Tester Pulls Ahead In Montana

LIVINGSTON, MT - NOVEMBER 02: Montana Democrat Senator Jon Tester who his defending his senate seat from Republican Matt Rosendale campaigns with Democrat Kathleen Williams who is running against Republican Greg Gianforte for Montana's lone house seat on November 2, 2018 in Livingston, Montana. (Photo by William Campbell/Corbis via Getty Images)
WILLIAM CAMPBELL/Corbis News

Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT) has pulled back into a lead over Montana state Auditor Matt Rosendale (R) in their slow-rolling election count.

Tester led Rosendale by just over 1,000 votes, or about 0.3 percent, with 88 percent of precincts reporting as of noon ET.

There’s plenty of votes left to be counted, but it appears that more of the outstanding vote is in Democratic territory — especially Gallatin County, home to liberal-leaning Bozeman and Montana State University. Less than half the vote is in from those areas, the largest chunk of the outstanding vote.

That would be a relief to Democrats, who had grown increasingly concerned that Tester’s race was tightening in the race’s final weeks. If he hangs on, he and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) would be the only Democrats from solid GOP states to win reelection, while Democratic incumbents lost reelection bids in Indiana, Missouri and North Dakota.

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