MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Democratic Sen. Tina Smith has won Minnesota's special election to finish the final two years of former Sen. Al Franken's term.

Smith defeated Republican state Sen. Karin Housley on Tuesday. The election was a 10-month sprint, triggered in January after Franken resigned amid a growing sexual misconduct scandal.

Smith got a head start in the race when she was appointed to take the seat by Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton. Smith was Dayton's lieutenant governor and former top aide.

Housley tried to brand Smith as a political insider. But national Republican groups largely bypassed Housley's race, sinking resources instead into more winnable races in states like North Dakota and Wisconsin.