Yowza. There are plenty of reasons Terry McAuliffe—Clinton acolyte, failed businessman, crony capitalist, and policy know-nothing— is a “deeply unserious” candidate, but I didn’t imagine one of the biggest newspapers in the state would echo that belief. As Jim Geraghty notes, the Dispatch “hasn’t endorsed in the Virginia governor’s race yet…[but]we can guess who they’re NOT endorsing.” From Sunday’s editorial:

When it comes to raking together piles of cash, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe is without peer. On questions of actual governance, though, his troubling lack of mastery and odd flippancy combine to paint a portrait of a deeply unserious candidate.

Newspaper endorsements are of decreasing importance every election, but something that reads almost like an explicit un-endorsement in a competitive purple state might have a tad more impact. More important, you’re seeing the crystallization of a message about who McAuliffe is that is simple, true, disturbing, and easily illustrated. And, McAuliffe himself offers new examples every single day.

The list of issues about which McAuliffe admits to knowing nothing or refuses to take a position is long. He’s running his campaign like he thinks he’s Barack Obama, voting present on as many issues as possible but without the eloquence or the quite the level of complicity in the media to cover for him. His attempt to pass on taking a position on EPA coal regulations, which are deeply important to residents of the western part of the state, is just the latest example. The Cuccinelli campaign, trailing McAuliffe slightly in most polls, has taken hold of this line of attack in its latest ad, “Serious,” and would be smart to keep pounding it from now until election day.

Meanwhile, the Washington Post solidifies the other message about McAuliffe— that he’s a failed businessman in his own right who relies on cronyism and his big-government connections to survive and thrive. Thanks, taxpayers! Guy Benson:

One supposes he’ll also look into how to be a governor once you elect him, Virginia. Meanwhile, the Washington Post published a tough story over the weekend, detailing McAuliffe’s long history of highly lucrative insider dealings. Among other things, the Post report reveals that the Democrat remains the largest individual shareholder of GreenTech Auto — the sputtering company he founded, which now sits under a cloud of federal investigation. McAuliffe told Virginians that he left the company in December, but he’s maintained financial and legal ties to the failed enterprise ever since.

The window of opportunity opens wide.