Georgia voters to choose new representative in special election
iStock/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) — Voters in Georgia’s sixth congressional district will head to the polls on Tuesday in a runoff to elect a new representative in a race that has attracted national attention. The election comes following a vacancy left by former Rep. Tom Price, who left his post in February to join the Trump administration as secretary of health and human services.
In what has become the most expensive House race in U.S. history, Democrat Jon Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel are expected to go down to the wire in the district. Recent polls have the two neck and neck.
The race comes following an April primary, where no one secured a simple majority of the vote to win the seat outright, promoting the runoff Tuesday.
Democrats across the country see Ossoff’s candidacy as an opportunity to win back a seat in the Republican-dominated House. The 30-year-old documentary producer and former congressional aide hopes to mobilize anti-Trump sentiment seen in millennial voters, minorities and women. Handel, who formerly served as Georgia’s secretary of state, seeks to maintain her party’s hold on the district’s seat, which ranges back to 1979.
Donors from across the country have shown an outpouring of support for Ossoff, with fundraising efforts totaling well over $20 million, not including an additional $6 million in donations from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Ossoff’s campaign claims that their average contribution is $42.52. Over 95 percent of donations have come from outside of Georgia — a point of contention for Republicans.
Handel’s fundraising efforts pale in comparison, totaling at approximately $4.2 million. While individual donors may not have shown Ossoff level support for Handel, she has benefited from support from outside groups. Outside money from Super PACs and the National Republican Congressional Committee total at about $18.2 million in support of Handel, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Both candidates have expanded their efforts greatly since the April primary, at which time totals only amounted to $8 million for Ossoff and $476,000 for Handel.
President Donald Trump has been an active participant in the race, tweeting frequently in the run-up to April’s primary and posting Monday to urge residents of the district, which encompasses parts of Cobb, DeKalb and Fulton Counties north of Atlanta, to vote for Handel.
The Dems want to stop tax cuts, good healthcare and Border Security.Their ObamaCare is dead with 100% increases in P's. Vote now for Karen H
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 19, 2017
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