Hodges Speaks at University of Chicago Institute of Politics Forum with Gov. Terry McAuliffe

November 1, 2017

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Jim Hodges, a former South Carolina governor who heads McGuireWoods Consulting’snational multistate team and is a partner with the McGuireWoods law firm,appeared alongside Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe at a University of ChicagoInstitute of Politics forum.

The two Democrats discussed headwinds for progressive candidates running inthe South at the Oct. 30 event.

Hodges, who was governor from 1999-2003, was elected on an educationplatform. During his tenure, he established South Carolina’s educationlottery, which has funded more than 100,000 scholarships. Ideas, notpartisan ideology, carried the election, he said.

“Part of the problem we’ve had since the early 1990s is we’ve fallen intothis trap of letting it [elections] be about ideology, at least in the DeepSouth,” Hodges said.

Had the race been a choice only between a Democrat and a Republican, hesaid, he would have lost. He succeeded because he made the campaign aboutfunding for educating South Carolina’s children, he said.

“It gets back to having to make the election about an idea — or a couple ofideas — rather than about a party,” said Hodges, who becomes president andchief executive officer of McGuireWoods Consulting on Jan. 12.

McAuliffe, who was elected in 2013 in Virginia, agreed with Hodges.

“You’ve got to lean in on the values that you care about,” said McAuliffe,who is limited to a single, nonrenewable term that expires in January.“Don’t worry about whether you’re going to win or lose. Go down swingingfor what you believe in, and I think voters respect that.”

To watch the entire forum, click here.