Down big in the polls, Ken Cuccinelli is playing his last card, Obamacare.
Then news came down on Tuesday morning that Vice President Joe Biden will join McAuliffe on the campaign trail next Monday. So it appears that McAuliffe is also putting his cards on the table as well.
A Washington Post poll out Monday night has McAuliffe ahead of the Republican Cuccinelli by 12 points, and suggests that he would actually benefit more than Cuccinelli in the event that voters would start peeling off from Libertarian Robert Sarvis, who is currently polling at 8 percent.
With the big lead, McAuliffe is playing to the base with the rub from Obama and Biden forthcoming to try to make sure to get out the vote.
The move by Cuccinelli to play the Obamacare card would seem curious since that is also an appeal to his base, smaller though it is. The Post poll asked voters regardless of their preference among the candidates overall to share who they trust to do a better job handling healthcare. The split was 53 percent for McAuliffe and 34 percent for Cuccinelli.
Voters also gave the national Democratic Party a small net positive approval rating (50 percent approving, 48 percent disapproving), while splitting sharply negatively toward the national Republican Party (32 percent approving, 65 percent disapproving).
And yet here we have Ken Cuccinelli playing Obamacare politics as if it were 2010.
“My opponent will be making his closing argument to Virginia workers and families with the President by his side,” Cuccinelli said. “If McAuliffe wanted to do right by the people of Virginia, he would ask the President to apologize for misleading the public so spectacularly. That of course is unlikely since McAuliffe was an ardent supporter of the law, so much so that he thought it didn’t go far enough. Indeed, McAuliffe has made clear that he plans to use a central tenet of the law – Medicaid expansion – to fund nearly all of his many platitudes for Virginia, despite the fact that even the liberal Washington Post editorial board has found that to be untenable.
“I’m proud to have been the first attorney general in the country to sue to stop Obamacare,” Cuccinelli said. “I did so because I believed the law was unconstitutional and violated our sacred first principles of individual freedom and limited government. As governor, I will continue to do everything in my power to stop the law from exacerbating the uncertainty already felt by our job creators and leading to fewer options and more expensive healthcare for middle-class Virginia families. Make no mistake, this is a fundamental and critical difference in the race for governor.”