Steinem Endorses Foy, NARAL Virginia Endorses McClellan: A Gubernatorial Update

The Republicans have picked their nominees for Virginia’s statewide elections, with signs of a pivot towards more moderate voters. The Democratic primary has about three weeks left of early voting, with 35,072 early votes already cast, surpassing total turnout in the primary in 2017, according to The Virginia Public Access Project. Democratic candidates are battling for a few key remaining nominations to sway voters.

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Virginia Republicans Nominate Glenn Youngkin for Governor

Former Carlyle CEO Glenn Youngkin is the Republican Party of Virginia’s nominee for governor. The win is a surprise since many pundits said that lower-than-expected turnout in Saturday’s convention meant that Youngkin’s base had collapsed. Instead, Youngkin took an early lead in the first round of counting of ranked-choice votes. Although it took six rounds of counting and all of Monday to confirm his win, Youngkin consistently stayed in the lead. In the last round Youngkin carried 54.71 percent of weighted votes to Pete Snyder’s 45.29 percent.

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Commentary: Chase Concedes, Snyder Confident After RPV Convention

Amanda Chase

State Senator Amanda Chase (I-Chesterfield) is the first of the GOP candidates to concede the gubernatorial contest to Pete Snyder by means of fusillade, threatening a third-party run due to “clear corruption” should the election go Snyder’s way.

Clearly there is a great deal of anger here. And perhaps a confession of sorts that Chase knew she wasn’t going into this convention with either strength or confidence in her ability to turn out.

But it’s not the anger of someone who had something stolen from them. This tweet alone is a violation of the RPV Party Plan. This is someone who refuses to accept any outcome other than the one that anoints them as a victor — Republicans don’t behave like Democrats.

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RPV Unassembled Convention Goes Smoothly with About 29,000 Ballots Cast

The Republican Party of Virginia held its unassembled convention to pick party nominees for governor, attorney general, and lieutenant governor on Saturday. Official results will be slow to come in, thanks in part to a decision to hand-count the tens of thousands of ranked-choice ballots. As a result, campaigns and elections watchers are looking at turnout estimates for clues about who the nominees might be. Estimates from Republican Governor’s Association officials claim about 52 percent of the over 53,000 registered delegates turned out.

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John Fredericks Commentary: Analysis and Predictions for the GOP for Saturday’s Nominating Convention

American flag flying above a large crowd.

On Saturday, May 8, up to 53,000 Virginia Republicans who pre-registered as delegates will nominate candidates for state-wide offices in November, including governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general.

It’s been a long time coming.

The nominating process for Republicans, an unassembled convention with about 40 voting locations across the Commonwealth – open for voting from 9:00 AM-4:00 PM – is a convoluted and confusing affair that took months to negotiate and consummate after numerous marathon and agonizing Zoom calls by the Party’s State Central Committee.

It’s been a long time coming.  

The nominating process for Republicans, an unassembled convention with about 40 voting locations across the Commonwealth–open for voting from 9:00 AM-4:00 PM–is a convoluted and confusing affair that took months to negotiate and consummate after numerous marathon and agonizing Zoom calls by the Party’s State Central Committee. 

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Virginia Gubernatorial Candidates Hustle Before the Convention

After months of contention among party leadership and claims of cheating and irregularities among the candidates, the Republican Party of Virginia will finally select its candidates for statewide office on Saturday, although the final count may not be known for several days. The candidates have fanned out across the state, emphasizing policies like reopening schools and businesses, supporting gun rights, and fighting for election integrity. This week the candidates are making their final appeals to convention delegates with more calls for reform, campaign stops, and support from major GOP political figures.

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Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association Starts Podcast Series on 2021 Candidates and Healthcare

Set up of podcast with microphone and desktop computer with editing software.

The Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association (VHHA) have announced a podcast series focusing on the 2021 candidates for office and their stances on healthcare. The series features statewide candidates from both parties addressing the healthcare issues of the Commonwealth. 

