Sabato, 25 Mag, 2019

Polls Close In Georgia's Closely Watched, Expensive Special Election

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Parmenio Sano | 21 Giugno, 2017, 09:26

AFP | Early results trickled in for Tuesday's closely-watched election in Georgia, the most expensive congressional race ever, with the Republican narrowly leading a contest that Democrats have painted as a referendum on Donald Trump's scandal-plagued presidency. It was silly to spend that much money on one congressional seat, and let's hope people chill out from now on. Leading up to the election, polls gave Ossoff a slight edge, but barely. Georgia doesn't often have competitive congressional races.

From day one, Ossoff had a very narrow target to hit while Handel had more room for error in this longtime GOP stronghold.

"There are more of us than we thought", said Tricia Gephardt, an Ossoff volunteer.

Some on the left were leading with their hearts when they got enamored with the Georgia Sixth District race.

The entire nation is watching the Georgia 6th District special election with bated breath, and each side of Washington favors one outcome over the other, but there is the strong potential for much-needed change no matter the results. I'm running to serve my hometown in Congress and I want to make them proud.

Republicans have held onto a GOP-leaning Georgia House district, a disappointing setback for Democrats who had hoped for their first big electoral win of the Trump era. But as an increasingly well-educated, diverse suburban district it is exactly the kind of territory that Democrats need to win if they want to gain the 24 seats necessary to reclaim the House in 2018.

Voting technology activists also are keeping a close eye on the Georgia race.

It turns out that they were motivated - as has been the case since at least 2010 - by the idea of Ossoff as nothing more than a Pesloi henchman. But Handel said that's not what she's hearing.

Spending on all candidates has been put at $US56 million, making it the costliest congressional election in United States history. The first-time candidate raised more than $23 million for his campaign, but most of that came from outside of Georgia from liberal enclaves like NY and California.

Republican retiree Miriam Asper told CNN that she feels that Handel's views reflect her own.

Handel said at her victory rally that she knew it was going to "require all hands on deck" for Republicans to hold on to the district. She also welcomed a parade of national GOP figures to Atlanta to help her raise money, with Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Paul Ryan holding fundraisers following Trump's April visit.

Voters "are not interested in Hollywood, California coming in and buying this seat", she told Fox News.

"I am thrilled to congratulate Karen Handel on her resounding victory tonight in Georgia's 6th District", said National Republican Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Stivers said in a statement.

That hasn't stopped the president from weighing in on the race. The Palmetto State district hasn't seen the erosion of support for Trump that Georgia's 6th did last November though, and Republican state Rep. Ralph Norman is expected to beat Democrat Archie Parnell, a former tax attorney and financial adviser. Most recently, Tom Price resigned the post in February to join Trump's administration as health and human services secretary. He lives near Emory University while his fiancee finishes medical school.

Ossoff conceded to Handel around 10:30 pm Tuesday night.

At Ossoff's party, the mood was different.

Handel and Ossoff have tried to say this race isn't about Trump or Washington, but the president and the GOP agenda on Capitol Hill have dominated the campaign.


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