U.S. Sen. Mark Warner, D-Virginia:
“In his four years as governor, Gerald Baliles was a steady hand steering the commonwealth, making important investments in transportation that Virginians are still benefiting from today.
“He was also a good friend. I join all Virginians in celebrating his service to the commonwealth. We will miss him.”
Speaker of the House Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights:
“Governor Baliles was a caring, conscientious and exceptional lifelong public servant. He was a distinguished member of the Virginia House of Delegates, as well as the attorney general of Virginia prior to becoming Virginia’s 65th governor.
“Like elected officials on both sides of the aisle, along with the citizens of all walks, I believe Governor Baliles tackled and tried in earnest to solve, head on, real problems affecting the people of Virginia.”
U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Virginia:
“Governor Baliles modernized our roads, pushed environmental policies that understood economic growth and conservation go hand-in-hand, and led unprecedented international missions that laid the groundwork for Virginia to become the global trade hub it is today. Given the decades of Virginia prosperity these initiatives have enabled, it would not be hyperbole to say Jerry was one of the commonwealth’s most accomplished governors of the 20th century.”
Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment, R-James City:
“His tenure as governor was among the most eventful and consequential in history. His focus on modernizing the commonwealth’s approach to funding transportation brought about significant improvements. Those changes benefited Virginia’s economy then and add to our quality of life today.”
Former President Bill Clinton:
“Hillary and I are saddened by the passing of Jerry Baliles. He was an extraordinary public servant with a fine mind, a quick wit, and a good heart. He used them all to expand educational opportunities, improve infrastructure, and modernize the economy for the people of Virginia. ... It’s easy to say that democracy works better when practiced with civility, honest debate, and good-faith compromise. Jerry Baliles lived it.”
Former Gov. Bob McDonnell:
“I join my fellow governors and all Virginians today in mourning the loss of a great Virginia governor, Gerald Baliles. His was a consequential life of public service, not just as governor but as a legislator, attorney general, leader in Chesapeake Bay cleanup, and director of the Miller Center. His achievements in strengthening higher education, providing historic funding for transportation, appointing the first woman justice to the Virginia Supreme Court, and pioneering the role of governor as a promoter of international trade, were among his many accomplishments.
“Among all else, he respected the ‘Virginia Way’ of doing business; by governing with civility, respect, and a focus on solving problems and getting things done.”
Chesapeake Bay Foundation President William C. Baker:
“Governor Baliles was a leader in the early fight to save the Chesapeake Bay. The partnership he forged with the other Bay states provided the foundation for Bay restoration efforts. That foundation, which continues today, is our best hope to leave a legacy of clean water for our children and grandchildren.”
Former Speaker of the House William J. Howell:
“He was the first governor with whom I served in the House of Delegates. Even though we were on different sides of the aisle, I always felt he was willing to listen and engage with those of us in a distinct minority. I appreciated greatly that example throughout my time in the House of Delegates.
“Governor Baliles leaves behind a legacy of accomplishment and distinction. He was, quite simply, a very good governor.”
Rep. Abigail Spanberger, D-7th:
“Governor Baliles was a model public servant, and he truly represented the best values of our commonwealth. His term as governor was marked by compassionate leadership, cooperation on both sides of the aisle, and a focus on long-term projects that could grow Virginia’s economy for decades to come.”