A year and a half out, Sen. Mark Kirk already going up with TV ads

SHARE A year and a half out, Sen. Mark Kirk already going up with TV ads

U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., speaks during an interview in his office in June 2014. | M. Spencer Green/AP

Still nearly 18 months from election, U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk is already preparing to launch TV ads in what’s expected to be a vicious battle to keep his seat.

U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., has announced her bid to battle Kirk for the junior senator’s post in an election to be held in November of 2016.

At least part of the buy is on cable TV, according to Comcast records.

The buy isn’t big and covers Chicago, Springfield and Champaign, according to one source with knowledge of it.

Going up on TV so early is widely seen as a way for the Republican incumbent to stave off concerns that he can’t handle a re-election campaign following his stroke. His team also fears a primary challenge.

Team Kirk said more details would come after the launch. The ads are to begin airing on Thursday.

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