For the four longshot candidates challenging former senator and governor George Allen for the Republican nomination in next year’s U.S. Senate race, one potential endorsement stands above the rest.
Ken Cuccinelli, the state’s maverick attorney general who has become popular in tea party circles, would help any of them burnish their conservative credentials in a race that so far hinges on who’s to the right of Allen. Cuccinelli would be a pretty good get for Allen, too.
All five declared candidates — Allen, Jamie Radtke, Earl Jackson, Tim Donner and David McCormick — have spoken or met with Cuccinelli in recent weeks.
“The attorney general is a heroic figure in the state,’’ Donner said after asking Cuccinelli for his support in a recent meeting in Richmond.
Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R) and House Speaker Bill Howell (R-Stafford) have endorsed Allen. Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) is widely expected to follow suit.
Cuccinelli has said he will wait to endorse until after November’s legislative races to weigh into the Senate race.