IL-14: Hastert is out - UPDATED (w/ Protesters)

Dennis Hastert announced this morning on a local radio show that he will not seek re-election:

The Beacon News says:

Ending months of speculation, former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert announced Friday that he will not run for a 12th term. He made the announcement on the Don Wade & Roma show on WLS 890 AM hours before an expected speech in his district.

more below the fold

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IL-14 Update: Who's in, who's out, with local straw poll results

While IL-14 Republicans are still awaiting word from Hastert as to whether he will be running again, the Dem field of candidates seems to have solidified.  Dem State Rep Linda Chapa LaVia recently announced she will not be running for the seat, leaving the field to 2006 nominee John Laesch, Geneva blue dog Bill Foster, and St. Charles attorney Jotham Stein.

As the Trib story notes, the three Republicans who have formed exploratory committees are hanging back, waiting for an announcement from Hastert which is expected some time this month.

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IL-14: Anti-breastfeeder runs for Hastert's seat

As the Laesch for Congress campaign readies for our visit to YearlyKos, we are keeping an eye on media reports about Hastert's plans to make an announcement in August, and the not-quite-announcements of several Republican candidates that are hanging in the balance.  Most recently we have heard from CQ Quarterly

that there is a

widespread belief that Hastert is much more likely to retire than to seek an 12th House term in 2008

On the other hand, local press quotes Hastert at a mid-July event:

"As far as I'm concerned right now, I'm running," Hastert said at the more than 500-person event at the Sandwich Fairgrounds. He said he plans to make a formal announcement next month on whether he will enter the 2008 race.

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