Bearing Drift Poll: McAuliffe 35.5, Cuccinelli 35, Sarvis 10.8


The Bearing Drift/Conquest Communications poll on the gubernatorial race finds Democrat Terry McAuliffe at 36, Republican Ken Cuccinelli at 35 and Libertarian Robert Sarvis at 11 percent, with nearly 19 percent of likely voters undecided. The poll’s margin of error is five points and the partisan split is 35.5R/30.5D/3.8L/27.8I/2.5 “other.”

The split here diverges from other polls, which have assumed the 2013 electorate will look far more like it did in the 2012 presidential year than has historically been the case for Virginia’s off-year elections. Recall that in 2009, that electorate was +4 Republican over Democrat.

Even with a more traditional off-year split, the race is a statistical tie. That’s a bad headline for the Cuccinelli campaign. Deeper inside the numbers, though, we see some of the reasons why, at least according to this polling snap shot, the race is still up for grabs.

Neither Cuccinelli nor McAuliffe has locked-up the party vote. Just over 29 percent of Democrats remain undecided, and 24 percent of Republicans are, too. Independents are even more so, with 37 percent of them having yet to make up their minds on any of the three candidates. This indicates that either the unhappiness with the choices is profound, or that, despite the millions spent on the major party races so far, a lot of voters still aren’t tuned-in to the contest.

And then there’s the Libertarian candidate, Robert Sarvis. His nearly 11 percent showing is impressive, and he draws his support largely from independents (44 percent of his total). But Republicans make up a third of his supporters, and that fits the long-standing narrative that Libertarians draw from Republican candidates more than Democrats. Does this make him a spoiler? We shall see. But if Sarvis bucks Virginia history and his supporters actually cast their ballot for him in November, it is possible the eventual winner could claim the governorship with less than half of the vote.

Where are the candidates strengths? Ken Cuccinelli runs best in the 1st, 4th, 6th, 7th, 9th and 10th congressional districts. But his lead is only outside the margin of error in the 1st, 7th and 9th CDs.

Terry McAuliffe is ahead in the 2nd, 3rd, 8th and 11th districts. His lead is outside the margin of error in the 3rd, 8th and 11th CDs — and he has a commanding lead in the 8th, 57-24.

The candidates are tied 29-29 in the 5th congressional district. Sarvis runs strong here, with 21 percent. But his greatest strength is in the 4th CD, where he ties Terry McAuliffe at 24 percent and is just three points back of Ken Cuccinelli.

The bottom line? This race is wide open. We’ve seen this trend building over the last few weeks across all polls and ours confirms the tightening.

For those interested in diving through the numbers, the top lines can be found here.

The crosstabs can be found here.

  • nmill005

    Sarvis at 11%…that is awesome.

    • John Smith

      It’s a mirage nobody really knows him. Better to pick the lesser of two evils.

      • ordinaryguy75

        He’s getting more and more known every day. We’ve settled for the “lesser of two evils” junk long enough. Time for us to finally do something about it.

        • He’s never going to be well known enough to win 50% of the vote. He’s a spoiler, and if you would prefer a Democrat be governor, then feel free to vote for him.

          A vote for Sarvis is effectively a vote for Terry McAuliffe.

          • Wally Erb

            In a three (or more race) one need attain 50 0r more to prevail.

          • Then let me rephrase. Sarvis will never get a plurality of the vote, either. Again, a vote for Sarvis is effectively a vote for Terry McAuliffe.

          • Matthew Reece

            A vote for Sarvis is a vote for Sarvis and against both McAuliffe and Cuccinelli.

          • No, it really isn’t. If voters who would otherwise vote Republican vote for Sarvis, they’re not voting against Ken. They’re ensuring that Terry wins.

          • Matthew Reece

            You are being internally inconsistent. “If voters who would otherwise vote Democrat vote for Sarvis, they’re not voting against Terry. They’re ensuring that Ken wins.” Do you see how your logic is flawed?

          • No, I don’t. Because the vast majority of those who are voting for Sarvis are traditional Republican voters, not Democratic voters.

          • reluctant activist

            Don’t be too sure about that. There are many moderate Democrats who are fiscally conservative and socially liberal. Like moderate Republicans, they have no decent mainstream choice in this election. Disenfranchised voters in the middle are flocking to Sarvis. People are really just sick and tired of that old saw you are playing, and the fact that both D and R candidates are so pathetic is incredibly freeing to those of us who would like to get some ethical, thoughtful people back in public office. The mainstream choices are so terrible that we can actually cut the ties and vote for someone we can respect in a third party. As an American, it feels GREAT to be able to vote your conscience and your belief instead of voting for one dirtbag so the other dirtbag won’t win! You should try it! it’ll make you believe in the power of your vote again!

