Tag Archives: Virginia Governor 2017

Where Are the GOP Gubernatorial Candidates This Weekend?

The GOP’s candidates are campaigning around Virginia this weekend. Where can you find them?

Ed Gillespie, candidate for Governor

Friday:  Wytheville, Bristol
Saturday:  Smyth, Pulaski, Floyd, Patrick, and Carroll Counties.

Galax — Fiddler’s Convention and Poor Man’s Dinner


Jill Vogel, candidate for Lieutenant Governor

Not available.



John Adams, candidate for Attorney General

1:30 – Newport Agricultural Festival (434 Blue Grass Trail, Newport)
6:00 – Poor Man’s Dinner and Fiddler’s Convention in Galax
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Polls Show Northam Leading in Virginia Gubernatorial Race

2017 Virginia Gubernatorial Debate with Democrat Ralph Northam, Republican Ed Gillespie, and moderator Judy Woodruff (PBS NewsHour). Photo by Matt Hall.

The latest Virginia statewide poll on the gubernatorial race came out Tuesday (see Northam leads Gillespie by 6 points in new poll, Trump’s Va. approval at 36 percent).

As I studied over it trying to decide how to pass it along (not sugar coat or spin but, rather, lay the facts out there), former Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling posted his thoughts on Facebook that mirrored my own. I share them here:

“This is the second poll this week to give LG Ralph Northam an early lead over Republican Ed Gillespie. An earlier poll showed the candidates tied. We will see a plethora of these polls in coming weeks. My best advice is to ignore them. They haven’t been terribly reliable in recent years.

“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – Gillespie will win big ‘downstate’ and the outcome of the election will depend on Northam’s ability to turn out the traditional Democratic vote in Northern Virginia and urban centers.

“At the end of the day, unless one candidate makes a big mistake, it will likely be a 2-3 point race, one way or the other. That’s been the trend in these top of the ticket statewide races for the past decade or so. The only blow out was in 2009 when Bob McDonnell defeated Creigh Deeds by a wide margin. All of the other races have been very close, and this one will likely be close as well.”

It is difficult to put a lot of faith in polls these days but if a trend is developing, it will be worth paying attention to in the months ahead. However, it is still early and we haven’t even crossed the traditional Labor Day beginning of the campaign season. Stay tuned….


Cross-posted at Bearing Drift

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George W. Bush To Attend Ed Gillespie Fundraiser

Ed Gillespie will have help on his gubernatorial campaign when a fundraiser to be held this weekend in Texas will be attended by his old boss, former President George W. Bush.

Gillespie, who was the state chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia in 2006, left to serve as the president’s top aide toward the end of the Bush administration. Gillespie also served as chairman of the Republican National Committee.

CNN reported:

“Ed will travel to Dallas this week to raise money for his campaign. He’s proud to have the support of President Bush and conservative leaders from across the commonwealth and the country,” said Abbi Sigler, a Gillespie spokeswoman. “This is a crucial campaign for Virginia Republicans, and Ed will work tirelessly to ensure we have the resources necessary to defeat Ralph Northam or Tom Perriello in November, and bring conservative leadership back to Richmond.”

The latest polls show Gillespie 25 points ahead of his nearest competitor, and ahead of both Democratic candidates in a hypothetical head-to-head contest.

Here are the numbers:

Head to Head Match ups:

  • Gillespie 40, Northam 39
  • Gillespie 39, Perriello 39
  • Northam 41, Stewart 33
  • Perriello 40, Stewart 34
  • Northam 40, Wagner 34
  • Perriello 38, Wagner 35

Among Independents:

  • Gillespie 40, Northam 30
  • Gillespie 40, Perriello 30

The Republican Primary is June 13 when Gillespie will be on the ballot with Corey Stewart and Frank Wagner. The winner will go on to compete in the general election against either Democratic Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam, or former Congressman Tom Perriello.

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Ed Gillespie Kicks Off Republican Gubernatorial Campaign Saturday


Ed Gillespie has counseled a president, led the Virginia Republican Party, and built a successful business. On Saturday, the longtime conservative and 2014 U.S. Senate candidate officially kicks off his campaign for Governor of Virginia with five events followed up with a four-day road trip that will have him crisscrossing the Commonwealth.

Gillespie, 55, will begin at 9:00 a.m. in Chantilly at his Northern Virginia Campaign Office, then travel south to his Richmond Headquarters for an 11:00 rally, followed by stops in Hampton Roads, Roanoke, and ending up in Bristol in Southwestern Virginia’s Fightin’ Ninth.

Gillespie easily led in a University of Mary Washington poll in September that had him with 19 percent. He was followed by State Senator Frank Wagner at 11 percent, and Prince William County Supervisor Corey Stewart at 6 percent. A fourth candidate, Rep. Rob Wittman, received 8 percent but has since dropped out of the race after winning reelection to Congress. Another candidate, Nelson County businessman Denver Riggleman, just entered the race.

In 2014, Gillespie came within a point of winning the U.S. Senate race in what was supposed to be a cake walk for Virginia’s Mark Warner. Since that time he has remained actively involved with Virginia Republicans. His hospitality suite during the December Republican Party of Virginia Advance in Richmond was one of the most, if not the most, attended and popular of the night.

Gillespie commented about the upcoming campaign. “I will be a governor for all Virginians and I am going to take my campaign to all Virginians. Cathy and I are ready to hit the ground running full-time. We have closed down our business and I am excited to be a full-time candidate for Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia.”

He added, “Our economy’s been stuck in neutral under the McAuliffe-Northam administration, and it will stay stuck if Ralph Northam or Tom Perriello are elected to continue the failed policies of higher taxes, more regulation and expanding Obamacare,” said Gillespie. “Over the course of the next 10 months, I will lay out a substantive plan to get our economy growing again. We will take our message of economic opportunity and upward mobility to every voter in every corner of our great Commonwealth.”

