Election 2012
4:18 pm
Mon May 9, 2011

Martin drops race for Senate, enters race for Congress instead

As we told you this morning in our news round-up, Republican attorney Ed Martin of St. Louis has dropped his campaign for U.S. Senate to enter a race for Congress instead.

In early polling, Martin trailed other likely GOP Senate contenders including Congressman Todd Akin and former-treasurer Sarah Steelman.

Martin says running in the newly-redrawn 2nd Congressional District will help him tap into his St. Louis name recognition.

"For the last couple months we've been across the state making an argument about the U.S. Senate because I think Claire McCaskill is ill-suited to represent Missouri," Martin said. "But it turns out the Second Congressional District is right here and has a lot of the neighbors that we've already been working with and it seems like a really good fit."

Martin lost a bid for Congress six months ago to Democrat Russ Carnahan in the Third District, but Carnahan will be out of a job after his current term due to redistricting, which will eliminate the 3rd District in 2013.

Carnahan has not indicated whether he'll run again in the new Second District, which includes many more suburban and rural voters.

For his part, Martin doesn't see the fact that he doesn't live in the Second District and will likely face a crowded primary, as reasons not to run.

"I'm a big supporter of primaries.  I think primaries are great for parties.  I'm a big supporter of term limits.  These are the kinds of things that challenge the entrenched interests who want to say who's next in line or who gets to be in power," Martin said.

Unlike his last race, Martin is expected to face a strong challenge from his own party, including former GOP State Party Chairwoman Ann Wagner.