Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) beat Democrat challenger Cal Cunningham in North Carolina on Tuesday in what was a hard-fought race where the polls were once again wrong.
“With a vast majority of votes counted, Mr. Tillis was leading by just under 100,000 votes, according to Edison Research, in an election that drew more voters and political spending than any in the state’s history,” The New York Times reported. “The result was a relief for Republicans, who viewed the seat as a potential tipping point whose loss could have cost them control of the Senate.”
Tillis’ win comes at the same time that President Donald Trump became officially projected to win the state and its 15 electoral votes.
Tillis, 60, responded to his win by writing in a statement on Twitter:
Earlier this afternoon, Cal Cunningham called me to offer his concession. This was a hard-fought campaign and I wish nothing but the best to Cal and his family going forward.
I am incredibly humbled by the chance to serve the people of North Carolina in the United States Senate for six more years and I pledge to continue keeping my promises and delivering results.
I know that my job is fighting for the jobs of the hardworking people of our state, which is why my first post-election priority will be defeating COVID-19 and getting the economy back on track.
North Carolinians have a solid record of weathering storms and coming back stronger than ever. I am confident that we all can come together and meet this moment and am ready to get to work.
“I just called Senator Tillis to congratulate him on winning re-election to a second term in the U.S. Senate and wished him and his family the best in their continued service in the months and years ahead,” Cunningham said. “The voters have spoken and I respect their decision. While the results of this election suggest there remain deep political divisions in our state and nation, the more complete story of our country lies in what unites us: our faith and sense of confidence in our democracy, our civic values and common humanity, our shared aspiration to care for one another, and our belief that we live in a country that does exceptional things.”
“I’ll always be proud of the work we did together to lift up the voices of North Carolinians who feel left behind by our politics. I want to thank my entire campaign team for their hard work, the countless volunteers and supporters who joined our effort, the North Carolinians who turned out to vote in record numbers to participate in our great democracy, and the election officials who worked in the face of a dangerous pandemic to administer this free and fair election,” he continued. “The end of this campaign does not mark the end of our need to improve access to health care, strengthen education, heal racial wounds, and create better jobs. These are causes that still must be championed.”
He concluded, “Though this isn’t the electoral outcome we worked for, I’ll always be grateful to be a North Carolinian, and I’ll always believe that our country’s best days are ahead.”
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