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Good times here in the Commonwealth of Virginia as the ad wars are beginning to fire up in the race for Governor. The race pits longtime DNC fundraiser and "Friend of Bill" Terry McAuliffe against Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. Trust me on this, it's an important race. The last thing Virginia needs is four more years of the kind of radical right wing politics of Bob McDonnell (R-VA).

Describing Cuccinelli’s views as “far right” is like calling Usain Bolt “reasonably fast.”
Eugene Robinson April 4, 2013
Cuccinelli and McDonnell have overseen a terrible four years for abortion rights in Virginia. Cuccinelli's camp knows that attacks on this record are coming down the pike. What do they do? They launch "All About", the first televised ad of the contest featuring Cuccinelli's wife Teiro. The ad is set to launch Monday in most of Virginia's media markets.
“There’s always a rush to define oneself first,” said Cuccinelli strategist Chris LaCivita. “And as it relates to the ad, this tells a side of Ken that a lot of people don’t know, and a lot of our friends in the press haven’t told.”

for those who can't play the ad, (via Washington Post)

“My husband, Ken, has spent his life standing up for the vulnerable and those in need,” Teiro Cuccinelli says as soft music plays in the background. “He’s worked the night shift at a homeless shelter, spent his college days leading efforts to prevent sexual assaults, and represented those suffering from mental illness.

“As attorney general, Ken fought to find and prosecute child predators and human traffickers. Virginia deserves a governor who is experienced, principled, and honest. I think you’ll find that’s what Ken Cuccinelli is all about.”

The ad follows on the heels of a radio ad by Women Speak Out Virginia which is allied with the Susan B. Anthony List, the first paid ad of the election cycle, targeting McAulife, saying "In the race for Governor…there’s one candidate who has taken extreme positions far outside the mainstream….one candidate whose radical ideas are troubling to every woman in Virginia. It’s Terry McAuliffe".

So why is this race important to anyone outside of Virginia. I offer two reasons, Cuccinelli is a Tea-Party radical and some are eyeing him for a 2016 presidential run. Either one is enough to defeat him in my view. Need another opinion? Ask chair of the Democratic Governors Association, Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin.

"There is no more extreme example of a Tea Party candidate for governor than Cuccinelli," Shumlin said. "[Gov Bob] McDonnell will look like a balanced, middle-of-the-road governor in comparison. Have you read his book? He characterizes both social security and Medicare as 'goodies.'"
The book, The Last Line of Defense, is an "attack on what he sees as the criminal overreach of the Obama administration — a group he unsubtly describes in the title of Chapter 1 as 'The Biggest Set of Lawbreakers in America.'”
He takes on the Federal Communications Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency and other parts of the federal government, but the heart of his case and the bulk of his book are dedicated to his greatest defeat — his failed attempt to stop President Obama’s health-care overhaul from becoming law. He makes clear that this is a fight he has not abandoned, though many of his fellow conservatives have moved on.
And, just in case the Washington Post is too far left for you, here's Joe Scarborough on Cuccinelli ...
“[Cuccinelli is] certifiable when it comes to mainstream political thought.”

How far out? Pick your issue: gay rights, abortion rights, contraception, or immigration.

Folks, this is a man that could take Virginia back another 50 years on a whole lot of issues. Worse, he could embolden the extreme conservatives in the Republican party if he wins. The reactionaries are blaming the 2012 presidential loss on Mitt Romney not being conservative enough. A win for Cuccinelli would give them what they would see as evidence that they were right.

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