Really excellent news.
Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich (D) defeated Sen. Ted Stevens, ending the tenure of the longest-serving Republican in Senate history, after the counting of more ballots yesterday gave him a larger lead than the number of votes still untallied, Alaska elections officials said.
Begich leads Stevens by more than 3,700 votes, according to the Alaska secretary of state. Gail Fenumiai, the head of the state’s election division, said about 2,500 absentee votes from overseas and Alaska’s most remote regions remain to be counted.
AP also has the call. And so far, it looks like no automatic recount is coming (though that could change).
The Democrat’s lead thus far — 47.8 percent to 46.6 percent — puts him beyond the margin of victory that would allow Stevens to call for a state-funded recount of the ballots.
Of the three Alaskans running for Senate this year (recall that, according to Sarah Palin, the Vice President is also part of the Senate), I’m delighted that only Mark Begich made it.