Guy Benson
UPDATE (1:32 am ET) Christine O'Donnell would "love" an endorsement from...Hillary Clinton?

(12:52 am ET) Mike Castle will NOT endorse O'Donnell in the general election.  This is bad form on Castle's part. Losing can be a bitter pill to swallow, but O'Donnell beat him fair and square--for better or worse.  The sore loser act is petty and unbecoming.  For what it's worth, Castle also announced he will not attempt a write-in campaign.

(12:29 am ET) Jim DeMint's 'Senate Conservatives Fund' has begun raising money for O'Donnell.  I think she'll pull in a massive haul from grassroots activists infuriated with the NRSC's decision not to help fund her campaign against Coons. 

(12:07 am ET) Presto-chango: Rothenberg Reports flips the Delaware Senate contest from Leans GOP to Leans Dem.

(11:26pm ET): Democrat Chris Coons is one happy camper in Delaware tonight.  Sad reality: If you thought some right-leaning bloggers (myself included, perhaps) were too tough on O'Donnell, you ain't seen nothin' yet.

Meanwhile, in a move that will surely rankle many conservatives, national and (almost certainly) state Republicans are so far refusing to back O'Donnell with any serious resources in the general election.  If O'Donnell produces yet another rabbit from her magic hat and wins on November 2nd, Jim DeMint may well be elected Senate Majority Leader.  If she loses (consult the poll below), the recriminations and finger-pointing on the Right will be intense.  I agree with Carol's point below that Sarah Palin has a lot of skin in this game.  We'll see what happens.

ORIGINAL POST:

8pm ET: Polls have closed and the votes are being counted

8:31 ET: With roughly 7 pecent of precincts reporting, O'Donnell leads 52-47.

8:41 ET: Almost 22 percent reporting, O'Donnell's lead over Castle balloons to 12 points, 56%-44%.

8:44 ET: Upset special? 37% in; O'Donnell maintaining double-digit lead.  At some point, Castle is going to run out of room to come back.  It's a small state.

8:53 ET: I think this is happening...O'Donnell up by 9 with 65% of DE precincts reporting.  Wow.

9:00 ET: No one has called it for O'Donnell quite yet, but it may come soon.

9:04 ET: An analyst for Charlie Cook's political report calls it for O'Donnell. 

9:12 ET: It's official.  AP calls it for Christine O'Donnell, your GOP Senate nominee in Delaware.  And it wasn't close.

Let the debate begin: Are you pleased with the result?

I happen to believe, based on considerable evidence, that O'Donnell's win will allow Democrats to retain a Senate seat everyone had chalked up as a lost cause.  I hope that I'm wrong, and will be rooting for her to win.

Guy Benson

Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Senior Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography