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eBay's Whitman lands 'lead' role in McCain campaign

Republican presidential candidate taps retiring CEO Meg Whitman to be new co-chair of his campaign. She'll travel on his behalf and help with fund-raising.

When Meg Whitman steps down from her post as eBay chief executive at the end of the month, another prominent position awaits her: co-chair of John McCain's presidential campaign.

Meg Whitman eBay

The presumed Republican nominee said Friday that he has asked Whitman to play a "lead role" in the campaign, helping to lead fund-raising, traveling the country on McCain's behalf, and assisting with policy development.

Whitman said in a statement that she was "honored" to be selected.

The Arizona senator's "unshakable commitment to lower taxes, strong trade, and innovation sets the right course for America's economy and future prosperity," she said. "I'm enormously excited to be a part of his team and believe in his vision for our country."

Whitman joined eBay in March 1998, witnessing its rise from a start-up to an international cult sensation, along with its more recent slowed growth due to competition from and others.

Involvement with the McCain campaign isn't her first foray into the 2008 presidential race. When former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was still a contender, she helped to manage his fund-raising activities.

Whitman has also been a generous Republican Party donor for years, cutting checks to a variety of congressional campaigns and committees. According to campaign finance records compiled by the organization, she gave $25,000 last November to the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

The California-based executive apparently hasn't ruled out political ambitions of her own, either. She's reportedly flirting with the possibility of running for governor of her home state in 2010.