          • I vote my conscience every election. Just I like I voted my conscience in this election. I would respect Robert more if he had any experience in public office, elected or otherwise. He doesn’t. I think it’s a waste of everyone’s time and energy to have folks on the ballot who are not serious candidates.

          • reluctant activist

            You DO NOT get to make the call about who and who is not on the ballot.

          • Did I say that I did?

          • ordinaryguy75

            Really? So the serious candidate isn’t the guy who is talking about the issues, it’s actually the two yahoos spending millions of dollars in special interest money on attack ads? The Governor, like the President is a leader. He doesn’t have to have been trained and polished into a politician by the two-party system. He just needs the courage to lead on principle and have ideas that will move us forward.

          • This isn’t about training and polishing into being a politician. It’s about training and polishing into an effective chief executive and a public official. Robert does not have any kind of experience that would translate into being a chief executive.

            Ideas and courage are nice, but they don’t trump experience. Even those, like Ronald Reagan, who jumped into elected office at the gubernatorial level had some kind of major executive experience. In the modern world, you can’t just walk in off the street and become an effective governor. It doesn’t work that way. And a Virginia governor, with one four year term, doesn’t have time to learn on the job.

            That’s why both Sarvis and McAuliffe are not good candidates for Governor.

          • datcv

            Experiene in office = long line of abusing power, taking money from companies and then not reporting it, or using your connections to get federal subsidies…

          • That’s not what experience means.

          • ordinaryguy75

            Yes, we’ve heard the same thing, year after year from party loyalists. Unfortunately, the basis for your vote is fear. The basis for those who have the courage to vote outside the broken two-party system is idealism… what this country was founded on.

          • No, the basis for my vote is a desire to elect someone who can actually do the job. Fear is your guys’ shop.

          • Ken Moellman

            This gets back to “ownership” of votes. No one owns a vote except the voter casting it. And no one steals votes before they’re counted; votes are earned. The only way votes are stolen is if someone changes the count after they’re cast.

          • David Obermark

            In looking at what you guys have to say about Sarvis, I hope more of you right leaning guys vote for him. He’s not going to get my vote. I’m still voting for Terry. Virginia is not Minnesota. If Jarvis starts leading in the polls, I hope we Virginians can agree on SOMEBODY to put a stop to such nonsense.

          • reluctant activist

            I disagree. I have many liberal friends who are also turning out for Sarvis. People are sick of our crooked two party system that gives us a choice between two horrible candidates that are really just flip sides of the same coin. I think you will see a much higher turnout this year BECAUSE of Sarvis. Nobody can get excited about the hate monger OR the carpetbagger, but a lot of people can get excited about a person who is actually telling the truth when he says he wants more limited government. We have been fed a pack of lies when we are told by people like you that a vote for an independent is just a throw away vote against one candidate or another. If not now, WHEN? It’s time for a change and we need to get rid of the Rs and the Ds. They are destroying our nation.

          • S Fisher

            Totally agree with you Brian…Sarvis is a spoiler and we can’t afford a McAuliffe administration

          • ordinaryguy75

            I guess I understand the context of your post, this being a conservative leaning site. I’ve long ago washed my hands of the idea that voting for a third-party candidate is akin to voting for “the enemy”. Democrats and Republicans have both used that tactic to shore up resentful and reluctant voters for a long time. We can either keep letting them manipulate us that way or we can actually start voting our conscience. I’m for the latter.

          • My conscience prefers a Republican to a Democrat.

          • John Harvie

            My sentiments exactly, but you’ll never convince Mr. Erb.

          • Matthew Reece

            In a three-way race, it is possible to win with only 33.4% if the others get 33.3% each.

          • MD Russ

            11% is a long, long way from 33.4%. In a three-way race, it is also possible for pigs to fly.

          • Matthew Reece
          • Ken Moellman

            With a 5-point margin of error, there’s a lot of “messiness” in trying to calculate anything. But based on what the story gives us, 44% of Sarvis’ support comes from Independents, and 33% comes from Republicans. Using simple math that means 23% is coming from Democrats. Applying math once again, assuming that all that split applies for the Independents (and I would say that it doesn’t, but whatever), you’re talking about a net of about 2% swing in the result in favor of D. And that’s assuming that the numbers are exact, without the +/-5.

          • brianrw

            That will be okay. Split government will likely do less than we would face otherwise.

          • Fred_Evil

            Good, vote for Sarvis, Cuckoonelli is a DISASTER!

          • datcv

            That’s fine. The cooch is every bit a piece of garbage as Terry McAuliffe. I was never going to vote for either of them.