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In Debate, GOP Gubernatorial Candidates Discuss Amazon and Small Business

Six of the seven GOP gubernatorial candidates met for a debate hosted by the Virginia Federation of Republican Women on Tuesday evening. Candidates answered questions about Dominion voting machines, Second Amendment rights, transportation, and funding law enforcement. Organizers said Pete Snyder had a prior engagement.

Larry O’Connor asked the candidates, “Amazon is king right now in northern Virginia if you didn’t know any better. How will we expect small businesses to survive when government regulations that make it difficult for them are thrown out the window for literally the richest man in the world? How do you plan to protect key real estate in northern Virginia from being swallowed up by one company as well?”

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Debates, Tours, Endorsements, and a Florida Stop: Virginia Candidates Battle for Nomination

The race for the GOP nomination for the top Virginia positions is coming to an end, leading to a debate, tours, and a trip to Florida. In the Democratic primary, early voting has already begun, but big nominations are still rolling in.

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Virginia Mathematics Pathways Initiative Draws Concern Over Lowering Academic Standards

A proposed Virginia Mathematics Pathways Initiative (VMPI) has Republicans concerned after Loudoun County School Board member Ian Serotkin warned about the plan on Facebook, first reported by Fox News. Serotkin wrote that there are some good things in the initiative, like enabling students to take calculus in high school. But Serotkin also warned that the VMPI would end math acceleration before 11th grade.

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With GOP Nominating Convention Two Weeks Away, Snyder, Sears Launch Tours

With two weeks until the May 8 GOP nomination convention, GOP candidates are hitting the road. On Friday, gubernatorial candidate Pete Snyder announced a new “Conservative Outlaw Tour” of ten stops over 12 days spread across Virginia accompanied by his barbecue smoker the “Pig Rig” and  “conservative outlaw” special guests. The same day, Lieutenant Governor candidate Winsome Sears announced her “Take Back the Commonwealth” RV tour with 24 scheduled stops over five days.

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Chase, Cox, and Youngkin Send Letter to RPV Criticizing Nomination Vote-Tabulating Plan

Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield), Delegate Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights), and Glenn Youngkin released a letter Wednesday criticizing a vote-counting plan to tally votes in the Republican Party of Virginia’s (RPV)  nominating convention. The convention will use ranked-choice voting, which makes vote counting complicated and time-consuming. An RPV committee has recommended that the RPV use an Excel-based system called the ‘Burkhardt Method.’ But the three candidates say the method is unproven, and may have security concerns.

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Virginia Republican Gubernatorial Candidates on Best Behavior at Liberty University Forum

The College Republicans of Liberty University hosted a forum for the Republican candidates for Governor of Virginia. Delegate Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights), State Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield), Colonel Sergio De La Pena, Glenn Youngkin, and Peter Doran participated in the forum that was held at Thomas Road Baptist Church. The candidates were well prepared and measured as the 100+ person plus room listened intently. 

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Q1 Finance Reports for Statewide Campaigns Filed, Youngkin Leads in GOP, Snyder Comes Close

Per the Code of the Commonwealth of Virginia, all campaigns must have their Campaign Finance Report filed with the State Board of Elections by 11:59PM  Thursday. These reports give voters a behind-the-scenes look on how candidates run their campaigns, who is giving them money, and how the candidates are spending their campaign cash.

According to public reports available as of press time, former Carlyle Group CEO Glenn Youngkin has out-raised the Republican field for Governor. Youngkin filed a sizable return, reporting $7.6 million in raised funds. However, he did not post yet how much cash on hand (COH) he has. Former New Media Strategies CEO and Youngkin’s main opponent Pete Snyder, meanwhile, raised $6.4 million – but also with no report yet on his cash on hand.

