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OTRC: Ashley Judd on possible Senate run: 'Taking a close look at it'

Ashley Judd, known for films such as "Heat" and "Double Jeopardy," appears to be shifting gears and contemplating venturing into the world of politics following recent speculation and reports.

Judd, 44, responded to reports about a possible Senate run while speaking at The Kentucky Society of Washington's Bluegrass Ball on January 19.

"I am incredibly honored and frankly overwhelmed by the outpouring of support - that the people of Kentucky are interested in having me represent them is the greatest honor of my life so far, and I am certainly taking a close look at it," Judd explained in Washington, according to Politico.

"The people of Kentucky need a fighter and certainly going back 10 generations, I've got some fighters from those hills in my family," she continued. "As soon as I know anything, after I've told the family members to whom I've made my promises that they'll be the first to know - you will be up to date in real time."

The actress, who is a Kentucky native, would be running against the Republican Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell, who is in his fifth term.

In December 2012, it was reported that the actress was thinking about running for senate, while Republican leader Rand Paul said that she is "way damn too liberal," according to Politico.

The outlet quoted "four people familiar with the matter" and said that the Democrat is "seriously exploring a 2014 run for the Senate to take on" Republican leader McConnell. The outlet also said that she is "reportedly also weighing whether to wait until 2016 to instead take on freshman Sen. Rand Paul."

In January, the actress' mother, famed singer Naomi Judd, spoke to Larry King about the subject. The singer explained that while her daughter was still unsure of a possible senate run, she was "very interested in changing the world," and knew that "politics is a way to do that."

Judd, known for films such as "Kiss The Girls," "Double Jeopardy" and "Heat" and the short-lived ABC series "Missing," lives in Tennessee with her family. The actress is married to a Scottish race car driver, Dario Franchitti.

In 2009, Judd attended a protest in Kentucky to help demonstrate about mountaintop removing coal mining, a practice in which explosives are used to blast away mountaintops in order to extract coal. She has said that it destroys "irreplaceable hardwood forests." In July 2010, she said in a speech to the National Press Club that the practice was the "rape of Appalachia."

Judd is also known for her efforts to promote awareness about AIDS, animal rights, poverty, equality and domestic violence. In March 2012, Kentucky's House of Representatives passed a resolution honoring "Kentuckian Ashley Judd on the occasion of the network premiere of 'Missing' and recognize her humanitarian efforts and outstanding work bringing awareness nationally and internationally for violence against women."

For the past four years, Judd has donated at least $7,500 to Democratic causes, including the first election campaign of President Barack Obama. If she ran and was elected to be a senator, she would be the most famous celebrity to do so. "SNL" alum and Democrat Al Franken was elected a senator for Minnesota in 2008.

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