Democrat Bill Hughes may get some strategic and financial help in his attempt to unseat longtime incumbent Frank LoBiondo, R-2nd, in the November election.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, or DCCC, on Monday selected Hughes as one of 28 candidates around the nation for extra support in the 2014 House elections. The Democrats need to pick up 17 seats to win a House majority.

The DCCC picked 16 congressional hopefuls as its "Red to Blue" (turning red states to blue states) candidates and 12 others under its category "Emerging Races." Hughes was picked under Emerging Races.

The DCCC also picked Democrat Aimee Belgard, who is trying to win the seat being vacated by Rep. Jon Runyan, R-3rd.

DCCC Chairman Steve Israel said the candidates were chosen for their hard work and the competitive nature of the districts in play. Israel said the DCCC will help them execute winning campaigns.

"Bill Hughes will work tirelessly to get South Jersey's economy moving again and will fight to end the reckless brinksmanship and partisan politics that continue to stifle local job growth," Israel said.

Hughes is happy to have the help.

"It shows this is going to be a competitive race, a nationally recognized race. I think it translates into attention, and I think it translates into resources, logistics and ground support," said Hughes.

Hughes first has a contested primary in June, as does LoBiondo, to set up a Nov. 4 battle between them.

Hughes campaign manager Keith Rosendahl said there is no set dollar amount tied to the DCCC support.

"This targets us as one of the top competitive districts in America," Rosendahl said.

Contact Richard Degener:

609-463-6711

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