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Cox Calls for Small-Group and Individual Tutoring to Address Learning Loss

Gubernatorial candidate Delegate Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights) agrees that schools need to be reopened immediately. But he says that’s not enough — policymakers need to address learning losses. Districts like Fairfax County have reported spikes in failing grades. Parents and medical studies have expressed concern over the long-term harms caused by a year of virtual learning. Cox is calling for tutoring programs to help students recover academically, and he says he is willing to be one of those tutors.

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Pete Snyder Stumps in Roanoke with Convention Quickly Approaching

With the 2021 Republican Party of Virginia Unassembled State Convention creeping closer and closer, Republican candidate for Governor Pete Snyder made his way to the Star City on Tuesday night to feed convention-goers and engage in a little retail politics.

Snyder, the former New Media Strategies CEO and longtime leader in the Republican Party of Virginia, bounced out of the car at Starkey Park to greet attendees. Syder’s Communications Director Lenze Morris – an alumnus of Governor Kay Ivey (R-Alabama) – and Republican Party of Virginia Western Regional Vice Chairman and Snyder’s Political Director Daniel Webb quietly watched as the candidate made his rounds.

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Glenn Youngkin Stumps for Governor: Addresses His Dealings in China, Virginia’s COVID Policy, and Election Integrity

Republican candidate for Governor Glenn Youngkin made a campaign stop in Roanoke over the weekend. Youngkin, former Carlyle Group CEO, was the guest of Dr. Nancy V. Dye and Dr. Kevin Dye at their home, the historic Rockledge manor.

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Gubernatorial Candidate Chase Claims More Convention Corruption

Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield) is firing more claims of corruption at her gubernatorial opponent Pete Snyder and Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) officials, based on Snyder’s campaign hiring staffers with roles in the RPV. Snyder’s campaign and some RPV officials say the claims are baseless.

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Chase Says Convention Rigged, Will Run as Independent if Snyder Wins Nomination

Senator Amanda Chase, candidate for the GOP nomination for governor, says she will run as an independent if Pete Snyder is nominated. Chase appeared on The Jeff Katz Show on Tuesday, where she said that the convention process selected by the Republican Party of Virginia is rigged.

“After all the conventions that I participated in for over a decade, I can tell you, that these conventions are rigged. It’s voter suppression,” Chase said.

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Virginia GOP Gubernatorial Candidates in Mad Scramble for Delegates in Wide Open Race

The Republican Party of Virginia announced Friday that the filing deadline had passed for the 2021 Republican Party of Virginia unassembled convention, creating a scramble for the wide open Governor’s race. The unassembled convention is scheduled for Saturday, May 8th, with over 30 polling locations across the Commonwealth of Virginia. According to the Republican Party of Virginia, all but two announced candidates for Governor filed for and paid their filing fee.

The following candidates have properly filed with the Republican Party of Virginia and will appear on the Republican Party of Virginia 2021 Statewide unassembled convention ballot.

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Former Trump Press Secretary and Arkansas Gubernatorial Hopeful Sarah Sanders Endorses Pete Snyder for Virginia Governor

Former White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders has endorsed Virginia gubernatorial candidate Pete Snyder. On Thursday, the Snyder campaign posted a video call between Snyder and Sanders on YouTube.

In the video, Sanders said Snyder was a strong Trump supporter who would fight for schools and businesses to be open.

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Virginia Democratic Gubernatorial Candidates Attack Their GOP Counterparts

Four Democratic candidates for governor blasted their GOP counterparts in a joint statement Thursday.

“Last week, the entire Republican field took their complete embrace of Donald Trump a step beyond the far right extremism that has become the norm in the Virginia GOP,” wrote candidates Jennifer Carroll Foy, Delegate Lee Carter (D-Manassas), Terry McAuliffe, and Senator Jennifer McClellan (D-Richmond.)

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Debates, Special Elections, and Hot Dog Reviews: A Virginia Gubernatorial Update

With a special election coming on Tuesday for Senate District 38, gubernatorial candidates on both side of the aisle made appearances this week campaigning for Laurie Buchwald (D) and Travis Hackworth (R). But the governor’s race this week also featured hot dog reviews, a Democratic debate, and attacks between candidates.

