Catherine Crabill, the Republican Party's nominee for Virginia's 99th District in the House of Delegates, gave a speech at a recent Tea Party event suggesting that Second Amendment rights could be used to defend the anti-tax movement. The strange assertion was picked up by Virginia political blogger Not Larry Sabato.
"We have the chance to fight this battle at the ballot box before we have to resort to the bullet box," Crabill said. "That's the beauty of our Second Amendment rights ... Our Second Amendment rights were to guard against tyranny."
Crabill, who proclaims on her campaign website that "America was founded by right-wing extremists," has already drawn fire for her controversial views. Among other things, she believes the U.S. government played a role in the Oklahoma City Bombing.
"She has stated herself in such immoderate terms that she has made her candidacy almost a caricature," said Westmoreland GOP Chairman Robert Fountain. "Her views will appeal to the faithful, but not to enough people to give us the 51 per cent of the vote we will need to win in November."
UPDATE: Crabill has defended her words in an interview with the Washington Post.
"Those are my convictions," Crabill, 52, said in a telephone interview this morning. "I am a full-blooded, freedom-loving American, and what we're seeing in Washington is domestic terrorism at its worst."
But as a video of some provocative remarks zipped around the Internet, she also worried that she would be caricatured as an extremist. And she said she wanted to make clear that she was not advocating armed resistance.
"I have no desire to see this country erupt in any kind of violent revolution," Crabill said. "I don't even own a gun."