February 12, 2007

Sen. Bentley Rayburn?

This came out over the weekend--he ran third in the 2006 GOP primary for Colorado's 5th CD, but if former Rep. Bob Schaffer bows out of the GOP primary, the retired Air Force general might toss his hat in the ring:
A retired military man might be marching toward the 2008 U.S. Senate race.

Retired Air Force Maj. Gen. Bentley Rayburn, a political rookie who made a surprising showing in a Republican congressional primary last year, said he is being urged to run to replace the retiring Sen. Wayne Allard.

"We’re considering it. We’re talking to a lot of people," Rayburn said in a telephone interview Friday. "If I decide it’s right to get into that fight, I need to get in right away."

Rayburn said one factor he is considering is his admiration for another Republican who is considering the race, former Congressman Bob Schaffer, a Republican.

"If he was to tell me tomorrow (that) he was going to run, that would completely change around my decision process," Rayburn said.
Sounds like a plausible alternative to former Rep. Scott McInnis, but the military record provides some leverage against his relatively low-profile politically:
Rayburn, who describes himself as a "social conservative" and "fiscal conservative," said his military experience makes him uniquely positioned to run right now.

"First, I’m not a politician," he said. "Second, obviously war is a big deal, and there is not, in my opinion, enough credible military experience in both the House and Senate."
What, John Murtha doesn't have the nation's military men and women's--needless to say the whole country's--best interests in mind?

Perish the thought.

Rayburn's X-factor race, should he run, will only be viable with the promise of adequate fundraising. The GOP will need strong cash reserves in the range of $5-10 million to even dream of holding the seat. McInnis has his own record to run against and Rayburn could ease by if an impeccable personal record and stature as a military expert, combined with strong conservative credentials, makes him an attractive candidate for the general election against Rep. Mark Udall (D-People's Republic of Boulder).

Cross posted at Political Avalanche

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