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Montana News

Feb 3, 2011 6:00 PM by Judy Slate

Bozeman's Steve Daines comments on switching from Senate to House race

Bozeman Republican Steve Daines announced Thursday that he's switching races.

Originally, he planned to run for the U.S. Senate. Now Daines says he's planning to run for the state's lone U.S. House seat, currently held by Denny Rehberg.

In the meantime, Rehberg is expected to announce his candidacy for the Senate, the seat Daines was originally was running for.

Daines said during an interview today that the decision to switch races was his. He adds that he hopes his decision unifies the Republican Party.

"A divisive primary at the moment would be the worst thing we could do in Montana. It would not serve the people or our nation very well. And Denny and I are on the same page," Daines said.

Rehberg is expected to make his announcement this weekend. Many people, including Daines, say Rehberg's candidacy for the Senate seat is the worst kept secret in Montana.

Daines is the second person to throw their hat to the ring for the Congressional seat. On Wednesday, Montana State University professor and Bozeman Rep. Franke Wilmer, a Democrat, announced her intent to run.

"I'm a Bobcat. Franke Wilmer is a Bobcat. I know we see the world differently, but it's good to see another Bobcat, another person from Bozeman in the race," Daines said.

Daines said he raised more than $225,000 in six weeks while running for the senate. He says he hopes to continue raising money and generating support now that he's running for Congress.

Watch full interviews with Steve Daines by Judy Slate and Donna Kelley in the video gallery above.

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