Tuesday, October 4, 2011

John Brunner enters Senate race

ST. LOUIS, MO (ST. LOUIS PUBLIC RADIO) - The Republican race to challenge Senator Claire McCaskill in 2012 is officially a three-way contest.

John Brunner chairs the board of Vi-Jon, a St. Louis-based company that makes the hand sanitizer Germ-X.

He has a long track record of donating to Republican and conservative causes. But he’s never run for public office – which he says makes him the most qualified person to serve.

"Career politicians with political experience alone are just unable to restore the American dream. They have no because they have no real world experience to guide them," Brunner said.

A spokesman for Congressman Todd Akin welcomed Brunner into the race but said he remained confident Akin would win. The campaign of former state treasurer Sarah Steelman did not return a phone call for comment in time.

Brunner’s entry into the race affects Akin more, says University of Missouri St. Louis political science professor Dave Robertson.

"Brunner, as someone who has supported Akin in the past, who comes from the general area that Todd Akin comes from, really has a chance to split the vote that Akin would have gotten and so probably weakens Akin a little bit more," Robertson said.

Campaign finance records show Brunner and his wife donating five thousand dollars to Akin’s campaign as recently as March.

Rachel Lippmann, St. Louis Public Radio


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