Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Brady is conceding the Illinois governor's race to incumbent Democrat Pat Quinn, who now goes on to serve his first full term as the state's top executive. "I congratulated him on his victory, as he deserved," Brady said. "After days of counting ballots with potential outcomes, we came to the conclusion that Gov. Quinn won this race. He worked hard for it, and you can't take away his effort in this endeavor."
For Brady, the writing had been on the wall since Wednesday afternoon, when it became clear that the majority of uncounted votes came from Democratic strongholds in Chicago and suburban Cook County. And as the counts continued to roll in, the GOP state senator from Bloomington watched as Quinn's lead grew from 8,300 votes to more than 21,000, where it stood early Friday afternoon. The Associated Press Thursday called the race in favor ofQuinn. But even on Thursday, state Sen. Brady told reporters he'd wait until every vote is counted before decide to bow out. "Elections are elections," Brady said. "We were confident that we ran a great campaign. We were confident we had earned the support of the voters. And we were hopeful that we would have a positive outcome. We're still hopeful that we end up with that. And we're just going through something we didn't anticipate right now."
The latest count shows Quinn leads by more than 21,000 votes. The Quinn campaign said the lead is "decisive" and it's time to focus on the issues of state government. The state officially certifies the election results on Dec. 3.