The Spin Room: Cuccinelli, McAuliffe campaigns declare debate victory

Odds are, you didn’t watch the Virginia governor’s debate. You didn’t miss anything.

state-capitol2Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican Ken Cuccinelli duked it out sans Libertarian Robert Sarvis, who is polling in the 10 percent range and still couldn’t earn a podium.

What they said during the debate … you didn’t watch it, so you don’t want to read about what they said.

But what about what the campaigns are trying to say by way of declaring total, unequivocal victory?

C’mon, you know you want to know.


Cuccinelli campaign: McAuliffe ‘incapable’ The Cuccinelli campaign presser said McAuliffe “proved completely and totally incapable of articulating how he would fulfill his spending promises.”

Maybe not to Cuccinelli’s liking, but that’s a matter of perception.

“Terry McAuliffe is not prepared to be Virginia governor and according to The Washington Post his Medicaid expansion plan is ‘not a sustainable or realistic way to finance’ his proposed spending increases.”

Sure, because the Post said Republicans in the General Assembly can’t be relied upon to actually expand Medicaid.

Again, a matter of perception.

Now the money quote from campaign manager Richard Cullen:

“Ken Cuccinelli dominated tonight’s debate from start to finish.  He was the only candidate on the stage who demonstrated an ability to articulate actual plans that will create 58,000 jobs, diversify the economy and ensure that all Virginia’s children have access to a quality education.  Terry McAuliffe, as predicted, failed at least four separate times to explain how he would pay for even a single one of his many platitudes.  Even the liberal Washington Post editorial board has made clear that his total reliance on Medicaid expansion as a funding mechanism for his endless promises is simply not feasible.  Tonight’s debate once again highlighted that there’s only one candidate who has the experience, knowledge and command of issues necessary to lead Virginia: Ken Cuccinelli.”


McAuliffe campaign: Cuccinelli ‘out of the mainstream’ Cuccinelli tried mightily to cast McAuliffe as being one who platitudes early and often. McAuliffe stuck to his campaign script by pushing the image of Cuccinelli as Tea Party puppet.

From the campaign presser:

“At tonight’s debate, Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe laid out his mainstream vision for growing and diversifying Virginia’s economy, and his commitment to working with Republicans and Democrats alike to find bipartisan solutions to the challenges Virginia faces. On the other hand, Ken Cuccinelli continued to focus on his extreme Tea Party agenda, including calling Medicare ‘welfare,’ touting his support from extreme government shutdown supporters like Ron Paul, reinforcing the fact that Ken Cuccinelli is just too far out of the mainstream.

The presser wrapped with a series of blurbs from two mayors, a Democratic state senator, two former members of the House GOP Caucus and a business owner.

We’d share them, but they were rife with, ahem, platitudes.


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