tax payer money) to appeal the Supreme Court to reverse decisions on laws regarding what consenting adults do in the privacy of their own homes (the sodomy laws). Ken isn't truly for less government interference. He actually wants more of it in many instances. The only candidate that is consistently for limiting the government's power to intrude on our lives is Sarvis.
T Ailshire October 20, 2013 at 01:28 PM
Ken Cuccinelli is only pro-liberty if you define liberty as living your life the way he defines it. Look at the bright side. Sarvis is libertarian, and wouldn't be able to get anything done in Richmond, though he could veto bills. A win for everyone.
oldtowner October 20, 2013 at 02:02 PM
@T Ailshire: Like your comment on Sarvis....sad but possibly true. And to Fred N.: As I heard years ago, the words "clean coal" are an oxymoron.
OT insider October 21, 2013 at 09:27 PM
Nice call putting Cooch and the Ayatollah Jackson on the ticket. Thank you Tea Party. With your takeover of the mainstream and your selection of the most extreme candidates in decades, you have handed this election to the Democrats, which will be a historic defeat. Now will you please go away?
oldtowner October 22, 2013 at 03:48 PM
Agree w/ OT Insider (and we are not related). As the saying goes, "Be careful what you wish for." The Virginia GOP is paying the price for what it did.

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