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Kilroy, Stivers Begin Campaign Week At Columbus Chamber.

Its politics for breakfast at the Columbus Chamber of Commerce. Major party candidates for the 15th congressional district will face off for the second time in four days. WOSU's Tom Borgerding reports.

First term democrat Mary Jo Kilroy is trying to fend off a challenge from Republican Steve Stivers. Kilroy beat Stivers by 23-hundred votes in 2008 .a year in which President Obama changed the political calculus in dozens of congressional races ..this year's vote could hinge on whether the President's appearance last night on the Ohio State oval will persuade enough 15th district democrats to go to the polls and cast votes for Kilroy.

"It was a really unusual year of course with the tea party movement. I think that is a big difference compared to 2008. And we have two other candidates in my race as well as republican, constitution party and libertarian party."

Republican Stivers says he's changed his campaign message this year to reflect his status as a challenger.

"Well its a clearly a different race than it was two years ago and I think that difference can be summed up in two words and that's her record, congresswoman Kilroy's record on jobs and spending and that's what this race is really about."

With this morning's appearance at the Columbus Chamber, the candidates enter the final two week campaign stretch. Both candidates say they still have sufficient funds for more broadcast and internet ads and direct mail appeals for votes.

"You know I've raised so much money for this campaign and one of the things we've got to address is the millions, and millions of dollars people spend on these elections and the special interest money that comes in." Says Kilroy.

"We feel pretty good. We just announced that we raised $758,000 in the third quarter and we feel good that we're going to have the resources we need to finish the campaign strong." Says Stivers.

Both candidates have served in public offices. Stivers as a state senator from 2003 to 2008. Kilroy served on the Franklin County Commission and the Columbus School Board before voters sent her to capitol hill in 2008.

Tom Borgerding WOSU News