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Article updated: 9/17/2013 5:58 PM

Cross kicks off campaign for treasurer

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Illinois House Republican Leader Tom Cross of Oswego will fly around the state starting today to start his campaign for state treasurer.

The tour could mark the formal end to the months-long drama surrounding his decision to run, which started with him declining to run for attorney general and continued when he decided he'd leave the Illinois House's top GOP post to shoot for the treasurer's job.

The flyaround starts in Chicago this morning and ends in Plainfield Thursday, hitting most downstate media markets in between.

Cross faces a primary election challenge from DuPage County Auditor Bob Grogan, who has spent the past few months traveling the state himself. Chicago Republican Michael Scott Carter is also in the race, potentially setting up the most hotly contested statewide Republican primary besides the governor's race.

Former DuPage County Board Chairman Bob Schillerstrom left the race to back Cross. And state Sen. Mike Frerichs, a Champaign Democrat, is eyeing the seat on the other side.

The seat has attracted a lot of interest because there's no incumbent in the race. Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford is running for governor.

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