TMZ spoke with Congressman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) who tells us he thinks Prejean could be a serious contender in the political arena: "[Carrie] has the ability to draw crowds and if she has a strong message to go with that, who knows what she can do? She has star power which can open doors.
"We've all made mistakes when we were 17. [The sex tape] is going to be an impediment, but people are excited about her convictions and her beliefs."
For the record -- Carrie was 20 when she filmed her world famous solo mission.