Primary night is over. The votes are counted. All the winning candidates are pivoting to their general election battles.

But there are some yet-unexplored victors and vanquished out of Tuesday's voting. To help with that exploration, here's our list of primary winners and losers beyond the candidates whose names were on the ballots:


• Parties: Every DFL- and Republican Party-endorsed candidate won. These included some tough races. Rick Nolan, who had the DFL nod, came out ahead in the Eighth Congressional District primary despite challenges from two very active opponents. Dave Osmek, the GOP-endorsed candidate in the west suburban Senate District 33, eked out a win against state Rep. Connie Doepke.

• Foes of big recounts: The results were decisive enough in all statewide and legislative races that none of them look eligible for a taxpayer-funded recount. Only five local races appear to be in the recount zone. Candidates in other close races can request recounts, but the state will not automatically pay the cost.

• Comeback stories: Nolan won even though he was last in public office three decades ago. Former state Rep. Tim Faust also bested his DFL challenger in the Mora area. Faust is a comeback story several times over. He lost a bid for the state House in 2004 to Republican Judy Soderstrom by 79 votes, beat her by 731 votes two years later and beat her again, this time by 307 votes, in 2008, only to lose handily to newcomer Roger Crawford in 2010.

• Female candidates: All five of the GOP candidates endorsed by the VOICES of Conservative Women State PAC won their races. Eleven of the 15 DFL candidates endorsed by WomenWinning won their bids.


• Parties: Yes, parties were both winners and losers on Tuesday. Why? GOP activists are still talking about Kurt Bills, the party-endorsed candidate for U.S. Senate, and his 51 percent victory in the primary. They note that the two candidates who were not Bills racked up 49 percent of the vote, a sign that, at very least, Bills is not well known even among the 124,000 activist Republicans who voted on Tuesday. The DFL Party also got a little dinged. Although Nolan won, he did so only after the two other DFLers beat him up a bit and the party spent more than $150,000 and lots of on-the-ground time to ensure his victory.

• The August primary: Only about 9 percent of voters turned out. That's about 330,000 people. Backers of moving the primary to June are sure to find strength in the low numbers.

• The losing candidates: In the Eighth District, Tarryl Clark had campaign cash and outside support but couldn't pull off a win. That's her second big loss recently; she ran against U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann two years ago. Republican state Rep. Steve Smith saw his two-decade-long career at the Capitol end -- his challenger bested him by more than a 2-to-1 margin. Doepke lost her GOP primary by a smaller margin, just over 100 votes, but still seemed to show that support from the Minnesota Chamber and the Minnesota Vikings cannot best support from the Republican Party and the Freedom Club.