GOP Gubernatorial Hopefuls Play Nice at First Debate

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — Virginia Republican hopefuls for governor have played nice during their first debate.

The candidates avoided attacking each other Saturday at an event in Charlottesville and instead stuck largely to GOP talking points.

Corey Stewart, a one-time chairman of President Donald Trump’s campaign in Virginia, has blasted former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie several times in interviews and social media accounts.

But Stewart ignored Gillespie during the debate, which only featured a handful of questions and speaking opportunities.

State Sen. Frank Wagner and distillery owner Denver Riggleman are also running.

Virginia’s widely watched contest for governor is seen by many as a potential referendum on Trump’s first year in office and an early test of opposition groups aligned against him.

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