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Brian Herr, a Republican businessman and selectman in the town of Hopkinton, announced Wednesday he would challenge Democratic U.S. Sen. Edward Markey in the November election.
Herr, 51, said in a statement that he believes a new approach is needed to solving problems in Washington.
"Our elected officials simply react; they respond; they panic," said Herr. "Then they have hissy fits with each other. And what does that get us? We find ourselves saddled with debt-ceiling fights, continuing resolutions and government shutdowns."
After serving 36 years in the U.S. House, Markey won a special election in June 2013 to fill the remainder of John Kerry's term in the Senate after Kerry was confirmed as U.S. secretary of state. Markey is seeking a full six-year term that would begin in January.
Herr ran for a House seat in 2010, falling short in the GOP primary. He's the first Republican to declare for Markey's seat. Gabriel Gomez, the Republican nominee in last year's special election, had considered another run against Markey but announced this month that he would not seek elective office in 2014.
If elected, Herr said he would press for term limits for newly elected federal officeholders, an amendment to the U.S. Constitution requiring a balanced budget and "meaningful, respectful immigration reform."
Herr, a father of five, is in his second term on the Hopkinton board of selectmen and works in the commercial construction business, according to his campaign biography. He has also served on the town's planning board and the Metro West Regional Transit Authority.
He was also among the leaders of a regional coalition that opposed development of a resort casino in the neighboring town of Milford. The proposal was defeated by Milford voters in November.
For the past 24 years, Herr has run in the Boston Marathon, which begins in the town of Hopkinton, to raise money for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. He said he was less than a mile from the end of the race last year when two bombs exploded at the finish line, killing three people and wounding more than 260 others.