RICHMOND, Va. -- Sen. Mark Warner has defeated Republican challenger Daniel Gade in the race for a U.S. Senate seat.
Warner, who was considered a heavy favorite to retain his Senate seat, will now serve a third term in the U.S. Senate, a seat he’s held the seat since 2008.
The Democrat and successful businessman from Northern Virginia currently serves as the Vice-Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, one of the lead committees examining Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
Warner has been outspoken about the need for greater regulation of social media and tech companies in reference to protecting users data and combating disinformation.
With Warner's win, no Republican candidate has won a statewide election in Virginia since 2009.
Gade, a political newcomer, conceded the race to Warner Wednesday morning.
"I'm deeply grateful to the tens of thousands of donors and volunteers who powered this campaign and the millions of Virginians who honored me with their vote last night," said Gade in a statement. "This was an entirely grassroots campaign, fueled by Virginians for Virginians, and we far out-performed the expectations of the media and the establishment, despite millions of dollars of negative attacks and being outspent 4 to 1," Gade said in a statement via email.
"I will never stop fighting for our country and for the Constitution which sustains it, but this race is over. I concede and call on all of my supporters to recognize state and federal results with peace and unity. No matter the results of the Presidential election, in particular, it is paramount that every American realize that we still live in the greatest country on earth, and to work towards “liberty and justice for all.”
Polls closed at 7 p.m. after voting proceeded smoothly Tuesday across Virginia.
New voting laws and other changes made in response to the coronavirus pandemic made it easier to vote early, and more than 2.75 million voters cast ballots before Election Day. That's more than two-thirds of the total overall voter turnout from four years ago in Virginia.
Virginia Elections Commissioner Chris Piper said at a 4 p.m. news conference that there had been no major problems.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.