Karen Handel Wins! OPEN THREAD
- Author: Leroy Wright Jun 21, 2017,
Jun 21, 2017, 18:35
Trends leave Democrats hopeful they can win a House majority next year.
It was the most expensive House race in American history - far surpassing the $29.6 million spent by candidates and outside groups for the 2012 Palm Beach-Treasure Coast race in which Democrat Patrick Murphy unseated Republican Rep. Allen West.
Handel, 55, fended off Jon Ossoff, a 30-year-old Democrat and political newcomer who emerged from obscurity to raise $25 million from progressives across the country eager to express their anger at Trump.
Mrs. Handel praised her supporters and said she hopes to carry on the legacy of her predecessors in that district: Newt Gingrich, Johnny Isakson and Tom Price, who vacated the seat to become Mr. Trump's health secretary.
Voters braved heavy rain Tuesday, with the National Weather Service (NWS) issuing a flash flood warning for DeKalb and Southern Gwinnett Counties until 10:00pm.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) congratulated Handel on "a hard-earned and well-deserved victory".
His opponent, Republican candidate Karen Handel, hit the streets and held a rally to urge suburban voters to show up at the polls.
"There are more of us than we thought", said Tricia Gephardt, an Ossoff volunteer.
Trump won the district by just 1 percentage point in last year's presidential election, giving Democrats a new sense of hope. Republicans hit him on that, while Democrats focused on Handel's support from "dark money". Mr Trump had earlier tweeted his congratulations to the Republican candidate: "Congratulations to Karen Handel on her big win in Georgia 6th". But she made clear she would work to pass major elements of the Republican agenda, including health care and tax overhauls.
Throughout the campaign Ms Handel he had stressed her local roots, and mocked the fact that Mr Ossoff, who grew up in the district, no longer lived there and was therefore not able to vote for himself.