Two Democrats, Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam and former Congressman Tom Perriello, have announce their gubernatorial candidacies.

Here is the schedule for Saturday’s kickoff on Saturday.

Northern Virginia Event
Saturday at 9:00 a.m.
Gillespie for Governor Northern Virginia Office
14504 Lee Road Suite C,
Chantilly, VA 20151

Richmond Event
Saturday at 11:00 a.m.
Gillespie for Governor Headquarters
2100 Maywill Street
Richmond, VA 23230

Hampton Roads Event
Saturday at 2:00 p.m.
Gillespie for Governor Virginia Beach Office
4354 Holland Road,
Virginia Beach, VA 23456

Roanoke Event
Saturday at 5:00 p.m.
Hotel Roanoke, Pocahontas Room
110 Shenandoah Ave NE,
Roanoke, VA 24016

Bristol Event
Saturday at 7:15 p.m.
Mellow Mushroom
3500 Lee Hwy,
Bristol, VA 24202


From EdForVirginia.com:

Ed grew up working in his parents’ grocery store, the JC Market. The son of an Irish immigrant, Ed started his career as a Senate parking lot attendant and eventually worked his way up to become Counselor to President George W. Bush.

A former Chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia and the Republican National Committee, a lead author of the 1994 Contract with America, and a long-time policy and communications aide to former House Majority Leader Dick Armey, Ed has always been a conservative leader.

As Chairman of the RNC, Gillespie in 2004 was the first GOP chairman in 80 years to preside over a party that won the White House, House of Representatives and U.S. Senate. In 2009, he was general chairman of Bob McDonnell’s highly successful campaign for governor, reclaiming the governorship after back-to-back Democratic governors.

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Governor 2017: Denver Riggleman Makes It Official


In an announcement Monday, Nelson county businessman Denver Riggleman made it official in a press release that he running for the Republican nomination for Governor.

Bearing Drift has published background and an interview by senior contributor Matt Colt Hall previously while Riggleman explored the prospect of pursuing public office. He had filed official paperwork on December 28, 2016.

Riggleman, who owns a distillery in Nelson County, plans the official campaign kickoff at that location on Saturday.

In his press release, Riggleman said:

“I am running to radically change business as usual in Virginia. The plain truth is that the system is wired for lobbyists and large donors and against small business and the people. I have explored every other avenue to fight for not just myself but for the people of Virginia. I believe someone needs to use blunt force trauma to break up the good ole boy system in Richmond that, as Ronald Reagan said, ‘takes from the needy to give to the greedy.’ ”

If you’re going:

Denver Riggleman for Governor
Official Campaign Kickoff
Silverback Distillery
Saturday, January 14th
11 AM
9374 Rockfish Valley Hwy
Afton, VA 22920

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Virginia Gubernatorial Race Has Fourth Candidate

Denver Riggleman’s appearance at the Republican Advance earlier this month was to float his name out there as a contender for Virginia’s 2017 gubernatorial race, something he has taken a step further by officially filing the paperwork even thought he still claims he won’t make a “final decision” until the first part of January.

Our own Bearing Drift senior correspondent Matt Hall caught up with Riggleman during the Advance and talked with him about his background in the Air Force, his current ownership of Silverback Distillery in Nelson County, his feeling about having a native Virginian in Richmond, and his reasons for running for governor who considers himself a “nonconformist Republican.”

Matt noted after the interview, “There is one thing that goes without saying. Riggleman could bust this gubernatorial campaign wide open with his populist message….”

Cross-posted at Bearing Drift

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AP reports Corey Stewart to run for governor

Corey Stewart, fresh off his loss at the Republican Party of Virginia’s weekend convention in Harrisonburg, will run for governor, according to the Associated Press.

Stewart, the Virginia Donald Trump state campaign manager, lost at Saturday’s convention in a tug-of-war with Cruz state director Ken Cuccinelli. In the end, Cuccinelli’s Cruz team wrangled ten Cruz delegates to attend the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, and Trump received three. In the battle, Stewart was bumped from the list, something he did not take lightly.

“If this slate is put forward, it will be illegitimate, and it’s going to be very, very difficult to unify the party,” Stewart said on Fredericks’ radio show. “Cuccinelli has become so arrogant. He thinks that he controls the Republican Party of Virginia.”

Stewart, who is chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors and ran unsuccessfully three years ago for lieutenant governor, mirrors Trump’s hard line against illegal immigrants.

Continue reading

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Obenshain decides to sit out 2017; Gillespie for governor?


Ed & Cathy Gillespie at Republican State Convention 2014. Photo by Lynn R. Mitchell

By Lynn R. Mitchell

Monday afternoon certainly perked up when the news began circulating that Mark Obenshain had decided not to run for the Republican nomination for governor in 2017 (see Obenshain will not run for Va. governor).

The immediate response from GOPers was who would run?

For the Republican Party of Virginia, we really need Ed Gillespie as our candidate for governor. His narrow loss when he challenged U.S. Senator Mark Warner in 2014 showed he was able to pull together the factions and unite a hurting party that is looking for a leader.

Ed Gillespie could be that leader.

Former Lieutenant Governor agrees. On his Facebook page Monday he noted:

This is good news for the Virginia GOP. It gives the party a chance to unite behind a mainstream candidate for Governor in 2017. Ed Gillespie ran a great campaign for the U.S. Senate in 2014. Should he decide to run for Governor, Ed is the kind of candidate the party could unite behind.

Could Ed Gillespie be the gubernatorial candidate to run in 2017? Stay tuned….

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