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Obama wins Delaware, Carper, Markell re-elected

Associated Press Modified: November 6, 2012 at 9:46 pm •  Published: November 6, 2012

DOVER, Del. (AP) — President Barack Obama has won Delaware's three electoral votes, and Democratic U.S. Sen. Tom Carper has kept his undefeated campaign record intact by winning re-election to the U.S. Senate.

Voters in predominantly Democratic Delaware also gave incumbent Gov. Jack Markell a victory over Republican challenger Jeffrey Cragg in Tuesday's election, according to exit polling.

Democrat Rep. John Carney Jr. also was re-elected Tuesday, defeating Republican Tom Kovach to win a second term as Delaware's lone representative in the U.S. House.

In the Senate race, Carper turned back challenges from Republican businessman Kevin Wade and Independent candidate Alex Pires Jr. in a race marked by Pires' sharp personal attacks on Carper, including questioning the 65-year-old lawmaker's health.

"He's been good for Delaware," said Tyrone Knight, 55, who voted for Carper at Middletown High School.

Markell and Carper, who hasn't lost a race since 1976, led a field of several Democratic incumbents seeking re-election Tuesday.

In other statewide races, Democratic Lt. Gov. Matt Denn defeated Republican challenger Sher Valenzuela, and Democratic state insurance commissioner Karen Weldin Stewart easily defeated GOP challenger Ben Mobley.

All the incumbent Democrats in the statewide races took at least 60 percent of the vote.

"It looks like we had a really good night," Markell said before addressing a Democratic gathering in Wilmington.

Delaware voters also were deciding a host of state legislative and local races, including two key state Senate races in which Democratic candidates were backed by Markell.

Obama's running mate, Vice President Joe Biden, cast his vote early Tuesday in Greenville before heading off to join Obama in Chicago on Tuesday night.

Turnout in Delaware was steady throughout the day, and state elections commissioner Elaine Manlove reported no major problems at polling places.

Evan Moser, 19, a first-time voter, is registered as an independent but pulled the lever for Obama and a straight Democratic ticket.

"I don't like Mitt Romney," he said. "I looked at all the commercials. I read everything I could read about him and I just don't like him. I didn't like what he had to offer."

In the gubernatorial race, Markell touted his record in attracting and retaining jobs in Delaware, including helping a company buy and restart the idled oil refinery in Delaware City. Markell also boasted of his administration's education reform record, including being one of the first two states to win federal Race to the Top funding

But Cragg pointed out that tens of thousands of Delawareans are still unemployed, and he criticized Markell for gambling millions of taxpayer dollars trying to lure electric car maker Fisker Automotive and fuel cell manufacturer Bloom Energy to Delaware.

Carper wants to use his third term to continue fighting government waste and inefficiency, work on implementing a deficit reduction plan, revising the tax code to bolster economic activity, and working to make the health care system more efficient.

Carney boasted during the campaign about his ability to work with Republicans, including co-sponsoring three bills passed by Congress. He also formed a bipartisan breakfast club with a Republican lawmaker from Ohio. But Kovach, the outgoing New Castle County president, said Carney almost always votes with fellow Democrats, and that he would do a better job at forging bipartisan relationships. He argued that Delawareans needed balance in their congressional delegation, which for the first time in some 70 years has all three members from the same party.


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