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Portman, Coats Coast in Midwest Senate Races

Former Indiana Sen. Dan Coats (R) cruised to a win Tuesday against Rep. Brad Ellsworth (D) in the race to replace outgoing Sen. Evan Bayh (D).

With 15 percent of precincts reporting, Coats had 55 percent of the vote and Ellsworth had 39 percent, and the Associated Press had called the race.

Also as expected, Republican Rob Portman cruised to victory against Democrat Lee Fisher in the Ohio Senate race to fill the seat vacated by the retiring Sen. George Voinovich (R).

CNN called the race minutes after the polls closed at 7:30 p.m. Many believe that Fisher had largely conceded the victory in recent weeks, when he donated a substantial portion of his campaign account to the state Democratic Party.

Neither result in Indiana or Ohio was a surprise. 

Although Ellsworth may have been the best candidate Democrats could have hoped for after Bayh announced he wouldn’t run for re-election, it’s been a long time since he was within single digits of Coats in polling. Coats previously served in the Senate from 1989 to 1999.

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