Dems eye House seats in Northeast

March 23, 2006 at 7:29 PM
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WASHINGTON, March 23 (UPI) -- Democrats eager to take back Congress believe they have a target-rich environment in the Northeastern states from Pennsylvania to New Hampshire.

The party has its eye on 17 seats, the Boston Globe reports. In some, Republican incumbents are believed to be vulnerable, while in others the incumbent is retiring.

Six of the seats are in upstate New York, an area that has historically been a Republican stronghold. But many of those Republicans are more likely to share the values of the late liberal Republican Nelson Rockefeller than of President George W. Bush, the Globe reported.

The Democrats need a net gain of 15 seats to get a majority in the House of Representatives. This might not seem like a lot with 435 representatives, but partisan redistricting nationwide has made most districts one-party fiefdoms, the newspaper reported.

If the Democrats succeed in taking control of the House, it is likely to turn the body even more partisan, the Globe said, since Republicans from the Northeast tend to be moderate. It could also exacerbate the red state-blue state divide, with Democrats even more firmly entrenched in the Northeast.

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