Graves (R-MO-06)

RESULT: Sam Graves 59% - Kay Barnes (D) 37%

The Race:

Congressman Sam Graves won his first race narrowly in 2000 but has not had to sweat much since. This year, Democrats have recruited a strong challenger in former Kansas City Mayor Kay Barnes. Graves’ team will try to paint Barnes as captive to the city’s interests, someone who will be hostile to the rest of the district, which is largely suburban and rural. The district favors Republicans, but as long as President Bush’s approval ratings remain low, Graves could be in trouble. He is a solid fundraiser, but Barnes has not lagged too far behind. [Roll Call, accessed 5/15/08]