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Tennant to seek Rockefeller's US Senate seat

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Natalie Tennant Natalie Tennant
Shelley Moore Capito Shelley Moore Capito
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) - West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie Tennant is running for Democrat Jay Rockefeller's seat in the U.S. Senate.

Tennant confirmed her plans to The Associated Press Monday, a day ahead of planned announcements in Beckley, Charleston and Morgantown.

Her candidacy sets up the possibility of a high-profile battle with popular seven-term Republican U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito. Capito announced her intentions to run before Rockefeller announced he wouldn't seek a sixth term.

If each candidate wins her respective primary, West Virginia voters could elect a woman senator for the first time.

Tennant's announcement was anticipated. Last week the National Republican Senatorial Committee issued a statement calling her a "cookie-cutter liberal."

In an email to supporters Monday night, state Democratic Party Chair Larry Puccio called Tennant "the people's candidate."

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)