GOP congressman not racist because he named his son 'after a black guy'


Republican Rep. Scott Taylor refuses to condemn his party's openly racist Senate nominee because he doesn't 'give a sh-t.'

Virginia Republicans humiliated themselves by nominating an openly racist candidate, Corey Stewart, to run against Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine. And while some in the party have disavowed their nominee, fearing the whole GOP will be tied to Stewart's racism, others, like freshman Rep. Scott Taylor, don't think they should have to.

And Taylor has a bizarre reason for thinking he's off the hook: He named his son after "a black guy."

According to the Virginian-Pilot, Taylor reacted angrily when his Democratic challenger, former Navy commander Elaine Luria, called on Taylor to denounce Stewart.

"I don't give a shit about Corey Stewart," Taylor answered. "No one else does either except for Democrats who are trying to target me. No one cares, except for a small teeny amount of people you met at the cupcake place. What are they trying to say? That Scott Taylor likes Corey Stewart so therefore he’s a racist? Do you think that's going to play here? My son is named after a black guy. I'm a military guy. We don't give a shit about where you come from. Black, white, brown, gay, straight. I don't care."

Taylor did not elaborate who the "black guy" his 5-year-old son Sterling is named after. And it doesn't matter. It certainly doesn't exempt him from accusations of racism, especially when he refuses to condemn the proud neo-Confederate his party nominated for the Senate.

Stewart, a Prince William County supervisor and former chair of the Trump presidential campaign in Virginia, supports Confederate flags and statues and has called for arresting mayors who don't racially profile Latinos. He has closely associated with white supremacists, calling anti-Semitic activist Paul Nehlen a "personal hero," and appearing in public with Jason Kessler, the neo-Nazi who organized the demonstrations in Charlottesville. He melted down when questioned about his ties to white supremacy by Chris Cuomo on CNN.

Taylor seems to understand the damage Stewart is doing to the GOP. Last week, he said in an interview he thinks there's "no way in hell" Stewart will win.

But he has refused to go as far as denouncing Stewart's candidacy, saying he "respect[s] the will of the voters and Republican folks who put him there" — an attitude dismayingly similar to that of some Republicans last year who hinted they would accept accused child molester Roy Moore if Alabama elected him to the Senate.

Taylor's seat, Virginia's 2nd Congressional District, leans Republican but is considered competitive. If Stewart depresses turnout for the GOP, Taylor could be vulnerable.

For all his bluster, Taylor should not expect people to give him a pass on hard questions because of what he named his son. Elections are about accountability — and he owes that to his voters.