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Hugh Hewitt Book Club

Minnesota, Oregon and Alaska

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The Senate results are here.

Norm Coleman has won re-election by a little over 500 votes out of more than 2.4 million cast.

Gordon Smith has a 15,000 vote lead in Oregon with about a quarter of the vote to go.

Alaskans returned Ted Stevens with a clear intent to keep that seat in GOP hands in the new Congress, thus presenting Sarah Palin with an important decision that will be closely studied.

If the Senate GOP, led by Mitch McConnell, Jon Kyl and Lamar Alexander, begin their new role with 44 votes, it is enough to make a clear and consistent impact on policy. Harry Reid did as much with 45 in the aftermath of 2004, but the key was that his caucus held together through thick and thin.

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