Webb decision inches Stewart closer to running
February 9th, 2011
03:23 PM ET
12 years ago

Webb decision inches Stewart closer to running

Washington (CNN) - Virginia Republican Corey Stewart told CNN Wednesday that Sen. Jim Webb's decision not to seek reelection makes it more likely he will enter the high profile Senate race himself later this year.

"It significantly changes the race," Stewart, the GOP chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors, told CNN of Webb's decision. "The Democrats have a weak bench and the odds a Republican will win are significantly higher."

Should Stewart enter the race, he would face off at least against former Sen. George Allen and Tea Party-backed candidate Jamie Radtke. Allen, the former senator who lost to Webb in 2006, is thought to be the early favorite. But some state GOP activists are wary of another Allen bid and Tea Party organizations are suspect of some of his positions.

Stewart meanwhile says Allen has little chance of winning statewide should he capture the party's nomination.

"The problem with George Allen is that he has the whole 'macaca' thing," Stewart said of Allen's now-infamous 2006 gaffe that cost him that election. "And that's not his only problem. He is going to have a real tough time reaching out to African Americans in particular. The African American turnout in 2012 is going to be very high and George Allen has very little room to grow."

Stewart says he won't officially launch a campaign until next November, after the race to retain his chairmanship in Prince William County is over. But the Virginia conservative appears to suggest he's all but running now.

"That doesn't mean I can't be doing things behind the scenes, like traveling around the state which I've done intently the last six to eight months and arranging fundraising," he said of his decision to delay an official announcement. "Just because I haven't announced doesn't mean I am not preparing."

Filed under: GOP • Jim Webb
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. ReFascisticans

    Kick rocks Stewart. Not only will George Allen have problems with the africam american, so will you. You are from Prince William County which is predominantly white suburbs. If you're not campaigning in Hampton Roads, you have no chance of winning.

    February 9, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  2. Protect and Defend Freedom of Speech in the USA

    Not only do they have a weak bench, they have Obama, Reid and Pelosi leading their progressively destructive party and this country right down the crapper. After the last 4 years of Democrat control of the House and Senate and 2 years of Obama in the Whitehouse, the Democrats have shown the country what they are really all about: drunken spending and borrowing with a complete disregard for their sworn oath of office to defend the Constitution and the rights of the American people.

    February 9, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  3. vic nashville tn

    Many GOP candidates starting their campaign with good start

    “very little room to grow”
    this fit to Sarah Palin also

    February 9, 2011 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  4. NVa Native

    Obama will be a power house in 2012. Especially when the economy rebounds after all the Repubs attempts to sabatoge the recovery.
    PW County is where Repubs demonized all the Hispanics so they couldn't find work and guess what they left. Made all the Repubs happy until they realized they left their mortagages, car loans, etc. Basically emptied out PW neighborhoods and the realestate tanked hard – not like in BLUE Arlington where Hispanics and diversity are embraced, where un-employment is very low, and foreclosures are very low. PW is typical Repub ignorance in action, and Stewart is part of the problem.

    February 9, 2011 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  5. NVa Native

    But Allen is worse, Allen is the typical good old boy network that is becoming (happily) extinct in Va.

    February 9, 2011 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |