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Hawley outlasts Schaefer in bloody primary battle

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – After a bitter primary, University of Missouri law professor Josh Hawley won a lopsided victory over Sen. Kurt Schaefer and will carry the Republican mantle into November as the party’s candidate for attorney general.

Hawley won with almost 64 percent of the vote, a near two-to-one margin.

The contentious race had been marked by attacks and accusations over credentials and past records with millions of dollars spent on advertising those attacks.

Hawley accused Schaefer of allowing Chinese interests to gain control of Missouri farms while Schaefer accused Hawley of being a terrorist sympathizer.

Schaefer touted his record as a prosecutor in Missouri, trying cases while pointing out that Hawley hadn’t tried a single case in a Missouri courtroom. Hawley pointed to his briefs filed in two Supreme Court cases to say he had beaten the Obama Administration and held back federal overreach.

They implied two starkly different views of how the Office of the Attorney General should work. Hawley envision(ed, s) an office to beat back federal overreach by fighting in court. Schaefer said that type of work was less than one percent of the office’s total responsibility and said he would focus on consumer fraud and prosecuting criminals.

Throughout the past two months, numerous polls had shown the race very close, often within the margin of error, with the candidates swapping turns in the lead.