House Republicans are hurtling towards key legislative deadlines with a dwindling majority: Rep. George Santos (NY-03) was expelled Dec. 1, and former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (CA-20) resigned Dec. 31. Rep. Bill Johnson (OH-06) is scheduled to resign Jan. 21 to take a university presidency, and Majority Leader Steve Scalise (LA-01) will be out until mid-February, undergoing a stem cell transplant to treat his cancer. That puts the GOP at 218 seats — leaving them with just two votes to spare on close votes.

And yet, it's Democrats who are approaching the Feb. 13 special election to replace Santos in New York's 3rd District with slightly more urgency and optimism — particularly after an unsteady rollout for the newly minted GOP nominee, Nassau County Legislator and Israel Defense Forces veteran Mazi Melesa Pilip.

Former Democratic Rep. Tom Suozzi started the six-week sprint with a valuable name ID and cash head start over the much greener Pilip. According to Democrats, Suozzi — who announced his bid for the seat in October — had banked more than $1 million by the time local

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