Contact: Emily Bowers Vermont Democratic Party Communications Director
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
VERMONT DEMOCRATIC PARTY CALLS ON REPUBLICAN PHIL SCOTT TO DISAVOW FAR RIGHT CANDIDATES USING HIS NAME
Montpelier, VT – The Vermont Democratic Party called on Republican Governor Phil Scott to condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the far right extremist candidates using his name and his party to campaign for state legislature.
"John Klar is arguably the most dangerous candidate Vermont has seen in decades," said Vermont Democratic Party Executive Director Jim Dandeneau, "and he's sending mail and buying newspaper ads showing him standing next to the Governor, making people think that Phil Scott supports his bigoted far-right extremism. Phil has a responsibility to Vermonters to tell us where he stands: is he with the cruel, conspiracy-driven MAGA wing of his party, or will he stand up for the decency and civility he likes to talk about?"
His recent apparent endorsement of John Klar - the bigoted, unabashed conspiracy theorist, transphobic candidate running Orange County State Senate - should be disturbing to all Phil Scott supporters. Klar has shown himself to be at the farthest end of Right Wing extremism; every day that Scott refuses to disavow the path of his party and their candidates notches up the danger to our security and democracy.
Klar is the embodiment of today’s Republican party. He makes comments about “transgender perverts” and the “extremist activism” that was Roe v Wade. He’s an election denier who travels the state attacking marginalized teenagers and the school staff who would dare try and protect them. His race has been described as “the big Senate race to watch” and “a pickup opportunity for Republicans” by the chair of the VGTOP.
Last week, John Klar sent a campaign mailer to the Orange County State Senate district picturing him standing shoulder to shoulder with Phil Scott. Governor Scott has not uttered a single word of condemnation since that ad hit mailboxes last week.
“This kind of behavior is exactly what got the national Republicans to where they are today,” said Dandeneau. “Their determination to get tax cuts for the wealthy has led them to become the party of violence and bigotry. They work everyday to actively undermine our democracy, and run on platforms of election denial and white nationalist talking points.
Governor Scott claims to be a moderate Republican. He has a responsibility to make it clear to Vermonters which he values more: will he protect our vulnerable democracy, or will he hold the statehouse doors open for people ready to tear it down on the off chance that they will sustain his veto?”