Updated:ORLANDO, Fla. —
Ten-term Congressman John Mica has defeated freshman U.S. Rep. Sandy Adams following a tough primary battle that pitted two Florida Republican incumbents against each other because of redistricting.
"This race has been called the fight for the soul of the Republican party," Adams said. "I'm happy to report the heart and soul of the party endures."
The Republicans faced each other Tuesday after redistricting put both of their homes in the 7th congressional district, which includes parts of Orlando and areas northeast of the city. Either could have run in another district, but neither did.
The race between the two Republicans featured blistering attack ads and celebrity endorsements. Adams called Mica a big-spending politician who is cozy with President Barack Obama. Mica said Adams used dirty campaign tactics and her record in the state House doesn't match her conservative rhetoric.
"This race demonstrated that the voters appreciate effective, experienced and proven conservative leadership. In this election we brought together every dedicated Republican across Central Florida. This victory is the result of hard work, dedicated grassroots support and incredible support shown at the polls today," Mica said.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee backed Mica while former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin supported Adams.