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South central Mo. Senator considers U.S. Senate run

By Marshall Griffin, KWMU

Jefferson City, MO – Another Missouri Republican is considering a run for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated next year by retiring Senator Kit Bond.

Chuck Purgason, 49, of Caulfield represents seven south central Missouri counties in the State Senate. He's announced that he's forming a committee to explore a U.S. Senate run next year.

"There's a silent majority of people out there that are really concerned about the direction we're going...I think they want someone just to tell them the truth about the financial state of this country, and show some leadership on how we get out of that," Purgason said.

If Purgason runs, he'll first have to challenge southwest Missouri Congressman Roy Blunt for the GOP nomination.

Terry Smith, a political science professor at Columbia College, says the last thing the Republicans need is a divisive primary.

"Senator Purgason, who is relatively unknown, to be in the race is a distraction at best and a drain at worst," Smith said.

Smith adds that a divisive Republican primary would clear the track for Secretary of State Robin Carnahan, who's seeking the Democratic nomination.

Former State Treasurer Sarah Steelman has also been mentioned as a potential Republican U.S. Senate candidate.

KWMU also contacted the Blunt campaign for this story, but so far no one has responded.