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Senate Whips Work the Home-State Crowds

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D) is keeping busy with his own re-election bid, crisscrossing Illinois to meet with voters, community activists and other elected officials while also balancing his act as a lead surrogate for the Democratic presidential nominee.

The Illinois Democrat will participate in a radio debate with his GOP opponent, physician Steve Sauerberg, on Thursday night. He is also scheduled to meet with Democratic candidate Colleen Callahan, who is seeking to replace retiring Rep. Ray LaHood (R).

Next week, Durbin plans to travel outside of the state with Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) on the presidential campaign trail.

Since the Senate adjourned late last week, Durbin has met with community leaders and public officials in Springfield, Chicago and other parts of the state. Durbin will speak at an National Association for the Advancement of Colored People event in Springfield on Saturday and is slated to participate in a Columbus Day parade on Monday.

Meanwhile, Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) has been concentrating on Arizona voters. Kyl, who is next up for election in 2012, was meeting Thursday with constituents and speaking with local media groups in Tucson.

Kyl plans to be in Phoenix next week doing the same.

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