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Bachmann’s 2012 race was the 8th closest in the country

Her 4,296-vote margin of victory was the slimmest of her career.

WASHINGTON — On Election Night, the Associated Press wasn’t able to call Rep. Michele Bachmann’s re-election contest until just before 4:00 a.m., her 4,296-vote margin of victory easily the smallest among House races in Minnesota.

Bachmann’s match-up with DFL challenger Jim Graves was so close that when Bloomberg crunched the numbers, they found only seven U.S. House races with tighter finishes than Minnesota’s 6th. Out of 435 races nationwide, the closest was North Carolina’s 7th, where Democratic Rep. Mike McIntyre won re-election by just 654 votes, or 0.2 percent.

Bloomberg credits redistricting with helping save Bachmann. The new district lines, redrawn by a state judge panel last spring, made the already-red 6th District more conservative, though Bachmann underperformed relative to both her past elections and other Republicans on the ballot — Mitt Romney won the 6th with 56 percent of the vote.

Devin Henry can be reached at