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Gomez Catches House GOP’s Eye After Massachusetts Loss

Rep. Greg Walden is the NRCC chairman. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Rep. Greg Walden is the NRCC chairman. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The House GOP’s campaign chief expressed interest in Republican Gabriel Gomez running in Massachusetts’ 9th District next year against Democratic Rep. William Keating.

Gomez lost to Democrat Rep. Edward J. Markey in the special election for Senate last month. But the former Navy SEAL’s candidacy caught the attention of the national GOP — including National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Greg Walden.

“He did outperform Markey in the [9th District] by 7 points,” Walden told CQ Roll Call in a Wednesday interview. “That got our attention.”

The Oregon Republican cautioned that he had not yet reached out to Gomez about the House race, calling it “a little too early to have that conversation, you know, when you’re coming off a bruising Senate run.”

But it’s clear that Gomez is not finished with Bay State politics. He indicated the loss was not the end of his political career in his June 25 concession speech.

Republicans have speculated that Gomez could run against Markey again in 2014, when he will seek a full six-year Senate term. They also suggested Gomez could enter the Bay State’s open gubernatorial contest in 2014.

A consultant for Gomez’s Senate bid said he had not spoken to him since the election to ask about his future plans, but he said Gomez “has a very bright future” in politics.

In 2012, Keating won a second term by 27 points. President Barack Obama also carried the district in 2012 with 55 percent.

The 9th District is rated a Safe Democrat seat by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

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