Huffpost Politics

Jay Inslee Election Results: Democratic Candidate For Washington Governor Beats Rob McKenna

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Jay Inslee (D) was elected the Governor of Washington, the AP reports.

Inslee's opponent, Republican Rob McKenna, conceded on Friday.

Inslee was a U.S. congressman from Washington until March 2012. He resigned to focus on his gubernatorial campaign. McKenna is the state's Attorney General.

Randy Pepple, McKenna's campaign manager, told reporters that the candidate decided to concede when it was clear the polls just weren't in his favor. According to Pepple, McKenna had been trailing Insee by about 42,000 votes when he decided to concede.

Here's more on the closely-watched race from the AP:

OLYMPIA, Wash. — Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna is conceding defeat.

Campaign manager Randy Pepple told reporters Friday night that McKenna called Democrat Jay Inslee to congratulate him. Inslee had steadily held a 51 percent advantage in the race as ballots were counted this week.

The decision brings to end one of the most watched, most expensive gubernatorial races in the country. The two candidates and outside political groups raised and spent some $40 million in the race.

McKenna had portrayed himself as a moderate with a plan to increase funding for education. Inslee had touted his plans to spur job growth by investing in clean energy and other specific sectors.

Both candidates vowed to not raise taxes. Those policies will be put to the test in January, when lawmakers begin negotiations over how to deal with a budget shortfall and the need for more education funding.

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