– Former Republican state Rep. Jim Abeler has won his party’s nomination for an open Senate seat.

The Anoka chiropractor easily beat party-endorsed activist Andy Aplikowski in Tuesday’s primary, winning 61 percent of the vote.

Abeler will run against DFL candidate Roger Johnson in the Feb. 9 special election.

The Senate seat covers suburbs north of Minneapolis.

The seat was vacated by GOP Sen. Branden Petersen, who resigned this fall.

ASSOCIATED PRESS