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Bush confident Republicans will hold White House    2007-12-20 11:08:48    

President George W Bush said Thursday that he is confident that the Republican presidential nominee will win next year's election and that his party will gain seats in Congress.
Washington (dpa) - President George W Bush said Thursday that he is confident that the Republican presidential nominee will win next year's election and that his party will gain seats in Congress.

"I'm confident we'll hold the White House," Bush said. "And I'm confident we can pick up seats in both the Senate" and the House of Representatives.

Bush generally tries to stay out of commenting on Democratic and Republican contests for the presidential nomination, but said he was certain Republican principles will persuade US voters to support his party despite his slumping job approval ratings.

"I believe ours is the party that understands the nature of the world in which we live and that the government's primary responsibility is to protect the American citizens from harm," Bush said.

The first balloting is set to take place in Iowa on January 3 to launch the state-to-state battle to determine who will represent each party in the November 4 presidential election.

Former first lady Hillary Clinton, a senator from New York, is leading in national polls to capture the Democratic nomination, while on the Republican side, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney and former New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani are about even.

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