Virginia Democrat Terry McAuliffe (D) is experiencing a wave of mockery on social media over a viral photo showing five individuals claiming to be supporters of his Republican challenger Glenn Youngkin, holding tiki torches outside of a campaign bus — an obvious nod to Charlottesville and white supremacy — as many surmise it is nothing more than a stunt by the Democrat’s supporters days before Election Day.
“These men approached @GlennYoungkin’s bus as it pulled up saying what sounded like, ‘We’re all in for Glenn.’ Here they are standing in front of the bus as his campaign event at Guadalajara started.@NBC29,” NBC 29’s Elizabeth Holmes said alongside a photo showing five individuals wearing khaki pants, white shirts, and baseball hats holding tiki torches in front of Youngkin’s bus — an attempt to drive the false narrative that Republicans embrace and support white supremacy. One of the supposed supporters standing in the picture is black:
These men approached @GlennYoungkin’s bus as it pulled up saying what sounded like, “We’re all in for Glenn.” Here they are standing in front of the bus as his campaign event at Guadalajara started.@NBC29 pic.twitter.com/l681ejyBjc
— Elizabeth Holmes (@holmes_reports) October 29, 2021
Others jumped in.
“I badly need to see the internal McAulliffe[sic] polling that led them to make this decision,” another added as memes and takes mocking McAuliffe and Democrats began pouring in:
— JimThompson (@JimmySportToons) October 29, 2021
Terry McAuliffe is so desperate that his staffers are dressing up like Ralph Northam.
It won't work.
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) October 29, 2021
Stunning and brave. pic.twitter.com/LRdOUSSTK1
— James Lindsay, premium Halloween costume (NSFW) (@ConceptualJames) October 29, 2021
Spot the s pic.twitter.com/hlcbkbnBBn
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) October 29, 2021
lmao tiki torches and sunglasses in the rain. this is very believable and definitely not at all related to recent Va. polling. https://t.co/Ojpww01B3e
— tsar becket adams (@BecketAdams) October 29, 2021
Totally organic. Not suspect. pic.twitter.com/M7aLTQwo4x
— Hooch’s Ghost 😶🌫️ (@CompanyHooch) October 29, 2021
Lol this is so fake it’s hilarious https://t.co/Vy00vWeMum
— Michael Duncan (@MichaelDuncan) October 29, 2021
When you show up for the disinfo photo op dressed as white supremacists but it’s raining so you text your handlers to see if you’ve stayed long enough to still get the $15 you were promised pic.twitter.com/2w6Yce0V11
— Noisy Desperation (@NoisyDesperatio) October 29, 2021
"I can't believe I'm only getting $40 for this." pic.twitter.com/KLqKpOl40I
— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) October 29, 2021
More actors, different script. pic.twitter.com/Wi7QbxC0Jr
— Silver Patriot (@SilverPatriot1) October 29, 2021
— James Kirkpatrick (@VDAREJamesK) October 29, 2021
Yeah. "Tiki-torch white supremacists for Youngkin who also work for Terry McAuliffe". Totally legit.
I can't imagine what the hell was going through the heads of the McAuliffe campaign when someone greenlighted this cringe, and yet, they have. https://t.co/QyXSBipQJF
— Rhode Islander (@rhodeislander) October 29, 2021
Did you ask Clayton Bigsby over here what he's doing at a Glenn Youngkin rally pic.twitter.com/KZlMQjPzU3
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) October 29, 2021
Ralph Northam wore blackface and now Terry McAullife makes staffers dress like white nationalists https://t.co/lawykE3GRu
— Comfortably Smug (@ComfortablySmug) October 29, 2021
Having a black crisis actor pretending to be a white supremacist while carrying a torch in the rain is absolutely perfect.
— Joe Cunningham (@JoePCunningham) October 29, 2021
Christina Freundlich, spokeswoman for McAuliffe, tweeted about the viral image on social media.
“The Unite the Right rally was one of the darkest days in the Commonwealth’s history. this is who Glenn Youngkin’s supporters are,” she claimed as social media users continued to mock McAuliffe’s campaign:
The Unite the Right rally was one of the darkest days in the Commonwealth's history. this is who Glenn Youngkin's supporters are pic.twitter.com/OpJ55r0AMr
— Christina Freundlich (@christinafreund) October 29, 2021
What’s wild is there are probably photos out there of Christina with these fellow Democrat staffers participating in this stunt. https://t.co/NkxO4QNOZm
— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) October 29, 2021
McAuliffe’s communications director also jumped on board.
“This is disgusting and disqualifying,” she said:
This is disgusting and disqualifying. https://t.co/EJ9Fk7OeTE
— Jen Goodman (@jengoodman75) October 29, 2021
VA Democrats are denying involvement:
Statement on Glenn Youngkin’s bus stop earlier today: pic.twitter.com/Hw0svCAW9W
— Andrew Whitley (@AndrewWhitleyVA) October 29, 2021
.@GlennYoungkin: “I think they work for Terry McAuliffe, and I’m sure he sent them… They’ll do anything to win, and he’s doing anything to win, and so he’s paying people to show up and act silly at our rallies.”https://t.co/isqTApoWFk
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) October 29, 2021
Friday’s RealClearPolitics’ average shows the gubernatorial race tightening the final days, with Youngkin having a 0.9 percent edge over McAuliffe.