Republican communications strategist Rick Wilson, who is now advising the newly announced Independent presidential campaign of Evan McMullin, appeared on CNN Tuesday morning to discuss the campaign’s viability and challenges with only three months until election day.
Wilson contended that Evan McMullin gives voters someone they can feel good about voting for, rather than just voting against the highly unpopular Hillary Clinton, who he referred to as “ethically challenged and corrupt” and Donald Trump, who he labeled as “crazy.”
“Voters are absolutely sick and tired of both of these candidates from the major parties right now and the Republican candidate they view as crazy and the Democratic candidate they view as ethically challenged and corrupt.
And folks in the middle of this country have no one to talk to, no one to be proud of, and no one they can go and say ‘This is somebody I can wake up on the day after election day and say I voted for that guy and I did the right thing.'”
While the timing of getting into the race isn’t ideal — several states’ filing deadlines have passed — Wilson said the campaign has “an aggressive ballot acquisition process going on” and stated that the campaign is “going to push to be on the ballot as widely as possible.”
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“There are a lot of states with a deadline that may have passed,” Wilson admitted. “But there are legal venues for us to get on those ballots still in terms of either appealing those things, being on a third-party line, certain independent line, certain legal recourse.”
“I’m not a ballot attorney, but we’ve hired all if best ones and they are out there kicking butt right now to get us on the ballot as widely as possible,” Rick Wilson revealed.
Wilson addressed the narrative pushed by the Trump campaign, that McMullin’s Independent candidacy would simply ensure a Hillary Clinton victory, head on.
“Donald Trump is doing a great job of losing to Hillary Clinton without Evan in the field. He was doing a great job of driving his campaign in the ditch every single day.”
“Every promised Trump pivot turns into a pratfall. Every time they say he’s about to improve as a candidate, he does something else crazy.”
Wilson revealed that the Evan McMullin presidential campaign is raising money at a fast rate, is rapidly gaining followers on social media, and added 50,000 people to their email list since Monday evening at 6:00 PM.
“We are raising money at a roaring clip; we have added over 50,000 people to our email list since last night at six o’clock; we’ve got people pouring out of the woodwork from all over this country volunteering, asking how they can get involved, asking how they can help, asking how they can work in our state-level organizations.”
Evan McMullin, a former CIA counter-terrorism officer, began Monday with a Twitter following of only a couple of hundred. Today, following his announcement, he has over 33,000 followers as of 2:00 PM ET, on Tuesday.
Wilson noted that Evan McMullin entered the race to win and to push the debate in a different direction than what the other candidates in the race offer and to give a positive choice to voters in November.
“We’re in this to win. We’re in this to push this debate in a different direction — to make it something that’s broader and more accessible to Americans and to not just be in the the two lanes that we’ve got right now of Hillary Clinton’s campaign voting against Donald Trump from her side and on the Republican side people voting against Hillary Clinton.”
“We want to give people something to aspire to,” Wilson concluded.
In an interview with ABC News on Monday night, Evan McMullin explained his late entrance into the race:
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) August 9, 2016