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.

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.

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.

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Original reporting by KDKA-2 CBS Pittsburgh.

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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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