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Key to redistricting, state legislative races show potential for Democratic pickups

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Those races further down the ticket have national implications. Today's NY Times examines what's happening in the state legislative races -- and why they matter:

Most significantly, the groundwork for redrawing Congressional districts after the 2010 census will be done under the 50 capitol domes, and the party in power will set the table for those discussions in ways favorable to its interests. Gains made this year, analysts say, will help give incumbents a leg up in the final elections leading up to the redistricting.

If the Democrats take control of a majority of the legislatures, which polls indicate could happen, women could also attain leadership positions in greater numbers, since Democratic women in state capitals outnumber Republican women by nearly two to one. The next generation of national political leaders, by tradition, is nurtured in the state legislatures.
The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC) will be spending around $10 million this year to help Democrats in state legislative races. But, the GOP is spending double that amount. However, the Times predicts that the Democrats could "possibly gain[ ] control of a majority of state capitols for the first time in a decade."

In addition to redistricting, state legislatures do provide future Congressional leaders -- on both sides. Some of the biggest menaces in Congress, like Marilyn Musgrave, got their start in state legislatures. Beat the evil ones in their state races so we don't have to deal with them later on.

Show some love to your state legislative candidates and the DLCC. Those candidates are on the very front lines and often serve as the backbone of get-out-the-vote efforts.

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