- - Sunday, November 3, 2013

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

On Nov. 5, Virginia will hold its Tuesday Night Football game. Might be on Spike. Check your TV listings.

Why the Land of Presidents holds its gubernatorial elections in off years — no presidential or congressional races on the ballot — is anyone’s guess. Maybe state lawmakers want to see just how few voters will go to the polls.

And this year, turnout could well set a new record low. The latest polls show Virginians virtually hate the two candidates running for governor. Many will be casting their votes against one, rather than for the other (aside from, of course, the Kool-Aid-drinking true believers on each side — you know who you are).

Terry McAuliffe, 56, whose claim to fame is that he raised hundreds of millions of dollars for Bill Clinton and then for his first lady, has never held any elective office. (And he wants to start off as governor? Yes. Yes, he does.) He’s involved in not one but two federal investigations, and, most recently, stories emerged that he might have made even more money off terminally ill people (seriously). What’s more, he lives in McLean (a suburb of Georgetown).

Then there’s Ken T. Cuccinelli II, 45, a homegrown, up-from-the-bootstraps, blah blah blah. Good God, he’s boring. That monotone! And he walked into the buzz saw of the Obama Playbook on women’s issues like abortion and reproductive health. Oh, and you’re also against divorce? Wonder how the local media (read: Washington Post) will play that!

So, Tuesday’s game will go like this: McAuliffe will score at least six touchdowns, maybe seven. Cuccinelli will score five, and maybe a field goal or two. Book it.

But wait, that’s 42-38, or 49-41. Where’s the rest?

With the other guy: Robert Sarvis. Never heard of him? Too bad. You should have.

Mr. Sarvis, 37, was born in Fairfax, the son of an English- and Irish-American and a Chinese immigrant. After attending one of the best high schools in the country, just miles from his home, he went to Harvard to study mathematics, then attended the University of Cambridge. He got a law degree at NYU, then earned a master’s in economics from George Mason University.

In the middle of a legal career, he left to join a software development business and founded a company that developed apps for Google’s emerging Android operating system. In between, he married a black pediatrician from Greenville, Miss., and fathered two children.

Although he ran unsuccessfully as a Republican for a state Senate seat in 2011 (out-raised by the Democrat 72-1, with a war chest of just $26,000), he left the party to become a Libertarian.

“I realized that the Republican Party, at least in Virginia, in the current era, is not a good vehicle for liberty candidates,” he told the Richmond Times-Dispatch, which this year has refused to endorse a candidate. “Republicans are very strident on personal issues.”

Him, not so much. On abortion, he sidesteps, saying it’s “counterproductive to try to settle the matter through the coercive power of the state.” He’s also a vocal advocate for gay marriage and calls for the legalization of marijuana. So much for the out-of-step Republican.

“When they talk about liberty,” he said of Republicans, “they don’t mean any personal issues. There is very little respect for personal autonomy.”

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