Though his name was out there a few months ago, Republican Chris Fields made it official on Tuesday—he's running against incumbent Keith Ellison in Minnesota's 5th Congressional District in 2012.
Fields joins as a Republican challenger to Ellison, a Democrat. It will be an uphill battle for both challengers in the generally liberal district—Ellison won with 68 percent of the vote in 2010, and with 71 percent of the vote in 2008.
Fields, who is a former Marine from New York City, said in a statement that he doesn't think Ellison has been an effective leader during his three terms in Congress. Fields added that his inner-city upbrining, as well as his time in the Marines, taught him about perseverance and leadership.
"These lessons have prepared me to run for Congress," Fields said. "They have also prepared me to serve all the people of the 5th Congressional District and the United States faithfully with an unwavering commitment to their wellbeing."
Fields, who will be seeking the GOP nomination, told MPR in September that the economy is his key issue.
"Folks are hurting out there," he said. "Folks are hurting across the whole district, and folks are hurting particularly in North Minneapolis, and since Congressman (Ellison) has been in office, folks haven't gotten a lot of relief economically."