Republican Nebraska state Sen. Deb Fischer brought the GOP its lone Senate pickup, defeating onetime Senator, presidential candidate and Vietnam War veteran Bob Kerrey in the race to replace retiring two-term Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson. The victory will position Fischer, who won by more than 16 points, as one of the few conservative female voices in the Republican caucus. Nebraska’s three House Republican incumbents will return to Washington.
In South Dakota, Republican Rep. Kristi Noem, who rode the tea party wave to Congress in 2010, easily won re-election. Neither of the state’s Senators were up for re-election.