NASHVILLE, AUG. 3 -- Rep. Harold E. Ford (D-Tenn.), the state's only black congressman, crushed two challengers in Thursday's Democratic primary, taking more than 75 percent of the vote in his reelection campaign.
Running under the cloud of a federal bank-fraud indictment, Ford swamped state Rep. Pam Gaia, who had about 20 percent, and Memphis businessman Mark Flanagan, who ran a distant third.
Two candidates in a down-to-the-wire GOP primary for the right to challenge incumbent Democratic Sen. Albert Gore Jr. were separated by only 11 votes as late returns trickled in. The victor in that contest will not be determined until after the last votes are counted this weekend.
With 95 percent of the votes counted, businessman Ralph Brown and conservative political economist William Hawkins both had 39 percent of the total.
Gore, 42, ran unopposed for the Democratic berth and is expected to easily handle whichever Republican he faces in the Nov. 6 general election.
Ford, 45, will face Republican Aaron C. Davis, 79, a political newcomer, in the general election. Ford was indicted by a federal grand jury in 1987 on bank and mail fraud charges, but jurors deadlocked in April after an 11-week trial. Prosecutors say a second trial will be held, but no date has been scheduled.
The eight-term congressman's backers have remained loyal. He contends the Justice Department targeted him because he is a prominent black leader.