Democratic Party’s task of retaining Senate could depend on its women

WASHINGTON — Using the headquarters of the historic National Woman’s Party as a backdrop, the Democrats’ chief Senate strategist said today that the task of maintaining her party’s grip on the chamber could fall to a record number of women vying for Senate posts, including Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.

With 23 of its Senate seats up for grabs next year, the Democratic Party could be particularly challenged to retain all of those seats or peel off a seat or two from Republicans.

Among the party’s best hopes of grabbing a GOP seat is in Massachusetts, where Warren is challenging Republican incumbent Scott Brown in what is expected to be one of the country’s most watched — and expensive — battles.

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“Democrats are well positioned to keep the majority,’’ said Senator Patty Murray of Washington state, who chairs the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

A record number of Democratic women are vying for Senate posts, with six of them defending their seats. Murray was a member of 1992’s “Year of the Woman,’’ when five women were elected to the Senate.

Murray introduced three of her party’s Senate nominees during a news conference assembled at the Sewall-Bellmont House, a museum on women’s suffrage located two blocks from the Capitol, to help showcase the party’s efforts to add more women to the Senate.

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