Democrats just scored a surprise special election victory and stole a Republican district after nearly 50 years

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Democrats in Pennsylvania scored a huge victory last night when Pam Iovino declared victory in the special election for the 37th state Senate district over Republican D. Raja.

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The Navy veteran and former Veterans Affairs Department official declared victory late last night after emerging from the race with a 4,100 vote lead, which quickly led to Raja’s concession.

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“The voters have spoken and we respect their choice. I called Pam Iovino about five, 10 minutes ago and offered my congratulations and told her she’d serve our country and we look forward to her service as a state senator,” said Raja in his concession speech, according to KDKA CBS.

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Iovino’s victory inches the Democrats closer to challenging the Republican control of the House, who need just 4 more seats to tie with their rivals for Senate control — and one seat is still vacant.

The win also flips a seat that has largely remained in Republican hands for the past half-century, in a district that Trump won by 6 points in 2016 but went for Democratic Governor Wolf by double digits in 2018.

Original reporting by KDKA-2 CBS Pittsburgh.

Natalie Dickinson

Natalie is a staff writer for the Washington Press. She graduated from Oberlin College in 2010 and has been freelance blogging and writing for progressive outlets ever since.

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