VA: Sponsor “Suggests” Including Sarvis in Gubernatorial Debate

Robert Sarvis, the Libertarian Party’s candidate for Governor of Virginia, is still polling just shy of the 10% average threshold for including in the final debate before next month’s election … but the debate’s sponsor, WDBJ TV of Roanoke, has put out feelers about including him in the event:

on Friday, according to an email obtained by The Washington Post, WDBJ’s news director, Kelly Zuber, wrote to the McAuliffe and Cuccinelli campaigns, “We have received quite a bit of negative reaction to the exclusion” of Sarvis.

“WDBJ7 will live up to the agreement we have with both of your campaigns,” Zuber continued, “but want you to know we would certainly entertain an amendment to the agreement allowing Mr. Sarvis to participate with no restrictions. Our organization is dedicated to providing as much information to the voters as possible.”

The ailing campaign of Republican Ken Cuccinelli is apparently desperately holding out against Sarvis’s inclusion (and on to Cuccinelli’s forlorn hope of outpolling Democrat Terry McAuliffe). Read all about it in the Staunton News Leader.

14 thoughts on “VA: Sponsor “Suggests” Including Sarvis in Gubernatorial Debate

  1. paulie

    The Richmond Times-Dispatch has a lengthy editorial about its recommendation for the Virginia gubernatorial race. The editorial is strongly critical of both major party nominees, and says it won’t endorse Rob Sarvis, the Libertarian, because he doesn’t have enough experience. It does, however, say that a vote on principle is not a wasted vote, which seems to be a faint hint that if the paper had endorsed anyone, it would have been Sarvis.

    On October 20, Professor Larry Sabato, considered the leading expert on Virginia politics, tweeted that he has been observing Virginia gubernatorial elections since 1965, and he has never seen so much unhappiness with the two major party nominees. Thanks to Eric Garris for the news about the Sabato tweet, and to PoliticalWire for the link to the editorial.

  2. Steve M

    thanks Paulie,

    “Libertarian Robert Sarvis has neither embarrassed himself nor insulted the commonwealth. He lacks the experience the job demands, however.

    Moreover, while The Times-Dispatch finds considerable merit in the libertarian ethos, the libertarian ideology is a luxury afforded by a political, economic and social climate that, despite the nation’s commitment to liberty, was not created by libertarian doctrine. We fear Sarvis would be in over his head.

    Still, a vote for him would not be wasted but would serve notice to Republicans and Democrats that the electorate rejects their surly antics. Citizens whose votes reflect their ideals do not throw away their ballots.”

  3. Steve M

    to add for those of us not living in Virginia.

    The Richmond Dispatch has a circulation of 102,586 (average weekday) 152,446 (Sunday) and besides being in the “Richmond area (including Petersburg, Chester, Hopewell Colonial Heights and surrounding areas), the Times-Dispatch has substantial readership in Charlottesville, Lynchburg, and Waynesboro. As the primary paper of the state’s capital, the Times-Dispatch is also a default paper for rural regions of the state without large local papers circulating.”

    From wikipedia

  4. George Whitfield

    Thanks, Steve M. When I was a boy living in Staunton, Virginia (west of Waynesboro)I delivered the Richmond Times to many of my customers on the weekends. In this editorial they were kind and respectful to Sarvis compared to the other two.

  5. paulie

    @ BAN article referenced in comment above

    UPDATE: on October 21, the Charlottesville Daily Progress endorsed a write-in vote for Bill Bolling for Governor. Bolling is the current Republican Lieutenant Governor, but he is not a candidate. Furthermore, although Virginia counts write-in votes for declared write-in presidential candidates, it doesn’t canvass the number of votes for write-in candidates for other office, unless the vote-counting equipment suggests that a write-in candidate might have won the election. The editorial does say, “A substantial vote for the Libertarian candidate (Rob Sarvis) also might serve to push the major parties into reform.”

    FURTHER UPDATE: two weeks ago, a community forum for all three ballot-listed gubernatorial candidates was arranged in Richmond, so that is one venue at which Rob Sarvis will appear jointly with Ken Cuccinelli and Terry McAuliffe. The event is Saturday, October 26, between noon and 2 p.m. at the Virginia War Memorial Building in Richmond. The event is sponsored by Radio One and Channel 8 News.

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