June 17, 2014
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - In his first public appearance since last week's primary victory against Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Dave Brat said Tuesday he was "hitting the ground running" in his general election campaign, with a message promoting "economic prosperity."
Brat gave brief remarks to reporters before a Rotary Club breakfast that was closed to the media.
"Too many Virginians are still suffering without jobs, suffering under the rising cost of Obamacare, and the government's attempts to spend our way into prosperity have proven to be a dismal failure over the last few years," Brat said.
He did not take questions from reporters.
Brat spent much of last week in his home avoiding media attention after his upset victory over Cantor. An economics professor at Randolph-Macon College, Brat is set to face off against Democrat Jack Trammell, who teaches at the same school, in November.
Brat's new spokesman, Brian Gottstein, who worked for former Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, said about 15 paid and volunteer aides are working on the campaign as it transitions to general election mode.
"It's just been a roller coaster," Gottstein said. "We're looking for phones; we're looking for computers."
He said he did not have the exact figure for how much the campaign has raised since last week's election, but called fundraising "steady."
During the primary, Brat attacked Cantor as a Washington politician out of touch with his constituents. Gottstein said the campaign has been fielding numerous requests from national media but said it is "very earnest" about keeping attention focused on local outlets.