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updated: 1/23/2012 7:53 PM

Sen. Mark Kirk's political timeline

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1977: Graduates from New Trier High School

1981: Graduates from Cornell University

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1982: Attends graduate school at London School of Economics, works for re-election of English Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher

1984-89: Works on the staff of 10th District Congressman John Porter

1989: Enters Naval Reserve

1992: Earns J.D. from Georgetown University

1991-93: Special assistant to the assistant secretary of state in the U.S. State Department.

1995: Counsel to the House International Relations Committee

November 2000: Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from the 10th District

July 2009: Announces campaign for U.S. Senate

Nov. 3, 2010: Beats Democrat Alexi Giannoulias in U.S. Senate race by 2 percentage points

Nov. 29, 2010: Sworn in as U.S. senator

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