51 to 49; Democrats Control Senate
It's official. Republican incumbent George Allen has conceded that he lost the election for Virginia's top congressional seat to Democrat Jim Webb. The majority of the senate hinged on the tight race in Virginia, which some thought would end up in a recount because of how close the vote was. Jim Webb won by a slim 0.3% margin, a little more than 7,000 votes in a predominantly and historically Republican state. Last night, the Associate Press called the seat for Webb. Today, Allen's concession makes it official.
Republican Sen. George Allen conceded defeat Thursday to Democrat Jim Webb, sealing the Democrats' control of Congress and the political downfall of a man once considered a White House contender.
Allen said the "owners of government have spoken and I respect their decision." "The Bible teaches us there is a time and place for everything, and today I called and congratulated Jim Webb," he said.
Webb, a former Republican and Navy secretary under President Reagan, claimed victory early Wednesday after election returns howed him with a narrow lead of about 7,200 votes out of 2.37 million ballots cast. llen chose not to demand a recount after initial canvassing of the results failed to significantly alter Webb's lead.
"I do not wish to cause more litigation that would not alter the results," Allen said, adding that he saw "no good purpose being served by continuously and needlessly expending money and causing any more personal animosity."
The Virginia contest was the last undecided Senate race in the country, and Webb's victory tipped the scales, giving the Democrats control of 51 Senate seats and majorities in both the House and Senate for the first time since 1994.