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Wed Dec 5, 2012, 04:48 AM

Kinder leads parade of GOP hopefuls interested in succeeding Emerson

Missouri Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder was the first of an expected crowd of Republicans to declare publicly their interest in replacing U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Cape Girardeau, who is retiring in February.

But others rapidly emerged as well, including soon-to-be former state Sens. Jason Crowell and Kevin Engler. Missouri Republican Party executive director Lloyd Smith, Emerson's former chief of staff, says he's also interested.

Kinder's statement reflected the sentiment of many who followed suit. “I am certainly giving careful thought and consideration to this opportunity to represent the 8th District in Congress,” said Kinder. “I have long been engaged in federal issues, from the beginning of my career in my hometown of Cape Girardeau heading the first two campaigns for Bill Emerson and working on his staff in Washington to leading the fight against ObamaCare. It would be an honor to serve in Congress.”

Kinder’s statement appeared, in part, to respond to comments on Twitter that seemed to take him out of the running. Some social-media talk centered on concern that if Kinder were successful, Gov. Jay Nixon – a Democrat – might appoint his successor. The state law is somewhat unclear.


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