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Afternoon Read: Cuccinelli's Non-Endorsement

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Afternoon Read: Cuccinelli's Non-Endorsement

Virginia Attorney General's Office

Ken Cuccinelli

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Virginia Attorney General and gubernatorial hopeful Ken Cuccinelli made a non-endorsement announcement, saying that he has no plans of endorsing a GOP presidential candidate.

In the past few weeks when it has looked almost certain that Mitt Romney would become the nominee, a number of high profile Republicans, including Sen. Maro Rubio and Rep. Paul Ryan, have played nice and given Romney lukewarm endorsements.

But in a brief interview with The Richmond Times-Dispatch Tuesday after he delivered remarks at the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police meeting, Cuccinelli said he hasn’t endorsed anyone and doesn’t expect to.

"I'm going to ride that one out," he said.

The attorney general’s opponent in the GOP gubernatorial primary, Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling, has already endorsed Romney.

Cuccinelli's boss, Gov. Bob McDonnell, has been a strong supporter of Romney, even appearing as a surrogate for Romney at many campaign events. McDonnell's name has been tossed around as a vice-president potential.

But as one of the foremost critics of President Barack Obama’s healthcare act, Cuccinelli seems to especially dislike Romney because he created a healthcare law similar to Obama’s—which has been dubbed Romneycare.

Cuccinelli told The Washington Times last month that that electing Mitt Romney as the GOP nominee would effectively be giving up the battle over Obamacare.

One thing that people voting as between Romney and Santorum is, they’re deciding whether to give up that issue,” Mr. Cuccinelli said on C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers” program.

“I mean, for Romney to go out and say, ‘I’d repeal it,’ is fine, and I believe him, but it doesn’t have the power politically to motivate people to vote or volunteer that someone who has been a permanent opponent does. I mean, you are effectively giving that issue up if you select Romney as the nominee, and we may be doing that,” Mr. Cuccinelli said.

* D.C.'s and Maryland’s primaries were yesterday and now that the blogosphere has had half-a-day to let the results simmer, here are some reactions circulating the web.

The candidates for Maryland’s highly anticipated 6th Congressional District race have been determined: Political newcomer John Delaney will be facing ten-term Republican incumbent Roscoe Bartlett in the newly reorganized District.

The National Journal wrote:

Winning on new turf will be a tall task for the long-time incumbent. His district grew considerably more Democratic in redistricting and gave President Obama 57 percent of the vote in 2008.

Even though voters in the new district lines favored Obama in 2008, Bartlett claimed, "That was then, this is now. There's an awful lot of voter remorse in that district."

He added that he was not sure on what issues Delaney would be able to attack him, saying, "I don't think I have a lot of negatives as far as this district is concerned."

Todd Eberly of The FreeStaterBlog wrote:

Another interesting aspect of the 6th District contest was the number of Republicans and Democrats voting. As redrawn, Democrats hold a voter registration advantage over Republicans of 183,000 to 141,000, with “unaffiliated/other” at about 90,000. The real contest in the 6th was in the Democratic primary, as everyone expected GOP incumbent Roscoe Bartlett to win. Yet in this newly created Democratic district, with a hard-fought Democratic contest, more Republicans cast ballots. In every other district (except the conservative 1st), Democrats outvoted Republicans. Come November, the presence of several high-profile ballot measures (same-sex marriage, the Dream Act and possibly even the new congressional districts) will boost turnout by Republicans and social conservatives. I would not be surprised to see the GOP hold onto the 6th District seat.

As recapped in the Morning Read today, The Post said D.C.’s primary results indicate that voters were able to look past the controversy that has embroiled the incumbents in recent months.

All but one incumbent secured the nomination. The between incumbent Vincent Orange and Sekou Biddle is still too close to call, and election officials are waiting for all the absentee and provisional ballot to be counted before a winner is declared.

“Tuesday’s results indicate that individual council members were able to insulate themselves from the widening probe. Orange’s name, however, has been at the center of the controversy over campaign finances.

Biddle beat him badly in large sections of Northwest Washington, suggesting unease in wealthier sections of the city about the state of the District’s government. But Orange’s huge support east of the Anacostia River and in Northeast accounted for his lead.”

*Virginia Democratic Senate hopeful Tim Kaine unveiled his economic plan today, detailing a proposal that would “strengthen our economy in a competitive world.”

His plan is threefold and hinges on growing businesses and jobs, building a talent economy, and balancing a budget and politics.

He will create jobs by investing in infrastructure and supporting energy policies to ensure that Virginia can compete in the “emerging $2.3 trillion clean energy market.”

Kaine’s plan also calls for supporting investments in education reform—from early childhood through college and work development programs—to try and produce the best long-term workforce.

Kaine, a former governor of the state, will likely be facing Republican George Allen, who is also a former governor of Virginia, in the general election.

Kaine is the lone Democrat contender while Allen faces three other GOP challengers in the primary.

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