Amid Tea Party victories in Florida and Tennessee, Connecticut Democrats have retained control of their Senate seat. Democrat Richard Blumenthal defeated Republican Linda McMahon to replace outgoing Democrat Chris Dodd. Blumenthal was up against the largest self-financed Senate campaign in history and won an important hold for Democrats. Here's how reporters are analyzing the win:

  • A Sigh of Relief for Dems, writes Russell Goldman at ABC News: "Connecticut was one of three crucial races -- along with Pennsylvania and West Virginia -- that Republicans' had targeted for victory in order to wrest control of the Senate from the Democrats. In addition to Connecticut, Democrats early on retained their seats in Delaware, Maryland, Vermont and West Virginia."
  • It Was an Ugly Battle, writes Neil Katz at CBS News: "At times the campaign looked like a grudge match. Blumenthal ran TV ads accusing McMahon of being a bad CEO who didn't care about her employees and pouncing on WWE-related issues, ranging from wrestler deaths to raunchy programming."
  • He Beat a Wave of Cash, writes The Associated Press: "Blumenthal, one of Connecticut's best-known politicians, withstood an advertising onslaught funded by tens of millions of dollars from McMahon's own pocket and survived a scare last spring when it was reported that he falsely claimed or implied on repeated occasions that he served in Vietnam."
  • Means Dems Will Keep the Senate, writes Michael Grynbaum at The New York Times: "While Republican challengers have already picked up key Senate seats in Florida and Kentucky, Mr. Blumenthal’s victory, in a race where Republicans were hoping to poach a seat, underscored expectations that the Democrats would hold onto control of the Senate. Mr. Blumenthal may have benefited from heavy Democratic turnout: several polling places in Bridgeport, one of the state’s major Democratic strongholds, repeatedly ran out of ballots on Tuesday, prompting officials to extend voting hours there until 10 p.m."
  • You've Got to Realize This Is Connecticut, writes Joe Weisenthal at Business Insider: "Here's the big lesson: In Connecticut, the GOP wave never materialized, because Connecticut doesn't hate bailouts like the rest of the country. This was a point that Tim Carney made last week... in the NY suburbs, because people benefited so much from TARP and bailouts (because of their role in finance), the Tea Party wave never really materialized."
  • A Big Save for Connecticut Dems, writes Adam Lisberg at The New York Daily News: "The victory lets Democrats succeed retiring Sen. Chris Dodd with one of their own, even in a year when voter anger threatened to flip the House and Senate to Republicans."

Actually, according to Blumenthal he already served two terms in the Senate and won several medals. #CTsenless than a minute ago via Echofon