His longshot candidacy notwithstanding, Daniel Gade received a polite reception from delegates to the Arlington County Civic Federation.
“I’m the sort of person who will always tell you the truth,” the Republican U.S. Senate nominee said at the Sept. 8 event. His opponent, incumbent Democrat Mark Warner, was invited but did not attend the forum, convened online due to the public-health pandemic.
Gade, a U.S. Army veteran and college professor, acknowledged he was walking “into the lion’s den” in bringing his message to Democratic-centric Arlington, but said he was happy to spread his message.
“I’ve always been a servant of the Constitution,” he said, suggesting there are “always opportunities for Republicans and Democrats to work together.”
After brief introductory remarks, Gade responded to prepared questions – questions perhaps a tad too specific for a general-interest forum, but interesting enough:
• Asked whether he supported having Congress rescind the deadline for ratification of the federal Equal Rights Amendment, Gade said ERA supporters would have to re-start the process from scratch.
As for needing such a constitutional amendment in the first place, Gade was dubious. “We can’t pretend the U.S. in 2020 is the same place . . . as in 1973,” he said.
• Asked whether he would support funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, he said that wasn’t a “mission-critical” responsibility of the federal government.
“We should spend within our means,” he said. “There are a lot of things that are higher priorities for me.”
First elected to the U.S. Senate in 2008 after a stint as governor, Warner in 2014 survived a too-close-for-comfort challenge from Republican Ed Gillespie. But despite the GOP candidate coming close to snatching the seat away from him, Warner received nearly 71 percent of the vote among the Arlington electorate.
Gade’s presentation turned out to be somewhat less aggressively conservative in tone than that of Jeff Jordan, the GOP nominee for the 8th District U.S. Representatives who followed later in the program.
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