Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson pulled off a victory in the Republican Senate primary Tuesday, and will represent his party in the general election against Democratic Rep. Tammy Baldwin in a race that is expected to help determine which party controls the U.S. Senate.
The Associated Press called the race with 81 percent of precincts reporting. Thompson led with 34.5 percent of the vote, having finally pulled away from businessman Eric Hovde.
Thompson, a popular four-term governor, came into the race as the front-runner. But recent polls showed him in a tough three-way race with Hovde and former Congressman Mark Neumann. A fourth candidate, state assembly speaker Jeff Fitzgerald, trailed in the polls for most of the race, and conceded the race before the count was complete.