Top Democratic hopeful starts bid for GOP Rep. Brooks' seat

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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) A former Democratic state legislator is seeking the central Indiana congressional seat being given up by Republican Rep. Susan Brooks.

Christina Hale of Indianapolis was the Democratic lieutenant governor nominee in 2016 after four years in the Indiana House. She's been the favored candidate of some Democratic leaders as they look to compete next year for the congressional district long held by Republicans that stretches from the northern Indianapolis suburbs to rural areas around Marion.

Hale is now Kiwanis International's youth programs director. She said Thursday she'll focus her campaign on "giving a voice to middle class Hoosier families in Washington."

Brooks announced last month she wouldn't seek a fifth term. No prominent Republicans have yet announced campaigns.

Democrat Dee Thorton is also running after unsuccessfully challenging Brooks in 2018.

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