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Wednesday, August 11, 2010 - 9:43am

Deal Wins Runoff Race

Former US Congressman Nathan Deal will be Georgia’s Republican candidate for governor in the November elections.

Georgia’s former Secretary of State Karen Handel brought former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin to Atlanta to drive voters to the polls, but it wasn't enough.

The race was so close, no winner could be declared Tuesday night. But Wednesday morning, results showed Nathan Deal a couple of thousand votes ahead, so Handel issued a statement conceding the race.

In it, she says she will give her support to Deal to unite Georgia Republicans rather than request a recount under Georgia law.

Spokesperson for the Deal campaign Brian Robinson says they were pleasantly surprised by Handel’s move.

"It was a selfless act. She put her state and her party above herself. Nathan was very pleased to get that phone call this morning," says Robinson.

Deal will face Libertarian John Monds and former governor Democrat Roy Barnes in November.

Barnes issued a statement congratulating Deal on his victory then criticized the Republicans for their out of state-endorsements and for focusing on issues he says divides voters.