Tuesday, February 3, 2009

McDonnell to Step Down

Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell announced today that he's stepping down as Attorney General to focus on running a full-time campaign for governor. This is not an uncommon practice among past AGs who have run for governor. I've embedded the YouTube clip of his full announcement.

It's interesting that he's trying to take such a bipartisan tack--it's as if he's taking a page from the Mark Warner playbook. In the same breath that he talks about values and the Boy Scout Jamboree, he also talks up the environment and protecting the waterways. Apparently Bob's campaign doesn't think moving right is necessarily an awesome idea.

Bobby's moderation, at least in terms of rhetoric, brings up an important question: what will the hardliners say? Specifically, it will be interesting to see how J-Fred responds. Will there be a battle of egos? Will Virginia's 2009 race become a microcosm of the national party's principles-versus-sanity debate? It would make for good political theater.

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