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Update: McAuliffe's Endorsement Marred in Controversy

Anita Kumar

Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Terry McAuliffe won the endorsement of the Richmond Crusade for Voters, a civil rights group well known for getting voters to the polls.

But tonight, longtime Crusade member, state Sen. Henry Marsh, accused the group of a series of "irregularities" that he said "reflect poorly on the Crusade and diminish the credibility of this historic organization."

Marsh, who is campaigning for McAuliffe's rival R. Creigh Deeds, accused the Crusade of allowing non-members and members who had not attended the required number of meetings to vote and permitting relatives and candidates' staff to serve on the committe that made endorsement recommendations.

The three Democrats running for Virginia governor -- McAuliffe, Deeds and Brian Moran -- have launched aggressive campaigns to woo the state's African American voters.

McAuliffe will appear with members of the Crusade tomorrow afternoon in Richmond. The endorsement could boost his image in the African American community, particularly in the key battleground of Richmond.

Meanwhile, Moran sewed up support from more local leaders in Northern Virginia this morning, announcing endorsements from Fairfax Supervisor Catherine M. Hudgins and former Fairfax City Councilman Scott Silverthorne.

By Anita Kumar  |  May 20, 2009; 6:15 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar  
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I attended the Crusade for Voters Forum on April 21st at which all three Democratic candidates spoke and answered questions. As a Deeds supporter, I share Sen. Marsh's disappointment about this endorsement, and if there were irregularities in the process, I too find it troubling.

But in all fairness to McAuliffe, he spoke with humor and passion and had the audience laughing and applauding in a way the other two candidates did not. Had the vote been taken that night, it was clear who would have won the endorsement.

Of course, McAuliffe made billions in campaign promises without spelling out how he would pay for them, but whatever.

Posted by: yellowhound | May 22, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

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