He's done it.
U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk has officially announced he will run for the U.S. Senate.
Surrounded by GOP state leaders, including former Gov. Jim Edgar, State Sen. Minority Leader Christine Radogno and House Minority Leader Tom Cross, Kirk made it official Monday morning.
"This is a very special day for me," Kirk said. When protesters tried to disrupt his announcement, he added, "You can tell this will be a spirited campaign."
Protesters for health care and immigration reform showed up at the event, which was held at his boyhood home in Kenilworth.
Despite the protests, Kirk is presenting himself as the hope of Illinois Republicans.
"Mark Kirk can win in November," Edgar said.
Kirk assums that Illinois Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias will be his opponent, and Kirk says he's ready.
"This will be a national race," he said.
Perhaps the Democrats heard him. Hours after Kirk made his announcement, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee released a campaign ad that shows Kirk as a Transformer robot, playing himself up as a moderate but then voting against Obama's economic recovery plan.