Virginia Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling announced Tuesday that he would not make an independent bid for governor.
Bolling was expected to run as a Republican, but withdrew when it became clear that he would not be able to beat Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli for the nomination. Since then, he had openly discussed the possibility of an independent bid.
Bolling siad that while he felt sure “I could have run a credible and competitive campaign and made a positive contribution to the public debate,” that he had decided he would stay out of the race entirely. In a statement, he explained that the reasons behind his decision were financial and his unwillingness to “sever my longstanding relationship with the Republican Party.”
He added that the newly “hyper-partisan and mean spirited” political process, has left him disenchanted with the idea of running for office. “I just don’t find the political process to be as enjoyable as I once did,” he said. “Because of this, I decided that the time has come for me to step away from elected office and look for other ways to serve Virginia.”
Bolling did not endorse either of the candidates running for the post — Cuccinelli or Terry McAuliffe, the former Democratic National Committee Chairman.
“I wish Mr. McAuliffe and Mr. Cuccinelli well as they begin their campaigns,” Bolling said. “One of these two candidates will have the responsibility of leading Virginia into the future. This is a tremendous responsibility and it should not be taken lightly. I encourage them to run campaigns that are worthy of Virginia; campaigns that focus on the big issues facing our state and offer a positive vision for the future of Virginia. That’s the kind of Governor the people of Virginia want and deserve.”
“And I encourage the people of Virginia to carefully consider the decision they will make this November, he added. “Our priority should be on electing a Governor who has the ability to effectively and responsibly govern our state and provide the mainstream leadership we need to solve problems, get things done and make Virginia a better place to live. Nothing less should be acceptable.”