Politics

The Humble Travel Style of Candidates for Governor in Virginia

November 1, 2013

The next governor of Virginia stoops to conquer, right at the door of a very small plane.

Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican Ken Cuccinelli II must crouch to get inside the four-seater flying machines winging them across the commonwealth in search of votes. There is no room to stand in the cabin — and nothing to get up for anyway. No bathroom. No place to fix a snack. Some of the planes have tattered upholstery and carpeting.

In a state as congested and wide as Virginia — sprawling from the Atlantic to west of Detroit — an airplane can be a candidate’s ticket to the governor’s mansion. But it is by no means a first-class ticket. This is travel that makes flying coach in the era of baggage and pillow fees feel like Concorde-style coddling.

“My pilot was kidding me today, ‘A lot of the pilots wouldn’t even fly that thing,’” said C. Richard Cranwell, a former Democratic state delegate who has let McAuliffe use his Piper Aztec at least four times since spring.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. You can enter an anonymous Display Name or connect to a social profile.

More from Politics