FALLS CHURCH, Va. – Hillary Rodham Clinton rallied supporters of Virginia Democrat Terry McAuliffe on Saturday, pointing to the race as a sign that divisive politics is giving way to “common sense and common ground.”
In her first public political event since departing the Obama administration, Clinton noted the end of the 16-day partial government shutdown, which affected many Virginians. More than 800,000 government workers were furloughed while Democrats and Republicans in Congress engaged in a partisan brawl over funding the country’s new health care program, funding the government and raising the debt ceiling before reaching an eleventh hour compromise.
Clinton said the nation was watching the Virginia race to see whether voters “lead the way of turning from divisive politics, getting back to common sense and common ground.”
“We cannot let those who do not believe in America’s progress to hijack this great experiment,” Clinton added, endorsing her longtime family friend at an event billed, “Women for Terry McAuliffe.”
The former secretary of state has largely avoided politics this year, raising money at private fundraisers for McAuliffe and one scheduled Monday for the New York mayoral campaign of Bill de Blasio, a former campaign aide. McAuliffe was a top fundraiser for the campaigns of both former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton and later served as chairman of the Democratic National Committee.
Independent polls show McAuliffe has built a lead over Republican Ken Cuccinelli with more than two weeks until the Nov. 5 election.