  • Pingback: Poll Alert: Libertarian in Virginia Governor’s Race Pulls 11 Percent | JHPolitics()

  • Islander505

    Sarvis FTW!!!

  • Wally Erb

    All things being equal, the cross tabs reflect a likely voter turnout in the mid-eighty percent; yet, the turnout in the 2009 general election was actually 36 percent. The extraordinary undecided vote, in all probability caused by either unfamiliarity or apathy toward the candidates at this juncture, leaves little in the way of useful data as to where to concentrate candidate efforts. Alternately, there may be strong indication that the Libertarian showing may meet the Code of Virginia criteria to be identified as a recognized political party for statewide election.

    • You’re conflating overall turnout with likely voter turnout. Likely voter turnout should be that high, because they’ve self selected as likely to vote.

      • CVA Patriot

        Did voter fatigue/apathy play into the numbers here Brian? I’m not slamming the polling results, just wanted to know if that was part of the equation. I just can’t see this race as anything but a test of the bases for both parties.

        • We didn’t ask that question, but I don’t see how anybody can view the high number of undecideds as well as the ridiculously high third party candidate number at this point as anything other than voter fatigue.

          • Jeanine Martin

            Right. We may have the lowest voter percentage of voter turnout ever and that will benefit Ken. If the weather is bad, that’s even better for Ken.

          • reluctant activist

            There’s something to be proud of.

          • Joe Mama

            If there’s one thing all losing campaigns of each party have in common, it’s an exhaustive post-Election Day review of weather patterns.

  • Ian Da Ous

    I donated money to Ken, because I liked his Libertarian streak. however when I got an email saying that Rubio was supporting Ken, I decided not to support him anymore.

    The Republicans party will fade out of existence unless it changes, and becomes more libertarian.

    Btw. Rubio is a globalist shill. Globalists are for more wars, more government, and less civil liberties.

    • Rand Paul is supporting Ken. Does that change your calculus?

      • Nathaniel Hamrick

        Rand Paul is trying to appeal to globalist shills like Rubio & friends so it shouldn’t even factor into one’s calculus.

        • Matthew Hurtt

          Luckily, this guy ^ doesn’t represent a majority of liberty folks in Virginia.

      • Ken Moellman

        Rand Paul is supporting Mitch McConnell. Does that answer the question? 🙂

        • Not really. Although I hope you guys remember this when you’re trying to convince us to vote for Rand Paul for President in 2016.

          • Ken Moellman

            I would assume that Rand Paul is running within the Republican primary, in which case I won’t have a voice in that anyway. If you want the votes of liberty-leaning people, then the Republican party should nominate people that would appeal to those voters. If they don’t want those votes, then don’t. That’s an internal party matter for Republicans to decide. I do not get to participate in the Republican primary, despite being forced to help pay for it.

    • EMSoliDeoGloria

      People support candidates for all kinds of reasons. I try to base my decisions on the character, record, and positions of the candidates. Who their supporters are can only play a small role in my decision, because supporters don’t necessarily indicate the candidate’s caliber.

    • CVA Patriot

      I agree with your assessment of Rubio. And I’m not thrilled with this post convention version of Ken. But TMac is an empty vessel for the Clinton’s at best. Plus, I was leaning toward a Sarvis vote until I did my homework on him. Good guy, mainly sound, Liberty minded principals, but with the challenges this country is about to face, I don’t think Sarvis is the best option right now.

      • VASmallBusOwner

        BECAUSE of the challenges this country is about to face is PRECISELY why I am voting for Sarvis!

        • Jeanine Martin

          Good grief. What experience does Sarvis bring to the table for handling big challenges? As much as I like young computer geeks, I don’t want them in charge when things are collapsing all around us!

          • Nathaniel Hamrick

            He’s also lawyer and prior school teacher. Don’t leave those parts out while typing on your computer.

          • VASmallBusOwner

            Versus a candidate that is already

            A) A professional politician. Hasn’t history proven their effectiveness?
            B) Has to pay back his war chest to the “donors” by leaning in corporate directions.
            C) Cares more for themselves as opposed to the people?`

            Lots! Nothing wrong with being a geek. I myself am significantly older geek. Sarvis has proven himself to be a very smart, capable person, not someone who will be selectively supporting the parts of the Constitution that are convenient to him and someone who isn’t beholden to the corporations. McAuliffe isn’t any better in my eyes. This country needs a massive readjustment and it isn’t going to happen within the system based on past history.

