Former Maryland GOP Chairman Alex Mooney announced on Monday that he will venture across state lines to run for West Virginia's 2nd District.
"I have been encouraged by the many words of support from grassroots activists I have received since my interest in running was first reported in Roll Call in February," Mooney said in a press release. "People want a fighter for their conservative values, and that is exactly who I am."
Earlier this year, CQ Roll Call reported that Mooney was seriously considering a campaign for the seat, which is open because Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., is running for Senate in 2014. He submitted his resignation as his state party's leader in February and has since moved to the Mountain State.
"I know I will be criticized for not having lived in West Virginia for a long time," he said in the press release. "But I am proud to join many people from Western Maryland and other states who now live in West Virginia. I felt the chance of pace would be good for my family and I enjoy living in a conservative state. I also believe my consulting business will do better here. I am here to stay."
In a Monday phone interview, Mooney said he met with state Attorney General Patrick Morrisey to discuss the run. Mooney also said he met Capito at an event where she asked him of his intentions. He said he confirmed to her that he was considering a bid.
CQ Roll Call also broke the news Monday morning that West Virginia Del. Eric Nelson, a top GOP recruit, would not run for the 2nd District.
In 2011, Mooney considered a bid for the seat held by his former boss, ex-Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, R-Md. However, that once-safe Republican seat was redrawn that year and local Democratic lawmakers made it a Democratic-favored seat.
Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call rates West Virginia's 2nd as Republican Favored.