Throughout the race, Murphy -- similar to many of his fellow Democrats -- worked to link his Republican opponent to the Bush administration and the war in Iraq.
Fitzpatrick, however, attempted to bring the election home, focusing his campaign on local issues.
Fitzpatrick backed the Bush policy in Iraq until early August when he revoked his support for the administration's "stay the course" policy.
Murphy, 32, a captain in the U.S. Army who served in Bosnia in 2002 and in Iraq from 2003 to 2004, has called for bringing American troops home from Iraq this year.
Murphy supports federally funded stem cell research and abortion. He also highlighted scandals in Congress, including the allegedly illegal exchange of gifts and services with former lobbyist Jack Abramoff, and called for reforms.
Murphy comes from a military family -- his father, brother and two of his uncles also served -- and taught constitutional law at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
Murphy graduated from Widener University School of Law in Harrisburg, Pa., and worked in the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office and the Harrisburg Civil Law Clinic. He is a lawyer at Cozen O'Connor and is married to Jennifer Murphy, a tax attorney.
Although new to running for office, Murphy has links to the Democratic Party through his previous jobs as a legislative aide to Democratic Rep. Thomas Tangretti and his involvement in Democratic Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts' presidential campaign.