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Political Ads and Gun Shows: A GOP Gubernatorial Update

The Republican Party of Virginia has finally selected a clear nomination process, and the GOP gubernatorial candidates are working to register delegates who will vote for them in the unassembled convention. They’re also attending gun shows, launching new political ads, and attacking the Virginia Parole Board.

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Gubernatorial Hopeful Pete Snyder Announces Election Integrity Plan

Pete Snyder announced his ‘Honest Vote’ election integrity plan on Thursday. The six-point plan focuses on transparency ballot verification and ballot verification measures.

“Having secure, legal, and trustworthy elections is something that we must demand in our Commonwealth. Unfortunately, for too many Virginians, whether they be Republicans, Democrats or independents, trust in our election system has been severely strained and due to many last minute Covid-related changes to our voting systems,” Snyder said in a press release.

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New Mission PAC Hosts GOP Gubernatorial Forum

GOP gubernatorial candidates Delegate Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights), Peter Doran, Sergio de la Peña, and Glenn Youngkin met on Zoom on Thursday evening to answer policy questions about school reform, fixing Virginia’s tax code, improving broadband access, and making Virginia more veteran friendly. The New Mission PAC hosted the forum. PAC founder Daniel Gade and former Delegate Chris Saxman asked the questions in a format designed to allow candidates to demonstrate policy positions without engaging in direct debate.

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Glenn Youngkin Creates Virginia Wins PAC to Fund Republican Candidates Across the Ballot

Gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin announced Tuesday he is creating a Virginia Wins PAC to fund Republican political candidates across the ballot in Virginia.

“Youngkin’s investment and fundraising will build a team of local and statewide Republican leaders to restore the Commonwealth, and counter the liberal agenda driven in Virginia by George Soros, who in recent years funded left-wing candidates and efforts aimed at transforming school boards and prosecutor offices,” a campaign press release states.

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Senator Amanda Chase Still Dominates Virginia Gubernatorial Conversation as Other Candidates Announce New Policy Plans, Make Campaign Stops

More gubernatorial polls this week show most voters are undecided, allowing contest leaders to continue to claim front-runner status while allowing everybody else to claim theoretical wins. But there’s more gubernatorial news than that — this week’s campaign news features new policy announcements, major endorsements, messaging controversy, and a late-night television mention.

First, the poll: 49 percent of Democratic voters and 55 percent of Republican voters are undecided, according to a Christoper Newport University/Wason Center Poll. Former Governor Terry McAuliffe leads Democrats with 26 percent, while Senator Amanda Chase leads Republicans with 17 percent.

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Gubernatorial Candidate Youngkin Announces Plan for an Election Integrity Task Force

Citing a need to restore trust in elections, gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin announced an Election Integrity Task Force on Monday.

“This is not a Democrat issue or a Republican issue, it’s a democracy issue,” Youngkin said in a press release. “Both parties have long raised concerns, and we must restore Americans’ faith in the integrity of our elections.”

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New Poll Results, GOP Candidates Hit The Campaign Trail, and Democrats Hit Zoom: A Virginia Gubernatorial Update

An independent YouGov gubernatorial poll of 508 internet respondents was released Friday. Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield) leads the GOP pack with 19 percent, with Pete Snyder at 10 percent and Delegate Kirk Cox at six percent. In the poll, first reported by The Virginia Scope, former Governor Terry McAuliffe leads Democratic candidates with 33 percent. The other leading Democratic candidates are well behind McAuliffe and are effectively tied given a five percent margin of error. Jennifer Carroll Foy and Senator Jennifer McClellan (D-Richmond) come in at six percent each, with Delegate Lee Carter (D-Manassas) just behind at five percent and Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax at four percent. Both races are still marked by high amounts of undecided voters.

