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Editorial: A possible challenge to King

U.S. Rep. Steve King of Iowa has served in the U.S. House of Representatives for five terms. He may face an intriguing challenge for a sixth.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that Christie Vilsack, the wife of U.S. Agriculture Secretary and former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack, is planning a run against King. The approval of new congressional districts means that King, who now represents the 5th District, would be seeking a sixth Washington term in a reconfigured 4th District; Vilsack said Wednesday she is relocating to the new district in consideration of a U.S House candidacy.

Vilsack obviously brings plenty of name recognition, even though she has never sought political office. She will still need to win the Democratic nomination, and then she would face the task of prevailing over King in a solid Republican district.

Still, Democrats have got to be pleased at the prospect of Vilsack's intent to run, as they no doubt would savor a defeat of King. While King has certain proven to be popular enough to win comfortable re-elections, he has proven to be a frequent opposing-party target as a result of either controversial or factually questionable statements. He has also become a favorite within the Tea Party movement; the AP noted Wednesday that "he is often allied with Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann as she explores a run for the (presidential) nomination."

Can Vilsack win? It's too early to tell, but Democrats should be happy that they could well have a legitimate chance.