Northwest Missouri state Senator Brad Lager has moved quickly to take advantage of an opening in the lieutenant governor's race.
The Savannah Republican announced his candidacy for the state's No. 2 executive on Monday, just days after Republican House Speaker Steven Tilley announced he was dropping out of the lieutenant governor's race.
Tilley, who is going through a divorce, cited a desire to spend more time with his teenage daughters.
Although he is the first to officially jump in, other Republicans now also are considering the race. The office will be open because Republican Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder is expected to challenge Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon in next year's elections.
Lager has experience running for statewide office, as he narrowly lost the 2008 State Treasurer’s race to Democrat Clint Zweifel, and there had been speculation that he was considering a run for governor. Lager was first elected to the State Senate in 2006 and easily won re-election in 2010.
So far, the only other declared GOP candidate for Lt. Governor is Michael Carter, who ran for the same office as a Democrat in 2008.
Former GOP House Member Cynthia Davis is also running for Lt. Governor as a member of the Constitution Party.