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Steve Cooley Concedes Attorney General Race to Kamala Harris

| November 24, 2010
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UPDATE 1:08 P.M. Steve Cooley didn’t participate in the media conference call today conceding the AG race to Kamala Harris, leaving it to a campaign consultant to field questions. But a statement from the candidate himself has been posted on the campaign’s web site. A couple of interesting remarks:

β€œIt is unfortunate that someone who is a non-partisan non-politician could not overcome the increasingly partisan tendencies of the state, even for an office that by its nature necessitates a non-partisan approach…

I will complete my third term and finish my career as a professional prosecutor in the office where it began over 37 years ago.”

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UPDATE 12:05 P.M. The Harris campaign statement on Cooley’s concession below.

UPDATE 12 P.M. I asked some of the seasoned reporters around here if it was unusual that Cooley did not join in on the conference call himself. They said yes.

ORIGINAL POST:

Republican Steve Cooley has conceded the California Attorney General’s race to Democrat Kamala Harris.

In a conference call for the media in which Cooley did not participate (much to the surprise of reporters, lemme tell ya), Cooley campaign consultant Kevin Spillane said that the numbers in the extremely close, see-saw race just didn’t add up in Cooley’s favor. Cooley currently trails by more than 50,000 votes, few enough to make the race one of the closest in California history.

The campaign will not pursue a recount, Spillane said, as the odds of overturning the result didn’t merit the expense, which in California is borne by the candidate.

Spillane blamed the loss partly on Cooley’s limited name-identification. Cooley had not positioned himself as someone running for statewide office, Spillane said, while Harris had been running for three years. He said, “Cooley is not that kind of a creature” and called him a “non-politician.”

Spillane noted that Cooley received more than votes than top-ballot candidates Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina, and asserted that Whitman’s poor performance impacted the AG race. If Whitman had run a few points stronger, he said, Cooley might have won.

Statement from Harris campaign:

SAN FRANCISCO – The Kamala Harris for Attorney General campaign released the following statement today:

“District Attorney Harris thanks District Attorney Cooley for a spirited campaign and looks forward to working together on the critical public safety challenges facing California. The counties continue to tabulate votes, and District Attorney Harris believes it is only appropriate to wait until all the votes are counted before making a public declaration. She will be holding press conference on Tuesday November 30, the deadline for counties to report final counts to the Secretary of State.” – Brian Brokaw, campaign manager, Kamala Harris for Attorney General

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Category: Law and Justice, Politics and Government

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