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Charles Booker officially concedes loss in Kentucky's U.S. Senate race

Posted at 10:00 AM, Nov 09, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-09 10:05:51-05

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (LEX 18) — Charles Booker, Kentucky's Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, conceded his loss in this Senate race in a statement released Wednesday morning.

The full statement:

After reviewing the numbers, and determining with my team there was no viable path, I respectfully concede my loss in this Senate race. The odds were clear from the start, but so was my faith and our collective urgency for change. For the nearly two years I ran this race, I was told it would be impossible to win. I understood what I was up against. More importantly, I understood what we were up against as a commonwealth. Our opponent wasn’t just Rand Paul, but it was also deep cynicism and disconnected coalitions that have been driven apart for years over wedge issues and deep rooted racism. I took a stand anyway, because I sincerely believe that change is possible in our beautiful commonwealth. Although I didn’t win at the ballot box, the result of this campaign has been a birth of new energy and hope in the most unexpected places. Kentuckians from the hood to the holler found their voices, and united around the common goal of ending poverty and winning our future. It reflected the spirit of the Rainbow Coalition, and proved that love still has the power to bridge divides.

I wanted this victory for Kentucky. I wanted this victory for our country. I never expected the Democratic Party to really help us. I knew we would be outspent. Yet, I knew that deep organizing, community building, and storytelling could galvanize the already growing fervor for change that has been spreading across Kentucky, and give us the ability to pull off a history win against corrupt, big money. This loss hurts because I was unable to overcome the obstacles I knew would come. I own that, and humbly ask that the people of Kentucky see my heart, and forgive me for not getting it done.

I’ll be praying on what is next for me, but I want to conclude by encouraging my team, our massive army of volunteers, and every person across Kentucky who has faced hard times and questions whether anything can change. Thank you all for taking a stand in spite of the odds. Thank you for your time and dedication. Thank you for using your own testimony to fuel this campaign. You have shown a light for the country to see, and I am so deeply grateful.

Kentucky, I love you and I will always fight for you. Thank you for believing by my side.

Booker is the first Black Kentuckian to secure the state's Democratic nomination for the Senate. In 2020, he barely lost the Democratic Senate primary to an establishment-backed rival Amy McGrath. McGrath lost to Sen. Mitch McConnell in the general election.

Booker lost the race to Rand Paul, who has won a third term in Kentucky's U.S. Senate.