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Republican venture capitalist Bruce Rauner is moving closer to running for Illinois governor in 2014.

In a press release Tuesday, Rauner says he's forming an exploratory committee to consider a bid. He's also launching a 60-day statewide tour to hear from Illinois citizens and gauge their interest in his candidacy.

An Illinois native, Rauner says it's "heartbreaking" to see the mess the state is in. He says he's considering running for governor because Illinois needs change.

Rauner was 1 of the early partners in the investment company Golder, Thoma, Cressey, later known as GTCR. He's also been active in the charter school movement.

He's never run for public office. But he has the financial means and connections to fund a serious campaign.

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