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Tough going for antiwar Republicans (Walter Jones)
|Last Edited||Andy Nov 01, 2007 03:32am|
|Media||Newspaper - Los Angeles Times|
|News Date||Sunday, October 21, 2007 11:30:00 AM UTC0:0|
|Description||MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. — The Crystal Coast Republican Men's Club faithful were all smiles as they gathered at a restaurant to listen to their candidate for North Carolina's 3rd Congressional District. |
But the warm reception wasn't for the Republican who since 1995 has represented this stretch of coast from the Virginia state line to the sprawling Marine base at Camp Lejeune. Rep. Walter B. Jones Jr., a soft-spoken, deeply religious man who two years ago turned against the Iraq war, was not there.
The GOP activists dining on fried fish were cheering Joe McLaughlin, a county commissioner and retired Army major who has launched a hard-charging bid to dispatch Jones in next year's primary by highlighting Jones' votes against the war.
"His is a message of despair, a message of defeat," McLaughlin told the appreciative crowd as he derided Jones, accusing him of abandoning the troops, President Bush, even talk-show host Rush Limbaugh.
Jones, who has never had a primary challenge but is being abandoned by GOP officials across his district, is not alone.