The Republican Party of Virginia is hitting Rep. Tom Perriello (D-Virginia 05) hard for his vote on a measure to stand against closing the Guantanamo Bay detention center.
A Republican congressman from California offered an amendment that would have prohibited funding President Obama’s request to close Gitmo. The amendment failed by a very narrow margin.
“I think the people in Perriello’s district will be shocked to learn that he put his fear of party leadership ahead of the best interests of the people of Virginia,” said Pat Mullins, chairman of the state GOP. “This was a test of Tom Perriello’s concern about public safety, and he flunked it.”
Perriello, of course, thinks he passed the test with flying colors. “Yesterday’s vote was a victory for serious national security solutions over partisan fear-mongering and I will continue to put what’s right for America ahead of what’s easy politically,” he said in a statement.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee — the group that will help Perriello in his 2010 re-election bid — also weighs in:
“While Congressman Perriello continues working to make America more secure, Republicans are using scare tactics to try to score cheap political points,” said DCCC spokeswoman Jessica Santillo. “Instead of lobbing empty political attacks, they should join Congressman Perriello in working to improve our nation’s security and supporting our men and women in uniform.”
And, in a somewhat amusing political merry-go-round, the National Republican Congressional Committe has sent a response to the DCCC’s response to the state GOP’s original response to Perriello’s vote:
“For all of his posturing, Perriello has proven remarkably willing to put partisanship ahead of what’s right for Virginia whenever Nancy Pelosi comes calling,” said NRCC spokesman Andy Seré. “The families who sent Perriello to Washington needed him yesterday, but so did Pelosi. Sadly, it’s now crystal-clear where his allegiances lie – and that’s why Pelosi’s allies are returning the favor by so feverishly running to his defense.”