Tim Kaine is re-elected to senate seat

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(CNN) Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine will win re-election, CNN projects, defeating Republican challenger Corey Stewart, a vocal defender of conservative monuments.

The 2016 Democratic vice presidential nominee was never seriously challenged in a race that the national GOP stopped taking seriously after watching Democrat Ralph Northam coast to the governorship a year ago.

Stewart, a Minnesota native is the chairman of the Prince William County board of supervisors, campaigned on defending a Robert E. Lee statue in Charlottesville and defending the display of the Confederate flag as part of Virginia’s “heritage.”

National Republicans declined to back Stewart, and strategists working on House races fretted that his presence on the top of the ticket would damage several GOP incumbents in the state.

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