Republican Handel wins Georgia House election

All sides and sources have poured a whopping $59 million in the race. Ossoff needs a tie there to have a chance of winning, strategists involved in the race say. "Everything we're seeing is incredibly encouraging", she said, though she noted it's "very, very early". I think the media and pundits placed way more attention on this election than those of us here on the ground. "We need to have someone that we can depend on and rely on to make our voice heard". Yet Ossoff barely mentions Trump, talking instead in generalities about "restoring civility" and Congress' oversight role.

Media outlets declared Handel, a former Georgia secretary of state, the victor over Ossoff, a filmmaker and former congressional aide, about an hour-and-a-half after polls closed at 8 Georgia 6th Congressional District.

The first returns from the northern Atlanta suburbs have Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff seesawing around 50 percent. Ossoff hopes to maximize the district's Democratic base and pick up just enough independents and moderate Republicans who don't align with Trump.

Ms Handel has handled Mr Trump gingerly.

"This is such an important election because of what goes on in D.C.", said Tom Greathouse, 52, a business owner who supported Handel.

That has not stopped Trump from weighing in on the race. Ossoff grew up in the district but now lives just outside the border near Emory University, while his fiancee finishes medical school.

"I know a couple news outlets have called it, but as some of you know, I'm the type of person who likes to dot every "i" and cross every 't, '" Handel said, briefly addressing the excited crowd after several national outlets called the election in her favor. Georgia doesn't often have competitive congressional races.

Voting technology activists also are keeping a close eye on the Georgia race after new details emerged last week about a security lapse at the centre that manages Georgia's election technology.

Handel's party has held the seat since 1979 and the Democratic Party is putting up a huge expensive fight to put a Democrat in the seat.

The Republican involved in the race made a point of emphasizing that "there are no moral victories".

Handel thanked Trump for his support. National Republicans' House campaign arm added $4.5 million, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce chipped in another seven figures.

The president even weighed in on the race, although Handel distanced herself from him on the trail. Democrats would love to give him a taste of electoral defeat.

Still, all four of those seats are traditionally Republican.

And if she can't win a district like this, what Republican can?

For Republicans, it's about defense, with a healthy dose of fear.

Last month, Republican Greg Gianforte won a special congressional election in Montana, despite being charged with assaulting a United Kingdom reporter.

Tuesday night in South Carolina, Republican Ralph Norman won the special election to replace Mick Mulvaney who became the head of the Office of Management and Budget, according to the Associated Press.

Republicans immediately crowed over winning a seat that Democrats spent 30 million dollars (£23 million) trying to flip.

While Tom Price - who is now Health and Human Services secretary - won the district by more than 20 percentage points in November, Trump beat Hillary Clinton there by less than 2%. The race between Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel is s. Fueled by a rush of donors from around the U.S., Ossoff pushed for an upset in the suburban Atlanta district that Price repeatedly won easily. But in November 2018, Democrats are expected to have many better pick-up opportunities.

  • Leroy Wright