EAST MOLINE, Ill. (AP) - A one-term Illinois congressman is trying to win back his former congressional seat.
Republican Bobby Schilling kicked off his campaign for the 17th Congressional District Monday, saying his campaign will focus on "middle class families and their values" along with economic issues.
"The middle class is falling further behind," Schilling said in a statement. "To combat unemployment, stagnant wages and rising prices, the middle class is going to need a lot more than just lip service and rhetoric."
The Colona businessman first won the seat in 2010 but lost the post in November to Democrat Cheri Bustos in one of the mostly closely watched races in Illinois.
Democrats had identified it as an opportunity to pick up a seat in their fight to regain control of the House and Republicans poured in big money to defend it.
Schilling was one of three freshman Republicans who were ousted last year along with seven-term U.S. Rep. Judy Biggert, who was defeated by Democratic challenger Bill Foster.
Bustos, a former city council member, received an early endorsement from U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin.
"Congresswoman Bustos is focused like a laser on job creation, protecting Medicare and Social Security, and serving the people of Illinois' 17th Congressional District, not an election that is over a year away," Colin Milligan, her communications director, said in a statement Monday.
The 17th Congressional District sprawls from the Iowa state line to include parts of western and central Illinois.
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