It’s not just Gingrich. Only Romney and Paul qualified. Considering how many other states Gingrich, Perry, et al qualified for the ballot, the Virginia system seems to be overly restrictive.
The deadline for this process is Dec. 22. Virginia officials say that any campaign that hasnt started the process probably would not make it. If they are not already collecting petitions, they are going to have a hard time getting on the ballot, says the Virginia official involved in regulating the process.
State GOP sources say they know the campaigns of Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, and Herman Cain are already working to get signatures. Those officials say they simply dont know about others, including Gingrich, who has shot toward the top of national polls in recent days. The officials concern is if well-wired state GOP officials havent heard about them, the signature-gathering efforts by other campaigns may be inadequate or nonexistent.
And don't forget Gingrich is a Virginia resident. Anyone with the slightest knowledge of GOP politics in Virginia knows, at the minimum, the process is a lengthy one.