U.S. Senataor Steve Daines is headed back for another term in Congress as one of Montana’s two senators, beating out incumbent but term-limited Montana Governor Steve Bullock in a $160 million race that was being closely watched by both Democrats and Republicans nationwide.
The final tally was 331,359, 55 percent, Daines to 271,226, 45 percent, for Bullock.
The chance of flipping a seat was the main reason for all the attention, but Daines, who has aligned himself with President Donald Trump, kept his seat running on a campaign platform of “protecting Montana’s way of life” and painting Bullock as too close to Democratic party leaders.
Daines, during a joint election night party with Governor-elect Greg Gianforte, thanked his supporters.
“This election was unprecedented. We know that. We’ve never seen a political race of this size in Montana,” he said. “I’m grateful that the good common sense, the good horse sense of Montana, didn’t listen to all that out-of-state money from Chuck Schumer flooding into Montana.”
Bullock, in his concession, thanked his supporters.
“I ran for office 12 years ago with one goal in mind: to make a meaningful difference in people’s lives,” he said. “I have been so pleased with how we have been able to bring people together in Montana — even when we don’t always agree — to improve the lives of our families and our communities.”
Bullock said he still believes Washington could work better.
“Montana has been a gift to me, and given me more than I could ever give back,” he said. “I have been so grateful to have served as Montana’s Governor and Attorney General.”