March 21, 2006
At a town hall meeting in Culpeper on Tuesday, Senator George Allen made a pit-stop, hitting the campaign trails as the 2006 elections draw near. He discussed healthcare reform and the War in Iraq, but many wondered about his Presidential aspirations.
A town hall meeting meant to highlight many issues once again turned Presidential.
"I am focused on reelection this year in Virginia," Republican Senator George Allen said.
As is the case so often, Allen faced several questions about a possible Presidential run in 2008. A run that Matt Smyth from the UVA Center for Politics says Allen is starting to set himself up to make.
"He is sort of testing out the waters for a 2008 Presidential run by visiting a lot of the key states, New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina. But doing under the auspices of helping out Republican candidates for the 2006 midterms," he said.
Allen's name has been tossed around with the likes of Senator John McCain and Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. Right now however, Allen is focused on making the Senate a more decisive legislative body.
"We need to make decisions, take action and there's insufficient action in the Senate," Allen said.
Making those decisions would potentially raise his national profile, a problem Smyth says Allen faces at this time.
"Nationally, he's got to get his name recognition up. As a Senator, certainly within your own state you are very well known, but nationally those numbers are in the single digits right now."
Allen has two potential democratic contenders to face in November: Harris Miller from Fairfax County, and former Secretary of the Navy James Webb. At this point he is expected to win comfortably against either. Official announcement has not been made about either of his candidacies.
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