          • CVA Patriot

            VA, I’m with most everything Sarvis stands for. I’m glad we are having this debate, finally the Libertarians have broken through the ceiling and their voices should be heard. Ken has seen that he made a mistake with who he sourrounded himself with before. Sarvis is a long shot, would you rather have a guy who you disagree with on some issues, but generally agree with. Or would you rather take your chance with Fast Terry? Because all he’s going to do is shill for Hillary for four years. Building her coalition and raising cash out of the Governors mansion. Sarvis should of mounted up a challenge to Ken, that way, we could of compared apples to apples and not had to worry about a Mcauliffe governship.

          • VASmallBusOwner

            I think I will vote my conscience, for the best person I think will be best for the job. That is Rob Sarvis,

          • CVA Patriot

            I didn’t mean to down vote your post, iPhone is not the easiest to navigate with for message boards. I understand and appreciate your thoughts on this.

  • ordinaryguy75

    Maybe I’m an optimist but I think Sarvis is getting attention just in time to pull out a shocking win. What’s surprising is that more Democrat’s don’t have the courage to jump off the party wagon and vote for him. He’s for gay marriage and deregulation of marijuana. You think McAuliffe has the guts to do that?

    • CVA Patriot

      If Sarvis changed his stance on gay marriage, he’d be polling in mid 20 numbers. If Ken would of stayed the Liberty minded, Tea Party guy that got him to where he is, this race wouldn’t be close. Ken would be pummeling TMac. But Ken fell into bed with the establishment and alienated the people that got him here in the first place.

      • CALLED IT.

        Only a matter of time before you guys turned on Ken. The most consistent man in politics is still being his consistent self, for better or for worse. Ken hasn’t changed a thing.

        • Jeanine Martin

          Amazing how you always ‘call it’. It’s great that BD has someone as all knowing as you, and so humble too!

        • CVA Patriot

          No, we haven’t. We turned on the Mitt Romney clone that the GOP turned Ken Cuccinelli into. Ken may have been consistent in his heart, but, his veneer was that of a politician swinging wildly for anything to stick. So I guess he was more John McCain than Romney. All the brow beating on GreenTech. All the backing away from the TEA Party and the Libertarian movement was like a check list of how the GOP has run it’s campaign recently. You wanna know why people like Sarvis, Jackson, Obenshain? Because they aren’t lock step with what the establishment spews out. Like I said, Sarvis is approaching Ken’s poll numbers right now if he was opposed, heck, if he was neutral on gay marriage. The Old Guard wanted to control this thing, and they may have very well of wasted enough Ken’s time and the grassroots movement time to lose to TMack. The same guy who not so long ago was holding up rum bottles on tv, and taking shots. The same establishment who managed to lose to Barrack Obama, twice. So you can say WE turned on Ken, when Ken actually allowed himself to get turned. By the way, why in the world is Pete Snyder in a visible role within the Cuccinelli campaign? You want to talk about thumbing your nose at the grassroots.

          • Ken has not varied his positions at all. How you can justify this statement is beyond me.

        • datcv

          That’s true. Ken has always been a bigot.

      • Nick Bukowski

        After Ken fired his Campaign Manager about a week or two ago, his message has completely changed to the old Tea Party Ken. Momentum is on his side primarily because of this shift. I have voted 3rd party before, when the two major party candidates were both awful, but I seriously don’t think this is the case in this current race. Ken is not perfect, but I don’t think he’s the lesser of two evils in this race. I think he’s one of the most liberty-minded major party candidates we’ve ever had. I don’t think it makes sense to vote third party when you have a viable limited govt candidate coming from the major parties. After the last decade or more I’ve seen the Republicans sell-out more and more, to the point where I’d consider myself more of a Libertarian than a Republican. But I think the only way to actually get the country back on track towards limited govt is through one of the major two parties. It makes more sense for libertarians to take over the Republican party and make it more libertarian than to try to go it alone with a new party. Split Libertarians and Republicans will only strengthen the Democrats and they’re the party of More Govt. In VA especially, I’ve seen great strides being made to steer the GOP more libertarian. It doesn’t make sense to give up on that now. By the way, Sarvis understood this as well when he ran as a Republican for State Senate in 2011. Even Ron Paul ran for President within the Republican Party. Ken is a liberty candidate. Don’t we want lower taxes, less spending and less regulation from the State Govt? Voting for Sarvis will not achieve any of those goals, but voting for Ken will.

        • Brad Froman

          I think one could see from the poor treatment that libertarian Ron Paul received from the GOP, and especially their convention goers, that the GOP doesn’t want to have anything to do with libertarian candidates. And as you see from Republicans in here getting pissed that libertarians “spoil” the chances of the GOP candidate, the GOP will never welcome the libertarian folks. The GOP just wants the libertarian voters to pull the lever for them, then shut up.

