Democrat McMurtrie endorses Republican Sturtevant in Virginia Senate race

A former Democratic delegate who lost his party's nomination for a state Senate seat has endorsed the Republican.

Alex McMurtrie Jr., who represented Chesterfield County and the City of Colonial Heights in the House of Delegates between 1971 and 1981, said he was "proud" to endorse Republican Glen Sturtevant, whom McMurtrie called, "by far the best candidate for education in this race."

Sturtevant, a member of the Richmond school board, called McMurtrie's endorsement "an honor," and said the two have a "shared commitment to education [that] transcends party labels."

McMurtrie finished third in the three-way-primary battle for the 10 District Democratic nomination. He outspent the winner, Chesterfield County Supervisor Dan Gecker, by more than $106,000.

McMurtrie was criticized during that campaign for his political contributions to Republicans. He donated more than $20,000 in cash and gifts to former governor  Bob McDonnell. McMurtrie's wife, Margaret, donated nearly $5,000 to Mitt Romney's 2012 presidential campaign.

Sturtevant campaign manager Matt Brown told AMI Newswire that the McMurtrie endorsement shows the candidate appeals to Virginians across party lines.

"We have a lot of bipartisan support among voters," Brown said. "We have a lot of support among the our entire party, too. Glen brings together the party and reaches across the aisle and finds common ground."

Neither the Gecker campaign nor Mr. McMurtrie responded to AMI Newswire for comment.