While only one of the two Senate runoff elections in Georgia has been officially called so far, it was a great Tuesday night (Jan. 5) for Democrats.
It looks like the party is on its way to taking back Senate control after both Democratic candidates—Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff—outperformed in the usually dependable red state. According to the New York Times, Warnock defeated incumbent Senator Kelly Loeffler by 2 percentage points.
As of this morning, news outlets have not called the race between Democrat challenger Jon Ossoff and incumbent Senator David Perdue, but Ossoff has a lead of about 16,000 votes with 98% of the vote in, according to NPR. Most of the remaining votes are from Democrat-leaning counties that make up Atlanta and its surrounding area like Fulton and DeKalb.
Before the race was officially called for Warnock last night, he addressed his supporters on his social media accounts—a move which was viewed by most pundits as a victory speech. During the speech, he mentioned his mother who went to the polls Tuesday to vote for her son to become the first Black Senator in Georgia’s history.
“[My mother’s] 82-year-old hands that used to pick somebody else’s cotton went to the polls and picked her youngest son to be a United States Senator,” Warnock said.
If Ossoff can keep his late lead and win his race, the Democrats will take back control of the Senate for the first time in a decade. Each party will have 50 representatives, but incoming Vice President Kamala Harris will have the tie-breaking vote for issues that split down party lines.
Ossoff’s win will also mean that Mitch McConnell will lose his title of Senate majority leader to New York Senator Chuck Schumer. Democrats who stayed up late to watch results come or woke up early this morning were quick to point out that McConnell’s time was almost up. #ByeMcConnell is currently trending on Twitter.
With control of both houses, Democrats are likely to focus on a larger stimulus package once Biden is sworn in as President on Jan. 20. The President-elected has already stated that he would move to send Americans $2,000 for relief from the impact of COVID-19.