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Brad Finstad wins a special election to replace Rep. Jim Hagedorn, who died in February.

Brad Finstad, a former Republican state legislator in Minnesota, has won a special election for a seat in the US House, according to The Associated Press. He will complete the final four months of the tenure of Representative Jim Hagedorn, a Republican, who died of cancer in February.

Mr. Finstad, 46, defeated Jeff Ettinger, a Democrat and the retired chief executive of Hormel Foods, a Minnesota company known for introducing spam in the 1930s. The district, Minnesota’s First, stretches across the southern border of the state from South Dakota to Wisconsin.

In 2017, President Donald J. Trump appointed Mr. Finstad as the Department of Agriculture Director of Rural Development for Minnesota. He also worked as an area director for the Minnesota Farm Bureau and as an agricultural policy officer for former Representative Mark Kennedy, a Republican from Minnesota. Mr. Finstad was a member of the Minnesota House of Representatives from 2003 to 2009.

The two candidates became entangled over the economy and agricultural issues in the largely rural district. But in the weeks since the Supreme Court overthrew Roe v. Wade, Mr. Ettinger — who supports the codification of Roe v. Wade into federal law — turned up the volume of his posts on abortion.

Mr Finstad’s campaign did not think abortion would move the needle in the polls. “It hasn’t really brought in many voters,” said David Fitzsimmons, a general adviser to Mr Finstad’s campaign. “Voters seem to be talking about the economy, inflation, gas prices.”

Both he and Mr Ettinger were on the ballot twice as both men successfully ran from the seat in the regular primary for the full term. They are now heading for a rematch in the fall, according to The Associated Press.

Carly Olson reporting contributed.

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