It was close, very close.

When the final votes were totaled early Wednesday morning, Senate District 57 incumbent DFLer Katie Sieben had won re-election to another four-year term.

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She defeated Republican challenger Karin Housley, 15,812 votes, to 15,206 votes.

In Dakota County, Sieben received 6,095 votes to Housley's 5,861votes. In Washington County, Sieben received 9,717 votes and Housley earned 9,345 votes.

Sieben previously served in the Minnesota House of Representatives from 2002 to 2006, and was elected to the State Senate in 2006.

"It was a good victory," said Sieben, "In view of the wave of Democrats being defeated across the country."

She noted, too, her election was gained in spite of the apparently large amount of money that was spent on the campaign by Housley campaign.

"I tried to run a positive campaign and focus on the issues," said Sieben.

Housley enjoyed the campaign participation.

"It was so much work for nine months and so many people were involved," she said.

She has no regrets, Housley said.

"It was a lot of fun and I am so glad I did it - having the opportunity to get to know a lot of people," she said. "I just feel it is important for people to step up. I'm numb and exhausted this morning."

There will be big changes in the Minnesota Legislature when it convenes in January. The Republican members will be in the majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

The status of the governor's office is unknown at this time. That race was too close to declare a winner when this issue of the Star Gazette went to press Wednesday morning.

"The state is facing a $6 billion deficit," said Sieben. "We are going to have to cross party lines to work together on this to reach a resolution, and if Mark Dayton is governor, as I expect he will be, there has to be a bi-partisan effort."