Springfield from 145: Giannoulias forms Senate exploratory committee

By Gus Bode

State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias turned speculation into fact Monday as he revealed the formation of a committee charged to investigate whether the 32-year-old Democrat should try to be Illinois’ next U.S. Senator.

Giannoulias, who was elected treasurer in 2006, was thought to be among state Democrats considering a run for governor in 2010.

A statement posted on his campaign Web site (http://www.alexiforillinois.com) revealed the formation of a explatory committee, which would report whether conditions are right for the Chicago-native to throw his hat into the Senate ring.

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Giannoulias has promoted himself as Barack Obama’s ‘basketball buddy,’ and recently accompanied Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin on a trip to Greece. He is one of the Illinois politicians’ calling for Sen. Roland Burris’ resignation after the 72-year-old senator admitted he lied to a committee reviewing the impeachment of Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

Burris, who has avoided reporters since he admitted to attempting to raise campaign funds for Blagojevich, formed a re-election campaign 10 days before he was appointed to Congress.

Should Burris choose to not resign and run for re-election, he and Giannoulias would compete against each other in the 2010 Democratic Primary. The Democrats have held the seat since 2004.

Daily Egyptian reporter Barton Lorimor can be reached at 536-3311 ext. 263 or [email protected]

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