Frank Guinta, the Republican mayor of Manchester, just announced on a conference call that he would seek Democrat Carol Shea-Porter's 1st Congressional seat in New Hampshire. This is likely to be the best chance the GOP has for retaking the seat once held by Jeb Bradley.
As Real Clear Politics noted last week:
What makes Guinta's candidacy so enticing is his home field advantage in the Queen City. Though Manchester is a majority Democratic city, he won a second term in 2007 by nearly eight points, and raised record funds in the process. Manchester also played a key role in Shea-Porter's last win. She carried every ward last year and took the city by 5,000 votes -- accounting for 40% of her reelection margin in the 1st Congressional district. No wonder Republicans hope Guinta's special appeal for the city's voters could be the X-factor in next year's House race.
A Guinta campaign adviser said that the greater Manchester area accounts for 37% of the vote in the House district and Guinta's popularity and standing in the city will "be a huge advantage."
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