The National Republican Congressional Committee has named Seventh Congressional District candidate Torrey Westrom as an up-and-coming recruit for the 2014 election cycle.

Westrom is one of seven House hopefuls the NRCC added to its “Contender” list today. The state senator is the GOP challenger to Democratic incumbent Collin Peterson in the district that covers most of western Minnesota.

“Torrey Westrom has reached the ‘Contender’ status because he is exemplary of the new leadership needed in Washington D.C. to turn our country around and provide a check and balance in Washington,” said NRCC Chairman Greg Walden, a Republican congressman from Oregon. 

“I am confident that Torrey will continue to work hard for his district and bring sound, conservative principles to Congress.”

Peterson outpaced Westrom during the year’s first fundraising quarter and had $522,000 banked for his re-election bid at the end of March. Westrom’s cash-on-hand total is $170,729.

As challengers ascend the ranks, they’re more likely to receive financial and campaign aid from the NRCC, the campaign arm of House Republicans. The next and final rung is for top tier recruits, who are tagged as “Young Guns.”

Eighth District GOP candidate Stewart Mills III reached 'contender' status in March. He's challenging Democratic congressman Rick Nolan.

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