Cuccinelli memo spins backdrop for tonight’s gubernatorial debate

The Democratic Party is in disarray over the ObamaCare rollout, and Terry McAuliffe is going to have to answer for his continued support of the Affordable Care Act.

state-capitol2That’s from a memo sent to news media by Richard Cullen, Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli’s campaign manager, early Thursday, in the walkup to tonight’s final gubernatorial debate before the Nov. 5 election.

The Cuccinelli campaign needs some sort of game-changer. Trailing by as much as 17 points in one recent poll, the Tea Party favorite has been unable to gain traction with voters and has consistently been behind the eight-ball with the Star Scientific scandal that has virtually brought down Gov. Bob McDonnell hitting Cuccinelli as collateral damage, and then the disastrous shutdown pushed by congressional Republicans dropping the attorney general like an anchor in the polls in recent weeks.

The one lifeline could be the continued messy rollout of the HealthCare.gov website, which has been an embarrassment for the Obama administration, but doesn’t seem in recent polls to have pushed negatives for Democrats in the same way that the shutdown pushed negatives for the GOP brand.

Cullen in his memo stressed “growing disarray” within the Democratic Party over the ACA rollout, pointing to calls among some congressional Democrats to delay the implementation of the individual mandate for one year and delaying the open enrollment deadline from the current deadline date of March 31, 2014.

“National Democrats are taking these steps because they realize what has been exceedingly obvious for a long time: ObamaCare is simply not ready for prime time.  What they may never realize, however, is the fact that as Ken Cuccinelli recently pointed out, ‘You can’t salvage something that is fundamentally broken,’” Cullen wrote in the memo.

Cullen hinted that Cuccinelli will hit McAuliffe on ObamaCare at tonight’s debate, and link the criticism to questions raised by Cuccinelli over McAuliffe’s support for an expansion of the state Medicaid program, which Cuccinelli ally Paul Ryan said on a conference call this week was a non-starter.

“There’s a reason why Terry McAuliffe has utterly failed to explain how his promises will become reality and why he will fail to do so again tonight: it’s impossible,” Cullen wrote in the memo.

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