Speaker Fitzgerald '99% sure' to run for U.S. Senate

CREATED Aug. 26, 2011

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MILWAUKEE - Wisconsin State Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald said Friday that he is "99% sure" that he will run for the U.S. Senate in 2012, though he stopped short of announcing a run.

"I'm very interested," he told Newsradio 620 WTMJ's Charlie Sykes.  "I'm talking to people to put that structure in place [for a run].  That's what I've been doing over the last couple of weeks."

"You know, this is very fluid to see who gets into the race and who doesn't get into the race, so I've been putting that together so that if I do decide to get into the race I can hit the ground running."

"On a scale of one to 100, with 100 being 'definitely running,' where would you say you are?" Sykes asked.

"I'm at a 99," responded Fitzgerald.

Democratic Senator Herb Kohl announced earlier this year that he would not run for another term next year, touching off a flurry of speculation about who would run for the vacant seat.

Former Republican Governor Tommy Thompson has said that he is "strongly considering a run," and Democratic U.S. Representatives Tammy Baldwin and Ron Kind are also believed to be interested.