          • Nathaniel Hamrick

            Brad, awesome recollection of the facts. Keep up the good work. The Republican Party can go to Hell if you ask me. What they did to Ron Paul was the biggest disgrace I’ve witnessed in natural politics. What a horrible memory.

          • What exactly did we do to Ron Paul? Not let him speak at the convention?

          • Nick Bukowski

            Hey Brian,

            They made several rule changes to prevent Ron Paul from being nominated from the floor of the convention. I don’t think Ron Paul had a chance at the convention in Aug, but there were a lot of examples of the RNC breaking their own rules. There was no need to break the rules. And there was no need to change the rules to stifle the grassroots in future elections. They had multiple examples of votes where it was clear the ayes didn’t have it or it was at least close, but they called it however they wanted to (reading off a teleprompter) instead of actually caring how the delegates voted. I watched live coverage of this as it occurred and was utterly disgusted. But I remain a Republican and will continue to fight to change the party to a more conservative one.


          • Those changes predated Ron Paul. The convention does no actual business anymore. The decision is made through the primary and caucus process months before. The convention is a rubber stamp and has been for a the last fifty+ years. I was there. It was a dog and pony show, like all national conventions are and have been in both parties since the rise of the primary.

            Ron Paul had no reason to complain. He didn’t lose the nomination because of rules changes or tricks. He lost the nomination because he didn’t get enough support to win. Period. No need to rewrite history.

          • Nick Bukowski

            Brian, you asked “what exactly did we (party establishment, I suppose is what you meant by we) do to Ron Paul? I answered that question regarding the Tampa convention. I agree that the nomination was over before the convention started, but the rule changes and breaking of the rules at the convention is what pissed Ron Paul people off. A candidate needed support from 5 states in order to be nominated form the floor and Paul had 6 and then they suddenly adopted an 8 state minimum. Instead of the Republican Party trying to harness the Ron Paul folks, they basically said F*** you to them in the charade they put on. What is the point of having procedural rules, if you’re not going to follow them? It makes a party look much worse to blatantly ignore their rules. The Ron Paul supporters operated under the party rules and had a legitimate chance to at least have their guy get voted on during the convention. The RNC rewrote rules and broke other rules to prevent Paul from being anywhere near the stage. This left a bad taste in the mouth of a lot of Republicans (including myself). And a lot of Ron Paul supporters had never been Republican before. It was a great opportunity for the GOP to grow their tent. They chose instead to purge the party of them. It appears that you’re the one trying to rewrite history.

          • Did you not read your own link? The 8 state minimum did not apply to this election. Ron Paul did not win 6 states. He won 4 states. That’s why he was not able to be nominated from the floor.

            This is the problem – you guys aren’t paying close enough attention to understand what’s going on, so you create conspiracy theories out of thin air.

          • CVA Patriot

            What harm would it of done to let him speak?

          • Why not let everybody take a turn at the podium then? There was no reason for him to speak, unless he was going to use the speech to support Mitt Romney.

          • CVA Patriot

            Maybe he would have. We don’t know. Not everyone has to speak, but the guy who has been a rockstar within the party for more than a decade, and actually won delegates? Why not? Why poke the Libertarians in the eye?

          • He was offered a speaking slot, but he refused to commit to Romney. That’s why.

          • Adam LeeBerty

            on behalf of the Ron Paul revolution, shut the fuck up.

          • Apparently freedom of speech isn’t one of the liberties the Ron Paul revolution is trying to protect.

          • Nick Bukowski

            This accomplishes nothing Adam.

          • Jeb_Bush

            Hi Brian,

            I didn’t support Ron Paul during the primaries either. But your question “What exactly did we do to Ron Paul?” is either intentionally evasive or shows extreme ignorance. We both know or at least you should know that the full weight of the GOP establishment and the Conservative media came down very hard on Paul as he was surging in Iowa. It is clear to anyone who is politically savvy that the chorus of criticism regarding the newsletter story was a coordinated attack meant to discredit Paul and his lifelong work.

            Requiring Paul to kiss Romney’s ring at the convention was also an unreasonable and intentionally divisive demand. Paul could have been allowed to give his standard speech on individual liberty and the Federal reserve without endorsing Romney. This really was the last shot to heal the division between the party and the Paul people. I felt then that there would be a backlash by the Libertarians and the Paul folks and that it could have been prevented. The GOP understood that Paul’s support came primarily from younger voters and my opinion is that the GOP was unnecessarily heavy handed and have potentially soured these voters on the GOP for a very long time.

            While I support Cuccinelli it is no surprise to me that there is a backlash against the GOP and Ken is facing some of that now. I suspect we will see more Libertarian candidates making races tougher for Republicans across the country.

