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Starting Lineup: Start Your Engines

Hill Passes On Gubernatorial Bid, For Now: Outgoing Rep. Baron Hill (D) won't run for Indiana governor in 2012, denying Democrats a potential top tier contender. Hill told The Republican newspaper that he is 99 percent sure he won't run for office in 2012 but that -- according to the paper -- the governorship "remains the one job that has great appeal to him." Democrats are searching for a gubernatorial candidate in Indiana. Outgoing Sen. and former Gov. Evan Bayh (D) announced last week that he wouldn't run for the post -- causing the Cook Political Report to move the 2012 race from "toss-up" to "likely Republican." The Democrat who has taken the most steps toward running is Evansville Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel, according to Democratic sources in the state. After him, Democrats will look to outgoing Rep. and 2010 Senate contender Brad Ellsworth, Rep. Joe Donnelly and former state House Speaker John Gregg. http://bit.ly/g4NmAw, http://bit.ly/hLTonf Nixon Preps For 2012: Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon confirmed to the AP Thursday that he will run for re-election in 2012. And he did so with remarkable brevity: "Asked Thursday whether he will seek re-election, Nixon told the Associated Press: 'Yea.'" The Missouri gubernatorial race starts the 2012 cycle firmly in the "toss-up" column of the Cook Political Report. Nixon has been laying the ground work for what will undoubtedly be a tough race -- raising $1 million in five weeks following the 2010 midterms. LG Peter Kinder (R) is his likely general election foe. Nixon benefited from a bloody Republican primary in 2008 when former Treasurer Sarah Steelman (R), who is now running for the Senate, landed several blows on eventual Republican nominee Kenny Hulshof. http://bit.ly/e8MkQx, http://bit.ly/dTjkcW

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