While all eyes are focused Tuesday on the Georgia Sixth Congressional District special election to replace Secretary of Health & Human Services Dr. Tom Price, there is a second special election that deserves both our attention and our prayers.
You have to be sleeping under a rock to not know about the heated race between Democrat Jon Ossoff, a documentary filmmaker and former congressional aide who grew up in the district, and former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel. Millions of dollars in donations have poured into both campaigns as Democrats desperately attempt to take a seat.
Price won re-election to that seat in November by a substantial margin, but the president won by less than two percentage points.
Ossoff has run a campaign that has focused more on attacking the president's issues than his opponent's and has, subsequently, been forced to fend off rebuttal attacks about his residency outside the district and the 10 to 1 ratio of donations that have come from California rather than Georgia. He won the largest share of votes in the jungle primary or nonpartisan blanket primary in April, but Republican voters outnumbered Democrats in that election.
Polls, on the other hand, suggest Ossoff could still win the seat, giving Democrats a major victory as they continue to obstruct the president's agenda in Washington, D.C.
Two hundred miles to the northeast, however, there's a second race that has been largely ignored by, not just the media, but by other members of Congress. In South Carolina's Fifth Congressional District, formerly held by Director of the White House Office of Management & Budget Mick Mulvaney, another race is heating up between a former attorney and a current state representative.
Archie Parnell, a former tax attorney for Goldman Sachs, is currently a 10-point underdog to state Rep. Ralph Norman. As is the case in Georgia, Democrats have spent a substantial amount of money and time trying to woo voters, particularly African-American constituents, to support their candidate.
In March, Norman held a 16-point lead, suggesting the polls are tightening in what should be a walk-away win for the GOP.
Both elections have serious implications for advancing the president's agenda in Congress, and a loss in either one could make weak-kneed Senate Republicans sit on their hands for the next several months until the 2018 mid-term elections are over. Losing both seats could take all of the wind out of the president's agenda in Washington.
He's not taking either election lightly. He made the following tweets Monday and repeated them throughout the day and again Tuesday:
Ralph Norman, who is running for Congress in SC's 5th District, will be a fantastic help to me in cutting taxes, and getting great border security and healthcare.
Karen Handel's opponent in
#GA06 can't even vote in the district he wants to represent because he doesn't even live there! He wants to raise taxes and kill healthcare. On Tuesday, #VoteKarenHandel.
Big day tomorrow in Georgia and South Carolina. ObamaCare is dead. Dems want to raise taxes big! They can only obstruct, no ideas. Vote "R"
Polls in both Georgia and South Carolina close at 7 p.m. EST. The first results should begin to trickle in around 7:30 p.m.
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