A message for Lt. Governor Bolling:
Don’t do it.
Don’t run as an independent for Governor and squander your legacy as a Republican Delegate, State Senator and two-term Lt. Governor.
Don’t throw away 20+ years of work in defeating Democrats that will be for naught as you will be remembered as the man handing the Governor’s Mansion over to Terry McAuliffe.
Don’t throw away long lasting friendships that will inevitably be severed, some of which are decades old, from your time on the Hanover Board of Supervisors.
Don’t betray the hundreds of people that have volunteered, worked and sweated so many years for you.
Don’t betray the trust of so many political colleagues that have supported you over the years, including Majority Leader Cantor, Governor George Allen, Governor Jim Gilmore and Governor Mitt Romney to name a few.
Don’t betray the donors who have contributed to you as a future Republican candidate for Governor, not as a third-party spoiler.
Don’t betray Governor McDonnell, whose elevation made you the most powerful Lt. Governor in modern Virginia history.
Don’t make the mistake I’ve seen with so many clients; make major decisions out of anger or fear.
Don’t forget the example of Charlie Crist, who withdrew against a “Tea Party inspired” opponent because polling numbers indicated he would win the Florida Senate seat as an independent. Polling numbers are fickle, and yours will only go down, not up, if you declare. In Florida, Crist had a much larger war chest and universal name identification as a sitting Governor compared to your current situation as Lt. Governor. In the end, Crist was crushed, because voters aren’t naive and don’t appreciate naked political opportunism.
Finally, don’t forget you are a Republican and this is a party you have been proud to call home for all of your adult life. To leave in such a manner would permanently tarnish your legacy.
Politics is a unpredictable business, and yesterday’s goat is tomorrow’s frontrunner. It also means building political capital rather than squandering it. Make no mistake, an independent run for governor is nothing more than a big, bold leap off the cliff of irrelevancy.
Do the right thing, endorse Attorney General Cuccinelli and work to build up the party for November’s election rather than tearing it down.
Do the right thing and doors will open.
Do the wrong thing, and future opportunities will be null and void.