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Pete Lee, left, and Marc Snyder greet each other after the polls closed at the El Paso Democratic Party’s watch party Tuesday night in the Gold Room in Colorado Springs. Snyder prevailed in House District 18, which Lee had to vacate.

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Round three of the battle between Democratic state Rep. Tony Exum and Republican former state Rep. Kit Roupe ended Tuesday with Exum coming out on top.

It's the third time in six years the pair have faced each other for House District 17 in southeast Colorado Springs. It's the most volatile seat in Colorado, changing hands between Democrats and the GOP in every election since 2008.

At 9:45 p.m., Exum was leading Roupe with 6,522 votes to 5,304 votes.

The 2018 battle was one of the most expensive in the history of the matchup, with Exum spending more than $113,000 to more than $30,000 spent by Roupe, state campaign finance records show.

While the Exum-Roupe race was a rerun, the 2018 election also brought some new faces to the General Assembly. On the west side of Colorado Springs, former Manitou Springs Mayor Marc Snyder defeated Republican Mary Elizabeth Fabian and independent challenger Maile Foster for House District 18.

Snyder continued the Democrats' hammerlock on the seat, vacated by Rep. Pete Lee, who was prevented by term limits from seeking re-election and ran for state Senate, instead.

Snyder led the three-way race with 13,851 votes to Foster's 1,481 and Fabian's 8,785. He outspent his two opponents combined, plowing more than $120,000 into the race against $17,000 for Fabian and $35,000 for Foster.

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It was a tough race for Fabian, who entered the fray in late July after the GOP's nominee dropped out of the race citing health reasons.

Lee, meanwhile, moved up to the Senate, cruising to an apparent victory with 17,615 votes to Republican Pat McIntire's 11,511 late Tuesday.

The House veteran spent $112,000 in his Senate District 11 race against McIntire, who spent less than $20,000.

Lee said the Democratic victories could be attributed to hard work.

"I can say that Marc, Tony and I have been working hard," Lee said. "That''s what brings out the supporters is when they see us working hard on their behalf."

It wasn't one big blue wave, though. The Republicans successfully defended several El Paso County General Assembly seats.

Former El Paso County Commissioner Dennis Hisey, a Republican, bested Democrat Beth Hart for the Senate District 2 seat vacated by term-limited Republican Kevin Grantham.

Hisey had 29,866 votes to Hart's 15,988.

In House District 14, incumbent Republican Shane Sandridge defeated Democrat Paul Haddick by a wide margin. Sandridge had 18,750 votes to Haddick's 8,325.

Incumbent Republican state Rep. Dave Williams easily fended off a challenge from Democrat Brenda Krause to keep his House District 15 seat.

Williams had 13,558 votes, Krause 7,944.

Incumbent Republican state Rep. Larry Liston also scored an easy win against Democrat Andrew Smith in the race for House District 16.

Liston was leading with 14,435 votes to 8,240 votes for Smith.

Republican Tim Geitner held the House District 19 seat for the GOP in a race to replace term-limited Rep. Paul Lundeen.

Geitner was hammering his Democratic opponent Asia Zanders 25,434 to 7,868 for the seat in northeastern Colorado Springs.

In the Senate District 9 race, Lundeen beat Democrat Gilberto Armendariz 42,669 to 17,841.

In House District 20, incumbent Republican state Rep. Terri Carver held a wide lead over Palmer Lake Democrat Kent Jarnig. Carver had 17,426 votes to Jarnig's 9,854.

In House District 21, incumbent Republican Lois Landgraf topped Democrat Liz Rosenbaum 8,600 votes to 5,368.

Contact Tom Roeder: 636-0240

Twitter: @xroederx

Senior Military Editor

Tom Roeder is the Gazette's senior military editor. In Colorado Springs since 2003, Tom covers seven military installations in Colorado, including five in the Pikes Peak region. His main job, though, is being dad to two great kids.

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