Smith rejects race/party labels
Chuck Smith is the Republican nominee in Virginia’s 3rd Congressional district. It is a district that was drawn by the order of the Justice Department specifically with the goal of giving minorities a voice in Washington. As a result of that decision, the 3rd has been a pretty reliable vote for Democrats. Smith, himself an African-American doesn’t believe it has to stay that way.
“I don’t think there is a concept by which one race of people belongs to a certain party,” said Smith during an interview on NBC12 First at 4.
Smith, a former JAG lawyer and member of the Marine Corps told me that the issues that he connects with are the issues that people in the 3rd district care about, whether they are white or black.
“I believe my values align with those in the 3rd district,” he said. ”I’ll go a step further and say my family values, my Christian values, my political values and my service to this country align with just about any place in America.”
But that doesn’t make him a lock step GOP vote. He said he won’t be afraid to challenge the Republican establishment when need be and vote in the best interest of his constituents.
“I am not a Republican because I follow the mantra of what other people are doing,” he said. ”I’m a Republican because I made a conscious decision early on in my life that I believe in lower taxes and smaller government.”
Smith has had a couple of high points in an otherwise low profile race. He received the endorsement of the Richmond Times-Dispatch over the weekend and earlier in the month he welcomed Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele to an event in Henrico.
Still, Smith’s campaign against Democratic incumbent Rep. Bobby Scott, has to be considered a long shot. A win would be considered a major upset and would represent a historic sweep beyond what even the most hopeful Republicans are projecting.
You can see the complete interview with Chuck Smith below. The complete transcript is available at NBC12.com.