The Washington Post

Presidential hopes mix with Va. governor’s race

RICHMOND — If Virginians want their next governor to be someone who thinks big, White House gate crasher Tareq Salahi might be their guy.

Salahi, who say he is running for governor as an independent, registered in June, according to registration records.

There’s also a presidential domain name for the presumptive Republican nominee, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II: was reserved two years ago.

BuzzFeed reported this week that a fund-raising consultant to Cuccinelli, Lauren Patten of American Target Advertising, registered the name. American Target Advertising has provided in-kind mail and e-mail services to Cuccinelli, according to Virginia Public Access Project records.

But Cuccinelli’s campaign said Saturday that Patten had no affiliation with the campaign and did not reserve the domain name on his behalf.

Sometimes speculators claim domain names with hopes of selling them to a future campaign. Patten did not respond to a message seeking comment.

Two other people are either in the race for governor or exploring a bid: former Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R), who is considering a run as an independent. If either one sees a future president in the mirror, you can’t tell it by domain names. Both and are available.

For the record, has been registered. Ditto for names associated with Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D), who like McDonnell, seems intent on seeking the White House in 2016: and

Somebody named Gregory Karasik of Bellevue, Ohio registered on Jan. 27, 2010. Karasik did not respond to messages seeking comment. McDonnell spokesman Tucker Martin said he’d never heard of Karasik, but noted that he registered the name on the very day that McDonnell gave a nationally televised speech.

“Looks like somebody liked the Governor’s response to the State of the Union,” Martin said via e-mail.

O’Malley had nothing to do with registering, which was claimed by a speculator.

“I have a couple of governors,” said Marc Peyser, a chiropractor from Stamford, Conn., who said he started dabbling in domain names a few years ago. “I’ve got the lady running against [New Jersey Gov.] Chris Christie. I’m thinking of [Connecticut Gov. Dannel P.] Malloy.”

Laura Vozzella covers Virginia politics for The Washington Post.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Video curated for you.

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.