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Yankton attorney making run for US Senate

Jason Ravnsborg

YANKTON (AP) — A Yankton attorney and soldier has announced a run for the U.S. Senate in South Dakota, though one expert says Jason Ravnsborg's bid is a long shot.

Ravnsborg, 37, says he will seek the Republican nomination for the Senate seat being vacated by Democrat Tim Johnson, who is not seeking re-election.

"I had people from around the state who started to call me," he told the Yankton Daily Press & Dakotan. "They said, 'I think you would be a good candidate and do a lot of good.'"

Ravnsborg is a major in the U.S. Army Reserves and has been deployed three times — to Germany in 2003, Iraq in 2004 and Afghanistan in 2009. He helped run a NATO military base in Afghanistan and said his military service has given him a good foreign affairs background.

"You had to build consensus, not only with (Americans), but you had to learn and work across cultural lines with these other (NATO) nations," Ravnsborg told the Argus Leader.

Ravnsborg wants to cut the federal budget deficit and oppose President Barack Obama's health care law.

Others seeking the GOP nomination are former Gov. Mike Rounds, state Sen. Larry Rhoden of Union Center, state Rep. Stace Nelson of Fulton and Sioux Falls physician Annette Bosworth.

Ravnsborg is a long shot to win the nomination, Northern State University political science professor Jon Schaff told the Argus Leader.

"You've got a fellow here who has never raised money, who has never asked anyone for a vote, who has never put together a campaign organization, and who is virtually unknown in the state," he said. "It's hard to see him making a big impact on the race."