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Live Blog: The Maine Caucuses

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3:53 p.m. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama face off in the Maine caucuses this afternoon, the 32nd state contest (plus 2 U.S. territories) to be held by Democrats so far this election season. Mitt Romney won the Republican caucuses in Maine a week ago.

The Democratic delegate count is basically even between the two Democratic candidates, varying at the margins depending on which estimate one reads.

To date, Obama has won 18 states plus the Virgin Islands while Clinton has won 12 states plus American Samoa (Clinton's state victory total includes Michigan, where Obama was not on the ballot, and Florida - two states which currently will not seat any delegates at the Democratic National Convention due to violation of Party rules). Final results in the New Mexico caucuses are still pending from Super Tuesday's election and are not included in either candidate's state total above; Clinton currently holds a lead of approximately 1,100 votes there.

Maine Democratic Caucus (11% reporting)
Obama = 51%
Clinton = 48%
Uncommitted = 1%

4:22 p.m. Maine Democratic Caucus (44% reporting)
Obama = 57%
Clinton = 42%
Uncommitted = 1%

4:51 p.m. Maine Democratic Caucus (59% reporting)
Obama = 57%
Clinton = 42%
Uncommitted = 1%

Obama appears to be on his way to another caucus victory - it would be his 9th caucus win compared to just one for Clinton (Nevada, with New Mexico caucus results still pending).

5:32 p.m. NBC News projects Obama has won the Maine caucuses - the 19th state in his column during the 2008 campaign.

6:00 p.m. Maine Democratic Caucus (70% reporting)
Obama = 58%
Clinton = 41%
Uncommitted = 1%

9:13 p.m. Maine Democratic Caucus (95% reporting)
Obama = 59%
Clinton = 40%
Uncommitted = 1%

Previous post: Obama Wins Virgin Islands
Next post: Clinton Braces For Another Obama Sweep

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Political Crumbs

No 100-Year Curse for Roberts

Defeating his Tea Party primary challenger Milton Wolf with just 48.1 percent of the vote, Pat Roberts narrowly escaped becoming the first elected U.S. Senator from Kansas to lose a renomination bid in 100 years. The last - and so far only - elected U.S. Senator to lose a Kansas primary was one-term Republican Joseph Bristow in 1914. Bristow was defeated by former U.S. Senator Charles Curtis who went on to win three terms before becoming Herbert Hoover's running mate in 1928. Only one other U.S. Senator from the Sunflower State has lost a primary since the passage of the 17th Amendment: Sheila Frahm in 1996. Frahm was appointed to fill Bob Dole's seat earlier that year and finished 13.2 points behind Sam Brownback in the three-candidate primary field. Overall, incumbent senators from Kansas have won 29 times against two defeats in the direct vote era. (Curtis also lost a primary in 1912 to Walter Stubbs, one year before the nation moved to direct elections).


The Second Time Around

Former Republican Congressman Bob Beauprez became the seventh major party or second place gubernatorial candidate in Colorado to get a second chance at the office when he narrowly won his party's nomination last month. Two of the previous six candidates were successful. Democrat Alva Adams lost his first gubernatorial bid to Benjamin Eaton in 1884, but was victorious two years later against William Meyer. Democrat Charles Johnson placed third in 1894 behind Republican Albert McIntyre and Populist incumbent Governor David Waite but returned as the Fusion (Democrat/Populist) nominee in 1898 and defeated GOPer Henry Wolcott. Gubernatorial candidates who received a second chance but lost both general elections include Democrat Thomas Patterson (1888, 1914), Progressive Edward Costigan (1912, 1914), Republican Donald Brotzman (1954, 1956), and Republican David Strickland (1978, 1986).


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