Georgia Senate runoffs live

Live commentary on today’s Georgia Senate runoffs. This post will also follow tomorrow’s certification of the Electoral College. Guest post by Adrian Beaumont.

8:18pm At about 3:40am Washington time, the Electoral College vote was finally certified. As expected, Biden won by 306 votes to 232.

8:15pm The last post was about the objection to Arizona. For Pennsylvania, 138 Republicans objected to democracy, with just 64 opposed. That’s 68% of House Republicans who objected to democracy. In the Senate, only seven of the 51 current Republicans objected.

4:20pm In the House, 121 Republicans voted to object, with 83 opposed, so 59% of all House Republicans that cast a vote objected to democracy, with Democrats unanimously opposed. The roll call shows that House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy voted to object.

2:15pm Despite the riots, six anti-democratic Republican senators have objected to the certification of the Electoral College. Their names are: Cruz, Hyde-Smith, Kennedy, Hawley, Marshall and Tuberville. Tuberville defeated Democrat Doug Jones in Alabama in November.

12:15pm In a YouGov snap poll on today’s riots at the Capitol, by 62-32 voters saw them as a threat to democracy, but Republicans disagreed by 68-27. Overall, voters thought Trump should be immediately removed from office by 50-42, but Republicans disagreed by 85-10.

12:07pm Ossoff’s lead now up to 0.8% or over 25,000 votes, with more Dem friendly votes left to count.

9:15am Not the most important news today, but US media have CALLED the Georgia regular Senate election for Jon Ossoff, who currently leads Perdue by 0.6% or over 27,000 votes. The Senate will be tied at 50-50, with Democrats making three net gains this election cycle. Kamala Harris will have the casting vote to give Democrats control of the Senate.

7:33am Since the November election, Trump and his henchmen have ranted about how the election was stolen. The violent protests in the US Capitol today are a direct result of these completely unfounded election fraud claims.

7:22am Trump supporters have stormed the US Capitol as Congress was supposed to meet to certify the Electoral College vote. Mike Pence will not attempt to overturn the results, and Mitch McConnell has condemned those who would object.

7:15am Thursday The vast majority of outstanding votes are in Democratic counties, so both Ossoff and Warnock will extend their leads.

9:11pm Ossoff now leads by 0.4% with 98% in. The projection is still for an Ossoff win by 1.1%.

6:24pm Some more of DeKalb is in, putting Warnock up by 1.0% and Ossoff retakes the lead from Perdue by 0.2% or 9.5k votes. The networks and the AP have CALLED for Warnock.

5:37pm Apparently there’s a technical glitch in DeKalb county that is delaying the count of votes that should put Ossoff over the top.

5:30pm A small turnout differential in Democrats’ favour was partly responsible for the result. Also, in November Perdue won by 1.8% while Biden defeated Trump by 0.3% in Georgia. There were a small number of Biden/Perdue voters who this time likely voted Dem.

5:26pm Compared with November, turnout was slightly higher in Biden and Black precincts than in Trump and rural precincts, but not much higher. Overall turnout will be about 90% of November levels.

4:40pm There are still votes remaining in DeKalb, which is only at 91% reported. When those votes report, Ossoff should take and keep the lead.

3:56pm Wasserman CALLS the regular Senate election for Ossoff. That gives Democrats two Senate gains from Georgia, and the Senate is tied 50-50. Kamala Harris will break the tie for the Dems.

3:40pm Perdue and Ossoff almost tied now, with Perdue ahead by a few hundred votes.

3:36pm Perdue’s lead down to just 0.08%.

3:30pm Perdue leads by 0.2% with 95% in, but there’s still more metro Atlanta left, while Rep counties are used up.

3:19pm A big Dem dump reported, and now it’s Warnock by 0.8% and Perdue by just 0.07% with 95% in.

3:10pm Despite a current Perdue lead of 3% with 91% in, the Needle has Ossoff winning by 1.0% with a 92% win probability.

2:56pm With 90% in, Perdue’s margin drops back to 2.6%, and the Needle has Ossoff winning by 1.0% with an 88% win probability.

2:47pm The Needle goes to at most 95% win probability, and Warnock is at that point. After that, it waits for official calls.

2:42pm While Perdue currently leads Ossoff by 3.0% with 87% reporting, the Needle thinks Ossoff will win by 1.0% and gives him an 81% chance to win. There are many more heavily Dem favouring votes yet to report.

