March 30, 2021 News & Press Releases

Why Won’t Virginia Republicans Hold a Debate?

by Democratic Party of Virginia

Richmond, VA — With fewer than 40 days to go until their convention, the Virginia GOP is refusing to host a gubernatorial primary debate. While their candidates for governor are hard at work sprinting further and further to the right in this disastrous primary, the Republican Party of Virginia has no plan to host even a single debate — and the clock is ticking. Today, we have one question: why won’t Virginia Republicans debate?

It might be because Virginia Republicans are terrified of answering questions about their extreme, unpopular, out of touch positions. In this primary, as they fight to win the support of hardline conservative party insiders, the Republican candidates have scrambled to prove their far right credentials:

  • They have opposed the American Rescue Plan’s crucial relief for working families, small businesses, schools, and communities across the Commonwealth — which they say “absolutely is wrong” and call “absolutely insane.”
  • They have dangerously advanced Donald Trump’s deranged election conspiracy theories and rhetoric.
  • They have opposed the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid expansion, both of which have made Virginians safer and healthier. 
  • They have opposed marriage equality.
  • They have opposed historic efforts to protect Virginians’ sacred right to vote.

To be fair, it must be difficult for a “disorganized and broke” party at war with itself to host a debate; and Virginia Republicans are not known for their organizational prowess.

“Virginia Republicans have been mired in a chaotic primary defined by brutal infighting and total support for Donald Trump; Virginians deserve the opportunity to see them all on stage answering direct questions about their extreme views,” said Manuel Bonder, DPVA spokesman. “The fact that the Virginia GOP is refusing to host a debate is yet another shameful failure in this long, disastrous primary. Hopefully they stop hiding and debate, but the clock is ticking.”