Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Petition race

Terry McAuliffe became the first Democratic gubernatorial candidate to file petitions for the June 9 primary. He filed 17,243 signatures with the State Board of Elections yesterday. Jody Wagner filed 17,858 signatures for lieutenant governor. It is a bit of "race" to file first - which should earn McAuliffe and Wagner top spots on the ballot and a bit of publicity this week.
To qualify for the ballot, candidates have to secure at least 10,000 valid signatures of registered voters with at least 400 in each of the state's 11 congressional districts. Some observers think the top spot on the ballot is worth one-half to one percent in the vote - something I personally discount for the top of the ticket with three well known candidates. It may be more valuable to Wagner in the lieutenant governor contest where candidates are not nearly so well known to primary voters.
Later in the day, Brian Moran submitted 16,928 signatures. Creigh Deeds is expected to submit petitions in the next week. Wagner and Jon Bowerbank have been in the lieutenant governor race the longest, giving them an advantage over late entries Pat Edmonson and Michael Signer in the tedious signature gathering process. While both should have their petition drives finished by April 10, it is possible one will not make the deadline. Why am I thinking of  Emmett Hanger?

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