WNYC's Bob Hennelly is an award-winning investigative journalist. While at WNYC he has reported on a wide gamut of major public policy questions ranging from immigration and homeland security to power outages and utility mergers.
With less than a week to go before the midterm election, several House races in New York are factoring into national Democratic and Republican calculations.
Vice President Joe Biden was in New York City Tuesday night to cheer on volunteers who were making calls for Congressman Scott Murphy from upstate's 20th District. The latest polling shows Murphy trailing GOP challenger Chris Gibson. Biden also headlined a Manhattan fundraiser for Senator Kirsten Gillibrand while in town.
Other local House races pivotal for the Democrats include Long Island's 1st district, where Democratic incumbent Tim Bishop faces a well-funded challenge from Republican businessman Randy Altschuler, and the 13th Congressional District that covers all of Staten Island and part of Brooklyn. There, freshman Democratic Congressman Michael McMahon is trying to hold off a challenge from former undercover FBI agent Michael Grimm.
For Democrats, it appears to be an all hands on deck moment to try to keep control of the House. Former President Bill Clinton will be stumping for Democratic Rep. John Hall, who represents the lower Hudson Valley's 19th District. Hall is facing a strong challenge from pro-choice Republican Nan Hayworth, an opthamologist.
On the GOP side, Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele was also in town Tuesday to campaign in Harlem for Michel Faulkner, who is challenging the heavily favored Democratic House veteran Charles Rangel.