WASHINGTON — Rep. Robert C. “Bobby” Scott of Newport News is considered liberal. Radio show host John Fredericks was pulling for and predicting a Donald Trump presidency long before most.
Conservatives attack Scott over his political positions.
Someone once chastised Fredericks — who served as co-chairman, then chairman of Trump’s Virginia campaign — in a store because he wore a red “Make America Great Again” hat.
But politics doesn’t always have to be so mean.
The two came together as friends in Washington on Friday. Scott invited Fredericks as his special guest for the Capitol swearing-in ceremony. Virginia’s three other Democratic congressmen — Reps. Don Beyer, D-8th; Gerald E. Connolly, D-11th; and A. Donald McEachin, D-4th — boycotted the inauguration because of their opposition to Trump.
Each member of Congress receives a ticket for a spouse or designated guest. Scott is not married, so an aide called Fredericks to offer him the ticket.
“I am a Trump supporter from the beginning, and everybody knows where I stand on a lot of issues,” Fredericks said. “But I have always known that Bobby Scott has the best interests of America at heart.”
Scott was first elected to Congress in the 3rd District in 1992, becoming the first African-American member of Congress from Virginia after Reconstruction. If Hillary Clinton had won the presidency — which would have made Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., vice president — Scott was a contender for appointment by Gov. Terry McAuliffe to complete Kaine’s unexpired term in the Senate.
“I have known John for several years, and I call in to his radio show regularly,” Scott said in a statement.
“Despite our different political views, I always enjoy debating the issues with John and sometimes we actually agree on a few things. Most importantly though, John and his family are my constituents and I was happy to provide them and many in the 3rd Congressional District with tickets to the inauguration.”
Fredericks attends an annual Labor Day barbecue at Scott’s home. His radio show is broadcast from Chesapeake.
“I had him on my show today, and we argued over health care,” Fredericks said Thursday, after broadcasting from Washington. “But there’s also common ground.”
Fredericks said Scott is setting a standard for approaching Trump’s presidency.
“I know people are upset,” he said. But a paycheck isn’t red or blue, Fredericks is fond of saying. He is optimistic that American’s economy will boom under what he calls “a working man’s revolution” that led to Trump’s surprise election.