Illinois state Sen. Susan Garrett (D) tells the Pioneer Press that she is being encouraged by national Democrats to enter the race against Rep. Mark KirkMark KirkGiffords, Scalise highlight party differences on guns Stale, misguided, divisive: minimum wage can't win elections Immigration critics find their champion in Trump MORE (R-Ill.).

"I'm giving it serious consideration, but it's been difficult for me because I love my job as a state senator," Garrett told the paper. "Yet, I understand the opportunity to provide representation to my constituents at the federal level."

Garrett said she could make her decision within a month. She acknowledged that the opportunity would be much more attractive if Kirk were to run for statewide office, such as for President Obama