Hoekstra's decision to join
the D.C. lobbying shop in February was seen as a sign that he had decided against a Senate campaign, as holding a lobbyist job looked like prime fodder for his political opponents.
Indeed, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee wasted no time Tuesday attacking Hoekstra, calling him a "Congressman turned Washington lobbyist who has stood up for taxpayer-funded bonuses for bailed-out CEOs, tax giveaways for oil companies, and Republican efforts to privatize Medicare."
"After his party rejected his bid for Governor, Hoekstra is now shopping for another revolving door to pass through," said DSCC spokesman Shripal Shah.
Despite the number of high profile Republicans who have passed on a chance to take on Stabenow, the Democrat remains vulnerable. According to a new EPIC-MRA survey out today
, 51 percent of likely voters give Stabenow a negative job rating of "fair" or "poor" while just 38 percent view her job performance favorably -- "excellent" or "pretty good." Stabenow's personal favorable/unfavorable split in the same poll is better -- 47 percent view her favorably, while 35 percent view her unfavorably.
Obama's approval in the state also is flagging, according to the survey
. He trails former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney
, 46 percent to 42 percent.
If Hoekstra jumps in, he would begin as the heavy favorite to win the GOP nomination. The field currently consists of Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner John McCulloch
, former juvenile judge Randy Hekman
and businessman Peter Konetchy
Sean Sullivan contributed to this report.