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Menendez Wins Re-Election To U.S. Senate In New Jersey

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) -- U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez defeated Republican state Sen. Joe Kyrillos Tuesday might, CBS News projected.

Menendez, 58, will begin a second six-year term in the Garden State.

CBS 2's Christine Sloan reported Menendez was favored to beat Kyrillos, a Republican from Monmouth. He appeared before a cheering crowd in New Brunswick as Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run" played in the background, and directly spoke to every victim of Superstorm Sandy as he gave his acceptance speech.

"Let me thank all of the people of New Jersey – those who voted me, those who did not – under a difficult set of circumstances, and reaffirming our democracy," Menendez said. "New Jerseyans have survived an unprecedented storm. We are battered, but not broken; damaged, but with a stronger sense of community than ever before."

Menendez said his main goal is to fight for families affected by Sandy, and for the middle class.

Menendez was appointed in January 2006 to fill the seat of Jon Corzine, who was elected to a single term as governor of New Jersey that year. Menendez was elected to the Senate seat in November 2006.

Kyrillos, 52, is a commercial real estate broker.

New Jersey has not elected a Republican to the U.S. Senate since the 1970s. The last Republican to hold a Senate seat for the state was Clifford P. Case, who served from 1955 to 1979.

(TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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