George Allen Announces Bid for U.S. Senate in 2012

January 24, 2011

Former Virginia Governor and U.S. Senator George Allen Monday signed and delivered his declaration of candidacy for the U.S. Senate from Virginia in 2012.

Allen first alerted supporters of his decision in a personalized email message that directed them to a video announcing his plans. Although announcing his official candidacy Monday, he plans an official kick-off tour later in the year.

Along with the email and video, Allen released the following statement:

"It's time for an American comeback with leaders who listen to 'We The People,' adhere to foundational principles, rein in spending and start creating opportunities for more jobs. To get there we'll need to listen to Virginia voices ­and fight to repeal the government mandated healthcare plan, pass a balanced budget amendment and line-item veto, and reduce our families' energy costs by unleashing our American resources and creativity.

"Today I announce my candidacy for the U.S. Senate. The people of Virginia know me as someone willing to fight to restore freedom, personal responsibility and opportunity for all. I'm asking them to hire me on for six years so that together we can put our country back on the path to prosperity."

The Republican will seek to reclaim the U.S. Senate seat from Virginia that he lost five years ago to Democrat Jim Webb. But many believe he'll first have to defeat a Tea Party challenger in the Republican Primary.

Allen, who was once considered a potential Republican presidential contender, lost to Webb by about 9,000 votes after a series of gaffes in a year when his party lost control of Congress to Democrats.

Webb, a decorated Marine veteran of the Vietnam War who was a Republican when he served as President Ronald Reagan's navy secretary, surged as public dissatisfaction over the war in Iraq and then-President George W. Bush's handling of it intensified, hurting Republicans in the 2006 midterm elections.

Since losing the seat, Allen has worked for the American Energy Freedom Center, subsidized by the nation's energy industry.

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