            The GOP should have followed Reagan’s example. Reagan was far more inviting and respectful of the Libertarians than you or the bunch that is running things now is. My feeling is that there will be some races lost for the GOP that could have been won.

          • I wish all of Ron Paul’s supporters would stop whining. It makes it hard to take any of them seriously when they honestly believe that it was some kind of conspiracy, and not the fact that Ron Paul simply didn’t appeal to the vast majority of Republican voters, that cost him the nomination.

            The rules were the same for all the candidates. Ron Paul didn’t win. He had no right to a speaking slot, but was offered one anyway, and he refused it as he would have had to support Romney. That was his choice.

            I am tired of being told that the majority in the Party needs to pander to a vocal, but largely misinformed or uneducated minority.

          • Jeb_Bush

            Well Brian,

            I think we grow the party and win elections by inviting people in and not by pushing people away by being disrespectful. JMO

          • Feels free to admonish the Ron Paul supporter below here who told me to STFU that he is pushing people away by being disrespectful.

          • Nick Bukowski

            Brian, you are the one who asked “what did we do to Ron Paul” and some of us have given some answers to your question. How is that whining? Don’t ask a question and then say we’re whining when we give you the honest answers to the question. That’s kind of ridiculous. Your the one that steered the discussion to Ron Paul and the 2012 Convention. Most everyone here was content to have a discussion about Sarvis, Ken and Terry.

          • My point in asking what was done to Ron Paul was to highlight the whining. That’s all it is. Ron Paul did not win enough states to be nominated, he did not have sufficient support to win the nomination, and nothing done at the Convention mattered. Your “honest” answers are based on untruths and conspiracy theories, and that’s what I find most frustrating.

            Ron Paul supporters can’t seem to wrap their brain around the fundamental fact that they do not represent anything more than a vocal minority, both within the Republican party and within the overall population. They’re the tail that wants to wag the dog.

          • Zach Martin

            “Misinformed or uneducated.” You sound just like a liberal, Brian.

          • No, I sound like a Republican who is tired of the low information voters on our side of the aisle. Both sides have them.

          • Zach Martin

            Paul had just surged to the lead in Iowa and was a hit on Jay Leno and within 5 hours Kerchick’s pdf file page at TNR had updated with the remainder of the newsletters. How do I know? I was up early having some coffee and reading them and watched the page update. What timing.

          • Nick Bukowski

            I was one of those pissed off libertarian Republicans after the convention. But 2012 is over. Ron Paul has retired. (I’m not sure he really ever wanted to be President). It’s time to move on. But if you look at the makeup of the Republican Party of VA, it is very libertarian. A coalition of Tea Party and Ron Paul folks control the State Central Committee. This very same coalition chose to change the nomination process to a convention over a primary, which gave a huge boost to Ken, who ultimately won the nomination unopposed. Of the 49 VA delegates to the August 2012 Convention, a slim majority of them were Ron Paul supporters. I have been discouraged with the treatment of Ron Paul supporters (libertarians) by the GOP, but I’m not going to throw in the towel and give up. I plan to remain a Republican and fight to make it a better party. I think Ken is an ally in this fight. And I’m pretty sure he was a Ron Paul supporter as well (albeit a closet one).

          • MD Russ


            A Libertarian Republican is like a virgin prostitute. They are two mutually-exclusive states of nature. Libertarians, having largely failed as a third party, seek to hijack the Republican name to become a major party. It won’t work. The voters are much smarter than you think and such a transition would only relegate the Republicans to third party status. A majority of American voters will never buy in to your ridiculous, unrealistic, and conspiracy theory ideas. That is why Jamie Radtke got her head handed to her in the 2012 primary and why E. W. Jackson is going to get crushed in November, no matter how many opinion polls that BD runs.

          • Matthew Hurtt

            This is false at the state-level anyway. Pat Mullins, Morton Blackwell, and MOST of the RPV organization in this state has welcomed libertarians with open arms. And those of us who understand the political system will work with Republicans to create a governing majority.

          • Jeb_Bush

            I think Morton Blackwell and Pat Mullins are voices of reason. Unfortunately their efforts at outreach are being overshadowed by party leaders at the national level.

          • Matthew Hurtt

            The libertarian activists I associate with in Virginia aren’t daunted by the national efforts to take power away from the grassroots. A political party is merely a vessel. It’s ideology is a reflection of its members. Enough of us are sticking around to make sure we have a voice.

            Who are the party’s leaders on all the important issues right now? Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Justin Amash…

          • Jeb_Bush

            I absolutely agree.

          • Matthew Hurtt

            Furthermore, in Arlington where I’m the Vice Chairman of the YRs, the people I see making phone calls and going door to door for Ken and the Republican ticket are overwhelmingly libertarians or Ron Paul-ers. Not to say other stripes in the Republican Party aren’t showing up because they are, but the volunteer group I work with is 5-to-1 libertarian.

