Today is the day for the special election in the sixth congressional district of Georgia. The race is between seasoned Republican political veteran Karen Handel and Democratic newcomer Jon Ossoff.
The special election is considered the referendum on the Trump presidency, so far, as if the absurdity of it all isn’t apparent. But, what is noteworthy is that this is the district that Newt Gingrich represented. And things in the area have certainly changed, as the demographics of the Atlanta area are shifting to the left.
The polls on this race are pretty much a dead heat. What else is notable is the big impact that newly politically active women are having in this race and it is in Ossoff’s favor.
In the wake of Donald Trump’s November defeat of Hillary Clinton, many of these Georgia women have remade their lives, transforming themselves and their communities through unceasing political engagement. To visit Georgia’s sixth in the days before the runoff is to land on a planet populated by politically impassioned women, talking as if they have just walked off the set of Thelma & Louise, using a language of awakening, liberation, and political fury that should indeed discomfit their conservative neighbors, and — if it is a harbinger of what’s to come — should shake conservative America more broadly.
And then there is the money pouring into the district for this race. One of Handel’s criticism of Ossoff is that there is a great amount of money coming to him from outside the district. Act Blue has been an influential source for bringing in out of district money for Ossoff. The amount of money spent on advertising has been astounding.
An election-eve analysis by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution shows that roughly $42 million has been spent or reserved for TV and radio ads in the race – including about $27 million since the first-round of voting in April winnowed the field in Tuesday’s vote to Democrat Jon Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel. That doesn’t include the other cash spent by the campaigns and the super PACs and outside groups supporting them for other trappings of the campaigns, including direct-mail, staff payroll, consulting fees and digital ads.
The analysis shows Ossoff laid out $14.2 million on ad time and spent at least another $8 million on other costs. Handel spent $2.5 million on TV, radio and cable spots and had at least $1 million in other expenses.
And some of the ads by PACs are just ridiculous, as this ad is…
Both campaigns have denounced this ad, BTW.
So, most polls have Ossoff ahead by a razor-thin margin. Personally, I think that Handel will win.
But, I have my fingers crossed.