WASHINGTON (AP) — Mainstream conservatives ran the table in Senate Republican primaries as tea party upstarts lost all six challenges to GOP incumbents.
The results left the establishment upbeat about midterm elections, and the insurgent movement beaten but unbowed.
Tennessee Sen. Lamar Alexander's narrow win Thursday night and Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts' triumph on Tuesday dashed the tea party's last hopes of knocking out a sitting senator. Earlier this year, incumbents prevailed in Texas, Kentucky, South Carolina and Mississippi for a party intent on nominating viable candidates and winning Senate control in November's contests.
Republicans need to net six seats for the majority. Democrats currently hold a 55-45 advantage.
Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said the GOP has produced the best nominee possible in each state.