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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — As Democratic Rep. Mike McIntyre and his Republican challenger David Rouzer continue to ramp up the rhetoric in their race for McIntyre’s seat in the US House, at least one political pundit sees the race starting to tip toward the incumbent.

Sabato’s Crystal Ball has moved the 7th District House contest from the “Toss-up” column to “Leans Democrat.”

The website says North Carolina is the state where Republicans should pick up the most net seats, but Crystal Ball predicts the GOP will pick up three seats with McIntyre holding his.

“McIntyre has run ads emphasizing his conservatism, and while the district is heavily Republican, his message seems to be getting through,” wrote Crystal Ball’s House Editor Kyle Kondik, who predicts Republicans will retain a majority in the House.

ABCNews.com and RealClearPolitics.com still have the McIntyre-Rouzer race listed as a toss-up.

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