News & Politics

Warnock Declared Winner in Georgia Senate Runoff; Perdue Race Too Close to Call

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

Rev. Raphael Warnock, the radical, pro-socialist preacher from Atlanta, has been declared the winner of one of the Georgia Senate runoff elections held yesterday.

As of 8:00 a.m. Eastern time on Wednesday, Warnock held a 54,000 vote lead over incumbent GOP Senator Kelly Loeffler. The Associated Press and other media outlets deemed that margin sufficient to declare Warnock the winner.

Most of the votes that remain to be counted are from heavily Democratic counties.

Democrat Raphael Warnock won one of Georgia’s two Senate runoffs Wednesday, becoming the first Black senator in his state’s history and putting the Senate majority within the party’s reach.

A pastor who spent the past 15 years leading the Atlanta church where Martin Luther King Jr. preached, Warnock defeated Republican incumbent Kelly Loeffler. It was a stinging rebuke of outgoing President Donald Trump, who made one of his final trips in office to Georgia to rally his loyal base behind Loeffler and the Republican running for the other seat, David Perdue.

There were concerns from many state Republicans that Donald Trump’s heavy criticism of Georgia GOP leaders and his claims of voter fraud would depress turnout. This doesn’t appear to be the case, as turnout in many Republican counties exceeded expectations.

Loeffler was appointed to the Senate after Senator Johnny Isaacson retired because of health concerns. She refused to concede the race and said she will eventually win.

“We’ve got some work to do here. This is a game of inches. We’re going to win this election,” insisted Loeffler, a 50-year-old former businesswoman who was appointed to the Senate less than a year ago by the state’s governor.

Loeffler, who remains a Georgia senator until the results of Tuesday’s election are finalized, said she would return to Washington on Wednesday morning to join a small group of senators planning to challenge Congress’ vote to certify Biden’s victory.

“We are going to keep fighting for you,” Loeffler said, “This is about protecting the American dream.”

In the second runoff race, documentary filmmaker Jon Ossoff has a 16,000-vote lead over incumbent GOP Senator David Perdue with 99 percent of the vote counted. As with Loeffler’s race, most of the votes that remain to be counted are from Democratic counties, but Ossoff’s lead was deemed insufficient by media outlets to declare a winner.

As with the presidential race in Georgia, there’s a long way to go before two winners emerge from this mess. Donald Trump’s sabotage of the Republican Party in Georgia appears to be paying dividends for him. Even if Perdue manages to eke out a victory, the GOP in Georgia is shattered. That makes Trump far more powerful than any Georgia politician.

Fear of Trump’s wrath extends to the Senate, where a dozen or more Republicans are walking the plank for the president and will object to the Electoral College vote today. As Abraham Lincoln noted, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” Donald Trump will be testing that adage for the next four years.

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