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3rd Republican enters race for 2nd District seat

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Former State Rep. Pam Myhra is throwing her hat into the ring for Minnesota's 2nd Congressional District seat.

Myrha, a Republican who lives in Burnsville, announced Wednesday morning she's running to replace U.S. Rep. John Kline, who's retiring from Congress when his current term ends in 2016.

Myhra served two terms in the state House representing the Burnsville/Savage area, and was Marty Seifert’s running mate in the 2014 Republican primary for governor, according to MPR News.

Myrha, who is a certified public accountant, is the third Republican to enter the race. Also pursuing the party's nomination are former state Sen. and former Red Wing Mayor John Howe and tea party activist David Gerson.

She told supporters during her campaign kickoff event Wednesday that she's running for Congress to make sure her children and grandchildren can "live the American dream and experience the tremendous opportunities I have enjoyed."

"My legislative work in Congress will focus on fiscal responsibility to strengthen our nation’s economy, strong national defense to protect our country and its people, and a government providing opportunity for success to all by reducing burdensome regulation and getting out of the way of people and their businesses," she said, according to her campaign website.

Myhra added she believes she is the most electable of the Republican candidates, noting that during the last presidential election year - 2012 - she won her race for the state House while other contenders did not, or were not on the ballot, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.

Myhra said she will abide by the Republican Party's endorsement process for the seat.

On the Democratic side, two candidates announced their campaigns earlier this year: Mary Lawrence, a Minneapolis doctor, and Angie Craig, a St. Jude’s Medical executive.

It's possible other candidates will still jump into the race; the Pioneer Press has a list of all of them.

Wide-open race

While Kline handily won re-election over the past seven terms, the 2nd District went for President Barack Obama in 2012.

The southern Minnesota district had been reliably Republican but is now considered more of a swing district, and Democrats believe they have a strong shot at winning the seat.

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