Ex-Va. Gov. Gilmore: McAuliffe Could Help Hillary in 2016

Wednesday, 06 Nov 2013 06:59 PM

By Bill Hoffmann

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Former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore says the election of Democrat Terry McAuliffe to the Old Dominion State's highest office will increase Hillary Clinton's popularity there, a potential help if she runs for president in 2016.

"The election of Gov. McAuliffe is going to be very significant," Gilmore, also a former chairman of the Republican National Committee, told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.

"The governor of Virginia is very strong. He has enormous if not almost total control over the politics of the state; he will be very formidable in helping to deliver Virginia to Hillary Clinton," Gilmore said Wednesday.

Editor's Note: 22 Hidden Taxes and Fees Set to Hit You With Obamacare. Read the Guide to Protect Yourself.

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That said, McAuliffe's victory over Republican Ken Cuccinelli doesn't mean Virginia is a shoo-in for Clinton, the former first lady, secretary of state under President Barack Obama, and U.S. senator from New York, he added.

"I do not believe that Hillary Clinton is the inevitable winner in 2016 in Virginia. As long as the Republicans do their job and begin to alter some things and change some things, we'll carry Virginia . . . and we can win the presidency in 2016."

Cuccinelli was let down by the Republican Party, Gilmore said: "Clearly, the RNC probably gave more money elsewhere."

But the race was closer than expected because of the Affordable Care Act, Gilmore says.

"The important point is this: the reason this race got close was because the people of Virginia began to see exactly what Obamacare was doing to them," he said.

As a result of the ACA, Gilmore said, insurance policies were being canceled this past week, and people were beginning to realize that the assertion by the president that they were going to get to keep their own health insurance was not true.

"They saw the government program was ineffective, and so, people began to turn back to the Republican candidate again, and Ken Cuccinelli was really wise to say at the end, listen, this is a referendum on Obamacare, because he probably knew the mood of the people was shifting that way at the end."

Editor's Note: 22 Hidden Taxes and Fees Set to Hit You With Obamacare. Read the Guide to Protect Yourself.

Gilmore says the huge victory of Chris Christie for a second term as governor of New Jersey bodes well for his political future, possibly as the Republican candidate for president in 2016.

"The governor has had a great personal victory in New Jersey. It's a Democratic state, he was elected overwhelmingly, and I congratulate him, and I wouldn't take anything away from him," he said.

"He had been perceived as being very effective in his response to the [Hurricane Sandy] issue. Someone actually made an analogy to me, and they said, well, do you think that Rudy Giuliani would have been elected just a couple of years after the 9/11 attack? And the answer is, of course, because of his perception of being responsive of that attack.

"Likewise, Chris Christie was responsive to the storm issue, even though getting very close to the president on that visit and being quite flattering of the president in the middle of the Romney campaign was not received well by everybody.''

But whether Christie has a shot at the Republican presidential nomination remains to be seen, Gilmore says.

"It's too soon to know whether Gov. Christie is going to be an effective candidate at the national level. We know what he just achieved in New Jersey," he said.

"Whether that translates into other far-flung states, like Virginia or South Carolina or Oklahoma or other places or New Mexico, remains to be seen."

See the Steve Malzberg Show on Newsmax TV each weekday live by Clicking Here Now.

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