Democrats closed in on control of the U.S. Senate with a victory in one of Georgia’s two runoff elections and the lead in the second contest. The Rev. Raphael Warnock won his race against Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler. The other Democrat, Jon Ossoff, held a narrower lead over David Perdue (R), whose Senate term lapsed Sunday.
Georgia U.S. Senate results Here’s what to know:
- Ossoff has a narrow lead over Perdue. If the lead holds, the 33-year-old would be the youngest newly elected Democratic senator since Joe Biden in 1973.
- In an emotional victory speech, Warnock noted he had received a vote from his mother. “The 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,” he said.
- Warnock will be the first African American Democratic senator from a former Confederate state.
- Election Day in Georgia came one day ahead of a joint session of Congress to certify the electoral college vote and cement President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.
- The runoffs were overshadowed by President Trump’s false claims of widespread voter fraud in Georgia in the November election.
Trump tries to sow doubt in results, drawing pushback from Ga. election official
In a series of Twitter posts Wednesday, Trump tried to stir doubt about the validity of the runoff results, prompting pushback from a top Georgia election official.
“They just happened to find 50,000 ballots late last night. The USA is embarrassed by fools,” Trump tweeted, one of multiple messages blasting the Georgia vote. “Our Election Process is worse than that of third world countries!”
Gabriel Sterling, a Republican who serves as voting systems manager for Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and who last month blamed Trump and fellow members of the GOP for threats directed at elections officials, responded in a tweet of his own.
“No Mr. President, there weren’t ‘found’ ballots,” he wrote. “We have known the number of advanced votes since this weekend. We saw record Election Day turnout. As of Monday 970,000 absentees had been accepted. 31k more were added in yesterday’s totals. That leaves 60k that came in yesterday.”
Trump continued his baseless attacks on the election, writing in a subsequent tweet that “these scoundrels are only toying” with the Perdue vote.
“They’ve got as many ballots as are necessary,” he added. “Rigged Election!”
Twitter labeled his assertions as “disputed.”
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