Ex-Bush aide Ed Gillespie launches Senate campaign «

    Ex-Bush aide Ed Gillespie launches Senate campaign

    Ed Gillespie, a onetime aide to President George W. Bush and a former chairman of the Republican National Committee, said Thursday he’s running for a Senate seat representing Virginia.

    If he wins the Republican nomination in June (where, says Politico, his longtime party involvement should pay off), he’ll challenge first-term Democrat Mark Warner.

    Gillespie made his run official with a video posted on YouTube that touts his working-class roots, including the stint as a U.S. Senate parking-lot attendant that helped him pay for college.

    Like most Republicans, Gillespie takes an anti-Obamacare line, saying it kills jobs.

    Warner could prove tough to beat: He won his seat in 2008 with 65% of the vote, defeating former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore.

    But Gillespie is clearly hoping the troubled Obamacare rollout will be a weapon against Warner, and his candidacy has conservatives pumped up.

    Warner, meanwhile, is saying: Bring it on.

    Senate Republicans are feeling more optimistic about efforts to net the six seats required to take back the majority in 2014. But as this piece pointed out, several factors could influence the outcome, including the possibility Obamacare and the economy will improve.

    – Robert Schroeder