Factbox: Eight U.S. House of Representatives races to watch in Tuesday's election

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democrats are defending their majority in the U.S. House of Representatives in Tuesday’s election.

FILE PHOTO: Republican U.S. House candidate Marjorie Taylor Greene speaks at a news conference in Dallas, Georgia, U.S. October 15, 2020. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage/File Photo

Here are eight interesting races to watch, including several of the most closely fought contests:

COLORADO’S 3RD DISTRICT

Republican Lauren Boebert, a pistol-packing gun rights activist who defied coronavirus restrictions to open her restaurant, spoke warmly of the unfounded online conspiracy theory QAnon in May, but later said “I’m not a follower.” She faces Democrat Diane Mitsch Bush, a university professor, in a largely rural district encompassing western Colorado.

GEORGIA’S 14th DISTRICT

Republican small business owner Marjorie Taylor Greene is a political newcomer who promoted QAnon in a 2017 video but later backtracked, saying it was not part of her campaign. She is expected to win a House seat in conservative rural northwest Georgia after her Democratic opponent dropped out.

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MINNESOTA’S 7TH DISTRICT

Long-time Representative Collin Peterson, one of only two House Democrats who opposed both articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump in 2019, faces Minnesota’s former lieutenant governor, Republican Michelle Fischbach. The district in rural western Minnesota voted strongly for Trump in 2016.

NEW JERSEY’S 2ND DISTRICT

Representative Jeff Van Drew, who was elected to Congress as a Democrat in 2018 but became a Republican after voting against impeaching Trump, faces a strong challenge from Democrat Amy Kennedy. She is a former schoolteacher who married into the famous U.S. political family. The district in southern New Jersey includes Atlantic City.

NEW MEXICO’S 2ND DISTRICT

Freshman Democratic Representative Xochtil Torres-Small has a rematch with Republican Yvette Herrell, who lost to her narrowly in 2018 and is endorsed by the conservative House Freedom Caucus’ political action committee. The district covers southern New Mexico including part of Albuquerque.

NEW YORK’S 2ND DISTRICT

Republican New York State legislator Andrew Garbarino is running against a Black combat veteran, Democrat Jackie Gordon, for the seat held for 14 terms by retiring Republican Representative Peter King. The largely suburban district on Long Island includes the eastern edges of the New York City metropolitan area.

SOUTH CAROLINA’S 1ST DISTRICT

Representative Joe Cunningham, who stunned Republicans in 2018 when he became the first Democrat to represent the coastal district in nearly four decades, faces Republican Nancy Mace, the first female graduate of the Citadel military college.

TEXAS’ 21ST DISTRICT

Conservative Republican Representative Chip Roy is being challenged by Wendy Davis, a Democratic former state senator who caught the national spotlight in 2013 by talking for over 11 hours to temporarily stop an anti-abortion bill. The central Texas district includes part of Austin.

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