          • No, those folks are the sideshows in the party, taking away from those who are actually trying to do legitimate work to benefit the country.

          • Matthew Hurtt

            Bless your heart.

          • What’s your guess for Arlington’s Republican vote this time around? Think you guys can crack 30%?

          • Nick Bukowski


          • Ken Moellman

            Yeah, as the chair of LPKY, I want to thank the GOP for kicking libertarians out of the GOP. Appreciate the help, guys!

        • S Fisher

          Amen Nick…great comment.

        • ordinaryguy75

          “After Ken fired his Campaign Manager about a week or two ago, his message has completely changed to the old Tea Party Ken.”

          Doesn’t that tell you something about the candidate? What’s so hard about having beliefs and sticking to them?

          • Nick Bukowski

            It was not a change on any issues. It was a change in the messaging of the campaign. Ken was really subdued and trying not to lose (versus being his firebrand self and being true to where he stands).

        • Ken did not fire his campaign manager.

          • Nick Bukowski
          • That is wrong.

            The campaign has stated to us, on the record, that Dave Rexrode is still campaign manager.

            I have not noticed a single change in how the campaign has been running over the last few weeks. I don’t know where you guys are getting this from. I can’t believe anybody that knows Ken would think for a second that his campaign manager was calling the shots in that campaign, not him. It’s pretty insulting to him, honestly.

          • Jeanine Martin

            Yes, Brian, we know that’s what the campaign told you but it simply is not the case. There’s been a dramatic shift in Ken’s campaign, perhaps you might explain how that happened if the campaign is still controlled by the same people.
            Never mind. We know how the changed happened. Ken took over his campaign and is now running it the way he should have been running it from the beginning. The CM’s attempts to make Ken into McDonnell part deux did not work. Thank goodness that Ken is back where he should always have been! Large and in charge!

        • Jeanine Martin

          Well said Nick! Ken is the liberty candidate! Anyone who wants lower taxes and the government out of our lives needs to vote for Ken Cuccinelli.

          • Adam LeeBerty

            and out of my asshole comes lucky charms

          • reluctant activist

            That’s a joke, right?

        • CVA Patriot

          That, is a solid post. Well done.

        • Brad Froman

          I think libertarian politicians should just run in the Libertarian Party or as an independent if they wish. The GOP has moved too far right on social issues to be able to welcome in a broader electorate. The women, Hispanics, Asians, African-Americans, and especially the young are a better fit with libertarian thinking anyway than they are with today’s GOP of Democratic parties. I used to think the GOP could modernize, but it seems not.

      • MD Russ


        If Sarvis was polling in the mid-20’s, he would still be at least 10-points shy of winning. And, I doubt very seriously if his stance on gay marriage would budge the needle more than a point or two. The “Liberty minded, Tea Party” guys are a failed political group that never was a movement. You guys are so preoccupied with drinking your own bath water than you cannot see reality when it is right in front of you. T-Mac has a shot at winning this thing and if he does he can thank Sarvis, just as Clinton could thank Ross Perot and Bush 43 could thank Ralph Nader.

        • Ken Moellman

          Actually, it’s been thoroughly disproven that Perot cause Clinton to win. Perot brought out people who don’t usually vote. Additionally, the policies Perot pushed, though he lost, were adopted by the Democrats and Republicans in the late 90s, for a short period. Balancing the budget, NAFTA reform, etc.; all the stuff Perot run on.

          • MD Russ

            Really, Ken? It has been “thoroughly disproven?” Perhaps it is “disputed,” or “considered disproved by some,” but I haven’t seen any indisputable evidence that “Perot brought out people who usually don’t vote.” In 1992, Perot got about 19% of a popular vote of about 105 million. In 1996, Perot got 8% of a popular vote of about 88 million. In 2000, the popular vote was about 101.5 million without Perot in the race. In 2004, the popular vote was about 111 million without Perot or Nader in the race. Your assertion about Perot is causing “a great big sucking sound.”

          • Ken Moellman

            Really. Check out the exit polling data from Perot’s race. The Democrats and Republicans love to try to scare people into voting for their candidate. It’s a common tactic. However, it’s not working as well as it used to. Republicans had geared their supporters to blame Gary Johnson for Romney’s loss months before the election in 2012, so much so that when the election happened, and it wasn’t the case, Republicans were launching easily-disprovable attacks based on Romney’s loss being a result of so-called vote-splitting. In fact, Romney just sucked. Sorry.

          • Ken Moellman

            PS. Jesse Ventura never polled above 20%, but won the governor’s seat in MN. It’s all about who shows up at the polls.

