Former state Sen. Bradley Byrne, a Republican, coasted to victory in Alabama's 1st District special election on Tuesday night, easily defeating Democrat Burton LeFlore in the final congressional special election of 2013.
Byrne defeated LeFlore, 62 percent to 38 percent, with 50 percent of precincts reporting, according to the Associated Press.
In November, Byrne defeated tea-party-aligned businessman Dean Young by 4 points in the competitive GOP runoff that served as a bellwether in the fight for control of the Republican Party. The U.S.Chamber of Commerce aided Byrne, marking the first victory for business in the battle for control of the party.
But the small margin of victory against Young — who was described as a lackluster candidate by many Republicans in Alabama — showed tougher contests lay ahead.
With his Tuesday win, Byrne will succeed former Rep. Jo Bonner in this Mobile, Ala.-based district. Bonner resigned from Congress in August to take a job with the University of Alabama system.
Byrne will not be sworn in to his post until the new year because the House recessed for the holidays last week.