Former Sen. Jim Webb has hired a senior political adviser and Iowa coordinator ahead of his possible 2016 presidential bid.
Rania Batrice is a native of Texas but has worked in Iowa before. She was Iowa Rep. Dave Loebsack’s campaign manager in 2008 and worked in the Hawkeye State for former Sen. John Edwards’ failed presidential campaign in 2007 and 2008. She has also worked for Democrats in Texas and North Dakota.
“Glad to report that Rania Batrice is joining our team as senior political adviser, including coordinating Iowa,” Webb said in an email from his spokesman.
The former Virginia lawmaker has been quietly building a team to run a presidential bid, even though he has repeatedly said he is only strongly considering a run. His candidacy is seen as a dark horse on the Democratic side because of Hillary Clinton’s dominance in polls and support.
Webb is set to leisurely test the presidential waters in the coming months. He will visit South Carolina this week for a series of events and a media availability and he will visit Iowa in early April for a speech to a county Democratic group.
Webb is also planning a trip back to South Carolina on May 25 and plans to visit New Hampshire in early June.