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Realtor Mulls GOP Primary Challenge To Dan Brady

Republican David Paul Blumenshine of Normal said Friday he's strongly considering a run against state Rep. Dan Brady, R-Bloomington, in next spring's Republican primary election.

Blumenshine, a real estate broker, previously served as campaign manager for McLean County State's Attorney Jason Chambers. He also unsuccessfully sought the congressional seat that was being vacated by U.S. Rep. Tim Johnson, R-Urbana, in 2012. Rep. Rodney Davis ultimately won that seat. Blumenshine also said he worked on Marc Tiritilli's unsuccessful run for Normal mayor earlier this year.

Brady currently represents the 105th House District in Illinois, which includes parts of Bloomington-Normal. It stretches northeast and includes Lexington, Towanda, Hudson, and other communities.

"Our state is broke, and broken," Blumenshine said. "Most of that comes from doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

Blumenshine said he believes in term limits for state legislators and has deep concerns about the future of the state. He plans to run as a Republican, with the state's unfunded pension liability a major issue for his campaign.

Blumenshine expects to make a decision by Oct. 1, though he says he's not running specifically to oppose Brady. Blumenshine said he's supported Brady during a previous campaign.

"At some point, we all term out," Blumenshine said. "And unfortunately, we have enough people in the process of legislating in Springfield that have been there long enough that we've gotten stagnant."

Brady said Friday that he intends to run for re-election but likely won't make a formal announcement until after Labor Day. Brady, who also works as a funeral director, said he prides himself on being "approachable, responsive, and highly visible" to his constituents.

"It's healthy to have elections and have choices," said Brady, who serves in the House Republican leadership as a deputy leader. "I respect the elective process and look forward to any challenge for me as state representative."

Brady has not faced a primary challenge since winning his seat in 2000. That year, he narrowly won a three-way primary by just 47 votes over Republicans Ed Brady and Joseph "Skip" Crawford. Dan Brady's last general election opponent was in 2006, when he trounced Green Party candidate Phil Huckelberry with 80 percent of the vote.

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Ryan Denham is the digital content director for WGLT.
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