The 1990 United States Senate election in New Hampshire was held on November 6, 1990. Incumbent Republican U.S. Senator Gordon J. Humphrey decided to retire and not run for re-election to a third term. Republican Bob Smith won the open seat, easily defeating the Democratic nominee, former senator John A. Durkin.
The 1990 New Hampshire Senate race garnered national news after John Durkin, previously a senator from New Hampshire in 1975-1980, made a remark that was perceived as a racial slur against the Japanese. Durkin told reporters interviewing him, "If you want a Jap in the United States Senate, then vote for Bob Smith". "Jap" is a term that was frequently used in WWII to describe the japanese, and was, by 1990, considered racist terminology. The quote destroyed Durkin's campaign and he ended up losing to Smith by a more than 2-to-1 margin, a devastating blow for the ex-senator. 
Despite this, Durkin is much more well known for his victory in the closest U.S. senate election in U.S. history that spanned from 1974-1975, due to the entire election having been redone.