Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, considered a vulnerable incumbent, moves on to the general election. GOP women prevail in primaries in California, South Carolina, and Nevada.
Tea party favorite Sharron Angle has topped recent polls in the Senate race, but businessman Danny Tarkanian and casino executive Sue Lowden appear to be within striking distance.
Lincoln is in a runoff against Arkansas Lt. Gov. Bill Halter, who is being supported by labor unions and liberal groups.
Soaring inflation and shrinking tax revenues will make it tougher for at least 25 states to fund public services.