Rep. Capito announces 2014 U.S. Senate bid in W.Va.

Rachel Rose Hartman
The Ticket

Weeks after winning re-election, Republican Rep. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia announced Monday morning her candidacy for U.S. Senate in 2014.

Capito's early announcement puts potential opponent Democratic Sen. Jay Rockefeller, 75, on notice amid speculation over his retirement.

But don't expect Rockefeller to speed up his campaign timetable. The longtime lawmaker lamented Capito's quick electoral turnaround in a statement to Hoppy Kercheval of West Virginia MetroNews. "Everyone I talk to in West Virginia is tired of the non-stop campaigning," Rockefeller said. "West Virginians just want us to do our jobs, and for me that means focusing full-time on the serious issues at hand. Politics can wait."

The state Republican party on Monday quickly responded to news of Capito's decision by attacking Rockefeller.

"If Rockefeller has the audacity to run for a sixth term in 2014, the people of our great state will have another opportunity to reject the failed policies of President Obama by voting against his strongest advocate in West Virginia, liberal Jay Rockefeller," chairman Conrad Lucas said in a statement.

11:08 a.m. EST: This post was updated to reflect breaking news.