10:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Scandal' Poll: Which Presidential Candidate Has the Cast's Vote?
ABC's Scandal is inching closer to its presidential election.
Thursday's episode will feature the presidential debate between Mellie Grant (Bellamy Young), vice president Susan Ross (Artemis Pebdani) and Trump-like candidate Hollis Doyle (Gregg Henry) as they compete for the Republican nomination. The winner will face off against one of two Democratic candidates: Frankie Vargas (Ricardo Chavira) and Edison Davis (Norm Lewis).
Most of the candidates have backing from major (and frequently shady) characters on Scandal. Mellie has Olivia (Kerry Washington) in her corner. Susan is backed by the president — and Mellie's ex-husband — Fitzgerald Grant (Tony Goldwyn). Hollis, however, is an island of one (for now). On the Democratic side, Edison has Rowan's (Joe Morton) support and Vargas has Cyrus (Jeff Perry) running point.
So who is the leading candidate among the five White House hopefuls among the cast? THR polled the stars — as well as Scandal producers Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers — to find out.
Rhimes: That changes daily, actually. We have arguments about it in the [writers'] room. Half of us are for one person, half for another person. It changes a lot.
Beers: I want to see them debate!
Goldwyn: Susan Ross. She's my vice president. Fitz sees in Susan someone who is unafraid to be herself and is pure. She has a strong spine and hasn't killed anyone. She's someone he thinks who could be what he wanted to be, which was unsullied. Fitz would love to see the look on Mellie's face if she lost to Susan Ross!
Washington: Olivia is on Team Mellie. Mellie would be an awesome president — and I think Susan Ross would be an awesome president and I love that the two candidates I love the most are both women. But I'm Mellie all the way and I'm biased because I've personally been in love with Mellie since season one, so it's hard to not say Mellie. Could Olivia serve as her VP? God no, but I don't know who [could]. But Olivia better be thinking about that!
Darby Stanchfield (Abby): It's tough: Abby is a Democrat working for a Republican administration — how much has she been brainwashed by her current administration? My guess is Abby is going to vote Democrat and that would be Vargas. Although I think Abby is a real woman's woman — so I could also see her going for Susan Ross because she does a lot of white-hat wearing.
Young: Mellie! Whoooo! I think she'd be an outstanding president. I don't know who her running mate would be. If I had to pick right now? Vargas, with a cross-ticket platform!
Katie Lowes (Quinn): I think Quinn would vote for Mellie. But I love Susan Ross, too! But Quinn goes where Olivia Pope goes. So whatever Kerry answers is my answer!
Perry: Cyrus has a dog in the race, so it's Frankie Vargas. And if I can't get Vargas in there, (laughing) this is going to sound insane, but I'm torn between the most honest — Susan Ross — and the craziest — Hollis Doyle.
Portia de Rossi (Elizabeth): I don't know what Elizabeth thinks of Susan Ross; I have no idea. Maybe Hollis Doyle gets her vote! He is the Trump of the show. I think Elizabeth is fiscally very conservative, but morally and socially I don't know. I think she would vote for the person who could give her the best shot at power!
Morton: Edison is my candidate, so he has my vote.
Cast your vote in the poll below.
Scandal airs on Thursday at 9 p.m. on ABC.