Anger Over Racist Protest Could Hurt Dem’s Bid For Governor

Only one Virginia governor has served in the office twice. Until recently, former Gov. Terry McAuliffe seemed well-positioned to become the second person to do so.

 But a return bid to Richmond by McAuliffe, 62, may be hampered by residual anger over his handling of the August 2017 Charlottesville, Virginia, riots and budding resentment about his new book chronicling the events, Beyond Charlottesville: Taking a Stand Against White Nationalism.

By state law, Virginia governors are elected to four-year terms but can’t immediately run again. One state chief executive, Mills Godwin, served two non-consecutive tenures from 1966 to 1970 and from 1974 to 1978 — first as a Democrat and then as a Republican, as the GOP’s strength spread across the South in the 1970s.

McAuliffe, a former Democratic National Committee chairman, a prodigious fundraiser for the party over four decades, and a Bill and Hillary Clinton confidante, was governor from 2014 to 2018, his first time holding public office. McAuliffe hasn’t said he’s contesting the governorship again in 2021 but has hinted strongly at it.