Election Night recap (w/ audio)

Earl Pomeroy (D) | Rick Berg (R)

FARGO – Tuesday was historic in North Dakota for multiple reasons.

It was the first time since 1966 that a challenger unseated a North Dakota congressman.

It was the first time since 1978 that voters elected a Republican as the state’s U.S. representative.

And, it marked the first change in congressional representation the state will have seen in nearly two decades.

While the U.S. Senate race between Republican Gov. John Hoeven and Democratic challenger Tracy Potter was called within minutes of the polls closing, North Dakota’s U.S. House race provided most of the drama for the night.

Nine-term Democratic incumbent Earl Pomeroy took an early lead with the first 8 precincts reporting out of 505 statewide. But as more results came in, Pomeroy’s advantage dwindled into positive numbers for Republican challenger Rick Berg. Ultimately, the Fargo legislator claimed a sizable victory in what was a lengthy and competitive race.

For updates on the night’s events, read my posts from The Forum’s Decision 2010 blog.

You can also hear from the candidates and their supporters who made comments during the evening:

  • Just before 8 p.m. – Pomeroy speaks with reporters before the Democratic-NPL rally at the Ramada Plaza & Suites, answering a question about how confident he is as the polls closed = Earl Pomeroy #1.
  • Just before 8 p.m. – Pomeroy responds to a question of how it would effect Congress if North Dakota voters didn’t pull through for him = Earl Pomeroy #2.
  • Around 9:30 p.m. – Berg speaks after learning at least one media outlet has projected his forthcoming victory in the race = Rick Berg.
  • Around 9:50 p.m. – Sen. Kent Conrad speaks in support of Pomeroy during the Democratic-NPL rally in Fargo = Kent Conrad.
  • 10:30 p.m. – Pomeroy concedes defeat = Earl Pomeroy concedes #1, Earl Pomeroy concedes #2. (2 clips)
  • Just before 11 p.m. – Berg accepts victory = Rick Berg victory speech #1, Rick Berg victory speech #2, Rick Berg victory speech #3. (3 clips / audio recorded by Forum reporter Amy Dalrymple)

And, check out the full story from today’s Forum.