Info Box: Read The News Virginian later this week for full details of Monday's interview with former Virginia Gov. and Sen. George Allen.
ALEXANDRIA -- Defeated Republican U.S.Senate candidate George Allen said Monday he will not seek elective office again.
"I'm grateful for the support, generosity and the votes of over 1.7 million people, but I have no intention of running for office again,'' Allen said during a 45-minute interview in his Alexandria office.
In a battle of two former governors, Allen lost to Democrat Tim Kaine in last week's election to succeed retiring Sen. Jim Webb. According to the Virginia State Board of Elections, Kaine received just over 2 million votes and nearly 52.8 percent, to Allen's more than 1.78 million, just over 47 percent of the vote.
Allen said he and wife Susan made the decision not to seek any future bids for political office during a weekend trip to Southwest Virginia where they attended the funeral of retired U.S. District Judge Glen Williams. Allen clerked for Williams for a year after graduating from the University of Virginia Law School in the 1970s.
"It was a wonderful celebration of his life,'' Allen said of the funeral for Williams. Of his decision made over the weekend, Allen said, "We had time to think about it and discuss things ... We reflected on the campaign. I'm proud we ran a campaign based on ideas."
Of the nearly two-year campaign, Allen said, "We gave it our all." He said he and his wife worked harder during the campaign than in any other they had ever waged for political office.
After suffering his second defeat for the Senate in six years, Allen said he has no regrets. "I'm obviously disappointed. But I'm glad I got out of the grandstands to fight for the people of Virginia," he said. "Susan and I love being with people."
Allen served one term in the U.S. Senate before losing to Democrat Webb in 2006. He also served as governor of Virginia in the mid 1990s. He also served as a congressman from Virginia's 7th District and as a member of the Virginia House of Delegates from the 58th District.
His future plans are not yet finalized. Allen only knows he will continue to preach for conservative principles. "As long as I'm breathing, I will look to advocate ideas,'' Allen said,. "I'm still a Reagan Ranch presidential scholar, and I still enjoy speaking on college campuses. I wil advocate for positive, constructive ideas."
Allen said he respected the effectiveness of the campaign waged by President Obama, and said the Obama campaign's relentless get out the vote effort impacted his chances.
"When you are running in a presidential year, the top of the ticket matters a lot,'' he said. Allen said the added factor of Virginia being a
battleground state impacted the turnout and the results of last week's election.