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A tight race in PA-12

Rand Paul vastly outperformed expectations in Kentucky, but at this hour Tim Burns, the Republican candidate in Pennsylvania's 12th district, is doing what the polls indicated -- running a tight race with Democratic candidate Mark Critz. Robert Stacy McCain is getting friendly reports from Burns's team, including a report of a 10-point margin for Critz from a 3-1 Democratic area. But spread that across the district and it's enough for Critz to pull it out.

In his corner -- the presence of a Libertarian Party candidate, Demo Agoris, who's pulling around 2% of the vote. In my many conversations with GOP and tea party activists, Agoris's name never even came up, which is a bit of a surprise now. Clearly, the path to a Democratic victory in a district like this is easier if the Democrat only needs 49.1% to win. And Democrats cautiously inform me that the early results are what Critz needs to get to a narrow win.

With 42.33% of the vote in, Critz leads Burns 56.2-41.5. The margin: 7085 votes.

By David Weigel  |  May 18, 2010; 9:44 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Election  
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