Dems target Maryland's 6th District

Maryland's competitive congressional election for Republican Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett's district has made a list of 36 races the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee said Wednesday it intends to target in the hopes of clawing back control of the House of Representatives.

The DCCC, the campaign arm of House Democrats, listed the 6th District as part of its "Red to Blue" program, a signal that it is a top priority for Democrats. Rep. Donna F. Edwards, a Prince George's County Democrat, is one of two co-chairs of that program.

"I'm not saying the majority is a guarantee. I am saying that we're nipping at their heels," said DCCC chairman Steve Israel, who is also a New York congressman. "We're in a much better position than anybody would have imagined a year ago."

Bartlett, who is seeking an 11th term, was slow to get his reelection campaign off the ground but appears to be making some progress. Though the district has long been safe for Bartlett and the GOP, it was recently redrawn by Democratic lawmakers in Annapolis and is now far more competitive.

Democrats and Republicans will both have primaries in April. Democrats would need to win 25 seats to capture control of the House.