RICHMOND — Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II made scant reference to the federal shutdown and said nothing at all about Sen. Ted Cruz (Tex.) on Saturday, when the two Republicans both addressed a conservative group.
But Cuccinelli, the GOP nominee for governor, met privately with Cruz before the event and urged him to find a solution to the shutdown, his campaign said.
Democrats have pounded Cuccinelli all week over his plans to appear at a Family Foundation dinner headlined by Cruz, widely considered the architect of the shutdown as a means of defunding the Affordable Care Act. Cuccinelli has said repeatedly that he disagrees with the tactic despite his fierce opposition the federal health-care law known informally as Obamacare.
The impasse in Washington has forced Cuccinelli to walk a fine line: between his longtime tea party supporters, who regard Cruz as a hero, and independent voters in a state with a large federal workforce, who tend to take a dim view of Obamacare but an even dimmer one of the shutdown.