Carly Fiorina Considering Bid For Senate In Virginia

Carly Fiorina, who failed in a bid for the Senate against Barbara Boxer in 2010 and also ran for the Republican nomination for President in 2016, is considering a run for Senate in Virginia in 2018:

Former Presidential Republican candidate Carly Fiorina is “strongly considering” a run to unseat Hillary Clinton’s former running mate Tim Kaine for Virginia senator in 2018, an adviser to the former Hewlett-Packard CEO told CNN.

Fiorina, who bowed out of the presidential race in February 2016 before a short stint as Ted Cruz’s running mate, has been considering a run against Kaine in Virginia since November, said Frank Sadler, former campaign manager for her presidential run and the former executive director to her PAC.

Sadler said that Fiorina will likely make a formal decision about running for Senate in the fall, a timeline the former presidential candidate essentially confirmed to SiriusXM’s Julie Mason earlier Tuesday.

“My decision will come, I suspect, after those elections are over but it’s certainly a consideration,” Fiorina said referencing Virginia’s gubernatorial election this fall.

Fiorina left the door open to running for the position when she was asked about it earlier this year on the “The John Fredericks Show.”

“Look, I’m certainly looking at that opportunity,” she said in February. “It’s a little early to be making that decision, we’re two weeks into a new administration.”

Sadler said Fiorina will nevertheless stay busy this spring and summer, as she plans to be heavily involved in Republican Ed Gillespie’s Virginia governor’s race.

“Something most people don’t know is she hired Quinn & Gillespie when she was at Hewlett Packard to work on the Compaq merger,” Sadler said. “They’ve been friends for 15 years. She’s very, very committed to him — that’s where all of her focus is.”

As former CEO at HP, Fiorina hired Washington-based law firm Quinn & Gillespie to advise her company in the Compaq proxy fight. Both Gillespie and his partner Jack Quinn have since been considered some of Fiorina’s closest advisers. Quinn was Al Gore’s former chief of staff and Gillespie was head of the Republican National Committee from 2003 to 2005.

Fiorina so far has not taken on an official title for Gillespie’s campaign. Currently Fiorina plans to throw her might behind campaigning with Gillespie on the trail, doing videos for him and offering anything else “she can be helpful with.” Sadler said Fiorina would be on the campaign trail even more after August. Fiorina’s PAC has donated $5,000 to Gillespie’s PAC in the past.

Additionally, she is actively helping raise money for GOP county committees across Virginia. She’ll be headlining the Hanover Republican Committee’s Reagan Day Dinner on May 5.

As of now, there hasn’t been much focus on the 2018 Senate race in Virginia, with the vast majority of the political attention going to this year’s races for Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney General as well as the battle for the House of Delegates. Nevertheless, several other potential names have been mentioned as potential candidates for the GOP nomination to take on Kaine in the General Election, including former Congressman Tom Davis and former Governor Jim Gilmore, who also ran for President in 2016. Neither man has commented directly on a potential one, but either one would seem to be more likely to win the nomination than Fiorina.

FILED UNDER: 2018 Election, Congress, US Politics, , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    After aiding in the demise of Lucent, she was booted out of HP. But not before selling $millions in HP gear to Iran.
    Lost in Cali.
    Lost in the Presidential Primaries.
    So much winning…

  2. grumpy realist says:

    God, please–NO!!!

  3. al-Alameda says:

    Let’s see?

    1 Considered by many to be a failed CEO ….. [check]
    2 Laid off, outsourced, jobs of 18,000 American workers ….. [check]
    3 Sheltered $14 Billion in profits overseas to avoid U.S. taxes …. [check]
    4 Engineered $20 Billion HP-Compaq merger, still regarded as a failure … [check]
    5 Lost to ‘socialist’ Barbara Boxer in CA senate race by1M votes ….. [check]
    6 Has icy corporate demeanor, no charisma ….. [check]

    Seems to me to be a solid Republican candidate.

  4. Argon says:

    Let it be so. Failure does a ‘hat trick’.

  5. JohnMcC says:

    It’s in the distant past but were I in VA politics I’d be very glad to be reminded the Mr Gillespie had something to do with the HP-Compaq merger.

  6. Scott says:

    @al-Alameda: It is called failing upward. See Trump, Pence for other examples.

  7. Mr. Bluster says:
  8. Gustopher says:

    My heart goes out to the people of Virginia — you don’t deserve this. Her presence in your state and on your airwaves is sad and regrettable, but if you persevere, she will eventually be gone.

    She’s so utterly without charm that she makes Hillary Clinton look like Bill Clinton.

  9. Anonne says:

    In the immortal words of Mötley Crüe: Girl, don’t go away mad, girl, just go away.

    Somehow these people think that being rich and mastering the art of self-promotion are qualifications to serve in public office. She is so utterly unqualified it’s not funny.

  10. Gromitt Gunn says:

    I strongly encourage her to waste as many GOP donor dollars as possible.

  11. Neil Hudelson says:

    I should go ahead and announce that I, too, am considering a run for the Virginia Senate seat.

    See you on the campaign trail, Carly and Jim.