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  LaHood to run for GOP national committeeman
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Last Editedev  Apr 06, 2008 02:09am
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News DateFriday, April 4, 2008 08:00:00 AM UTC0:0
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LaHood to run for GOP national committeeman
April 4, 2008; 3 p.m.
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GateHouse News Service

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - u.S. Rep. Ray LaHood, R-Peoria, wants to be the next Republican National Committeeman from Illinois.

LaHood, who is completing his seventh two-year term in the House and isn’t seeking re-election to Congress, said Thursday he has sent a letter to members of the Republican State Central Committee seeking their support to become the national committeeman.

The Illinois GOP has three members on the national committee -- the state party chairman, one woman and one man. The man currently is Bob Kjellander of Springfield, whose term ends with the completion of this year’s Republican National Convention in St. Paul.

“Kjellander is not running again,” LaHood said, adding that he has spoken with state GOP Chairman Andy McKenna and others about the committeeman post.

“I think I’ve got the credentials as a Republican, having been elected seven times, and that I know the ways of the Republican Party in Illinois,” LaHood said.

“Frankly, it’s a way for me to stay active in party politics and it’s an opportunity for me to, I think, continue to make a contribution to the Republican Party,” LaHood said. “

Delegates to the GOP state convention in Decatur in June will elect the next committeeman.

LaHood said he thinks McKenna has done a “terrific job,” and he called fund-raising for the party under McKenna “extraordinary.”

He also thinks McKenna recruited good statewide candidates for 2006 elections, and LaHood wants to be part of “the team of leaders that puts together some of our best candidates” for the 2010 statewide elections.

That’s part of the way, he said, that “we rebuild the party in Illinois.”

LaHood isn’t aware of anyone else seeking the post, but thinks there could be competition by the time of the state Convention.
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