Thursday, November 20, 2008

Goodbye Ted

The longest serving Republican Senator of all time has lost his bid for re-election to a seventh full term. Theodore Fulton Stevens (R-AK) was appointed to the United States Senate by Governor Wally Hickel, upon the death of Democratic incumbent Senator Bob Barlett and was sworn in on Christmas Eve, 1968. Stevens had lost a Republican primary battle for Senate in 1968. That was the last election Stevens would lose until he found out on his 85th birthday (November 18) that he was almost 4000 votes behind Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich. Yesterday, Stevens conceded defeat.

Believe it or not, sixteen days after the 2008 general election, we still have two Senate seats up for grabs. Incumbent Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) is facing a run off election on December 2nd against Democratic challenger Jim Martin, having failed to receive more than 50 percent of the vote on November 4th. The other outstanding race is between incumbent Norm Coleman (R-MN) and Democratic challenger Al Franken. The official count put Coleman ahead by 206 votes. An automatic recount began yesterday, and final results are not expected for a month.

This means that OVC has yet to miss a call in the Senate races. For the casual reader, we have said Franken will prevail in Minnesota, and Chambliss will retain his seat on December 2nd. This leaves the Democrats one seat shy of the filibuster proof number of 60 seats.

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