In an email release, Denver Riggleman announced he’s suspending his campaign for the 2017 GOP nomination for Virginia Governor. The press release cited concerns about his business and family health issues as reasons underlying the decision.
The full statement is below:
Based on business considerations, resource shortages, and family health issues, I have no other choice but to suspend my campaign for Governor effective today. I want to thank everyone who has supported me, and particularly those that were willing to donate to our cause. Their sacrifices will not be in vain, because the Whiskey Rebellion will continue. Stay tuned.”
UPDATE: It is not clear which of the remaining campaigns this benefits most. It is doubtful that any of Riggleman’s supporters would have backed Sen. Frank Wagner (R-Virginia Beach), leaving his backers to choose between Corey Stewart and Ed Gillespie. I think conventional wisdom has to side with this being a positive for Corey Stewart. The conventional conservatives who backed Riggleman might otherwise lean Gillespie, but the outsider/Whiskey Rebellion element that animated Denver’s campaign may feel more inclined to the Trumpist style of Stewart. We shall see.
In any event, we are sad to see Denver go. He was a positive influence on the race, and truly a breath of fresh air in Virginia politics. We hope to see more of him in the future.
UPDATE 2: Class act Ed Gillespie has released the following statement regarding Denver’s exit from the race:
I’ve had the opportunity to spend time with Denver on the campaign trail and it confirmed for me what I thought when he got into this race: He is a good man who is concerned about the size and scope of government like I am. He has been a voice for Virginians who feel left behind and ignored by government, or worse. I know that Denver will continue to find ways to serve our Commonwealth and our country.”
UPDATE 3:: Corey Stewart also chimed in with some kind words about Denver and his supporters:
I would like to congratulate Denver Riggleman on a great race. He took the GOP establishment by storm and raised awareness on a host of important issues, most importantly the corruption in Richmond.
Denver’s fight against Dominion Power was spot on, as his effort was primarily driven by his distaste for Dominion Power’s strong control over Richmond. This is a fight I’ve also engaged in, and so I understand how hard a fight it is, and I hope Denver’s effort to keep Richmond honest won’t stop now.
I would like to specifically mention Denver’s staff and volunteers. They are some of the hardest working people there are, and no matter what happens this election, Denver’s #WhiskeyRebellion is alive, it is well, and it will continue.”