2:17pm Ossoff’s win probability up to 76%, while Warnock is at 90%.

2:07pm The Needle has Ossoff’s win probability up to 73%, while Warnock is at 87%. If Ossoff wins, Republicans will be cursing the Libertarian who got 2.3% in November, denying Perdue an outright win.

1:55pm There’s still lots more votes left in Atlanta, which is why the Needle has projected final margins of Ossoff by 1.0% and Warnock by 1.7%, even though both Republicans are currently ahead in the raw vote count. Ossoff’s win probability up to 70%.

1:44pm Wasserman CALLS the Senate by-election for Warnock (D).

1:40pm With 78% in, it’s Loeffler by 0.6% and Perdue by 1.3%. But the projected margins are Warnock by 1.7% and Ossoff by 1.0%.

1:28pm With 69% counted, both Republicans have taken the lead, Perdue by 1.1% and Loeffler by 0.35%. However, there’s lots more votes left in the Dem-heavy Atlanta area, and the projected margins are Warnock by 1.6% and Ossoff by 0.9%.

1:09pm Just had lunch, and there’s been a big narrowing in the Dem leads. With 63% in, it’s Warnock by 0.6% and Ossoff by just 0.04%. However, the Needle is more confident in both Dems, with Warnock projected to win by 1.4% (68% chance) and Ossoff by 0.7% (60% chance).

12:42pm With 49% in, it’s Warnock by 8 and Ossoff by 7. The Needle has Warnock by 1.2% and Ossoff by 0.7%, with both Dems at around 60% win probability. There’s still a lot of election day vote to come.

12:25pm With 42% reporting, Warnock leads by 11 and Ossoff by 10. The Needle has both races tilting Dem, with Warnock up 1.2% and Ossoff up 0.8%.

12:22pm Wasserman has a good result for both Democrats from Washington county.

12:17pm Wasserman says that many very rural, very Republican counties are below 90% of November turnout. We already know that DeKalb will be over 90% of November levels.

12:11pm With 29% in, it’s Warnock by 4 and Ossoff by 3. Warnock has a 60% chance to win, Ossoff 57%.

11:56am Both Democrats up by 12 with 18% in, and both leading on the Needle by 0.5-1.0%. Both races now classes as Tilting Democrat, from Flip a Coin.

11:52am Dave Wasserman tweets that Republicans trail Trump’s numbers by a point or two in Lanier county with only 86% of November turnout.

11:45am Ossoff now up by more than Warnock (6 vs 3) with 11% in. The Needle has both Dems ahead by under 1%.

11:37am With 9% reporting, it’s Warnock by 14 and Ossoff by 12. The Needle still has both Democrats barely ahead.

11:27am Democratic counties are reporting far earlier than in November. It’s currently Warnock by 30 and Ossoff by 27, but the Needle has both Democrats barely ahead.

11am New York Times results available here, with a Needle for both races.

10:30am Looks like good turnout news for Democrats: DeKalb county (83% Biden) is at 90% of November turnout levels with an hour until polls close.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is an honorary associate at the University of Melbourne. His work on electoral matters for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

After the November election, Republicans had a 50-48 lead over Democrats in the Senate. The final two seats, both in Georgia, went to runoffs that will be decided today. If Democrats win both of these contests, they will tie Republicans at 50-50 in the Senate, and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris would cast the tie breaking vote.

The FiveThirtyEight poll aggregate has both Democrats moving into slight leads, with Jon Ossoff (D) leading David Perdue (R) by 1.8% and Raphael Warnock (D) leading Kelly Loeffler (R) by 2.1%. Ossoff has gained 0.9% and Warnock 0.3% since Saturday’s article.

Polls in Georgia close at 11am AEDT. In November, the counting was slow in Georgia, with initial results strong for Republicans owing to a rural bias. The suburbs around Atlanta did not start reporting until late on election night.

Concerning tomorrow’s Congressional certification of the Electoral College, all I have to add to Saturday’s article is that at least 12 Republican senators will join Josh Hawley in objecting to the results.

On Sunday, Democrat Nancy Pelosi was re-elected as Speaker of the House of Representatives, winning 216 votes to 209 for Republican Kevin McCarthy. There were two votes for other candidates. Pelosi needed a majority of all candidate votes. As there were 427 such votes, she needed 214, so exceeded the required majority by two.

