Sen. Tina Smith wins U.S. Senate special election

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Senator Tina Smith is the projected winner for the special election for U.S. Senate in Minnesota.

DFL Chairman Ken Martin released the following statement:

"Tonight the people of Minnesota have reaffirmed Governor Dayton’s confidence in U.S. Senator Tina Smith. In the nine months since Tina’s appointment to U.S. Senate, she has proven to be a smart and relentless fighter for Minnesota values in Washington D.C. and I know she’ll continue to make Minnesota proud as an elected United State Senator.”

LAST ELECTION: Al Franken beat Mike McFadden in 2014 by a healthy margin, 53.2 percent to 42.9 percent. Minnesota last elected a Republican senator in 2002.

Democratic Candidate: Senator Tina Smith (Incumbent). Smith was appointed to the position by Governor Mark Dayton to succeed former Senator Al Franken, who resigned. She took office on January 3, 2017. Polls have Smith up by 9 to 10 percent. The winner of this race will serve out Franken’s term until January 2021. Smith managed Ted Mondale’s unsuccessful 1998 campaign for governor. After Paul Wellstone died, Smith managed former Walter Mondale's campaign for the seat. Worked for Planned Parenthood after that.

Republican Candidate: Karin Housley. Member of the Minnesota State Senate, representing District 39, Stillwater. She was first elected to the State Senate in 2012. Housley was a Republican candidate for Lieutenant Governor in the 2014 elections, losing in the primary. In 2010, her first run for public office, Housley was narrowly defeated by DFL incumbent Katie Sieben for election to the Minnesota Senate. After redistricting placed Housley in a new district, she was narrowly elected to that seat in 2012. Endorsed by President Trump. Husband is hockey Hall of Famer Phil Housley.