A state senator from Leavenworth is running for Congress.

A state senator from Leavenworth is running for Congress.

Steve Fitzgerald has confirmed that he is making a 2018 run for the U.S. House of Representatives in Kansas' 2nd Congressional District.

Fitzgerald, a Republican, filed a statement of candidacy form with the Federal Election Commission on Saturday.

He is seeking the seat currently held by U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins. Jenkins, a Republican, has announced that she will not be seeking re-election in 2018.

"We need a good conservative Republican to hold this seat," Fitzgerald said.

Fitzgerald said he is concerned his party could lose the seat without a strong Republican candidate. He argued this would not be good for national defense or the economy.

"I think it would be harmful to the president's agenda," he said.

All of Leavenworth County is included in the 2nd Congressional District.

Fitzgerald considered challenging Jenkins in a Republican primary for Congress in 2014, but he decided not to run.

Fitzgerald said that, at the time, he was concerned about problems Jenkins was having with then House Speaker John Boehner.

"She was able to resolve those problems," he said.

Fitzgerald was elected to a second term to the Kansas Senate in November. He represents the state Senate's 5th District, which includes the cities of Leavenworth and Lansing and a portion of Wyandotte County.

Fitzgerald, a strong abortion opponent, recently made news when he compared Planned Parenthood to a Nazi concentration camp. He made the comparison while expressing dismay that someone had made a donation to Planned Parenthood Great Plains in his name.

Fitzgerald said he wanted to make his intention of running for Congress known as soon as possible, but he does not plan to do much campaigning at the moment.

"It's a little early to go door-to-door," he said.

Fitzgerald said he will need to do some serious fundraising.

"The intent is to start raising money and see where we go," he said.

Fitzgerald also noted that the Kansas Senate is still in session, which is keeping him busy.

Fitzgerald is the second person from Leavenworth County to declare himself a candidate for the 2018 congressional race.

Vernon Fields also is seeking the Republican nomination for the congressional seat. Fields is a member of the Basehor City Council.

Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR