Control of US Senate to be decided in Georgia

Callie Harkins, Staff Reporter

Georgia is in the midst of a Senate runoff election that will determine which party controls the Senate. Both Georgia Senate seats are to be decided on Jan. 5, 2021, and all eyes are on the Peach State. 

For the Democrats, the candidates are Jon Ossoff, an investigative journalist turned politician, and Reverend Raphael Warnock, a pastor who is known politically for his role as a leader in the campaign to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. 

“Jon Ossoff has shown a lot of integrity and dedication through this whole campaign,” Young Democrats Club member Ahaana Naimpally (’22) said. “Even with Perdue refusing to debate, he was there and showed a lot of professionalism. I think he would make a really great senator.”

Across the aisle, the Republican candidates are David Perdue, the first term incumbent, and Kelly Loeffler, currently Georgia’s junior Senator who was appointed last year after then-Senator Johnny Isakson retired due to health issues. 

“As a Christian, I really like what both of the Republican candidates are saying,” Republican candidate supporter Daniel Meginly (’22) said. “I just think that faith is so important and I like seeing them echo that.”

In Georgia, election law requires a candidate to secure a majority of the vote to win. As none of the candidates broke 50% on Nov. 3, no one obtained the necessary votes to claim either Senate seat. Both runoff elections will take place on Jan. 5, with Perdue versus Ossoff and Loeffler versus Warnock. 

Following Election Day on Nov. 3, Republicans have control of the senate 50 to 48. The Georgia races could either solidify a Republican rule or tie up the chamber, giving Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris the deciding vote for the Democrats. 

Money makes politics possible in the modern era. As of Nov. 27, $58,337,175 has been flooded to Georgia as donors and Super PACs hope to push their candidate past the finish line come January.

As the fate of the Senate lays within Georgia, top officials from both parties are lending their support and money to the candidates. The battle in the newly declared swing state of Georgia is proving to be close. Come Jan. 5, the Senate power will be determined.