Guess what? The nominee the GOP picked for its Senate candidate in Virginia in its Tuesday June 12th primary to oppose incumbent Senator Tim Kaine was the Confederate statue and flag-loving Corey Stewart. A quizz for you reader: Corey was born in—-a) Richmond, b) Nashville, c) Atlanta or d) Duluth Minnesota? If you answered “d” you are correct. How much farther North can you get than Duluth before you crash up on the Canadian border? Where is the sincere concern in Duluth for “Conferderate legacy?”
Well, my great-grandfather Patrick Foley was a Yankee, also, from Chicago transplanted to Virginia as well. Why? To serve in the 23rd Illinois for Lincoln, the Union and to end slavery not to embrace the racist values of the neo-KKK rioters in Charlottesville last summer under a phoney banner of “Confederate legacy” — and this from a “Yankee” child of Duluth Minnesota. Corey Stewart is really running like one of the made-over 19th century Democratic Copperhead candidates who opposed — then abetted in the murder of Abraham Lincoln by their virulent hatred of the Great Emancipator (who helped found the Republican party, doesn’t anyone remember that?). Copperheads also opposed U.S. Grant and his Reconstruction efforts to protect freedmen’s rights with Federal troops in the treasonous and defeated former Confederacy. Doesn’t Corey even know the roots of the party whose banner he is running on? Hello, it is the Republican Party. Abraham Lincoln, ever heard of him?
Just walk down the Mall in Washington and gaze upon his serene but sad statue in his Memorial — and his carved Second Inaugural Address — “With malice toward none, with charity for all…let us bind up the nation’s wounds.” Even now, after over 150 years, it can bring tears to one’s eyes. And as that address was being given, even then the Confederate agent provocateur John Wilkes Booth was stalking Lincoln, watching him in the audience listening to the address. Booth on horseback would also stalk General Grant — the military commander who saved our United States — and his wife Julia in their carriage on their way to Union Station, but as it was the day planned for the assassination in Ford’s Theater Booth was preoccupied so he reluctantly had to let them go. But at Ford’s Theater — in a pure act of vindictiveness as Lee had already surrendered at Appomattox and no bullet could then change the outcome of the war — Booth shot Lincoln in front of his horrified wife and then shouted the Virginia slogan “sic sempre tyrannis” — as if Honest Abe could ever be a tyrant. Corey, two of the most famous Republicans in our history were Abraham Lincoln and U.S. Grant, not Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee. And there were no Confederates in your hometown of Duluth Minnesota in 1861 when Fort Sumter was attacked.
Corey is what the anti-Reconstruction unrepentant Confederate sympathizers used to refer to as a Yankee “carpetbagger ” transplanting himself not only geogrpahically South but also embracing values antithetical to the very roots of the party whose banner he is running under. He is playing the “noble, lost cause” card of what he perceives as Virginia “good old boy” Confederate prejudice trying to get elected. (Tim Kaine interestingly was also born in Minnesota but soon moved to the border state of Missouri where Julia Grant’s family, among many others, owned slaves — so he could at least make some claim to Southern heritage if he wanted to do so. Don’t think he does though.) But Corey started college at St. Olaf’s — how more Minnesota can you get than that?
Corey, don’t you know that your home state, Minnesota, was admitted to the Union in 1858 on the eve of the Civil War and fought for Abraham Lincoln — ever heard of him? — and the Union, NEVER for the Confederacy , Jeff Davis, Robert E. Lee and all those others whose statues you love so much.
Not everyone of your potential future constituents in Virginia is a Confederate descendant. Some, like the 80,000 strong Korean-American community I work closely with, are immigrants. Others, like me, are descendants of Union veterans. I am proud of my ancester Captain Patrick Foley and his role, under General Sheridan, in the Valley campaign in the Shenandoah. Patrick’s commander, Colonel James Mulligan, never made it back home to Illinois. He fell fatally wounded at the Battle of Kernstown on July 26, 1864, while uttering the immortal words “lay me down and save the flag” — meaning our flag, the flag of the United States, NOT the Confederate flag. I just saw those words again on Mermorial Day at Calvary Cemetery in Evanston, Illinois carved into the obelisk where Colonel Mulligan lies buried. Corey Stewart, aren’t you glad that U.S. Grant, Philip Sheridan, James Mulligan and Patrick Foley were in Virginia in 1864 and 1865 to preserve the United States as we know it today? Do you really wish that the Confederacy had won? “Oh, we’ll rally round the flag, boys, we’ll rally once again, shouting the battle cry of freedom!..The Union forever, hurrah boys, hurrah, down with the traitor, up with the star!” That is part of the Civil War legacy of the Commonwealth of Virginia also which you are seeking to represent. The number one state where Union forces battled to preserve the Union forever.
Corey’s bio, the Minnesota “confederate”: