GOP's Perdue wins outright in Georgia

Businessman David Perdue (R) has won Georgia's open Senate seat, topping the 50 percent threshold needed to defeat former charity executive Michelle Nunn (D) and avoid a runoff election in January.

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Multiple networks have called the race for Perdue, who leads Nunn 57 percent to 41 percent with 77 percent of precincts reporting.

Democrats had hoped to knock off Perdue and make it more difficult for Republicans to win the Senate majority.

Perdue held a lead for most of the race, but Nunn had seemed to close in on him in the last month following revelations that he'd said he spent "most of my career" focused on outsourcing. 

But Georgia's conservative lean and a bad national environment for Democrats sunk any chances of a Nunn win, as Perdue retook a lead in the final polls of the race.

Nunn's loss eliminates Democrats' best chance of a Senate pickup in what's looking like a rough night for the party.

Perdue will replace retiring Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.).