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A state lawmaker from Bismarck says he will seek the GOP nomination for governor in 2016, bringing the number of Republicans who have publicly expressed interest in the race to six.

District 7 Rep. Rick Becker was elected to the House of Representatives in 2012 and re-elected in 2014 to a four-year term that ends in 2018.

The plastic surgeon and father of four was traveling Wednesday but said via text message that he is “for sure” seeking the GOP nod. He plans to formally announce his candidacy Oct. 19.

Asked if he would run as an independent if he doesn’t receive the GOP nomination, the staunchly conservative Becker replied, “Two chances: slim and none.”

Other Republicans who have publicly said they are considering a run for governor are Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, state Treasurer Kelly Schmidt, state Sen. Tom Campbell of Grafton and Fargo entrepreneur Doug Burgum, who hasn’t ruled out a run as an independent.

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