PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon Democrat John Kitzhaber and Republican Chris Dudley remained locked in a tight race for governor as ballots from two of the state's largest counties were still being tallied.
The candidates spent a combined $15 million on the race to replace Democratic Gov. Ted Kulongoski, who is leaving office after the two straight terms allowed by Oregon law.
Kitzhaber, a former two-term governor trying to return after a seven-year hiatus, was buoyed by a last-minute visit from President Barack Obama. He'd be the first Oregon governor to win three terms.
Dudley, a former NBA player and political rookie, ran a campaign supported by Oregon's business community.
The winner will face a projected budget gap of $3 billion in the state's next two-year budget cycle.
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