Sen. Ted Stevens, the longest serving Republican in Senate history, narrowly lost his re-election bid Tuesday, marking the downfall of a Washington political power and Alaska icon who couldn’t survive a conviction on federal corruption charges. His defeat to Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich moves Senate Democrats closer to a filibuster-proof 60-vote majority.
Read the whole thing. The Democrats now have 58 Senators, and would reach 60 if they can knock off Norm Coleman in Minnesota and Saxby Chambliss in Georgia. Chamberliss will face off with Democratic candidate Jim Martin in a special election on December 2. Meanwhile, a hand count of the 2.9 million ballots in the fiercely contested Coleman-Franken Senate race in Minnesota begins tomorrow, and should be finished in about a month, the Minnesota Star-Tribute reports. Republican Sen. Norm Coleman leads by 215 votes.
(HT: Daniel L. Patterson)