Dem Congressional Candidate Compares Trump to Osama bin Laden: Greatest Threat to Democracy 'Lives in the White House'

May 30, 2018

Democratic congressional candidate Dan Helmer released a campaign ad on Wednesday that compared President Donald Trump to Osama bin Laden.

"After 9/11, the greatest threat to our democracy lived in a cave," Helmer said over images of the al-Qaeda leader. "Today, he lives in the White House."

"No one, even the president, is above the law," Helmer added.

Helmer is running in the Democratic primary to see who will challenge Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock for Virginia's 10th Congressional District. The primary is scheduled for June 12.

Helmer is trailing behind several other Democratic candidates vying to take on Comstock. He and other Democrats in the primary have targeted front-runner state Sen. Jennifer T. Wexton for accepting corporate donations.

This isn't the only Helmer ad to grab headlines. Back in September of 2017, Helmer released an ad titled "Helmer Zone." It features candidate Helmer, wearing a shirt with "veteran" on it, where he spots an actress who is supposed to represent Comstock. The scene is inspired by the classic 1986 Top Gun bar scene and is chock full of Goose/Maverick references, from The Righteous Brothers' "You've Lost That Loving Feeling" to "danger zone."

The ad was dubbed the "worst ever."

Helmer's campaign defended the ad, saying it created a "fundraising bump." But the campaign's filing showed the opposite.

Earlier this month, Helmer released an undercover video of himself purchasing a firearm at a gun show without having to undergo a background check. The video captured national headlines as gun control was being debated around the country.

Helmer served as an Army officer in Iraq and in Afghanistan. He was stationed in Northern Virginia by the Army in 2013, and remained there when he left active duty in 2014.

Update 2:38 p.m.: A previous version of this piece incorrectly stated that Helmer moved to Virginia after being released from duty.

Published under: 2018 Election , Virginia