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'I'm going to break the mold': Republican primary candidate makes stop in Richmond

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) -- One of the three Republican primary candidates hoping to run in the Senate race made a stop in Richmond, trying to make a last appeal to voters.

"I'm going to break the mold of what it means to be a Republican," said E.W. Jackson, a Chesapeake pastor running in the primary. 

Meeting at a Get Out the Vote rally the Hilton Hotel on Broad St. Saturday, Jackson put prayer first to bring the people together. 

It stood out to voters. 

"He's a Bible believing Christian, which is really important to me. I share the same faith as him," said Guy Harper, from Chesterfield County. 

While focusing on his base Saturday, Jackson still hopes to appeal to people on the other side of the aisle. He switched parties back in the 80's. 

"I used to be a Democrat," he told 8News. "As Ronald Reagan famously said, I didn't leave the democratic party, the democratic party left me. I think we can come together around those common values and solve problems instead of just devouring each other." 

Jackson is vying for the Republican nomination against Corey Stewart, the current Chairman of the Board of County Supervisors in Prince William County, and Delegate Nick Freitas (R-Culpeper). The Republican candidate who wins Tuesday will go up against incumbent Sen. Tim Kaine, a Democrat who's served in the U.S. Senate since 2013. 

Jackson grew up in Pennsylvania in a foster home. He told the audience how he was on the wrong path, getting involved with a gang, and then his father stepped back into his life. With his father by his side at 10 years old, Jackson became a better student, later attending Harvard Law School. 

While studying law, Jackson found the ministry calling to him. Later, his faith got him involved with politics.

Jackson's three main focuses include reform in Congress, immigration and education.

Jackson explained that he wants to put limitations on special counsel investigations, saying they've become too politicized. 

"Republicans shouldn't be doing it to Democrats and Democrats shouldn't be doing it to Republicans. I will file legislation to reign in special counsels," he explained.

Jackson has a strong stance on immigration. He says President Donald Trump is on the right path by enhancing a security at the border, but Jackson also wants to create more legislation.

"We got to draw an absolute line, that you can't come here illegally and except to gain the benefits of citizenship," he said.

In terms of education, Jackson wants to make sure parents have more options for their children. 

"I believe that parents aught to be able to choose their children's school and not have to pay twice,"  Jackson explained. "I favor tax credits to help with tuition."

 The Chesapeake pastor considers himself the "unity candidate," and wants to make sure Virginia values are at the forefront of the election. 

'Virginia is the ideal place to remind Americans who we are and to bring us back to the fundamentals that made America great." 

A big decision for voters come Tuesday.

Polls will be open from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m.

- What You Need to Know Before the June Primary


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