Both of Virginia’s gubernatorial candidates appeared taken aback by the final question in their debate on Thursday night. The question didn’t pertain to job creation, tax policy, or social issues, but rather, Republican Ken Cuccinelli’s and Democrat Terry McAuliffe’s stance on the Redskins-name controversy and whether the team should change its name.
“I don’t think the governor ought to be telling private businesses what they should do about their business,” McAuliffe responded. “As governor, I’m not going to tell [team owner] Dan Snyder or anybody else what they should do with their business.”
Cuccinelli also avoided answering the question directly, saying it was “up to them entirely” and noting that he respected the 80 years of history associated with the name. Cuccinelli did show off his familiarity with the team’s on-the-field issues, namely quarterback Robert Griffin III’s knee injury.