SAN DIEGO, Calif. -- Count Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell among the Republicans who want to see former Sen. George Allen (R) take a shot at winning back the seat he lost in 2006.
In a wide-ranging interview with The Hotline, McDonnell said he believes Allen will run against Sen. Jim Webb (D) in 2012. McDonnell, who worked in Allen's gubernatorial administration in the 1990s, praised Allen as "a great ideas governor, a reform governor."
"He's got a great story to tell and he loves being involved in the political process, and he's got great charisma," McDonnell said. "He wants to serve again. So it would not surprise me at all to see him back in the hunt here."
McDonnell would not go into detail about talks between the two men. "I've had some conversations with George. I'll let him discuss what his plans are," he said.
Allen's actions speak louder than words: He has taken steps that indicate he's interested in a comeback bid, ramping up his media appearances and showing up at key party events. This weekend, he is hosting a hospitality suite at a major Virginia Republican Party gathering in McLean.
Up in the air is whether Allen will actually get his shot at a rematch. Webb has raised money at a lethargic pace, hinting he may not seek a second term. A Democratic polling firm released a survey on Wednesday that showed both Webb and former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine (D) leading Allen, albeit by small margins.