With Election Day still seven months away, New Jersey bankers are already lobbying House GOP leaders to put Rep. Marge Roukema at the Banking Committee's helm next year.

The current chief, Rep. Jim Leach of Iowa, will abide by his party's six-year term limit on chairmanships and step aside in 2001. Rep. Roukema, of New Jersey, and Rep. Richard H. Baker of Louisiana are rivals to succeed him if Republicans keep control of the House.

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