Republican Candidates Trade Endorsements
Vermont Lieutenant Governor Phil Scott is in the midst of a contentious primary campaign against first-time candidate Bruce Lisman in the Republican primary for governor. Today, Scott received an endorsement from the Republican seeking his current position.
Vermont’s Republican gubernatorial primary has become increasingly abrasive as retired Wall Street executive Lisman questions Scott’s ethics and leadership. Scott, meanwhile, slams his opponent for running what he calls a negative campaign based on deceit and lies.
Randy Brock is the only Republican running to replace Scott as Lieutenant Governor.
Scott and Brock met at a park in Colchester Wednesday morning to exchange endorsements.
Brock, a former state auditor and senator, said Scott is the best person to implement the change Vermont needs. “Vermonters are taxed out, tapped out, and ready for change in Montpelier. Today I’m endorsing Phil Scott for governor of the state of Vermont. In November we must make sure that we provide Vermonters with the best catalyst for change to make a real difference in everyday lives and to do the hard work it takes to transform state government. I believe that Phil Scott is the best person and is the person best positioned to accomplish this.”
Scott returned the favor, announcing his full backing of Brock in the general election. “Randy has a strong background in fiscal management, in accountability, with the right skills, ethics and experience to serve as Lieutenant Governor. He shares my vision of putting principle above politics.”
Scott’s opponent, Bruce Lisman, doesn’t think Brock’s endorsement will sway any voters. “I’ve run an outsider’s race. I’m offering real issues. I’m telling people, because Phil won’t, I’m telling people what Phil thinks. Or what he has said I should say, it’s that descriptive of what he thinks. And they’ll decide based on that contrast. And so the best endorsement I could get of course is a majority in Tuesday’s election.”
Scott says he always anticipated a contested race, but is disappointed in the tone of the primary campaign. He is gratified to have received endorsements from not only Brock but more than 100 Republican leaders across the state. “With the amount of negative ads and from my standpoint deceitful ads it’s given me concern. And I want to make sure all our bases are covered. I want to fight right to the very end. Bruce Lisman has supported me in the last three elections. So I was a bit taken aback by this strategy.”
But Lisman says he has simply offered direct quotes from Scott. “He has never said he didn’t say those things. He merely says they’re lies. And so the real issue is they’re contrast ads. They tell people what he has said over the last six years and tell people what I say over the last six years.”
Brock says he has kept away from the animosity of the gubernatorial primary. “Both these men are friends of mine. I believe Phil is the person best positioned to our next governor and I support him. In the event that the primary goes in another direction I will support Bruce Lisman. Bruce is a very competent and capable guy as well. However I’m endorsing Phil because I believe Phil is the best person to win this election.”
The Vermont primary is Tuesday. There will also be five Democrats on the gubernatorial primary ballot. Incumbent Governor Democrat Peter Shumlin is not running for re-election.