RICHMOND, VA, October 24, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Virginia's Democratic candidate for governor, Terry McAuliffe, has gotten another boost from a billionaire in his race against pro-life state Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.
A political action committee founded by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has spent $1.1 million in anti-Cuccinelli TV ads that began airing in the liberal D.C. Suburbs this week.
Bloomberg, a Democrat-turned-Republican-turned-Independent who favors abortion-on-demand, gay “marriage,” and nanny state health regulations founded the political action committee, Independence USA, which paid for the new commercials.
Aside from his hostility to social conservatism, Bloomberg's interest in the Virginia governor's race – one of the most matched races in the country – is gun control. His Mayors Against Illegal Guns is targeting incumbents who have resisted further legislation to restrict the right to keep and bear arms.
“Let me be clear: big money is pouring into Virginia from New York City to severely restrict your 2nd Amendment rights,” Cuccinelli wrote his supporters.
The funding is the fruition of a meeting McAuliffe held with the retiring mayor in September and the latest in a series of major McAuliffe donors from outside the Old Dominion.
Former President Clinton sent McAuliffe $100,000 of his own funds and Hilary, a likely 2016 presidential hopeful, hit the campaign trail for the first time in five years to endorse the longtime family friend and political ally.
“McAuliffe’s liberal supporters like Steyer and now Mayor Bloomberg aren’t pumping millions into this race for a few laughs,” Cuccinelli communications director Richard T. Cullen said. “They’re doing so because they expect a return on their investment.”
The timing of the billionaire's embrace could hardly be less opportune, as it coincides with a new ad released today by a pro-Cuccinelli PAC accusing McAuliffe of blatant hypocrisy on numerous fronts, including campaign finances.
“There’s just way too much money in politics,” McAuliffe said in the ad. “Let’s get rid of it. I’m all for it. I’d support it.”
But when a reporter asked how much money he had raised as chairman of the Democratic National Convention during the Clinton years, McAuliffe replied, “I don’t know. People say $300 to $400 million. I stopped keeping track a long time ago.”
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With $20 million in his campaign fund and political contacts that afford him access to the nation's elite donors, McAuliffe has nearly $8 million more than Cuccinelli on hand.
McAuliffe's war chest has fueled his campaign in the swing state, allowing him to surge to a seven point lead over Cuccinelli in recent polls. The Democrat holds strong leads among minorities and single women, President Obama's winning coalition last year and, McAuliffe hopes, one he can keep intact until 2016. Or beyond.
However, Libertarian Party candidate Robert Sarvis – who has been endorsed by Ron Paul and columnist George Will – has garnered 10 percent support. Third party voters typically gravitate toward major party candidates as election day nears.
Cuccinelli hopes to win those votes – and greater support from pro-life grassroots Republicans around the country – before election day on November 5.
The candidates will square off in debate tonight.