GOP super PAC expands field program to 40 districts

GOP super PAC expands field program to 40 districts
© Greg Nash

The Congressional Leadership Fund, the super PAC aligned with retiring Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanAmash: Trump incorrect in claiming Congress didn't subpoena Obama officials Democrats hit Scalia over LGBTQ rights Three-way clash set to dominate Democratic debate MORE (R-Wis.), is expanding its presence in key GOP-held districts as Republicans seek to fend off a potential Democratic "blue wave" in this year's midterm elections.

The group announced Friday that it is opening field offices in six Republican-led districts, bringing its total to 40 offices in competitive House races across the country. 

The new field offices are intended to boost GOP Reps. Rodney DavisRodney Lee DavisHillicon Valley: GOP lawmakers offer election security measure | FTC Dem worries government is 'captured' by Big Tech | Lawmakers condemn Apple over Hong Kong censorship GOP lawmakers offer new election security measure House panel pushes forward election security legislation MORE (Ill.), Randy HultgrenRandall (Randy) Mark HultgrenRepublican challenging freshman Dem rep says he raised 0,000 in 6 days Illinois Dems offer bill to raise SALT deduction cap The 31 Trump districts that will determine the next House majority MORE (Ill.), George HoldingGeorge Edward Bell HoldingBetsy DeVos's playbook of political correctness Education Dept. cites disproportionate focus on 'positive aspects of Islam' in reviewing UNC-Duke grant funding Delay of new trade deal harms America's digital advantage MORE (N.C.) and Pete SessionsPeter Anderson SessionsFourth defendant in Giuliani associate case taken into custody at New York airport The Hill's Morning Report - Dem debate contenders take aim at Warren Former GOP lawmaker Pete Sessions subpoenaed over dealings with Giuliani associates MORE (Texas), as well as now-open seats in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District and Kansas' 2nd District.

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In North Carolina's 9th District, Republicans are seeking to hold on to the seat held by outgoing Rep. Robert PittengerRobert Miller PittengerBottom Line North Carolina reporter says there could be 'new crop' of GOP candidates in 9th Congressional District race North Carolina board calls for new election in contested House race MORE (R-N.C.), who lost his primary bid against pastor Mark Harris. Harris is locked in a tough race against Democrat Dan McCready, who has a significant financial advantage over his Republican opponent.

Republican Steve Watkins is also likely to face a difficult challenge in Kansas' 2nd District. He overcame a crowded field of GOP hopefuls in his primary on Tuesday, and is now set to face off against another well-funded Democrat, Paul Davis, in November.

The field offices have been a key part of CLF's strategy to bolster Republican candidates in districts where Democrats are eyeing inroads to claiming back the House majority. Democrats face a tough challenge, needing to flip 23 seats in order to overcome their deficit.

In Ohio's 12th District, for example, CLF spent millions of dollars on advertisements and a field program to boost Republican Troy Balderson in his special election bid against Democrat Danny O'Connor. Republicans initially expected the race to be an easy victory for the party, given its more than 30-year streak as a GOP-held district.

But the election, which took place on Tuesday, has yet to be called officially, though Republicans have declared victory. Balderson currently leads in the polls by less than 1 percent, and provisional ballots will take days to count. 

Though Balderson and Republicans could still eke out a victory in the Ohio's 12th District, Democrats see the closeness of that race as a strong sign that they can win back the House in November.