BATH — Clerks are reporting a strong turnout by residents of Maine Senate District 19 in a special election to fill a seat left vacant by Democratic Sen. Seth Goodall’s resignation to lead the Small Business Administration in New England.

There are three candidates on the ballot in the district that covers Sagadahoc County and the town of Dresden: Republican Paula Benoit of Phippsburg, Democrat Eloise Vitelli of Arrowsic and Green Independent Daniel Stromgren of Topsham.

The month-long campaign drew more than $155,000 in independent expenditures.

For Democrats, loss of the seat would give them the slimmest possible majority in the Senate. Republicans, meanwhile, hope to generate some momentum in advance of the 2014 gubernatorial race.

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