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Top Races in 2016: Mid-Atlantic States

A cardboard sign points to a polling place in Philadelphia on Nov. 6, 2012. (Jessica Kourkounis/Getty Images File Photo)

This is the second in a series of regional looks at the most competitive House and Senate races to watch in 2016.  

The Mid-Atlantic region includes Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.  

Pennsylvania Senate: Democratic Rep. Joe Sestak lost a close race to Republican Patrick J. Toomey in 2010, but that wasn’t enough to inspire the confidence of Democratic strategists who recruited former gubernatorial chief of staff Katie McGinty into the race. Either Democrat should be credible enough to give the senator a tough re-election race. Toomey had $8.6 million on hand on Sept. 30 and isn’t likely to get tripped up by silly mistakes, but he might be vulnerable to the winds of the presidential race.  

Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report /Roll Call rating: Tossup/Tilts Republican.  

New York’s 24th District: Republican John Katko defeated Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei in one of the late-breaking races of 2014 and with one of the most stunning margins of victory. Katko now represents a district which President Barack Obama won with 56 percent in 2008 and 57 percent in 2012. Democrats have three candidates in the race including Colleen Deacon, former district director to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who doesn’t have a voting record and could be a difficult opponent for Republicans.  

Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report/Roll Call: Tossup.  

Pennsylvania’s 8th District: GOP Rep. Michael G. Fitzpatrick didn’t have many problems holding this competitive district, but his retirement creates an open seat takeover opportunity for Democrats. Democrats have a competitive primary between state Rep. Steve Santarsiero and small-business owner/2014 candidate Shaughnessy Naughton. The local GOP organization has coalesced behind state Rep. Scott Petri, but Fitzpatrick’s younger brother is serious enough about running to move back to Pennsylvania after working for the FBI in California, according to GOP sources.  

Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report/Roll Call rating: Tossup/Tilts Republican.  

What races would you add to the list?

Related:

Top Races in 2016: New England Top Races in 2016: The South Top Races in 2016: The Midwest Top Races in 2016: The Plains States Top Races in 2016: The West Top Races in 2016: The Southwest Top Races in 2016: Mountain Region Roll Call Race Ratings Map: Ratings for Every House and Senate Race in 2016 Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call in your inbox or on your iPhone.