McDonnell aides deny resignation rumors are true

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Alex Pappas
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      Alex Pappas

      Alex Pappas is a Washington D.C.-based political reporter for The Daily Caller. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and the Mobile Press-Register. Pappas is a graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., where he was editor-in-chief of The Sewanee Purple. While in college, he did internships at NBC's Meet the Press and the White House. He grew up in Mobile, Ala., where he graduated from St. Paul's Episcopal School. He and his wife live on Capitol Hill.

Aides to Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell tell The Daily Caller that rumors the Republican is planning to resign as soon as Monday are simply not true.

“The rumors are false,” spokesman Paul Shanks said in an email.

The resignation claims have been spreading across the Internet over the last week as the Republican governor faces intense scrutiny over whether he and his family improperly received gifts and others perks while he has served in office.

On Saturday, the Virginia Virtucon blog quoted Virginian Republican Mike Belefski claiming on social media that McDonnell is resigning Monday. Belefski is a former operative on lieutenant governor Bill Bolling’s unsuccessful gubernatorial campaign.

Asked about the claim, another McDonnell spokesman, Tucker Martin, told TheDC this weekend that those claims are “false.”

More rumors spread on Friday after McDonnell’s office announced that the governor and his family will be on vacation all of next week.

In the case McDonnell — considered by many to be a rising star in Republican politics and even a potential presidential candidate — resigned, it would throw another wild card into the already contentious contest to replace him when his term is up at the end of the year.

Under that scenario, Bolling, his lieutenant governor, would step in as governor. However, Bolling dropped out of the race to succeed McDonnell this year when it became clear he would lose the Republican nomination to GOP nominee and Virginia attorney general Ken Cuccinelli.

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