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President Obama told a Democratic fund raising event in April that he wants Nancy Pelosi back as Speaker of the House and vowed to do everything in his power to make that happen in the 2014 congressional election.

“She never lets ideology cloud her judgment,” Obama told the crowd that produced an estimated $3.2 million for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s 2014 campaign coffers.

“It’d be a whole lot easier to govern if I had Nancy Pelosi as speaker,” he said.

But 2012 election returns make clear that Obama and Democrats face an uphill battle to put the Speaker’s gavel back in Pelosi’s hands by defeating enough Republicans to regain the House majority they lost in 2010.

Republicans now 234 House seats, versus 201 Democrats. Twenty-nine of the seats were won by five points or less in 2010, making them 2014 targets. But even winning all 29 target races listed here won’t do the trick for Pelosi.

That doesn’t mean it won’t happen. Five factors likely will determine who will control the 114th Congress: 1) candidate recruitment; 2) party favorability; 3) base intensity; 4) fund-raising; and 5) President Obama’s job approval ratings.

Other races besides these 29 could become targets, too, but the basic handicapping begins with these 17 Democratic and 12 Republican vulnerable seats.

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