“We are more diverse than ever before. But we have a long way to go,” said McClellan.
If she or Carroll Foy were elected, they would be the nation’s first Black woman governor.
On a number of issues that highlighted the progressive nature of the field, the four candidates were in agreement. All four said they would support: ending qualified immunity for police officers; legalizing marijuana; imposing a moratorium on new fossil fuel infrastructure; tightening Virginia’s notoriously lax campaign finance regulations; and making the currently part-time General Assembly a full-time body.
The candidates did not venture into personal attacks against each other, though Carroll Foy threw several jabs at McAuliffe, including one about his decision not to participate in Tuesday’s debate.
McAuliffe said in a statement to The Associated Press ahead of the event that since launching his campaign, he has “been speaking directly with Virginians about my big, bold plans to rebuild our economy, create a more equitable Virginia, and move our Commonwealth forward.”
Carter, the state’s lone elected Democratic socialist, sought to distinguish himself as a pro-worker crusader and outlier even among the Democratic field.
“I think over the last two hours, we’ve heard some wonderful answers from all the candidates. But one thing that I have tried to make clear is that my perspective on issues is entirely different from the rest of the field,” said Carter.