POLITICS
01/09/2014 06:10 pm ET Updated Jan 23, 2014

Ed Gillespie To Run For Senate In Virginia: Report

Former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie is gearing up to challenge Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) in his reelection bid this year, the New York Times reported Thursday.

According to the Times' Jonathan Martin, Gillespie has notified top Republicans that he intends to announce his candidacy as soon as next week.

Gillespie, who led the RNC from 2003 to 2005, has reportedly been weighing a Senate campaign for some time. The former chairman's establishment credentials -- he previously served as an adviser during Mitt Romney's 2012 presidential campaign and as an aide to former President George W. Bush -- stand in contrast to tea party favorite and current Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, who unsuccessfully ran for governor in 2013.

Cuccinelli has said he will not challenge Warner in 2014.

Earlier this month, Gillespie hinted at his potential candidacy while speaking to Republicans in Norfolk, Va.

"I have concluded it is a winnable race," he said. "I'm very touched that a lot of my friends and fellow Republicans in Virginia think that I could be a good standard-bearer for us."

Warner, first elected to the Senate in 2008, has raised nearly $7 million ahead of his reelection bid.

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