Here we go. Sarah's running in 2012. No, not that Sarah -- we're talking about former Missouri Treasurer Sarah Steelman, a Republican who announced Wednesday she's in the race to unseat Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) two years from now.
Steelman, a bit of a maverick herself, irked GOP leaders in 2008 when she opposed former Rep. Kenny Hulshof in a hard-fought Republican gubernatorial primary, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
reported. Hulshof won, but his resources were depleted and he lost the general election
to the Democrat Jay Nixon, the current governor.
Steelman, who also served in the Missouri Legislature as a state senator, said Wednesday she wanted to do her part "fighting for America's future." If elected, Steelman said she'd work to reverse mandates in the health law -- she called it "Obamacare" -- and would stop "Washington elites from making America more like a European country."
Other Republicans are likely to join the fray to oppose McCaskill, a moderate who is expected to seek a second term. But the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee was on the Steelman case Wednesday, calling her the "ultimate political insider" because she had run for -- or considered running for -- several elective offices.
"Perennial candidate Sarah Steelman launching a campaign for public office is about as new as the sun rising in the East," the campaign committee said. The statement may have been a preemptive attempt to head off any GOP effort to depict McCaskill as one of those "Washington elites" that Steelman referenced.
In a survey taken just before Steelman's announcement, Public Policy Polling
found McCaskill leading the Republican in a hypothetical match up by one point -- a virtual dead heat. Two other possible Republican candidates -- Peter Kinder and former Sen. Jim Talent who lost to McCaskill in 2006 -- led the incumbent by two points in hypothetical contests. The poll of 515 prospective voters had a plus or minus error margin of 4.3 percentage points.