Nation: More Sound Than Steam

Once in a blue moon is North Dakota's timetable for electing a Democrat to the U.S. House of Representatives. In 74 years of statehood it has happened only in 1958, when now-Senator Quentin Burdick pulled a stunning upset.

Thus the state's Republicans were not exactly frantic when they learned that the Democrats were running a politically untested university professor in last week's special congressional election to fill the seat of Representative Hjalmar C. Nygaard, who died last summer. It would, the G.O.P. thought, be a snap.

As it turned out, the Republican candidate won—but...

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