Libertarian Robert Sarvis will not appear in the final candidates’ debate in the Virginia governor’s race, one of the co-sponsors said late Thursday.
Sarvis, who is running as a third-party candidate in the Nov. 5 election, has become a wild card in recent weeks as his rising numbers in public polls appeared to reflect a distaste among voters for either major-party candidate.
Although Sarvis remains unknown among most voters, his appeal has grown sufficiently to suggest that he could affect the outcome in a notably ugly battle between Terry McAuliffe (D) and Ken Cuccinelli II (R)
WDBJ (Channel 7) of Roanoke, which is co-hosting the Oct. 24 forum with Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, said on its Web site that Sarvis did not meet the required threshold of public support as reflected in recent polls before Thursday’s deadline.
As a third-party candidate, Sarvis needed to draw support from at least 10 percent of those surveyed in major independent polls, as tracked by RealClearPolitics.com, over the past three weeks before the debate.