After a hard-fought race marked by angry rhetoric about teachers and the intervention of national politics, Kentucky voters finally got the chance to make their decision at the ballot box.
In the end, Attorney General Andy Beshear was able to emerge victorious in a gubernatorial race being watched as much for what it says next year's national elections as it does about the direction of the commonwealth.
Both men were with supporters in Louisville on Tuesday night watching as the results came in.
The Democrats -- Beshear and his running mate, Jacqueline Coleman -- placed much of their focus on Kentucky's educators and their anger over moves by the Bevin administration to make changes to their pensions.
"I believe the more Kentuckians that come out, the better our chances are, because people are hungry for a governor that listens more than he talks and solves more problems than he creates," Beshear said earlier Tuesday.
Bevin, a Republican who has polled consistently as among the least popular governors in the nation, highlighted his anti-abortion rights agenda and close ties with President Donald Trump. He switched his lieutenant governor running mate this time out to Ralph Alvardo.
John Hicks and Ann Cormican ran a long-shot race on the Libertarian Party ticket.
On Tuesday after casting his ballot, Bevin said he was feeling good and confident.
“I thought we’d win by 6 to 10 [percentage points]. I still feel very confident in that," he said. "I’d like it to be more like 10 to 12. We’ll see.”
Trump and Vice President Mike Pence made high-profile visits in the final week before the election, including an election eve rally by Trump in downtown Lexington at Rupp Arena.
While Bevin basked in the attention and personal visits from Trump and Pence, Beshear worked to shore up votes and keep voters looking at local issues, including his support for expanded gambling in the state.
The story: turnout. 2015 saw about 970k voters. Tonight, Kentucky had 1.425 million, a nearly 50% increase. Beshear's final margin is less than 5,000 votes and Bevin didn't concede citing 'voting irregularities". But Beshear declared victory tonight anyway.
In the other statewide races, the Democrats didn't do nearly as well. Beshear will be the last bastion of blue in the Bluegrass for a while now.
But Bevin's still governor for a while, and he can still do some damage. A recount is coming, maybe more than one. I don't know.
It's not over yet.