Nelson's concession to Scott significant on national stage

‘I, by no measure, feel defeated,' Nelson says

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Senate race in Florida is officially over.

Bill Nelson conceded to Republican candidate Rick Scott Sunday afternoon.

“I was not victorious in this race, but I still wish to strongly re-affirm the cause for which we fought: A public office is a public trust,” Nelson said.

Sunday’s concession marks victory for Republicans -- and a significant one on the national stage.

All eyes have been on Florida, waiting for the conclusion of this very close midterm election.

“I, by no measure, feel defeated, and that’s because I have had the privilege of serving the people of Florida and our country for most of my life,” Nelson said.

[Read more: Bill Nelson concedes Florida Senate race to Rick Scott]

Nelson’s loss ends a nearly two-decade run in the Senate.

“He has had a very distinguished career over 46 years in elected office — 30 of those years in Congress, 18 in the Senate, 12 in the House of Representatives and, of course, he was a member of the Florida Legislature,” political analyst Rick Mullaney said. “This contest itself was truly epic.”

News4Jax spoke with Mullaney about the significance of Scott’s Senate victory in Florida.

“For the Senate, it increases the margin,” Mullaney said of what this means moving forward. “They did have a 51 to 49 margin. And assuming Mississippi goes the Republican way, that margin will likely increase to 53-47 — very very significant.”

After Florida’s manual recount, Scott led the race for Senate by just over 10,000 votes. He shared this statement following Nelson’s concession reading in part

“I thanked him for his years of public service,” Scott said. “‘This victory would not be possible without the hard work of so many people like you.’”

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