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Robert Sarvis polling at record high 12.7% in new opinion poll for Virginia Governor

Robert Sarvis continues climb in polls

October 1, 2013

By Matthew Reece


On Sept. 30, Newsmax/Zogby Polling released a poll of the gubernatorial race in Virginia. The race now appears to be nearly tied, with Democrat Terry McAuliffe, a former chairman of the national Democratic Party, leading Republican Ken Cuccinelli, the current attorney general of Virginia, by a margin of 32.5 percent to 32.4 percent. 24.3 percent are undecided, while 10.8 percent support another candidate.

But when Libertarian candidate Robert Sarvis is named as a choice, he gets 12.7 percent of the vote, with McAuliffe at 32.2 percent and Cuccinelli at 27.4 percent.

Among 18-to-29-year-olds, the difference is far more pronounced. A two-candidate poll finds Cuccinelli at 46.0 percent and McAuliffe at 26.7 percent, while a three-candidate polling finds McAuliffe at 28.8 percent, Cuccinelli at 23.2 percent, and Sarvis at 21.6 percent. Like most Libertarian candidates, Sarvis performs exceptionally well among voters younger than 30.

This result, along with a Bearing Drift poll from last week showing Sarvis at 10.8 percent, should be sufficient to allow Sarvis to debate alongside Cuccinelli and McAuliffe. The threshold for being allowed into debates in the Virginia gubernatorial race is 10 percent, and Sarvis has been excluded from debates thus far.

If Sarvis’s support holds up or grows stronger, it will be one of the strongest results in a gubernatorial race inLibertarian Party history. The current record is held by Dick Randolph, who received 14.92% of the vote in the 1982 Alaska gubernatorial election.

The Libertarian Party is the only third party with a candidate running in the 2013 Virginia gubernatorial race. An independent candidate was running, but was unable to meet the ballot access requirements.

About Post Author

Krzysztof Lesiak

I've been a contributor for IPR since January 2013. I consider myself to be a paleoconservative. I'm also the founder of American Third Party Report. Email me at


  1. Dave Dave October 2, 2013

    Great to hear. I think Sarvis could benefit from being in the next and iirc last debate. To a lot of casual voters he will be a new face and probably be able to stay out of the fray as the other two beat each other senseless. That could only help his poll numbers.

    My one fear from this is that the election is close enough that Republicans can use it to argue Sarvis was a spoiler. Those sort of arguments still work on lots of people.

  2. SouthsideCentral SouthsideCentral October 2, 2013

    Not a chance in hell that Sarvis breaks 6%. Welcome to reality.

  3. Rick Adams Rick Adams October 2, 2013


    Why if it isn’t Bruce Hedrick! 😉

  4. George Whitfield George Whitfield October 2, 2013

    I hope that Robert Sarvis gets over 10% of the vote. Great effort Virginia Libertarians!

  5. Jed Ziggler (@JedZiggler) Jed Ziggler (@JedZiggler) October 3, 2013

    I believe if Mr. Sarvis does poll 10% or more the LP becomes ballot qualified thru 2017.

  6. Matt Cholko Matt Cholko October 3, 2013

    Jed is correct. That would be excellent for us here in VA. But, 10% is an incredibly gigantic number for a statewide, minor party candidate.

  7. Mark Axinn Mark Axinn October 3, 2013

    Great article in today’s Washington Post on Sarvis.

    That kinda publicity don’t come easy.

  8. Robert Capozzi Robert Capozzi October 3, 2013

    This campaign speaks well for the edge v. fringe approach. I wonder if Sarvis believes there is a cult of the omnipotent state?

  9. Eric Sundwall Eric Sundwall October 4, 2013

    It speaks well for the frustration of voters when both major party candidates suck. Third parties always uptick in these situations. It has noting to do with Mr. Capozzi’s bogeymen.

  10. paulie paulie October 6, 2013

    My one fear from this is that the election is close enough that Republicans can use it to argue Sarvis was a spoiler.

    They should look at the actual polls with and without Sarvis. Either way McAuliffe is up…by about the same percentage.

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