Ex-Miss America Announces Illinois Congressional Run

Erika Harold plans to challenge first-term U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Alex Wong
    NEW YORK - AUGUST 31: Miss America 2003 Erika Harold speaks on night two of the Republican National Convention August 31, 2004 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

    A 33-year-old former Miss America says she plans to challenge first-term U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis in the 2014 Republican primary.

    Erika Harold announced her campaign Tuesday at Urbana High School. She grew up in the Illinois city and recently moved back there from Chicago.

    Harold said afterward that her priorities would be promoting conservative principles and encouraging economic growth. Harold also says she believes she can help expand the party's voting base and reach people who don't traditionally vote Republican. A message left for a Davis spokesman seeking comment was not immediately returned.

    The Republican Party chose Davis over Harold and others to replace Tim Johnson last year when the longtime congressman retired.

    Harold was Miss America is 2003. She is a Harvard law graduate and works for a Champaign firm.