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Female candidates key to Democratic Senate

A record 11 women seek seats as party tries to retain its hold

WASHINGTON - Democrats, as they aggressively seek to turn women’s concerns into a rallying call of the presidential election, are leaning heavily on female candidates to retain control of the Senate.

From Massachusetts to Hawaii, a record number of Democratic women - six incumbents and at least five challengers - are running for seats this year. That eclipses 1992’s vaunted “Year of the Woman,’’ when 10 women sought entry into the country’s most exclusive political chamber.

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