Vice President Mike Pence reached out to Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley about the possibility of challenging U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill in 2018, Hawley’s spokesman confirmed Tuesday.
Hawley has been a top pick to run against McCaskill, the Democratic incumbent, by several prominent Missouri Republicans. Hawley has been coy about his plans, but his spokesman confirmed that he received a phone call from Pence last weekend.
“Josh spoke to Vice President Pence this weekend and has been getting a great deal of encouragement to run. He is giving the race serious consideration,” Hawley’s spokesman, Scott Paradise, said in an email. “Josh has also received calls from others (candidates) interested in running and he is letting them know of his decision to consider the race.”
Pence’s office did not immediately comment on the phone call Tuesday. The National Republican Senatorial Committee, the GOP’s main national campaign committee for Senate races, also did not comment on Pence’s interest in the Missouri race.
Former U.S. Sen. Jack Danforth and Sam Fox, a former U.S. ambassador to Belgium from St. Louis, have led a public campaign to recruit Hawley.
Read more: Kansas City Star