Former state Rep. Dale Crafts has officially captured the Republican nomination in Maine’s 2nd Congressional District following Tuesday's ranked-choice runoff.
Crafts finished with 58.5 percent of the votes in the ranked-choice runoff conducted by the Secretary of State.
The runoff was more of a formality, as Crafts led challengers Adrienne Bennett and Eric Brakey by double digits on election night, and both conceded defeat. Crafts was just shy, though, of the outright majority he needed to clinch the nomination without a ranked-choice runoff.
Crafts will now take on Democratic U.S. Rep. Jared Golden in a head-to-head contest that national prognosticators rank as a toss-up.
Golden holds a wide fundraising lead over Crafts, but the gap could narrow now that the Republicans have a nominee.
Outside groups who work independently of the candidates spent nearly $10 million trying to influence the 2nd District race just two years ago.