Democrat Keith Ellison came out on top Tuesday in the race to be Minnesota's next attorney general following a contentious race where both candidates had to respond to questions about their past.

With about 94 percent of precincts reporting, Ellison had about 49 percent of the vote to about 45 percent for Wardlow.

Ellison will be the latest in a long line of DFL attorneys general. Wardlow would have been the first Republican to hold the constitutional office in nearly 50 years. Noah Johnson was also on the ballot as the Grassroots-Legalize Cannabis candidate, although he recently threw his support to Ellison. Johnson drew nearly 6 percent of votes on Tuesday.

Interest in the normally quiet contest began to grow in June when incumbent Attorney General Lori Swanson decided not to seek re-election and instead made an unsuccessful bid for governor.

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