Virginia Gubernatorial Hopefuls Gearing up for 2017

May 3, 2016

Are you already tired of the presidential campaign? If Election 2016 has become tiresome, go ahead and start getting ready for Election 2017. That’s right, next year is an election year too — one that’s already taking shape. 

The race for the Republican nomination already featured former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie and Congressman Rob Wittman. 

But now the race is taking some unexpected twists and turns. Former Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli says he will not run for governor, and Prince William Board of Supervisors Chairman Corey Stewart says he will.

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“In some ways, both of them occupy similar space in the ideological spectrum of Republican politics in Virginia."

That’s Quentin Kidd at Christopher Newport University. He adds, “in my mind what we have is Rob Whitman on the moderate end. Ed Gillespie somewhere in the middle. And then now Corey Stewart on the very conservative end."

Geoff Skelley at the University of Virginia Center for Politics says Stewart is facing a difficult race.

“If Stewart couldn’t win the lieutenant governor nomination last time in a field that was not terribly strong, the fact that he is running against Ed Gillespie and Rob Whitman, I think that is a much stronger pair of opponents."

On the Democratic side, Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam has the field to himself … for now. But the primary is more than a year away.