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24 hours later, Roy Moore refuses to concede Alabama Senate race to Doug Jones

Republican Roy Moore refused to concede defeat to Sen.-elect Doug Jones in a message to his supporters Wednesday night, nearly 24 hours after losing the Alabama special election to his Democratic opponent.

In his first comments since losing the race Tuesday night, Moore never offered a concession despite trailing by nearly 21,000 votes and a 1.5 percent margin to Jones, who pulled off the major upset.

"We are indeed in a ​struggle to preserve our republic​, our civilization​, and ​our religion and to set free a suffering humanity. ​And the battle rages on," Moore said in the video message to supporters.

"In this race, we have not received the final count​ to include ​military and provisional ballots," Moore said. "This has been a very close race and we are awaiting certification by the secretary of state."

“I want to thank all of you who have stood with me," he added.

Moore initially floated the prospect of a possible recount Tuesday night. Officials have largely dismissed the notion that Jones will not end up in Washington.

Secretary of State of Alabama John Merrill said it was "highly unlikely" that Jones would not be certified as the winner.

Moore was the slight favorite heading into Tuesday's election to fill the remainder of Attorney General Jeff Sessions' term in office, but lost after turnout exceeded 40 percent on Tuesday — nearly double what Merrill said he expected.

Moore's loss was a welcome sight to some Republican lawmakers who had pressed for him to step aside amid several allegations of sexual misconduct with teenagers decades ago. For some, that weighed more heavily than seeing their majority in the Senate shrink to a 51-49 margin — a loss that will hit their push for tax reform and the Republican agenda at large.

Jones is expected to be sworn in to fill the remainder of Sessions' term after Congress returns from the Christmas holiday, which will run through 2020.



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