Towns beats young challenger in primary

September 9, 2008 7:11:40 PM PDT
Longtime Rep. Edolphus Towns has fended off a spirited challenge from a community activist and former "Real World" cast member. The 74-year-old Towns defeated 42-year-old Kevin Powell, who appeared on the first installment of the MTV reality show.

Powell sought to paint the congressman as an outdated, out-of-touch representative whom voters should retire after 13 terms. He also sought to position himself as part of a new generation of political activists, seizing on the excitement generated by Barack Obama's historic presidential bid.

In response, Towns flexed his own political muscles, calling in favors from Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and other top Democrats to show he can still deliver.

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