337 comments on “Georgia Senate runoffs live”

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  1. The wash-up of the US elections has produced an outcome many Americans would be happy with: Trump out of the White House decisively (7 million votes) and Democrats with bare majorities in both chambers of Congress. This will allow Biden to pursue modest objectives and pretty much guarantee he can get appointments through the Senate, but the tightness of the Democrat margins in Congress will guarantee Government from the centre. How this plays out in the 2022 mid-term elections will be fascinating, especially in the Senate where the Republicans will be defending the 20 seats they won in 2016 (originally it was 21, before Loeffler’s loss today). Democrats would be hoping to pick up Senate seats in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

  2. Dotard’s star is on the wane, bad campaign for Georgia, petulant whingeing, anti-democratic, splitting the Republican Party.

    Of the 52 GOP senators present tomorrow;

    13 have said they will challenge the results
    25 have said they will vote to confirm the Electoral College numbers (including Mitch McConnell)
    14 are snivelling cowards, hiding under their chairs, afraid to say anything

    After the pending clean sweep of Georgia, and losing control of the Senate, the move to take back control of the Party and send Dotard and his spawn packing must be growing

  3. “ I expect the filibuster and Supreme Court will be addressed along with adding DC and Puerto Rico to statehood.”

    If the Democrats don’t deal with those issues now they are fools. Constitutional change in USA with partisan politics is very hard. So the Republican stranglehold on the Senate is not going away thanks to those many small states. For both self-interest and representational equity DC and Puerto Rico should become States. They have larger populations than several small existing states.

    Same with the Supreme Court – its now or never for the Democrats. To me it would be a betrayal of the many women and minority voters who supported them if they left the courts (not only SC) unaddressed, since they have been comprehensively stacked by a party that represents no more than 45% of American even with full voter turnout.

    In USA as here, dealing with climate change is no longer a difficult issue given one non-corrupt government, since the solutions are now both cheaper and generate more jobs. Given that coal states like Wyoming, West Virginia and Kentucky are all staunchly Republican, there is little to lose from acting, and considerable economic and political capital to gain.

    Incidentally, today means Australia really has become an island in CC policy. Now only Russia, Saudi Arabia and maybe Turkey are in the same corner as us. Our natural allies?

  4. Andrew_Earlwood @ #225 Wednesday, January 6th, 2021 – 5:02 pm

    “ Edit: The War on Drugs and the racist incarceration rates associated with it is over.”

    You do realise that the real issue relates to meth, right?

    Abso-bleedin-lutely. Though I read that the Mexicans are trying their best to make heroin a thing again. Maybe because the Chinese have the Meth market cornered. And they are more ruthless! Than the Mexicans even! 😆

    As far as the filibuster is concerned, I believe Biden’s advisers and tacticians are smarter than the Republicans’ for once in a long time, as they’ve certainly been playing their cards right since the election. What I have read is that Biden is going to play nice for a while but if the Repugs don’t play ball then he is going to resort to the expanded Executive Powers that Trump thoughtfully ( 😀 ) carved out for him. And the Republicans can just sit on their filibuster and rotate endlessly.

  5. At 33, Jon Ossof should be there as long as that other guy who came into the Senate at a young age. What was his name again? Oh yes, Joe Biden. 🙂

  6. The Chinese contribution to meth is to change the precursor of choice from pseudo-ephedrine to ephedrine in large scale amounts.

    The meth problems however transcend C@t’s sinophobia.

    C@t: executive powers may be crimped significantly by the present Supreme Court. They are also temporary, and simply cannot go as far as actual legislation. It might be messy and brutal – it might even provoke a massive political backlash and civil unrest, but Biden and democrats are fools if they don’t move to fix the Supreme Court and add in new states as the first order of business.

  7. Of the 52 GOP senators present tomorrow

    Or 51? Not that it makes a lot of difference at the moment.

    Perdue was elected in the 2014 class. His six-year term began in January 2015 and will end when the current Congress gives way to the new body. Because that happens before the runoffs, Perdue will technically be a former senator when polls open Jan. 5.

    But these numbers are potentially interesting.

    13 have said they will challenge the results
    25 have said they will vote to confirm the Electoral College numbers (including Mitch McConnell)
    14 are snivelling cowards, hiding under their chairs, afraid to say anything

    If you add the 13 to the 14 you get the 27. Are we looking at a split in the GOP? The ratio of 25 to 27 is seductive.

