(WASHINGTON TIMES) Rep. W. Todd Akin in Missouri and former Rep. Pete Hoekstra in Michigan emerged from crowded primary fields Tuesday night to capture the Republican nominations to take on two embattled Democratic senators in November.

Mr. Akin took 36 percent of the vote to fend off challenges from multimillionaire businessman John Brunner, who received 30 percent, and former state Treasurer Sarah Steelman, who got 29 percent of the vote despite a strong late endorsement from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Recent polls showed all three Republicans beating freshman DemocraticSen. Claire McCaskill in head-to-head matchups. Mrs. McCaskill made history in 2006 as the Show-Me State’s first woman elected outright to the Senate — but she is also widely seen as one of the nation’s most vulnerable Senate incumbents as Republicans push to reclaim their majority.

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