Cuccinelli leads in one poll as McAuliffe scandal mounts

Patrick Howley Political Reporter
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Republican Ken Cuccinelli has taken the lead in one Virginia gubernatorial poll as a federal investigation involving his Democratic opponent Terry McAuliffe’s business practices threatens to become “very damaging” for the Democrat.

An impending Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Inspector General’s report is expected to be “very damaging” for McAuliffe, a Virginia political insider told The Daily Caller.

“If your name is being brought up in Senate confirmation hearings, it’s not likely that it’s going to blow over,” according to the insider.

Cuccinelli leads McAuliffe 37 percent to 31 percent, according to a Roanoke College poll conducted in mid-July. Another July survey by the Democratic-leaning polling firm Public Policy Polling puts McAuliffe ahead of Cuccinelli, 41 percent to 37 percent.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)  director Alejandro Mayorkas is currently under federal investigation for helping an investor in Gulf Coast Funds Management, run by Hillary Clinton’s brother Anthony “Tony” Rodham, receive an EB-5 visa, which grants conditional permanent residence to foreign nationals who invest significant amounts of money in the United States. The investor’s application had already been denied by the time Mayorkas became involved, and an appeal had already been shot down.

Mayorkas acknowledged that he met with McAuliffe, a business partner of Rodham, to generally discuss the USCIS visa application process, which McAuliffe complained was too slow.

“I was asked to attend a meeting with Mr. McAuliffe so that I could hear in person his complaints. . . . I heard those complaints, and that was the extent of the interaction,” Mayorkas said.

Gulf Coast Funds Management handles EB-5 visas for investors in GreenTech Automotive, of which McAuliffe is chairman. GreenTech reportedly relies on EB-5 visas for its investors.

McAuliffe and Rodham are close friends and associates, even taking a fishing trip together in April 2013 to celebrate the launch of GreenTech’s MyCar electric vehicle, where they were photographed together.

The McAuliffe campaign and Gulf Coast Funds Management did not return requests for comment.

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