BOSTON — State Rep. Dan Winslow, who finished third in the Republican Senate primary this week, tells WBUR he is gearing up to run for statewide office again.
“I’m going to be making a statement about my future plans — and they will be statewide plans — in the near term,” he says.
Winslow says he does not know precisely when he’ll announce the office he’s seeking.
He says his “immediate focus” will be helping GOP Senate primary victor Gabriel Gomez win his general election contest with U.S. Rep. Ed Markey.
But “I have to get working fast,” he adds, “I don’t have the luxury of waiting.”
Winslow, 54, a lawyer and one-time judge in Wrentham District Court, may be best suited to run for attorney general.
But with Attorney General Martha Coakley, a Democrat, sending strong signals that she’ll run for re-election next year, any GOP challenger would face long odds.
Winslow may have his sights set on the governor’s race, with Gov. Deval Patrick set to step down next year. Charlie Baker, who lost to Patrick in 2010, is considered the GOP frontrunner at the moment.
Winslow is a colorful figure who once stacked 10 tubs of Marshmallow Fluff in a pyramid outside the office of Gov. Deval Patrick’s budget chief to highlight the “fluff” in the administration’s spending plan.
Allies call him a happy warrior brimming with ideas. Critics — Democratic and Republican alike — dismiss him as a too-clever publicity hound.
In a Senate race that never stirred much public interest, Winslow struggled to make good use of his public relations gifts — racking up newspaper endorsement after newspaper endorsement, but failing to get much traction with voters.
Winslow wound up with 13 percent of the vote, well behind Gomez’s 51 percent and former U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan’s 36 percent.
But in an interview with WBUR, he said that 13 percent of the GOP vote — and the fundraising chops he demonstrated in raising about $340,000 in the brief campaign — provided a solid base for another statewide run.