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Saunders, a former top adviser for Sen. Mark WarnerMark WarnerSenate intel panel has not seen Nunes surveillance documents: lawmakers Overnight Cybersecurity: House Intel chair says surveillance collected on Trump transition team Dem senator: House Intel chairman may have revealed classified info MORE (D-Va.), former Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) and John Edwards's presidential campaign, rips McAuliffe as a "corporatist" and says he can't back his party's nominee.

"I can’t support a corporatist. I just can't. This guy is not my kind of Democrat," Saunders tells the Richmond Times-Dispatch. "I just can't sit here anymore and watch this coin-operated government continue. Wouldn't I be a hypocrite if I came to Richmond last year and jumped on Eric CantorEric CantorPaul replaces Cruz as GOP agitator GOP shifting on immigration Breitbart’s influence grows inside White House MORE for it and then came back and supported Terry McAuliffe?"

Saunders also worked for Cantor's opponent last election cycle.

The populist-leaning strategist's support mirrors a recent endorsement from longtime GOP strategist Boyd Marcus, a former Cantor adviser who is working for his campaign.