Vermont Republican Gov. Phil Scott announced Thursday he is running for re-election, but he won’t hire staff, actively campaign or raise money until the current state of emergency because of the coronavirus is lifted.
In an email to supporters, Scott said that during the pandemic, Vermont needs a governor who is focused full-time on responding to the disease.
"I will not be campaigning in the traditional way while we are in the midst of our response to this pandemic," Scott’s announcement letter said. "Facing, fighting and defeating this virus — and rebuilding a stronger, more resilient economy — are my top priorities."
Thursday is the filing deadline to appear on the August primary election ballot.
Scott was first elected governor in 2016 and he easily won re-election in 2018.
Scott faces at least one Republican opponent in the primary, and so far, three Democrats have filed to seek their party’s gubernatorial nomination.
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Scott said he realizes the risks of not campaigning.
"But, I simply cannot bring myself to campaign during the state of emergency, even if it puts me at a political disadvantage in August and November," he said.