I can recall meeting Boyd Marcus only once, at one of the Blogger’s Days that LG Bill Bolling hosted (before they decided it would be a partisan event and excluded me and others). To say he was revered amongst the Republicans there would be an understatement. So when the email came yesterday announcing that Marcus had endorsed Terry McAuliffe for governor, my mind immediately pulled a Joe Biden: this is a big f***ing deal. Maybe not to the general public but certainly to those who play inside baseball.
This AP story gives some of the background of Marcus, as does this RTD piece. I think we all remember Jim Gilmore’s “No Car Tax” campaign slogan. Marcus was the architect of that. Marcus’ firm represented his old boss, Eric Cantor. The firm will dissolve now, with partner Ray Allen buying out his shares.
Democrats are giddy and Republicans are furious, as Bob Lewis points out. I’m just really, really amazed. Rare is the day when a party operative switches sides, especially like this. In fact, I’m having trouble thinking of any comparable situation. Honest party operatives will have disagreements with candidates – and will let them know of those disagreements – and will often sit on their hands when they have a truly awful candidate. But crossing over to support a candidate of another party and burning all of the bridges behind him is almost unheard of.
That Boyd Marcus did so is not just a rejection of Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli, but rather a rejection of the entire Republican Party.
And that makes this a BFD.