Elections

Congressional candidate called war-veteran opponent ‘a coward.’ Now he’s apologizing.

Democratic congressional candidate Christian Cano has apologized for a series of attacks – on other Democrats.
Democratic congressional candidate Christian Cano has apologized for a series of attacks – on other Democrats. jsimmons@charlotteobserver.com

Democratic congressional candidate Christian Cano has apologized for a series of attacks – on other Democrats.

Cano, who is running in the 9th Congressional District, made the apology in an email.

“My public responses were irresponsible and not a reflection of our campaign of hospitality, service, and trust.”

The attacks started last week after the violence in Charlottesville and President Donald Trump’s response to it. They began with comments aimed at Dan McCready, a Charlotte Democrat and Marine veteran who, like Cano, is running for the seat held by Republican Robert Pittenger.

In a Facebook post, Cano criticized McCready’s own response to the president. “You’re running as a Marine veteran,” Cano wrote. “Stop being a coward and stand up for something you p----.”

McCready had commented on Trump’s response on Facebook. “I’m disgusted that we have a President who won’t call out hate and bigotry for what it is,” he wrote. Later he called Cano’s comments “Trump-like” and “unhinged” and “deeply offensive to veterans, women, and the people of the Ninth District.”

Cano’s post drew criticism from Charlotte City Council member Julie Eiselt, who called it derogatory.

It doesn’t “justify using crude language referring to a woman’s body part, and denigrating women,” she tweeted.

Dan McCready
Dan McCready Deborah Triplett

“Oh please @JulieEiselt,” Cano responded in a tweet. “When did you become the moral fiber of Charlotte? Get off the cross we need the wood.”

When Mecklenburg Democratic Chair Jane Whitley criticized his behavior to WSOC, he called her “Clueless Jane.”

In a letter to Cano and McCready, state Democratic Party Chairman Wayne Goodwin reminded each candidate to abide by the party’s code of conduct.

At least one staffer quit Cano’s campaign in protest.

In his apology, Cano acknowledged the damage his remarks caused.

“I realize I have to regain the trust of some of our campaign supporters,” he wrote, “and I’m confident we can do that…”

Jim Morrill: 704-358-5059, @jimmorrill

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