The Hill’s 50 races to watch


New York 24th District

Dan Maffei (D) vs Ann Marie Buerkle (R)

Freshman Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle (R) takes on former Rep. Dan Maffei (D) in this much-watched rematch of their 2010 contest. 

The race was so close last time that it wasn’t called until a few weeks after the election, with Buerkle winning by less than 600 votes. The testy race this year has featured a fight for female voters, with Maffei portraying Buerkle as an “extreme” conservative who would “redefine” rape, and Buerkle lashing back that Maffei is “desperate” and “pathetic” for making those claims. 

Healthcare will also play a big factor in this race. Buerkle, a former nurse, is a Tea-Party favorite who’s built a name hammering President Obama’s reform law as a government intrusion on the private sector. That formula worked well in 2010, but it remains to be seen whether the same will hold this year, with the economy improved and some of the law’s benefits already in effect.

Redistricting favors Maffei — and the Democrats consider this contest one of their best chances to steal a GOP seat — but Buerkle has defied expectations before.

The Hill rates this race as a toss-up.