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Armstrong declared winner in U.S. House race

A Democrat has not won the seat since 2008, when Earl Pomeroy was re-elected with a 55% majority vote.

Kelly Armstrong.jpg
Kelly Armstrong

DICKINSON, N.D. -- Republican incumbent Kelly Armstrong cruised to reelection on Tuesday for the North Dakota's lone U.S. House of Representatives seat.

As of 6 a.m. Wednesday, with 354, 595 votes cast, Armstrong had garnered 69% of the vote, compared to opponents Democrat Zach Raknerud (28%) and Libertarian Steven Peterson (3%).

"Every time you're on the ballot, you're just humbled to hear North Dakota say you're doing a good enough job to do it again, so I'm really proud," Armstrong said. "I've said this before and I mean it, outside of my marriage and the birth of my two kids, this is the greatest privilege of my life."

Prior to Election Day, CNN had listed North Dakota's U.S. House race as "solid Republican," while 270toWin had rated it as “safe for the incumbent party ” and “not expected to be competitive in 2020.”

"It is what it is, but I've been extremely proud to advocate for the needs of working families in this state and really proud of the campaign we won," said Raknerud.

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A representative's term ends every two years, and the position brings with it a salary of $174,000.

Armstrong is part of a decade-long chain of Republicans serving North Dakota's only seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

When he ran for the House seat in 2018, Armstrong won 80% of the votes. His Democratic opponent, Mac Schneider, pulled in just 16%.

A Democrat has not won the seat since 2008, when Earl Pomeroy was re-elected with a 55% majority vote. Pomeroy held the seat from 1993 to 2010, when he lost to Republican Rick Berg.

Given this shift from blue to red, the odds of winning looked long for Armstrong's opponents.

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Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R) and candidates Steven Peterson (Lib.) and Zach Raknerud (D) debated one another on Prairie Public, Thursday night. (File photo)

Kayla Henson is a former Dickinson Press reporter.
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