BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore is not conceding to Democrat Doug Jones, telling campaign supporters "it's not over."
"It's going to take some time," the candidate says during a brief appearance before supporters.
Campaign chairman Bill Armistead says that because the vote is close and approaching the state's recount requirement, "we do not have a final decision on the outcome."
Alabama state law calls for a recount if the margin of victory is less than one-half of one percentage point. With all precincts reporting, Jones leads by 1.5 percentage points — three times what's required to trigger a recount.
If the secretary of state determines there were more write-in votes than the difference between Jones and Moore, the state's counties would be required to tally those votes. It's not clear how that would help Moore, who ended the night trailing Jones by more than 20,000 votes.
President Donald Trump congratulated Jones on a "hard fought" win in Alabama, adding Republicans will have "another shot" at the Senate seat.
Trump backed Moore in the race, despite the multiple allegations of sexual impropriety against Moore. Trump cited the need for GOP votes on his legislative agenda.
Trump says on Twitter, "The write-in votes played a very big factor, but a win is a win."
Jones' victory will narrow the Senate Republican majority to 51-49. His term lasts until January 2021.