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Nevada’s Democrat governor has lost his reelection bid to Republican candidate Joe Lombardo, apparently conceding the race before it was called by local officials or media outlets. The gubernatorial contest came to a close as the two major parties wait to see who will control the US Senate after this week’s midterms. 

“While votes are still coming in – and we need every ballot tallied and every voice heard – it appears we will fall a percentage point or so short of winning,” Sisolak said in a statement conceding to Lombardo, a county sheriff who took 49.2% of the vote with most ballots counted.

Lombardo, 60, is a veteran police officer who served two terms as Clark County sheriff, and earned an endorsement from former US President Donald Trump. 

“I’ve dedicated my life to protecting and serving our community, and now, I’m honored to have the opportunity to protect and serve our entire state as your next governor,” Lombardo said in a statement shortly after Sisolak conceded.

The outgoing governor thanked his constituents and wished Lombardo success after taking his place in office, also noting that while he came up short at the polls, Democratic Senator Catherine Marie Cortez Masto is “on a path to win” and hold her seat in the upper chamber of Congress.

According to the Associated Press, however, Nevada’s Senate race is nearly neck-and-neck, with Masto trailing Republican Adam Laxalt by just one-tenth of a percentage point as of Friday night. Around 94% of the votes have been counted in the state. 

With Arizona’s Democratic incumbent, Senator Mark Kelley, beating out the GOP’s Blake Masters late on Friday night, Nevada and Georgia are now the states to watch to determine which party takes a majority in the Senate, which was previously divided evenly ahead of this week’s elections.

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