The Republicans' best hope in years to win the governor's race, Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna, conceded defeat to Democrat Jay Inslee on Friday evening. Inslee was leading 51 to 48.9 on Friday night.
McKenna's campaign manager, Randy Pepple, who'd issued a video statement 24 hours earlier presenting a quirky take on the situation with some numbers on a dry erase board assuring his supporters that McKenna would eventually come out top, held a call with reporters on Friday acknowledging the campaign was over.
After defiantly saying the numbers would break his way despite three days of vote counts that went in Inslee's favor (Inslee went from a 49,000 vote lead to a nearly 56,000 vote lead by Friday evening), McKenna's campaign finally acknoweledged what Inslee's campaign (and the press) had been saying for days: The math—especially with Inslee's hefty advantage in King County, eventually 62-38—made it impossible for McKenna to win. McKenna called Inslee after the Friday evening count to concede.
“We’ve got to unite this state,” Inslee said at an impromptu victory announcement at his Seattle campaign headquarter on Friday night. "We’ve got some real challenges going forward and we’re going to all have to pull together. I represent 100 percent of the people of the state of Washington as of tonight.”