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Northup wins Kentucky district

Lucas retains 4th District seat

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LOUISVILLE, Kentucky (CNN) -- GOP Rep. Anne Northup defeated Democrat Jack Conway in the race for Kentucky's 3rd District, CNN projected.

Northup, who sits on the House Appropriations Committee, made a potentially serious misstep this summer. A local newspaper reported in late August that Northup penned a June 21 letter to the Federal Communications Commission seeking quick action on an application filed by Radio Sound Inc., whose president is her husband, R. Wood "Woody" Northup.

The congresswoman called it an "honest" mistake, but Democrats criticized her aggressively on the issue. Both Northup and Conway drew national figures to the district. Northup stumped both with President Bush and with Lynne Cheney last month.

Conway, trying to appeal to Louisville's large African-American population, invited Rep. John Lewis, D-Georgia, a civil rights legend, to the district. Louisville is a Democratic stronghold, and Conway, a telegenic former aide to Gov. Paul Patton, was viewed as a potentially strong challenger.

In Kentucky's 4th District race, conservative Democratic Rep. Ken Lucas defeated GOP challenger Geoff Davis. Lucas has been targeted aggressively since he narrowly won a 1998 race, and he has steadfastly rebuffed GOP offers to switch parties.

Lucas votes with the White House more than almost any other Democrat in the House, and he backed Bush's tax cut and the president's plan for a Medicare prescription drug benefit. But Lucas has used ties to staunch conservative groups to prove he is not a loyal follower of House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt, D-Missouri.

President Bush endorsed Davis but also made sure to praise the working relationship he enjoys with Lucas. Recently, the White House also invited Lucas to join Davis at a speech Bush gave in the district -- a move that further minimized any bounce Davis could have drawn from Bush's endorsement.

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