See below for the latest thoughts by former Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R) on the 2021 Republican governor’s nomination contest (h/t to Brandon Jarvis for the “heads up” on this). Of course, in reality, none of these people should even be considered for governor of Virginia, but if you want the “least-bad” of them, perhaps Youngkin or Cox aren’t as horrible as Chase or Snyder? But really, it’s just degrees of badness…
THOUGHTS ON THE VIRGINIA REPUBLICAN GOVERNOR’S RACE
To my Virginia Republican friends, let’s talk about the Republican nomination for Governor today.
Are you really excited about any of the current Republican candidates for Governor? Do you think any of them have a realistic chance of defeating Terry McAuliffe in what has become a very blue Virginia? If so, who and why?
Here are my thoughts on the main candidates:
Amanda Chase…..Chase is a non-starter for me. She will have a base of support within the Republican Party, and she may even win the first ballot vote, but I don’t think she can win the nomination, and I know she can’t win in Virginia. If Republicans nominate Chase they are giving away any chance they have of winning the Governor’s office, and probably giving away the other two state wide offices as well.
Kirk Cox…..Kirk is billing himself as the conservative insider. He certainly has a record of conservative leadership (although some would disagree with his support for Medicaid expansion in 2018), and he definitely knows how state government works. He also has a positive personal message as a former teacher and coach. If you are looking for a genuinely nice guy, with experience in state government and a conservative record, Kirk could be your choice.
Pete Snyder…..Snyder is billing himself as the conservative outsider. I know Pete and I like him. He has paid his dues in the Republican Party, both as a leader and a candidate, but he has never held elected office. Some may see that as a strength, while others (including me) see it as a weakness. I am also concerned by Pete’s strategy of trying to appeal to the far right wing of the party. I think he is posturing himself as the #2 choice for Chase voters. That may be a good nomination strategy, but it could prove a handicap in the fall campaign.
Glenn Youngkin…..Youngkin is the experienced outsider. Not experienced in government, for he has never held elected office either, but experienced in running a large private sector company. No one really know what Youngkin believes, because he has never had to make difficult decisions in the public square. That may be his greatest weakness. But if you are looking for a true outsider to both politics and government, Youngkin could be your candidate, and he certainly has an impressive record of leadership in the private sector.
For me, the choice comes down to Cox and Youngkin. I know Kirk Cox, while I don’t know Glenn Youngkin. That makes me inclined to lean more toward Cox. However, Youngkin is an interesting candidate, kind of the Republican version of Mark Warner and Terry McAuliffe. (I mean that in a positive way) I think either of these candidates could make the fall campaign competitive, and they could have an outside chance of winning if the national environment turns against the Democrats or McAuliffe stumbles.
Those are my thoughts. Feel free to share yours.