Illinois state Comptroller Dan Hynes conceded the Democratic gubernatorial race this morning to Gov Quinn.
"The people have spoken, and the votes have been counted," Hynes, accompanied by family members, including his father Tom and longtime friend John Schmidt, said. "We rose up but fell just a little short.
"And if democracy means anything, it means that the campaign with more votes wins. We did the right thing, made sure all the votes were counted, and now we know for sure: That wasn’t us.
"And, rather than contest or demand anything further, let’s do the right thing again."
Hynes said the state needs "peace" now instead of turmoil and Quinn can provide that. Hynes said he’s backing the governor because of Quinn’s "basic decency."
It marked a sharp difference from the rhetoric during the often-bitter campaign.
The three-term comptroller had vowed to "continue fighting" when he addressed supporters late Tuesday, waiting until all the Democratic votes were counted following a close and often bitter contest against Quinn.
But Quinn claimed victory, and in the ensuing hours his lead grew to nearly 8,100 votes — an almost insurmountable number for Hynes to overcome and a margin that made it difficult to press for a recount. Hynes spent Wednesday out of the public eye as he pondered his next move.
Quinn is expected to hold his own news conference in the Loop shortly after Hynes is done talking. On Wednesday, Quinn called on Democrats to come together, but did not publicly push Hynes to end his campaign, saying he’s "not going to tell anybody what to do."
"I think Dan Hynes will do what’s right for the Democratic Party," said Quinn, who praised his rival for putting his "heart and soul" into the contentious race.