November 9, 2006
It was a difference of just a few thousand votes, but Thursday the candidates spoke. Senator George Allen conceded, and shortly after Jim Webb celebrated.
"It is Virginia that turned the senate blue, folks, it's Virginia," shouted Governor Tim Kaine as he addressed a crowd in northern Virginia Thursday afternoon.
As of Thursday night, Webb edged out incumbent Allen by a little more than 8,000 votes.
Thanking his campaign workers and the voters, Webb promised to get to work quickly.
"We will begin the process of putting this country on the track that it needs to be," said Webb.
Earlier in the afternoon Allen, also in northern Virginia, conceded his race for another term in the senate.
"The people of Virginia, who I always call the owners of the government, they have spoken, and I respect their decision," said Allen, as he stood beside his wife and Senator John Warner in front of a crowd in Alexandria.
Although in a race this close Allen is entitled to a recount paid for by the Commonwealth, he said he will not request one.
"It is with deep respect for the people of Virginia and to bind factions together for a positive purpose, that I do not wish to cause more ranker by protracted litigation, which would in my judgment not alter the results," explained Allen.
Webb's win in the Commonwealth now solidifies democratic control of the senate, and Jim Webb wasted no time speaking directly to President Bush on behalf of the party which now controls Capitol Hill.
"I'd also like to call on our president to publicly denounce the campaign tactics that have divided us instead of bringing us together," said Webb.
The votes will not be certified for several more weeks, but most political analysts said it was very unlikely a recount would have uncovered enough votes for an Allen victory.