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Will Any Dem Seats Fall in the House?

So much of the focus this cycle has been on Republican seats in play. On RCP's list of the most likely House seats to switch parties, the first Dem seat doesn't appear until #33 with Melissa Bean in Illinois 8. But there is a basket of five seats Republicans are looking at for possible pickups (IL-8, GA-8, GA-12, VT-AL, and IA-3) and the odds would suggest that the GOP may be able to pick up one of these five. The two seats in Georgia, helped by a strong Sonny Perdue at the top of the ticket, are generally thought to offer Republicans their best hope for a pickup.

Today the Indianapolis Star has a front page story which is extremely interesting given how much of a battleground Indiana has become because of the three Republican districts in play (IN-2, IN-8, and IN-9).

A new poll shows Democratic U.S. Rep. Julia Carson narrowly trailing Republican Eric Dickerson -- an outcome that, if it holds on Election Day, would be one of the biggest upsets in Indiana politics.

Dickerson led Carson 45 percent to 42 percent in the poll conducted for WTHR (Channel 13), The Indianapolis Star's news-gathering partner.....The WTHR poll -- conducted by Selzer & Co. of Des Moines, Iowa, and based on responses of 468 likely voters in the 7th Congressional District -- was startling, though, particularly in the wake of a poll of 400 likely voters, taken in September for WISH (Channel 8), that showed Carson with a lead of 20 percentage points. WTHR reported its poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

Dickerson, a former auto dealer, has run his race largely on his own. He beat the Republican Party's endorsed candidate in the primary and has run his campaign with virtually no state or national support since.

"It's just another confirmation that our campaign is very, very serious and we do intend to win this race," Dickerson told WTHR.

Indiana 7 is a reasonably secure Democratic district, giving 58% for Kerry in 2004 and 55% for Gore in 2004. But Carson has had some serious health issues and she's also been unable to get over 55% of the vote since the seat was redistricted in 2002 making it more attractive to Republican candidates.

We're skeptical just how much this seat may really be in play, but this is certainly a race we are going to keep an eye on.