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Incumbents Mainly Win In State Primaries

INCUMBENTS fared surprisingly well in Tuesday's primaries for the 1994 elections, especially compared to primaries two years ago at the height of anti-incumbency fever. No members of Congress lost their primary races this year.

On the busiest primary night of the year so far, South Dakota Gov. Walter D. Miller was ousted by GOP voters Tuesday and governors in Iowa and New Mexico survived close calls.

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In Senate races, Republicans in three states picked challengers to Democrats who are considered vulnerable, among them California's Dianne Feinstein and New Jersey's Frank Lautenberg.

Senator Feinstein, who brushed aside token opposition, will face Rep. Michael Huffington in a millionaires' marathon that promises to be the costliest in Senate history.

In New Jersey, Senator Lautenberg easily defeated two primary opponents, but is considered beatable this fall. State Assembly Speaker Chuck Haytaian won handily in the GOP primary. Other results include:

* Republicans in New Mexico picked former Undersecretary of Defense Colin McMillan to challenge Sen. Jeff Bingaman, a Democrat who is considered vulnerable.

* In Montana, attorney Jack Mudd easily beat former US Sen. John Melcher in the Democratic primary, and will challenge Sen. Conrad Burns (R) in November.

* Sen. Trent Lott (R) of Mississippi crushed two little-known challengers and will face the winner of a June 28 runoff between two Democrats.

* In New Mexico, Gov. Bruce King claimed a narrow victory over Lt. Gov. Casey Luna in the Democratic primary. He will face Republican Gary Johnson, a millionaire construction contractor.

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* In Iowa, Gov. Terry Branstad barely staved off a Republican mutiny led by Rep. Fred Grandy. Governor Branstad now faces state Attorney General Bonnie Campbell (D).

* Alabama Gov. Jim Folsom defeated Paul Hubbert, a teacher's union leader, in the Democratic primary. Alabama Republicans will hold a June 28 runoff. Congressman Bono?

THE beat goes on for Sonny Bono. The onetime singer-comedian and former mayor of Palm Springs, California, has captured the Republican nomination for Congress in California's 44th Congressional district.

Bono knocked off five challengers in the race to succeed retiring Republican Congressman Al McCandless.

Former Democratic Assemblyman Steve Clut will face Bono in November.

Bono told supporters in Palm Springs that he'll lead a ``combat force'' against a government that he says has ``gone mad.''

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