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Cat in third place for US Senate seat

09:48 Sat Nov 10 2012

A cat may come close to securing third place in the race for the US Senate seat in Virginia, after receiving more than 6000 votes.

Hank the Cat, a nine-year-old Maine Coon from Springfield, has been running for the Senate seat as part of a spoof on the modern election process.

Hank's owner and campaign manager Matthew O'Leary has launched a website, Facebook page, and Twitter account as part of the prank, and has even released a campaign advertisement.

Running on a pro-cat, job-creation platform, Hank may finish among the top three contenders for the seat behind Democrat Tim Kaine, who won the election, and close rival and Republican George Allen.

Online statements show Hank the Cat's campaign has helped raise and donate over $15,000 to animal rescue groups.

Former governor and now Senator-elect Kaine ended up winning by a margin of nearly 200,000 votes.

But polls leading up to Election Day put the race as neck-and-neck between him and former Senator Allen.

At the start of the year, the Democrats' hold of the Senate was seen as increasingly tenuous.

But a series of gaffes from Republican nominees handed the majority party the momentum heading into November.