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Eckersley going full speed with congressional bid

The Associated Press is reporting that Scott Eckersley is officially running for Congress as a Democrat.

From the article:

The state paid Eckersley and his attorneys $500,000 last year to settle a lawsuit claiming he was wrongly fired and defamed in September 2007 after raising questions about e-mail deletions in governor’s office. Matt Blunt contends Eckersley was fired for legitimate reasons. The settlement included no admission of wrongdoing by any parties.

Eckersley filed to run for Missouri’s 7th Congressional District on March 30 – the deadline for candidates to enter the Aug. 3 primaries. But he said at the time that he merely was keeping open the option of running and had not raised any money.

Eckersley was holding a formal campaign kickoff Monday in Springfield. He said he hoped his financial contribution would demonstrate his seriousness and attract other donations. The $100,000 amounts to more than one-third of the money Eckersley received from the settlement, after paying his attorneys.

Although Eckersley’s much-publicized lawsuit increased his name recognition, he is running in a district that historically has elected Republicans. Roy Blunt, who has held the seat for 14 years, is not seeking re-election because he is instead running for U.S. Senate.

“Everyone has tried to dissuade me, telling me that voters are party-line voters down here,” Eckersley said Monday in a telephone interview.

“I just think we’ve got a message that sticks,” Eckersley added. “The tone and the theme of these elections really has been tailor made for me. While all of these guys are talking about how they are going to be able to stand up to the establishment, I’ve done it.”

Eckersley, an attorney who was at the center of a controversy in Gov. Matt Blunt’s office involving records retention, will have to defeat Branson attorney Tim Davis in the Democratic primary. Eight Republicans and a Libertarian are also running for the seat.

Check back later for more about this development