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Before announcing that he would not run for re-election, incumbent Mike McIntyre (D) was one of seven early targets listed by the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) in the 2014 congressional elections.[1] The seven targets aligned perfectly with the seven most Republican districts currently held by Democrats, according to FairVote's partisanship index. McIntyre's district ranked as the most Republican (38 percent Democratic).[2]

McIntyre was a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's Frontline Program. The program was designed to help protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents during the 2014 election cycle.[3]

Republican David Rouzer -- who narrowly lost to McIntyre in 2012 -- ran again for election to the seat.[4] The National Republican Congressional Committee added David Rouzer to their "On the Radar" list in November 2013. According to the NRCC, candidates that made this list received "...the tools they need to run successful, winning campaigns against their Democratic opponents."[5] In March 2014, Rouzer was included on the NRCC's "Young Guns" list.[6]