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Tester ready for Rehberg challenge


HELENA — Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Tester and longtime Republican stalwart U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg have been sparring for more than a year, but it appears they really have something to fight about.

Tester's campaign says they have been preparing a long time for a 2012 challenge by Rehberg. The populist farmer's spokesman calls Rehberg's candidacy "the worst kept secret in Montana."

Rehberg's campaign would not confirm his plans on Tuesday. Campaign spokesman Brian Barrett says Rehberg plans to make an announcement on Saturday.

A race between two favored party candidates promises to grip the state for the better part of the next two years.

The looming challenge became increasingly clear last year as Rehberg opposed the senator's effort to mandate more logging while expanding wilderness.


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