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Associated Press - "Love Kicks Off Campaign for 2nd District Congressional Seat"

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Associated Press - "Love Kicks Off Campaign for 2nd District Congressional Seat"

State Rep. Jay Love has kicked off his campaign for the Republican nomination for the 2nd District Congressional seat, promising to work to fight illegal immigration and to finish the mission of U.S. troops in Iraq.

Love, R-Montgomery, kicked off his campaign Tuesday night with a fish fry for about 300 supporters at a Montgomery park.

Love, 39, who gave $300,000 of his own money to his campaign, has already started running television and radio ads in the district, which stretches from Dothan in the southeast corner of Alabama to the suburban cities of Prattville and Wetumpka north of Montgomery.

"It's a crowded field. I wanted to make sure my message gets heard first," Love said. "I'm committed to this race and I wanted the voters to know how committed I am."

Other announced candidates for the GOP nomination include state Rep. David Grimes, R-Montgomery; state Sen. Harri Anne Smith, R-Slocumb; Montgomery broadcasting executive David Woods; Dothan oral surgeon Craig Scmidtke; and Dothan businessman John Martin. Montgomery Mayor Bobby Bright and Cheryl Sabel, president of the Alabama chapter of the National Organization for Women, have announced they are running for the Democratic Party nomination.

Love is seeking to fill the seat held by U.S. Rep. Terry Everett, R-Rehobeth, who is not seeking re-election. Everett was first elected in 1992 to the 2nd District seat, which has been held by Republicans since 1964.

Love said the number one issue of his campaign is controlling illegal immigration.

"I recognize that we have to secure our borders. Our nation's national security starts with border security," Love said.

He said he is also concerned about the rising cost of gasoline and other energy sources.

"It affects every family's budget," Love said, adding that he wants to work to make the country energy independent.

On the war in Iraq, Love said, "We've got to complete the mission. I believe what we are doing in Iraq is right and noble. I certainly want to see the troops come home once the mission is complete."

Love said he also wants to work to help farmers in the district and to protect the district's military bases — Fort Rucker in southeast Alabama and Montgomery's Maxwell/Gunter Air Force Base. If elected, he said he would request to serve on the House Agriculture and Armed Services committees.

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