Richmond, VA — As Virginia Republican Party insiders prepare to pick their statewide nominees at a convention this weekend, the dangerous extremism in the party and rigged nomination process have prompted multiple threats of third party candidacies that would further sink the GOP’s chances in November.
This week, Republican Senator Amanda “Trump in heels” Chase renewed her threat to run as a third party candidate if Pete Snyder were to win the nomination. “I'm going to follow through with what I said. If Pete Snyder comes out as the victor I will run as an independent and I've been very consistent on that,” said Chase in a radio interview.
Chase has accused Snyder of rigging the nomination process against her, taking issue with multiple members of Virginia GOP leadership - including the party’s general counsel - who are paid staffers for Snyder’s campaign. Snyder’s team has said outright that they think a convention process is the best way to stop Chase, and Chase recently told her supporters not to trust the party to deliver accurate election results.
Former Republican Congressman Denver Riggleman has also moved closer to launching a third party run over the last few weeks. Riggleman has been a vocal critic of the Virginia GOP, calling them “a circus party,” slamming the convention process as “insanity,” and calling out the candidates for spreading election conspiracy theories. Recently, he admitted he was seriously considering a third party candidacy for governor, and that he would announce his decision within the next month.
“The dysfunction and extremism in the Virginia GOP are tearing the party apart, and these threats of third party candidacies guarantee that the chaos of their primary will continue after May 8,” said DPVA spokesperson Manuel Bonder. “Whoever limps out of this rigged convention will face a bitterly divided GOP that has doubled down on Donald Trump’s right-wing extremism for years.”