Former Sen. Jim Talent (R-MO) is gearing up for a possible rematch with Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, who defeated him back in 2006, Real Clear Politics reports.
At least four well-known Republicans in Missouri are exploring the race against McCaskill, but GOP operatives say Talent is farthest along and has been positioning for another run ever since he stood down in early 2009 when Rep. Roy Blunt decided to pursue the seat GOP Sen. Christopher (Kit) Bond is vacating in January.
In an interview on Thursday, Talent said of the Senate race, “I am looking very carefully and very seriously at it.”
The state GOP’s executive director said that other possible Republican candidates are: Former state Treasurer Sarah Steelman, who lost the 2008 gubernatorial primary; Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder, who is also eyeing the 2012 gubernatorial race against incumbent Democrat Jay Nixon; and Ann Wagner, who was the campaign manager for Sen.-elect Roy Blunt.
Talent was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1992, serving for four terms. He lost the 2000 gubernatorial race by 49%-48%, but was then elected to the Senate in the 2002 special election, defeating incumbent Democrat Jean Carnahan (the widow of Mel Carnahan, who had posthumously won the 2000 Senate race, which then triggered Jean’s appointment to the office). Talent then lost to McCaskill in the Democratic wave year of 2006, by a margin of 50%-47%.