(CNN) – The 2012 Senate campaign in Virginia has its first Tea Party candidate.
Jamie Radtke, head of the Virginia Tea Party Patriots, filed federal papers to run for the Republican nomination for Virginia's Senate seat currently held by Democrat Sen. Jim Webb, and Radtke plans to make a formal announcement in January.
Radtke said the recent tax deal passed by Congress and increased national spending contributed to her decision to run.
"We would be foolish to hope one last time that career politicians can and will save us from the national crisis that they themselves even now are making worse," Radtke said in an e-mail. "To change Washington we need to elect a new generation of leaders to the Senate and House who will fight to restore the virtue and accountability that has been sorely lacking in our government."
The former grassroots organizer helped arrange a large Tea Party convention in Richmond, Virginia, earlier this year, but said the "spiraling debt" is an issue Tea Partiers, conservatives and moderate Democrats can agree on, and is something incumbent Webb has not addressed.
"During his tenure, Senator Webb has consistently voted against the will of Virginians, from agreeing to Obama's Health Care plan to extending our budget deficit," Radtke said in her e-mail. "This voting record does not match my positions or the interests of the citizens of Virginia."
But she will likely have some competition for the GOP nomination. Former Sen. George Allen, who was Webb's opponent in 2006, is also considering a run. Radtke criticized Allen's use of earmarks when he was in the Senate and said earmarks are one of the issues that need to be debated.
Looking ahead to the race, she said she considers herself a Tea Party and Republican candidate and that the Tea Party has grown in popularity because voters support candidates who favor "cutting deficit spending and less government."
"We can build on what we have learned and on the foundation we have laid in 2010 for the upcoming elections," Radtke said.