Republicans are playing defense this year when it comes to maintaining control of the House of Representatives. However, the Washington Times reports that redistricting in Georgia has created the opportunity for the GOP to pick up two seats. Not only have the 8th and 13th district been redrawn in a way that should benefit Republicans, but the party has fielded two former House members to compete for the seats.
Former Rep. Mac Collins is rated a strong bet to unseat inclumbent Jim Marshall in the 8th district, which President Bush carried with 61 percent of the vote in 2004. Former Rep. Max Burns is thought to have a tougher road against incumbent John Barrow. Burns lost to Barrow by 4 percentage points in the district as drawn in 2004, the same margin by which Kerry outpolled Bush. And while Bush carried the district as redrawn (shorn of the university town of Athens), he did so with less 51 percent of the vote.