It was looking grim early last night for Jeff Merkley in his race to unseat Republican Sen. Gordon Smith of Oregon, but that was mostly because the
November 6, 2008

It was looking grim early last night for Jeff Merkley in his race to unseat Republican Sen. Gordon Smith of Oregon, but that was mostly because the Multnomah and Lane counties hadn't been counted much yet.

Those counties started coming in this afternoon and evening, and the trend is so strong in his favor (at last check, Merkley had about a 10,000-vote lead, and growing) that the Oregonian has called it for him.

Congratulations, Senator Merkley. Thanks to you and your awesome staff for all your hard work. And Democrats have just inched a tad closer to a filibuster-proof majority.

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