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Curt Schilling says he’ll run against Elizabeth Warren if wife agrees

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling posed with Republican volunteers Tuesday at a party office in Salem, N.H.
Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling posed with Republican volunteers Tuesday at a party office in Salem, N.H.Jim Davis/Globe Staff/Globe Staff

NASHUA — Curt Schilling is definitely in. Maybe.

The former Red Sox star continues to tease about a possible election challenge to US Senator Elizabeth Warren in 2018, suggesting in a radio interview Tuesday that he will run if his wife, Shonda, gives her blessing.

“Plan A is to talk to Shonda,” Schilling later told reporters in Nashua, where the former hardball pitcher signed autographs for GOP electoral volunteers at a Republican Party office. “I want to do it. I need to see if my family is OK with it. “

Schilling was at the center of one of the great moments in Boston sports history, the 2004 Red Sox playoff comeback against the New York Yankees, which helped pave the way to the first World Series win for the Sox since 1918.


Earlier this year, Schilling was fired from his job as an ESPN baseball analyst after comments on Facebook critical of transgender rights. He now has an online radio show.

RELATED: In WRKO interview, Schilling hints at run against Warren

He describes himself as a “conservative pro-life pro-2nd amendment American who wants to help those that cannot help themselves.” He supported Governor Charlie Baker’s first gubernatorial run in 2010 and campaigned for Baker before Election Day 2014. He has supported other Republican candidates, such as former US senator Scott Brown, Senator John McCain, and former president George W. Bush. Schilling stumped on Tuesday for GOP presidential nominee Donald J. Trump in several places in New Hampshire.

Warren, a Democrat, defeated Brown, the incumbent, in 2012 and has become a national favorite of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party. Earlier this year, Warren and Trump engaged in a war of words on Twitter.

In meeting GOP volunteers, Schilling wore jeans, a flannel shirt, and a red Donald Trump “Make America Great Again” cap. Schilling called Warren “the quintessential tax-and-spend liberal” and said, “I think I can beat her.”


He said he differed with Warren on myriad issues, such as lifting the cap on charter schools, which he supports. He suggested Warren lacks accomplishments in the Senate.

A WBUR poll of 506 likely voters in September found Warren would start with a big lead in a hypothetical matchup with Schilling, 54 percent to 29 percent.

Schilling, whose social media accounts say he still lives in Medfield, wrote about the poll on his blog Sept. 14, saying, “29%? Ok I can work with that.”

“I got 29%, which is a lot more than I expected considering I’ve never stated a public position on legislation except to state my opinions as a Christian, Conservative, Constitutionalist, and American,” he wrote.

Warren’s office declined to comment.

Schilling, dismissing polls that suggest Clinton is ahead, was bullish Tuesday on Trump’s chances to win the White House. “I see 15 Trump signs for every Clinton sign I see,” Schilling told volunteers at a GOP office in Salem. The cheers that broke out from volunteers became a chant, “Trump, Trump, Trump!”

Schilling has promoted such prominent Republicans as Charlie Baker, Scott Brown, and John McCain.
Schilling has promoted such prominent Republicans as Charlie Baker, Scott Brown, and John McCain.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

R.I. interview

Schilling spoke Tuesday with WPRO-AM, his first interview about 38 Studios since settling a lawsuit over it and since a criminal investigation resulted in no charges.

Governor Gina Raimondo, a Democrat, has said Rhode Island residents were hurt by the bad deal and deserve an apology.

Schilling said it’s not that he won’t apologize, but he wants Raimondo to tell him what he should apologize for. He asked listeners: ‘‘What do you want me to apologize for?’’


The company moved from Massachusetts to Rhode Island in 2010 in exchange for a $75 million loan guarantee, then went bankrupt less than two years later.

Schilling said his company failed because it didn’t raise enough money, not because he did anything malicious or illegal, and that he has apologized to his former employees.

‘‘I couldn’t raise the final tranche of money and get the product to launch and that will never be anyone’s fault but mine,’’ he said.

But Schilling also faulted politicians for giving him a loan guarantee in the first place.

‘‘If I was the governor, I would have never even offered this deal,’’ Schilling said. ‘‘The government doesn’t belong in private business. But I'm on the other side of this. My job and responsibility is to my company and to my employees and I was doing everything I could do, within my legal means, to make that be a success.’’

Schilling took questions from callers in the wide-ranging, three-hour interview.

A judge recently approved a settlement with Schilling and three other 38 Studios officials over the loan deal. The state of Rhode Island sued Schilling and other key players involved.

Just one company remains as a defendant, First Southwest, which acted as the state’s financial adviser. Schilling said he expects to testify at the trial.

Raimondo said on Tuesday that she’s angry because Rhode Islanders were hurt by the 38 Studios deal. She said it wasn’t right that ‘‘tax dollars vanished on a terrible deal.’’


Material from the Associated Press and State House News Service was used in this report. Mark Arsenault can be reached at mark.arsenault@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @BostonGlobeMark.