Whitman Wins GOP Nomination for Calif. Governor

Republican gubernatorial candidate hopeful Meg Whitman takes the stage during a walk-through before an election night gathering in Los Angeles, Tuesday, June 8, 2010. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) AP Photo

Meg Whitman, the billionaire former chief executive of eBay, easily won the race for the Republican gubernatorial nomination, setting up a general election contest against former Gov. Jerry Brown.

Whitman took a large lead in the polls in the final weeks of the campaign after a negative ad war over which Republican was the most conservative.

"Whitman won't be shy about continuing to spend her personal fortune in her quest to replace Arnold Schwarzenegger in the governor's mansion," said CBSNews.com political reporter Brian Montopoli.

More Election Night Coverage:

Blanche Lincoln Narrowly Wins Arkansas Runoff
Nikki Haley Can't Avoid Runoff in South Carolina

The contest was the most expensive primary in California history, with Whitman spending more than $81 million and state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner spending $25 million.

Whitman, who has never before run for elective office, is the first woman to win the Republican nomination for governor in California.

Brown, governor from 1975-83, was unopposed in the Democratic primary.

More CBSNews.com Coverage of Tuesday's Primaries:

Winners: Blanche Lincoln | Nikki Haley | Meg Whitman | Carly Fiorina | Sharron Angle | Roundup
Anthony Salvanto: What's Next for the Big Primary Winners?
Jeff Greenfield: California Vote to Alter Primaries Could Have Huge Impact
Bob Schieffer: Money and Melodrama Shape Primaries
Marc Ambinder: How Did Sen. Blanche Lincoln Pull Victory From the Jaws of Defeat?
Women Win Big on Primary Day
Interactive Map: CBS News Campaign 2010 Race Ratings
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