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Washington (CNN) - Ken Cuccinelli, Virginia's Republican nominee for governor, has pulled out of this weekend's RedState Gathering, an annual conservative conference being held this year in New Orleans.
The conference, named for the popular website RedState.com, stars a bevy of prominent Republican speakers, including Texas Gov. Rick Perry, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
Cuccinelli, whose conservative efforts in the attorney general's office have made him a favorite of grassroots Republican activists around the country, had originally agreed to be part of the program, but his campaign now says he has a scheduling conflict.
The candidate will instead spend the weekend doing multiple town halls in southwest Virginia, a spokesman for the campaign said. RedState impresario Erick Erickson said the same.
"He was coming, but the campaign staff decided he needed to be in Virginia on Saturday," Erickson told CNN.
Cuccinelli has tried to move away from his reputation as a conservative crusader in the Virginia race, the only competitive statewide race in the country this year, by focusing on taxes and the economy rather than the heated partisan rhetoric that will certainly be part the conversation at RedState.
He has also worked to portray his opponent, former Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe, as a carpetbagger funded by out-of-state money - but spending a weekend in New Orleans glad-handing conservatives might have undercut that message.
feeling a little nervous there Culcinelli?? Maybe it's NOT looking so easy for you??
Maybe the conference isn't just "conservative" enough for Mr. Cuccinelli. You know that the TEA Party doesn't stand still- it keep moving ever rightward!
He's running from his own rhetoric and record. He's the guy who led the Virginia lawsuit aginst Obamacare, arguing the case in courts run by judges appointed by governor Bob McDonnell.
That's called campaigning.
I guess he doesn't want to be seen as so conservative as he really is.
You have to love people who run away from their CORE values.
Back paddle back paddle back paddle back paddle...
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and Texas Gov. Rick Perry will appear as "special guests" at an Aug. 26 Three Stooges convention along with Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
Rand Paul asked why not the Aqua Buddha !
He must have seen the latest polls that shows him behind the Democrat that is running.
At least he is from Virginia, McAuliffe is not. McAuliffe also built factories in China and MIssouri. Not to mention he is a Washington insider. The people of Virginia do not need an outsider as Governer. Of course the radical liberals like him.
So his crazy Lieutenant-Governor running mate is going instead, right? To make Cuccinelli look like a moderate (or even a liberal) by comparison?