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TV Reporter Switching Channels to Senate Bid

Former investigative TV journalist Dale Cardwell (D) launched a campaign to unseat Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R) on Monday, becoming the second Democrat to enter the Georgia Senate race.

DeKalb County CEO Vernon Jones (D) also has been raising money for a Senate campaign.

Until last week, Cardwell had been an investigative reporter for Atlanta’s WSB-TV for 11 years, during which time he won six Emmy Awards.

In launching his campaign, Cardwell railed against the special interests that he said have corrupted Washington, D.C. He said he will not take money from political action committees or registered Washington lobbyists during the campaign.

“This may be our last chance to elect an outsider who will stay an outsider, a Senator who will tell the truth and fight like hell to make a difference,” Cardwell said in a statement. “I’m no professional politician, and I know I’m in for a tough fight, but you know, that’s what I’ve been doing on behalf of honest citizens like all of you for the past 25 years.”

Democrats face a tough uphill climb in trying to unseat Chambliss, who is seeking a second term next year. Long dominated by Southern Democrats, the state has become fertile territory for the GOP since the beginning of this decade and Republicans now rule the state’s government.

Meanwhile, Rep. Sanford Bishop (D) is seeking to tamp down speculation that he might be interested in a Senate run, even though Rep. Jim Marshall is the Georgia House Democrat most often mentioned as a possible Chambliss challenger.

“It has come to my attention that rumors are circulating that I am considering a run for the U.S. Senate in 2008 against Saxby Chambliss,” Bishop said in a statement issued last week. “This suggestion is absolutely false.”

— Lauren W. Whittington

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