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Bolling Regrets Decision Not to Run for Governor

April 23, 2013

Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling is expressing regret with his decision not to run for governor just five weeks after he made the announcement.

"Maybe he walks around in Richmond and runs into people and they say, 'We really wish you'd run.' So he gets this feeling that maybe there was a space for an independent run out there," said Geoff Skelley, a political analyst with the University of Virginia's Center for Politics.

Bolling told the Richmond Times-Dispatch in an article Tuesday that he wishes he had waited longer in making a decision about running.

"Scandals of some sort have erupted on both sides," Skelley said. "The severity of it for both sides remains to be seen. But I think Bolling realizes that, 'Wow, maybe these guys were even more flawed than I thought they were.'"

Republican Ken Cuccinelli has been wrapped up in a conflict-of-interest case, while credibility surrounding Democrat Terry McAuliffe's resume is in question.

"But I think at the end of the day, even if he had extended out the time period on making a decision, he still probably would have decided not to run," Skelley said.

That's partially because of the money. Bolling had said he'd need to raise at least $10 million to $15 million to have a shot at a winning campaign.

"I would say that it's not too late in the game if he has some kind of great donor who comes along and gives him a large amount of money. A financial angel, if you will," Skelley said.

According to the latest campaign numbers, Bolling raised $2.7 million before withdrawing from the race. That's compared to Cuccinelli's $4.3 million and McAuliffe's $6.7 million.

Despite the steady fundraising, Bolling's campaign told the Newsplex Tuesday he has "no current intention to enter the race, as tempting as it may be."

Still, the deadline for any independent candidate to file is June 11.

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