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Former Romney Staffer David Kochel Joins Bush Team

By    |   Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 06:31 PM

Republican strategist David Kochel, who previously worked on both of Mitt Romney's failed presidential campaigns, is joining team Jeb Bush, according to a report.

The New York Times reports that Kochel, who is currently based in Iowa, will serve as a senior strategist on Bush's political action committee. If Bush decides to run for president next year, Kochel could work as Bush's national campaign manager.

"I really believe Governor Bush is the right person for the right time," Kochel told the Times. "He has a successful conservative record in Florida, and I'd put that record up against anybody else."

Kochel will reportedly move to Miami in a few months to join Bush's team. If Bush, who served as Florida governor from 1999-2007, decides to run for the White House, he is expected to make an announcement in the spring.

"This is a reflection of Governor Bush's intent, should he go forward with a campaign, to make the race focused on early states, Super Tuesday states and running governors-style races," a Bush adviser told the Times. "This is not going to be a D.C.-driven, top-down structure. That's not the Jeb Bush way."

Kochel served as an adviser to Bush for six years.

Speculation is running rampant that Bush will seek the Republican nomination for president. Romney, on the other hand, is on the fence, according to recent reports. After declaring himself out of the race a year ago, he seems to have changed his mind — maybe.

Some of Romney's former aides, however, aren't convinced  their old boss should give it another shot after coming up short in 2008 and 2012.

Bush and his growing team have proactively been working behind the scenes to prepare for a run. That includes setting up a 60-event fundraising tour to raise money for the campaign's war chest.

A Miami Herald report, meanwhile, claims that Bush's team is coming together in Tallahassee, Fla., where his political action committee Right to Rise is located.

The Herald provided a partial list of Bush's staffers:

Right to Rise director Sally Bradshaw, who worked on Romney's 2008 campaign as an adviser

Kristy Campbell, who was Bush's spokeswoman during his time as governor and who worked on Romney's 2008 and 2012 campaigns

Matt Gorman, who served as Romney's deputy rapid-response director in 2012

Jesse Hunt, whose previous jobs include communications director for Scott Brown’s 2014 U.S. Senate campaign

Josh Venable, who previously worked as the Republican National Committee's deputy finance director

Karen Unger, who worked for the Bush campaigns in 1998 and 2002

Brandi Brown, who was previously the external affairs director for Bush's foundation

Pablo Diaz, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi's campaign manager for the 2014 election

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Republican strategist David Kochel, who previously worked on both of Mitt Romney's failed presidential campaigns, is joining team Jeb Bush, according to a report.
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Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 06:31 PM
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