Ore. GOP nominates Cornilles for vacant Wu seat

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- Oregon Republicans have nominated business consultant Rob Cornilles in a special election to replace former Rep. David Wu.

Cornilles (cor-NIHL'-us) was the heavily favored front-runner. He defeated several lesser-known candidates to win the GOP nomination on Tuesday.

Cornilles is expected to face Democratic frontrunner Suzanne Bonamici in the Jan. 31 special election. The Portland-area district is the nation's only vacant congressional district.

Cornilles is a sports-business consultant from the Portland suburb Tualatin. In a district that heavily favors Democrats, Cornilles has downplayed his Republican affiliation, positioning himself as a centrist candidate with an independent streak. Democrats have tried vigorously to tear apart that image and portray him as an extremist and tea party candidate.

Wu resigned in August amid allegations he made an unwanted sexual advance on an 18-year-old woman.