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Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D) has officially joined the front lines.

The freshman Congresswoman with a bull’s-eye on her back has joined the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s “Frontline” fundraising program for vulnerable incumbents, after initially declining help from the national party earlier this cycle.

According to the New Hampshire Union Leader, which first reported the story, Shea-Porter’s campaign manager, Pia Carusone, said the Congresswoman always said she would consider getting help from the national party if Republicans targeted her re-election.

Shea-Porter, who defeated national Democrats’ pick in the 2006 primary, rejected the party’s support in the general election and defeated then-Rep. Jeb Bradley (R) in a unique, low-budget campaign. Bradley is back for a rematch this cycle, though he first has a primary challenge with former state Health Commissioner John Stephen .

In a recent poll by the University of New Hampshire, Shea-Porter trailed Bradley by 6 points, though she led Stephen by 8 points.

New Hampshire GOP Chairman Fergus Cullen cited that poll in a statement about Shea-Porter’s decision to enter the Frontline program.

“Washington Democrats know Shea-Porter’s in trouble; that’s why they kept pressuring her to take the money,” Cullen said. “New Hampshire Democrats know Shea-Porter’s in trouble; that’s why their chairman dispatched a top aide to ‘professionalize’ Shea-Porter’s campaign. Finally even Carol Shea-Porter is recognizing political reality.”

A spokeswoman from the DCCC said the party is committed to aiding Shea-Porter’s re-election.

“We are committed to strengthening Democratic Members and will ensure that Congresswoman Shea Porter has the tools she needs to continue her fight for veterans and New Hampshire values in Congress,” DCCC spokeswoman Carrie James said.

— Shira Toeplitz

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