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Illinois: No Lack of Candidates Interested in Kirk’s Seat

Businesswoman Renee Thaler (R) announced she is opening up an exploratory campaign for Rep. Mark Kirk’s (R) seat. Kirk is stepping aside to run for Senate in 2010.

Thaler, an official in former Gov. Jim Edgar’s (R) administration, said in a release that she currently serves on Kirk’s campaign finance committee.

“As I consider this race, I promise to represent the same tradition of moderate, thoughtful and independent leadership that has served the 10th district so well,— Thaler said.

Thaler is not the only GOP candidate looking at the open-seat race. Businessman Dick Green has already hired a consultant, and state Rep. Beth Coulson, attorney Jim Koch and attorney Bill Cadigan are all considering the race.

Democrats targeted Kirk’s district last cycle without success. Now that the Congressman is running for Senate, the district is a top pickup opportunity for Democrats. Two prominent local Democrats — including the party’s 2006 and 2008 nominee — have already announced their campaigns.

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