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Tom Barrett announces bid for governor, begins campaigning

Tom Barrett says he'll file his nomination papers today in his Democratic bid for governor. The Milwaukee mayor announced his candidacy Sunday.

He then drove to Racine to be a surprise guest at a campaign fund-raiser for Senate Democrat John Lehman.

If you shake hands with Barrett, he'll do it with his left hand. The right one is still heavily bandaged after he was attacked outside the State Fair in mid-August. The last of 10 metal pins was removed from his right hand on Friday.

At his Racine stop, Barrett said jobs and the economy are his top priorities and he said Wisconsin needs more regional economic alliances like the seven-county Milwaukee Seven group in southeast Wisconsin.

He said he'll make a case of why Democratic ideas will succeed and said his party has to break through "ideological walls and partisan rhetoric."

Barrett is expected to be the Democratic nominee, while at least three Republican hopefuls square off in a primary next September: Scott Walker, Mark Neumann, and Mark Todd.