VIRGINIA — This campaign flyer left in mailboxes last week in Virginia Beach, Virginia has caused an uproar, especially in the Filipino American community.
Fil-Am Kelly Fowler, a Democrat, serves as a delegate for the 21st district.
Fowler is running for re-election against Republican Shannon Kane.
The flyer, which was sent out by Kane’s campaign shows Fowler’s picture photoshopped next to MS-13 gang members, and said Fowler is “weak on illegal immigration, supports sanctuary cities and is putting the community’s safety at risk.”
“There is some last-minute attempt to try and ignite base against me, and the only way that she’s able to do that is to really, it’s race baiting, it’s getting people upset and angry about issues, first of all issues that weren’t true that were said against me.”
On Monday morning, Kane spoke to BA about the controversial campaign material.
“I regret the flyer going out. I approved the content of the flyer but I didn’t approve the creative direction of that. It was done by an ad agency and I didn’t see that part of it. I wish I had designed it myself. It’s hurting people, hurting someone, it’s not something I ever want to do, and for that I truly regret that the image used on flyer was used.”
Nony Abrajano is a Virginia Beach resident who has worked with several local politicians.
“That material that Shannon Kane put out might have been a wrong approach for her to do that. I disagree with the way she put out that materials but overall wise, she’s an excellent person. She’s not a racist based on my several years of working relationship with her, helping our Filipino American community here in Hampton Roads.”
Abrajano said he and many Fil-Am voters are looking at where the candidates stand on issues, and not necessarily the candidate’s ethnicity.
“You know majority of the Filipino Americans here in Hampton Roads, especially here in Virginia Beach are retired military and they are very concerned about Kelly regarding open border and the whole nine yards that go along with it. We are totally opposing it.”
Contrary to what was written on the flyer, Fowler said that she is against sanctuary cities and that she does not support free in state tuition.
Local elections in many towns across the country, including in Virginia Beach, is on November 5th.