Tea Partier Christine O'Donnell Wins in Delaware

She knocks off GOP-favored Mike Castle

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 14, 2010 7:51 PM CDT

(Newser) – Another huge message from the tea party and potential bad news for Republicans: Christine O'Donnell defeated the GOP establishment candidate, longtime congressman Mike Castle, in Delaware's Senate primary, reports Politico (whose headline begins "GOP Nightmare ..."). She won 53% to 47%. "Don't ever underestimate the power of 'we the people,'" she said in her victory speech, later giving out a shout of thanks to Palin ("You Betcha!") and a nod of recognition to Glenn Beck's 9/12 project.

At one point, her supporters began a chant of "Yes we can." In his concession speech, Castle did not mention his opponent, and he took no questions about whether he'd endorse her. O'Donnell had the backing of Sarah Palin, along with the enmity of many Republicans who fear she's going to lose in November to Democrat Chris Coons. Her win could in fact reduce Republican chances of retaking the Senate, as Nate Silver spelled out today in his FiveThirtyEight blog.

Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell talks to voters in Wilmington, Del., Tuesday.   (Robert Craig)
Rep. Mike Castle and wife Jane vote Tuesday morning in Wilmington, Del.   (Robert Craig)
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