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Wisconsin's Baldwin becomes first openly gay senator

Tammy Baldwin

Tammy Baldwin Photo Credit: (Getty Images)

Wisconsin Democratic Rep. Tammy Baldwin made history on Tuesday by becoming the first openly gay U.S. Senator, defeating former governor Tommy Thompson in the most expensive Senate race in state history.

The two candidates raised at least $65 million.

The outcome is another blow to Republicans, who needed to make a net gain of four seats to take a majority in the Senate.

Baldwin assumes the seat of retiring Democrat Herb Kohl, who is finishing his fourth term in the Senate. The 50-year-old Baldwin, first elected to Congress in 1998, also becomes the first woman senator from Wisconsin with her victory Tuesday.

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