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Ted Stevens Loses Senate Race

It’s a terrible birthday present for Ted Stevens: The Senate’s longest-serving Republican has lost his bid for a seventh term. Stevens, who turns 85 today, went down to Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich by a 3,724-vote margin, with nearly 90,000 absentee and early ballots counted two weeks after Election Day. Begich is the first Democrat in Alaska’s congressional delegation in nearly 30 years, and his win gives Democrats 58 Senate seats, two away from a filibuster-proof majority, with races in Georgia and Minnesota still to be decided. The defeat is the second blow for Stevens in less than a month: Nine days before the election, he was convicted on seven counts of corruption charges for failing to report improper gifts.