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Virginia GOP Candidates Start to Collect Endorsements

As the 2021 campaigns accelerate, Virginia’s GOP gubernatorial candidates have started to pick up some big name endorsements, including from two former governors for Delegate Kirk Cox and from influential grassroots organizer Martha Boneta for Pete Snyder.

“Pete is the trusted, proven conservative that we need to battle career politicians in Richmond that failed us when we needed them most. I want all Republicans to support Pete for governor,” Boneta said in her endorsement Thursday.

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Governor Northam Wants Virginia Schools to Provide In-Person Option by March 15

Governor Ralph Northam wants Virginia’s schools to provide in-person learning options by March 15, one year and two days after first ordering schools to close on March 13, 2020. On Friday, the governor sent a letter to school districts instructing them to provide in-person options and encouraged the schools to develop learning-loss mitigation strategies.

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Virginia GOP Gubernatorial Candidates Call for Schools to Re-open

Gubernatorial candidate Pete Snyder announced Tuesday his Open Our Schools tour, where he will visit local Open Our Schools activists across the Commonwealth. Snyder said opening schools in November would be too late, and called for immediate action.

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Northam Approves Permanent COVID-19 Safety Standards for Virginia Businesses

Governor Ralph Northam approved the Permanent COVID-19 Workplace Safety and Health Standards, which replace the expiring COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard. The standard requires Virginia businesses to develop COVID-19 safety strategies much like other workplace safety requirements.

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Running Out of Options, Virginia GOP State Central Committee Might Choose 2021 Party Nominees

  The Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) is headed towards the State Central Committee (SCC) selecting the GOP 2021 nominees for governor, lieutenant governor, and attorney general. A majority of the party has voted repeatedly for an in-person convention, which is illegal under current COVID-19 executive orders. A minority of…

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Former Business Executive Glenn Youngkin Officially Joins Race for Virginia Governor

Former business executive and political outsider, Glenn Youngkin has officially joined the 2021 Virginia governor’s race seeking the Republican nomination.

Youngkin, 54, made the formal announcement through an online statement and campaign video released on Wednesday.

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Virginia Republican Gubernatorial Candidates Welcome Snyder into Race

Republican gubernatorial candidates Delegate Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights) and Senator Amanda Chase welcomed Pete Snyder into the nomination race Tuesday.

“Look forward to working with you again Pete. Welcome to the race,” Chase tweeted, posting a picture of Snyder working in her 2019 campaign office.

Cox tweeted, “I’d like to welcome Pete Snyder to the 2021 gubernatorial race. It’s my firm belief that competition is a good thing — and I look forward to a robust discussion in which Virginia Republicans can choose the proven candidate that can best unify the party and lead Virginia forward.”

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Businessman Pete Snyder Enters Race for Virginia Governor

Virginia 30 Day Fund founder Pete Snyder announced Tuesday that he is running for governor. Snyder is experienced as a social media entrepreneur, investor, and political operative. He’s positioning himself as the answer to problems caused in 2020 by Governor Ralph Northam and the Democrat-led General Assembly.

“We have faced the biggest crisis that we’ve seen in over 100 years, and our leadership in Richmond has absolutely failed us,” Snyder told The Virginia Star.

Failing businesses, closed schools, criminal justice reforms, and a loss of First and Second Amendment rights are the issues the entrepreneur said are fueling his campaign in 2021.

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Former Trump Official Sergio de la Peña Joins Virginia Gubernatorial Race

Former Trump official Sergio de la Peña announced Monday that he’s entering the race to be the Republican nominee for Virginia governor. de la Peña served 30 years in the Army, where he reached the rank of colonel. He also served as Trump’s Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Western Hemisphere Affairs, and he says that experience will set him apart from the suddenly crowded field of GOP gubernatorial candidates.

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Virginia 30 Day Fund Partners with Barstool Fund, Providing Support to Struggling Businesses

Pete Snyder’s Virginia 30 Day Fund has a new partner, the Barstool Fund, which is funding businesses who are still paying their employees even though they aren’t making enough to stay open.

