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Two Lt. Gov. Candidates, Same Endorsement

Anita Kumar

On Wednesday morning, Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling issued a press release proudly announcing an endorsement from the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce political action committee.

On Thursday afternoon, his Democrat rival Jody Wagner also issued a press release proudly announcing her endorsement from the very same PAC.

Did one of the candidates make a mistake? Or did the group change its mind?

Actually, it's neither. It turns out the chamber endorsed both candidates for lieutenant governor.

Do they know that's not how it works? And that if you endorse both candidates, it's not really .... well, an endorsement.

"I understand,'' said Ira Agricola, chamber senior vice president. "It would not be my personal preference."

The PAC's 12-member board voted to endorse both candidates for the first time in its history -- clearly split between the incumbent who has campaigned on business issues and the challenger who hails from the region and worked on the state finances.

Check out the statements from the chamber for Bolling and Wagner below:

From the Bolling press release:

Jack Hornbeck, CEO of the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce President: "The Hampton Roads Business PAC, a public policy committee of the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce, is pleased to endorse Bill Bolling for election to lieutenant governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia. The HRBizPAC carefully considered incumbent voting records and a comprehensive questionnaire on key policy issues to evaluate the candidates. Bill Bolling's solid support on issues of importance to the business community was key to his receiving this endorsement."

From the Wagner press release:

Jack Hornbeck, CEO of the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce President: "The Hampton Roads Business PAC, a public policy committee of the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce, is pleased to endorse Hampton Roads' own Jody Wagner for election to lieutenant governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Throughout the past eight years, we have had the opportunity to work with Jody during her time as treasurer and secretary of finance. We are confident that as Lieutenant Governor, Jody will support maintaining Virginia's competitiveness as the 'Best State for Business'."

By Anita Kumar  |  October 9, 2009; 2:49 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Lieutenant Governor's Race , Anita Kumar , Election 2009  
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