By Zachary A. Goldfarb
Sunday, October 1, 2006; Page A05
Just as Democrats hope to shift the balance of power in Congress this November, they are hoping to control more state legislatures.
Tim Storey of the nonpartisan National Conference of State Legislatures said there could be a seismic swing in the control of state legislatures in favor of Democrats this fall because of an energized Democratic base. Legislatures currently are controlled nearly equally by Democrats and Republicans.
"For a number of elections, the Republicans have been eating [the Democrats] alive," Storey said. "Do the Democrats build some momentum in the other direction? I think they're optimistic they can do that."
The balance of state legislatures could have national implications, as they have been the source of headline-grabbing lawmaking on topics including redistricting and state policies on health care, immigration and abortion that go beyond what Congress does.
The top 10 battlegrounds, according to the national conference, are Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon and Tennessee.