          • MD Russ

            PPS, Ken. You just told us that exit polling “thoroughly disproved” that Perot cost Bush the 1992 election because he mobilized non-voters. Now, you are telling us that the polls never saw Jesse Ventura winning in MN. Well, which is it? Are polls reliable only when they support the Libertarian viewpoint and a bunch of crap when they don’t?

            I have cited hard numbers, not statistical projections, that there was no surge of new voters that Perot rallied. Cling to your Libertarian fantasy of a magical third-party candidate if you wish. But it is just a fantasy.

          • Ken Moellman

            I presented you with the information you need to find out for yourself. What you choose to do with that information is up to you. Exit polls showed Perot drew his support 38% from otherwise Dem votes, 38% from otherwise Rep votes. Ventura never polled (prior to election day) above 20%, but won the election because he brought out a very large number of people who weren’t polled; the people who don’t usually turn-out. Historically, “third” parties have not done well in federal elections, especially not since the number of US Reps was capped at 435 in 1913; however, they have been successful at causing major policy shifts, from ending slavery to getting an almost-balanced budget at the end of the 90s.

            Again, if you’re worried about this phenomenon, then you should investigate Instant Runoff Voting as a Constitutionally-tested alternate mechanism that ensures that no one wins with less than 50% of the vote.

    • This goes beyond optimism. Sarvis will not win. Period.

    • MD Russ


      Do you know the difference between an optimist and a pessimist? A pessimist has better data.

      • ordinaryguy75

        Better data? That’s no compliment. Data is meaningless in the human context. All pessimists with “better data” do is spout statistics and odds and spend an inordinate amount of energy telling other people what can’t be done, all the while accomplishing nothing meaningful.

        • MD Russ

          Man, oh man. You Libertarians really are a bunch of sour pusses with no sense of humor. But your description of pessimists is perfectly aligned with the Libertarian conspiracy theory that everyone is plotting against you, esp. the “establishment.” Well, take comfort in the fact that just because you are paranoid doesn’t that they aren’t out to get you.

          • ordinaryguy75

            Your childish name calling hardly bears response but I would open my eyes and ears a little more because it sounds like your definition of Libertarian needs some serious correction.

  • Brad Froman

    Sarvis represents what people are now looking for in government: An end
    to runaway spending, stopping the snooping in our private lives, and
    giving power and control back to the people. The Democratic and Republican parties
    have long lost their ability to lead and are therefor losing the
    confidence of the electorate.

    • isophoroneblog

      Ken has been trying to control runaway spending for a long time. He knows the budget and where to cut far better than either of his opponents. Sarvis brings nothing new to the table, except a role as a potential spoiler. I heard Sarvis make his case on WMAL. He wasn’t disagreeable, but he was weak. The only things he mentioned different from Cuccinelli were 1) His support of gay marriage, and 2) Pension reform. I am guessing Cuccinelli is aware of pension issues also, but maybe it is a bit much in the weeds for campaign materials.

    • We don’t have runaway spending in Virginia. Virginia is not snooping on anybody’s private lives.

      This is a state election, not a federal one.

      • Brad Froman

        True, it’s state. I’m speaking more in general about how people, especially the young, are looking for more libertarian-principled leadership in this country as a whole. The two big parties have lost the confidence of the people. And despite what so many hardcore Republicans think, Libertarian Party candidates know full well the difficulty of getting elected. Money controls America…and the two major parties control the electoral process. But we will keep fighting and speaking up and running for office until we succeed. One day, something will give. Robert Sarvis represents that spirit, in my mind.

  • Nick Bukowski

    Why doesn’t this poll show up on the RCP Average?

  • BrianKirwin

    Wow, if the Tea Party defeats Ken Cuccinelli by voting for a Libertarian, I don’t know if I should laugh or cry.

  • Mr Green Jeans

    I would consider voting for Sarvis but most of the libertarians here in Fauquier are total douche bags. Should I punish Sarvis for the sins of his political brethren?

    • MD Russ


    • Ken Moellman

      All candidates should be individually judged. While party is one of the factors upon which to judge, there are limited options when it comes to that. I’m sad to hear that my libertarian brethren aren’t playing nice in your area.

  • There’s no chance in hell that Sarvis is at 21% in the 5th District.

    • edmaz

      Do you mean he’s surged past that already? Mr Sarivs does appear to be the only candidate actually moving the needle upward as far as poll numbers are concerned.

  • chronic masturbators 4 ken!

    I give Ken 2 thumbs up (my ass)!!!

    • Agenda 21 or Bust

      Gross. I hope you washed them first.

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  • cbob9999

    Go Sarvis

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