Florida Democrat Bill Nelson ends US Senate reelection bid, concedes to Gov. Rick Scott
Florida Senator Bill Nelson (D) ended his reelection bid, the New York Times reported Sunday, conceding the race to his Republican rival Governor Rick Scott.
The Nelson-Scott Senate race was one of several incredibly tight races in Florida which saw an unprecedented statewide manual vote recount. Nelson’s concession comes one day after Democrat Andrew Gillum conceded on Saturday to Ron DeSantis in the governor’s race.
According to The Times, Scott in a statement called for unity, saying “Now the campaign truly is behind us, and that’s where we need to leave it.”
“We must do what Americans have always done: come together for the good of our state and our country,” he continued.
The Florida elections, however, have been fraught with tensions over Republican fears of voter fraud.
Last week, Scott claimed without evidence that there was rampant fraud in both Broward and Palm Beach counties, blaming Democrats specifically.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement spokesman Jeremy Burns, however, said that he was told there are “no indications of fraud.” Election monitors in Broward County also saw no evidence of criminal activity, a Florida Department of Election spokesperson told the Miami Herald.
At the same time, Broward Circuit Judge Jack Tuter called for the rhetoric on criminality to be toned down in the week after November 6. “These words mean things these days,” he said, “as everybody in the room knows.”
Scott’s victory gives the Republicans another seat in the US Senate, increasing their margin 52-to-47.