  8. Yep, that’s right, A-E, how could I forget, I’m Sinophobic…On the day I just asked a Chinese Panda Bear to become a villager on my island in Animal Crossing. 🙄

    Sheesh, you can’t even state a fact about China around some people before they’re curling their lips at you.

    Now this will really curl your toes, A_E. I’m alert but not alarmed about China. 😀

  9. I wouldn’t be moving too far, too fast on the SCOTUS, if I were Biden. The SCOTUS have just done him a very big favour by not allowing Trump to even get past first base with his ridiculous claims of election malfeasance, so I would be waiting to see hos CJ John Roberts corrals the new chums first. It may end up being a more rational SCOTUS than many on the Left believe.

  10. The Washington Post have given a win to Warnock:

    The Warnock win — and the possibility of a second Democratic victory — represented a historic upset in a longtime Republican bastion, signaling a clear shift in the political makeup of the state that Biden won nine weeks ago. Warnock will be the first African American Democratic senator from a former Confederate state, and Ossoff, 33, would be the youngest newly elected Democratic senator since Biden in 1973.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/perdue-ossoff-loeffler-warnock-georgia-senate/2021/01/05/7d7b5afe-4f5d-11eb-83e3-322644d82356_story.html

  11. “ I’m alert but not alarmed about China. ”

    Are you also alert about how America’s interests regarding the Asia pacific are not the same as ours? Or that SfM is willingly setting us up to take the fall for American hubris and paranoia? Are you alert to the real possibility that if push comes to shove, America is as likely as not to simply cut and run and leave us in the merde?

  12. Andrew_Earlwood @ #273 Wednesday, January 6th, 2021 – 8:25 pm

    “ I’m alert but not alarmed about China. ”

    Are you also alert about how America’s interests regarding the Asia pacific are not the same as ours? Or that SfM is willingly setting up to take the fall for American hubris and paranoia? Are you alert to the real possibility that if push comes to shove, America is as likely as not to simply cut and run and leave us in the merde?

    Cool your jets, A_E! There’s no way Biden will abandon the Pacific theatre. And hey, guess what, America’s interests have always been different to ours! Who knew?

    I reckon we’ll be seeing Antony Blinken here in the blink of an eye.

  13. This appears to be the immediate agenda for Biden-Harris:

    At stake in Tuesday’s contests was the governing coalition Biden will enjoy in his first years in office. If both Democrats win, they would flip control of the Senate, with the tie-breaking vote of Vice President-elect Kamala D. Harris, opening the door for potential passage of legislation Democrats campaigned on over the past two years, including­ an expansion of federal health-care subsidies, a tax increase on the wealthy and a comprehensive immigration overhaul.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/perdue-ossoff-loeffler-warnock-georgia-senate/2021/01/05/7d7b5afe-4f5d-11eb-83e3-322644d82356_story.html

  14. A-E

    ‘Are you alert to the real possibility that if push comes to shove, America is as likely as not to simply cut and run and leave us in the merde?’

    You mean like they left the Kurds, and we/they the Afghans and the Vietnamese?

  15. “ I wouldn’t be moving too far, too fast on the SCOTUS, if I were Biden. The SCOTUS have just done him a very big favour by not allowing Trump to even get past first base with his ridiculous claims of election malfeasance, so I would be waiting to see hos CJ John Roberts corrals the new chums first. It may end up being a more rational SCOTUS than many on the Left believe.”

    More pussy footing around while the republicans work out how to shank progressive reform. Terrific. There hasn’t been an effective progressive president since January 1969. LBJ knew how to put the stick about. It’s time for the democrats to put on their big boy pants and ho for broke. Before it’s too late.

  16. Unconfirmed reports Putin is now dumping Mitch McConnell as his agent in USA. Trump’s contract was presumably terminated two days after the election.

  17. Boerwar
    “ Can we assume that the Republicans are going to behave rationally now that they are in opposition?”

    Thanks Boerwar, between that and the Georgia results you have really put a smile on my face.

    I think these are the five stages of Republican grief:
    1. Howl with rage.
    2. Howl with rage.
    3. Howl with rage.
    4. Howl with rage.
    5. Sack the servants.

  18. Reading the background on Ossoff, his Australian mother, Heather Fenton, is a lifelong supporter of (small-l) liberal causes, including equal rights, refugees etc. I don’t think Scomo has much chance of playing the Australian card for any points here. In fact, via his mum, I suspect Ossoff will be well informed on Australian politics; they have made several trips back over the years.

