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Transcript: Edwards Concession Speech

Wednesday, November 3, 2004; 2:07 PM

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President Bush claims victory after John F. Kerry concedes the 2004 presidential election.
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Following is the transcript of Sen. John Edwards' concession speech at Faneuil Hall in Boston, Mass.

EDWARDS: Thank you.

Well, it was a long night and a long morning, and even though the outcome won't change, I want you to know that we will continue to fight for every vote.

(APPLAUSE)

Because every vote matters in our America and we will honor each one of you who stood with us and who stood in line to change your country.

We believe in you. We didn't stop fighting for you when this campaign began and we won't stop fighting for you when this campaign ends.

(APPLAUSE)

EDWARDS: Your cause will always be our cause. And nothing makes John and me prouder than standing with all of you.

In this hour, I'm held up by the love of my life, Elizabeth, and by our beautiful children.

(APPLAUSE)

And I draw great strength by standing with the man I fought alongside with the last four months, his beautiful wife Teresa and his wonderful daughters and sons.

(APPLAUSE)

EDWARDS: John Kerry is a great American.

(APPLAUSE)

To be a part of the most important election of our lifetime and to fight for so many things of value and consequence, it was nothing short of an honor to work with such a kind, caring and remarkable man.

You cannot fight 18 hours a day, seven days a week unless you love America.

EDWARDS: And John loves this country.

(APPLAUSE)

In this campaign, we worked hard and we hoped that the results would be different. And I want to talk to the tens of millions of people who worked alongside us, who believed in our cause and who stood with us.

You can be disappointed, but you cannot walk away. This fight has just begun.

(APPLAUSE)

Together we will carry on and we will be with you every step of the way.

You stood in line for 10 hours because you want your government to stand up for you. You stood in the rain to vote because you want to build one America. You missed classes, field hockey, soccer practices.

EDWARDS: You stood for hours and hours to let your voices be heard. Well, we heard you. And I want you to hear me.

This campaign may end today. But the battle for you and the hark-working Americans who built this country rages on.

The battle rages for the factory worker and the mill worker who says, "I want to work. I just want a job."

The battle rages on for the mother who sits in the emergency room with her daughter and wonders how she is going to pay the bill.

The battle rages on for the young person who's worked hard and wants to go to collect but doesn't have the money to pay for it.

It goes on for the young child who doesn't understand why they are treated differently just because of the color of their skin.

And it rages on for the mother who wants to know why her son was sent over there and will not come home.

This fight will continue in our homes and in our union halls, in our churches, and in our schools, in our offices and over the Internet.

EDWARDS: We will keep marching toward that one America and we're not going to stop until we get there.

(APPLAUSE)

You know, I've learned a lot of lessons in my life. Two of the most important are first, there will always be heartache and struggle. You can't make it go away. But the other is that people of good and strong will can make a difference. And we can make a difference. Rest assured, we will make a difference.

One lesson is a sad lesson, but the other lesson is inspiring. And we are Americans, and so we choose to be inspired.

We choose to be inspired because we know we can do better, because this is America, where everything is still possible.

EDWARDS: And at the end of our heartache today resides an eternal hope for the country we're going to fight for and the country we're going to build together.

Ladies and gentlemen, the man who never surrendered his hopes and dreams for the country he loves so much, Senator John Kerry.


© 2004 FDCH E-Media