Georgia’s Runoff Races Are Usually Disasters for Dems. This Time Is Different.

12.09.2020 - By The Mother Jones Podcast

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You might be breathing a deep sigh of relief that the 2020 elections are finally over. But spare a thought for our friends in Georgia. Voters there are still being bombarded with political ads, national attention, and oodles of fresh campaign cash because they are about to decide, in two contests on January 5, who controls the US Senate. Runoff elections like these in Georgia are typically disasters for Democrats, explains our voting rights reporter Ari Berman. But organizing against voter suppression and high turnout in November are giving Democrats hope that these Senate races could be different this time around. Democrats have believed for some time that a rapidly diversifying electorate would allow them to be competitive in Georgia, but repeated voter suppression efforts had kept that electorate from fully forming. Now, two years of activism have created the conditions for Joe Biden to carry the state by just under 12,000 votes, making him the first Democratic presidential candidate in 28 years to win Georgia, amid record turnout. That electorate is now giving Democrats hope that Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff can win runoff elections that would have seemed almost unwinnable in past years. While Republicans are melting down over Trump’s false allegations of voter fraud, Democrats and Black organizers are now focused on electing a majority in the US Senate that can pass Biden’s legislative agenda. They might just make history.

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