posted at 02:50
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Republican win in runoff US Senate vote boosts majority
Her loss to Republican rival Bill Cassidy in the runoff vote consolidates a conservative majority in the southern state, in a region where political winds have shifted strongly in the Republicans' favor in recent years. The vote - the last in the Senate contest and the only runoff - comes after Democrats suffered a sweeping blow in November 4 legislative elections, which saw energized Republicans reclaim the Senate majority and expand their control in the House of Representatives. Republicans will hold 54 out of 100 seats in the Senate next year, nine more than they hold today. The Republican National Committee applauded Cassidy's win, and congratulated voters for making the right decision. Her recent push to get the Senate to approve construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, a project popular with Republicans, ended disastrously when she fell one vote short. "Bill Cassidy will be a champion for policies that create jobs and grow the economy, especially building the Keystone Pipeline," Priebus said. Obama's waning popularity further weakened her bid for re-election in a region that has seen a rise in Republican support. Analysts had predicted turnout for the runoff to be whiter, older and more Republican than in presidential election years.

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