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Daughter of former Congressman Baldus runs for 3rd District seat

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A former CIA officer and daughter of a former area Congressman is joining the Democratic primary for the 3rd District House race.

Deb McGrath, from Menomonie, announced her candidacy on Tuesday. McGrath’s father, Al Baldus, was the last Democrat elected to the 3rd District seat before Ron Kind went to Congress in 1996.

Baldus served three terms under Presidents Ford and Carter.

McGrath is a retired national security officer with the CIA, the Army, and the State Department, who was assigned to the Soviet Union and Korea.

Kind is retiring after 13 terms in Congress. Three other Democrats are already in the House race, along with Derrick Van Orden, the Republican nominee in 2020.

Other Democrats already in the race are state Sen. Brad Pfaff, of Onalaska, Eau Claire business owner Rebecca Cooke and U.S. Navy veteran Brett Knudsen.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.