“I’ve been ranting and raving lately about the plight of small businesses in the United States,” Barstool Sports Founder David Portnoy said in a video. “New York City just shut down in door dining. It’s like, ‘How do you expect these people to survive? How are restaurants going to survive?'”

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Virginia Governor Candidate Kirk Cox Reportedly Says Biden Will be Next President

GOP candidate for governor and Virginia State Delegate Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights) reportedly said Tuesday he does not stand with Republicans in Congress who plan to object to the Electoral College votes and that Joe Biden will be the next President of the United States. 

Cox’s reported comments were shared by Daniel Grimes, a reporter and weekend anchor for NBC29 in Charlottesville, in a post on Twitter. 

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Princess Blanding Announces Third-Party Run for Virginia Governor

Community activist and mental health advocate Princess Blanding, whose brother was fatally shot by Richmond Police in 2018, announced her entrance into the 2021 Virginia governor’s race on Tuesday as a third-party candidate, joining a group of hopefuls featuring former and current state politicians.

Blanding, 38, will be running as an independent candidate under the Liberation Party, whose mission to advance equity by uplifting traditionally underserved and oppressed communities, according to a press release.

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Republican State Senator Emmett Hanger Still Seriously Considering a Bid for Governor

As the 2021 elections inch closer and begin to dominate almost all political talk in the Commonwealth, Sen. Emmett Hanger (R-Augusta) is still exploring a potential run to become the 74th governor of Virginia.

Hanger, 72, recently discussed the gubernatorial election and the difficulty of securing the GOP nomination in an interview with The Virginia Star. 

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Chase Caves on Convention for Virginia GOP Nomination

Six days after the Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) decided to hold a nominating convention instead of a primary, gubernatorial candidate State Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield) finally declared that she would run in the convention, and not as an independent.

“My team and I have received thousands of communications across the Commonwealth this past week asking me to continue to run as the next Republican Governor of Virginia,” Chase said on Facebook on Friday.

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Terry McAuliffe to Run for Second Term as Virginia Governor

Former Governor Terry McAuliffe officially entered Virginia’s 2021 gubernatorial election on Wednesday after months of educated speculation that the long-time Democrat would throw his name into the contest and seek another four years in the Executive Mansion.

McAuliffe, 63, made the announcement during a press conference in front of Miles Jerome Jones Elementary School in Richmond’s southside that was streamed live to his Facebook page.

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Chase Follows Through on Promise, Will Run for Virginia Governor as an Independent

Virginia State Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield) is now planning to run for governor in the 2021 election as an independent candidate. 

The decision comes after the Republican Party of Virginia State Central Committee voted 41-28 on Saturday to hold a convention instead of a primary to nominate the party’s candidates for the 2021 races, according to previous reporting from The Virginia Star.

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Republican Party of Virginia Chooses Convention for 2021 Nominations

It was a “Motion from hell,” Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) Chair Richard Anderson said during the hours-long discussion of the RPV’s nomination method for 2021. 

Eventually, the RPV State Central Committee voted in favor of holding a convention instead of a primary to nominate the party’s 2021 Virginia candidates.

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The Republican Party of Virginia Faces a Day of Reckoning

The Republican Party of Virginia (RPV) State Central Committee (SCC) will hold a virtual meeting on Saturday to determine whether a convention or a primary will be used to nominate their candidates for 2021. The decision is strategically important for candidates and power brokers, so rumors of intrigue surround preparations for the meeting.

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Campbell County Passes First Amendment Sanctuary Resolution

Campbell County is a First Amendment Sanctuary, according to a resolution the Board of Supervisors (BOS) unanimously passed at a regular meeting on Tuesday.

“No Campbell County funds will be used to restrict the First Amendment,” the resolution states. “[No] County funds shall be expended to aid federal or state agencies in the restriction of said rights,” the resolution adds.

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