Washington (CNN) – Sen. Kay Hagan of North Carolina, who finds herself in a tough race for re-election this year, will not attend a speech President Barack Obama is delivering in her home state on Wednesday.
A spokesman for Hagan confirmed to CNN on Monday that because the "Senate is in session on Wednesday," the Democratic senator will not attend Obama's event on the economy in Raleigh, North Carolina.
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Senators and representatives from the same party as the President generally attend White House events in their home state or district. And Hagan's absence at the event has already received attention from national Republicans hoping to unseat the senator in 2014.
"Hagan may not be in North Carolina on Wednesday, but her presence will be felt since she can't hide her support of disastrous policies like ObamaCare and the failed stimulus," Brook Hougesen, National Republican Senatorial Committee press secretary, said in an email to reporters. "Kay Hagan has put the President's reckless policies ahead of the people and she simply can't hedge or hide that from North Carolinians."
The absence of Sen. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana – another Democratic lawmaker with a tough re-election bid in 2014 – became a talking point for Republicans in November 2013. Though Landrieu flew with Obama on Air Force One to New Orleans, the incumbent senator did not appear with the President as he toured the Port of New Orleans and delivered a speech about infrastructure spending.
Although Obama mentioned Landrieu in his remarks – "I just want to say nobody is a tougher advocate of the working people of Louisiana than Mary Landrieu" – Republicans knocked the senator for, what they saw, as running away for her support of Obama, who is unpopular in Louisiana.
Landrieu had other events in the state scheduled that day.
There are currently a host of Republican's vying for Hagan's seat, including State House Speaker Thom Tillis, physician Greg Brannon and attorney Heather Gran.
Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan group that evaluates upcoming elections, writes that the race "has the potential to become one of the more competitive of the cycle" but is currently leaning Democrat. The Rothenberg Political Report rates the race as "Toss-up/Tilt Democratic."