Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling will not mount an independent candidacy for governor of Virginia.
In recent weeks, Bolling had been considering the run, but this morning announced that he had decided against it. Three factors, he said, persuaded him to drop the idea: money, ending his relationship with the Republican Party and the climate of politics in the state.
Bolling said he is confident he can be the kind of governor Virginia needs, but that indepedent campaigns are “difficult.”
“The biggest challenge an Independent candidate faces is fundraising,” he said, noting that a run would cost $10 million to $15 million. Bolling said he can raise the money, but that he will not risk the donations of supporters on what could be a quixotic political campaign.
Noting his “longstanding relationship with the Republican Party” and his concern about its “direction,” he said he values his friendships within the party too much to risk a run. He said those friendships are more important than being governor.
Bolling “was heavily influenced by a growing dissatisfaction with the current political environment in Virginia,” he said. Bolling said “the political process has become much more ideologically driven, hyper-partisan and mean spirited.” And “rigid ideologies and personal political agendas are too often placed ahead of sound public policy and legitimate policy disagreements too quickly degenerate into unwarranted personal attacks,” he said.
— Staff Report