by Chris Bowers, Thu Nov 09, 2006 at 08:47:53 AM EST
Burns, a three-term senator whose campaign was troubled by verbal gaffes and voter discontent, congratulated Tester, a farmer and state legislator.
"I stand ready to help as Montana transitions to a new United States Senator," Burns said in a statement provided to the AP. "We fought the good fight and we came up just a bit short. We've had a good 18 years and I am proud of my record." Well, he is just about the only one who is proud of it. Buh-bye. Also, from Virginia:U.S. Sen. George Allen is expected to concede the race for the Senate today.
Allen's concession to Democrat Jim Webb would pave the way for the Democrats to gain a majority in the U.S. Senate.
Allen will hold a 3 p.m. news conference at the historic Carlyle House in Old Town Alexandria.
The Allen campaign has been monitoring the local canvassing of the election results and has not seen enough change to affect the outcome. Webb won by about 7,000 votes out of 2.3 million cast. Assuming that Joe Lieberman caucuses with Democrats, that officially gives us control. I don't think there is much remaining energy to strip Lieberman of his seniority, since it could mean we don't take control. This could very well be a DLC dominated Senate for two years, but we will have the agenda, subpoena power, and much more influence over judges. However, considering that in 2008 and 2010 Republicans must defend a wide swath of seats, we will have the opportunity to build a much more progressive Senate relatively soon. And controlling the Senate at all is a vast, vast improvement on our previous position. In 2008, at the very least, I think we have good chances to win Oregon, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Virginia, New Mexico, North Carolina, and Colorado. It will be a target rich environment. Diarist jgkojak has more on this.
Maybe, in a way, it is better that it took two extra days for the Senate to officially become ours. That way, Nancy Pelosi was featured in the news for two days, and now Harry Reid can have his turn. It is particularly sweet that Montana and Virginia put us over the top, showing once again that the people-powered movement can make a big impact in red states too.