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Local congressional race now a toss-up

An independent political analyst has shifted Ohio’s first congressional district from “leans Republican” to “toss up” after U.S. Rep. Steve Chabot, R-Cincinnati, was outraised last quarter by Democrat Aftab Pureval.

Pureval, the Hamilton County clerk of courts, raised more than double the incumbent Chabot last quarter, factoring in to Sabato’s Crystal Ball’s decision to knock the district out of the long-serving Republican’s favor.

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“Pureval raised more than double what Chabot raised last quarter and is approaching the long-time incumbent’s cash-on-hand total,” the analysis said. Sabato’s Crystal Ball is a service of the University of Virginia Center for Politics.

Chabot’s campaign spokesman Cody Rizzuto responded to the downgrade saying, “We have always expected this to be a competitive race but remain confident that once voters of the 1st District discover how out of touch Aftab is with their principles and values, they will reject his ultra-liberal approach to governing.”

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Pureval’s campaign argued the Beavercreek native’s message is resonating in the district, which includes much of Cincinnati and all of Warren County.

“Steve Chabot has been in Washington for 22 years, and he has nothing to show for it,” said Sarah Topy, a Pureval spokeswoman. “Aftab Pureval is offering voters a fresh new vision of leadership. In Congress, he will stand up for working families and protect access to health care. And his message is resonating with the people of this district. That why you’re seeing this positive momentum.”

Pureval raised $823,663 last quarter to the $339,290 raised by Chabot. He has $1.59 million in the bank; Pureval has $1.34 million. Pureval has $31,544 in debt.

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