House Republicans have taken another step toward making former secretary of State Hillary Clinton's email controversy a problem for Democrats around the country.
The National Republican Congressional Committee launched a robocall campaign Tuesday calling out vulnerable Democratic incumbents who have stayed quiet about Clinton's use of a private email account and server to conduct official business while running the State Department. The NRCC will run robocalls in four districts and pay for live calls in three districts, it said in a news release.
"Lawmakers are now calling on Clinton to turn that private server over to a third party so that government business is not hidden from the American people," a narrator says in each call, before pointing out that each Democrat "has not called on Clinton to do so, and has said nothing at all about this stunning breach of the public trust."
The robocalls will target Democratic Reps. Ann Kirkpatrick of Arizona, Gwen Graham of Florida, Brad Ashford of Nebraska, and Sean Patrick Maloney of New York. The live calls will target Reps. Ami Bera and Raul Ruiz of California, and Collin Peterson of Minnesota
The campaign marks the first time Republicans have sought to take advantage of the issue in congressional campaigns. It also gives an early indication of where the NRCC thinks it can go on offense in a cycle in which they'll be almost entirely focused on defending their own incumbents.
These are some of the most conservative districts held by Democrats this Congress: Mitt Romney actually carried four of them in 2012. But it's also early for attack ads, considering Ashford is the only one of the seven who already has a challenger.
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Jack Fitzpatrick is a staff correspondent at National Journal. He has previously written for USA TODAY, NBCNews.com, Slate, The Arizona Republic and other newspapers and websites. He graduated from Arizona State University with a master's degree in mass communication and a bachelor's degree in journalism.