  19. Assuming Ossoff prevails, Breyer can comfortably retire from the Supreme Court within the next two years now. Sigh, if only Ginsburg had survived a little longer.

  20. The US share market has become a barometer that measures the welfare of the rich.
    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/12/11/americans-increasingly-feel-the-stock-market-isnt-barometer-for-economy-but-instead-the-wealdoesnt-indicate-overall-economy-health-but-that-of-the-wealthy-and-coporations.html

    I recall the reporting on Nov 3/4. At first the share market dived when it was realised that Joe Biden would win. Then the share market corrected when it was realised that Joe Biden wouldn’t control the Senate.

    I’m interested to see what happens now..

  21. “ Sigh, if only Ginsburg had survived a little longer.”

    If only Ginsburg had done the right thing and retired in 2011!

    Grrr. Hubris.

  22. Some days are just better than others.

    Jon Favreau
    (@jonfavs)
    In just four years, Donald Trump cost the Republican Party the House, the Senate, and the presidency.

    Well done, sir!

  23. The Dow Jones based on futures will have a small increase o.19% whilst the SP500 will decrease 0.31% and the Nasdaq will tumble 1.77%.

    With Democrat Presidents the share market outperforms compared to Republican Presidents – counter intuitive you would think but they spend more into the economy whilst Republican slash taxes for the rich. At the end of the day, it is the economy (except when COVID-19 is running around like an unregistered dog).

  24. I am thinking that this result greatly increases the prospects of Kamala Harris becoming the first elected female black POTUS in future. She is not too old. She now gets four years casting the deciding vote in the US Senate. She will learn how to negotiate with lawmakers. She will have huge visibility and considerable power. Unless she stuffs it up (unlikely IMO; she is a very smart lawyer and ex-prosecutor) she will have a hugely increased profile at the next POTUS race.

  25. https://www.pollbludger.net/2021/01/06/georgia-senate-runoffs-live/comment-page-6/#comment-3537202

    A 2011 retirement would have meant her replacement facing a Republican controlled Senate, meaning the vacancy could easily have persisted until 2013 and then only been filled if the Democrats had altered the nomination cloture rules for SCOTUS as well as the other courts (they only did the other courts, the Republicans did SCOTUS under Trump).

  26. With not enough Democrats willing to reform the filibuster on current numbers, only taxation and spending based reforms (through reconciliation bills) and appointments (presuming Republicans don`t change the rules before the new senators from Georgia take their seats) have any likelihood of getting through without significant Republican support. Medicare/Medicaid expansion (limited to 10 years as they would be spending increases), undoing some of Trump`s high income and corporate tax cuts and possibly expanding the types of guns covered by the National Firearms Act (on the grounds the NFA is the basis for the transfer tax of (currently) $200) might get through without Republican support but little else will.

  27. “A 2011 retirement would have meant her replacement facing a Republican controlled Senate”

    Factually incorrect. The democrats held on in the senate until the 2014 mid terms. Hence my point. Even waiting until after the 2012 Obama re-election campaign was a big risk.

    Obama offered her the opportunity to effectively pick her successor in both 2011 and again in 2013 when the dems still had the numbers in the Senate. She declined.

    Hubris.

  28. Wow what a fantastic result! I never thought this would happen, fully expected it’d be 2 GOP Senators incoming.

    Fingers crossed Ossoff can hold on for the win.

  29. Confessions

    Decision Desk have already called it for Ossoff, plus one other US analyst. The US networks are super cautious in calls ever since Florida 2000. Ossoff is 16,000 in front with only votes remaining from heavily Democrat leaning counties remaining. His margin should increase.

  30. Confessions
    “Wow what a fantastic result! I never thought this would happen, fully expected it’d be 2 GOP Senators incoming.”

    Why would you even think that?

    Dems were always a chance.

    Pessimism is your game!

  31. stuart stevens@stuartpstevens·
    5h
    I’ve worked on the Republican side in Senate and governor’s races in every Deep South state. What @ReverendWarnock and @ossoff just pulled off is one of the more amazing political feats of our time. Like winning the World Series by pitching four perfect games. Extraordinary.

    This is why I was expecting Loeffler and Perdue would win. Plus it’s a run off election.

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