MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Democrat Al Franken has defeated Republican challenger Mike McFadden to earn a second term in the U.S. Senate.

The Democrat was the favorite throughout the race against McFadden, who was running his first political campaign.

The investment banker had painted Franken as too close to the president.

Franken's campaign played up his legislative work in the Senate, such as the difficult passage of a farm bill, while also attacking McFadden's business background.

Franken won the seat in 2008 by just 312 votes, defeating then-Senator Norm Coleman after a months-long recount.

His narrow win made him an alluring target for Republicans' efforts to regain control of the Senate this election cycle, but outside groups focused their time and money in more competitive states.