MILWAUKEE, WIS. (WEAU) - Standing before a crowd of supporters and more than a dozen TV cameras, Tommy Thompson conceded in what has been a grueling race between him and his challenger, Tammy Baldwin.
"I called her and congratulated her," he told supporters.
It is an ending that happens in any political race. But for Thompson's daughter-in-law , Notesong, it is a different experience.
"You know he just has a big heart," she said about Thompson.
She remembers the day when Tommy Thompson made it clear to her why he was running while they were on a drive together.
"He was very firm and said I'm not doing this because it's in my blood but because I care about the country," she said.
Hesitant to the idea at first, she says it was that moment that brought her on board.
"That sold me, I was 110% into this campaign," she said.
And it is that passion that makes an ending like last night's even tougher.
"I wanted, so much, to help lead back America to be the country of growth and opportunity. To build America for future generations," Thompson said.
He thanked supporters several times, outlining that his campaign was about a bigger picture, putting America back on track. A message supporters took to heart.
"I thought he was so classy," said Christine Ruesch, a supporter at the Thompson event. "He ended with the traditional Irish blessing, he congratulated the president and wants to see people work together again, I was very impressed by his speech."
Notesong was not surprised either and adds her father-in-law likely will not be looking at retirement but rather what he can do next in life.