Georgia race seen as early Trump test goes to run-off

Winning 92,390, Ossoff beat the top three Republican candidates combined, and feel just 200 votes of beating the top four Republicans.

They almost pulled it off.

"No matter what the outcome is tonight - whether we take it all or whether we fight on - we have defied the odds".

Since he defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton previous year, Trump and the Republicans have had control of the White House and both chambers of Congress.

A Democrat came close to outright victory in Tuesday's closely watched U.S. congressional primary in Georgia, heading to a run-off in a race that Democrats tout as an early test of resistance to President Donald Trump.

Trump's approval ratings in national polls are among the lowest ever recorded for US presidents for their first months in office, giving Democrats renewed hope they could capture a congressional seat with Ossoff and embarrass the new president. The seat then became vacant when Price was appointed Secretary of Health and Human Services by Mr. Trump earlier this year.

The trends point increasingly toward a June 20 runoff that would pit Ossoff against the top Republican vote-getter.

But Ossoff, a documentary filmmaker and former congressional aide, told energized supporters that he and Democrats "shattered expectations" with their performance. "The eyes of the world are on us", he said at a canvass launch in Sandy Springs on Saturday afternoon. "And your voices are going to ring out across this state and across this country".

The Atlanta Journal Constitution has reported that Republicans and Democrats have spent a combined $14 million on ad blitzes.

Trump, a businessman and TV celebrity elected without having previously held political office, has attacked Ossoff on Twitter, calling him a "super Liberal Democrat" who would "protect criminals, allow illegal immigration and raise taxes". "I wouldn't use the word referendum", said spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders. Trump himself targeted Ossoff with robocalls and a barrage of Twitter messages.

Democrats, out of power in Congress and the White House, need a spark to convince themselves they can take back all that they had lost. "It also potentially puts the Senate in play, while certainly protecting our endangered red-state incumbents. All of this, and we're still in Trump's supposed "honeymoon" period!"

Now, attention shifts to the runoff. Republicans have long believed that - particularly with such high turnout in Tuesday's contest - Ossoff would near his high-water mark in the jungle primary and have little room to grow his support in the runoff.

While Handel has said she thinks Trump is doing a good job, she didn't exactly wear her support for him on her sleeve. Handel voted for the charity to stop giving to Planned Parenthood, a decision that was later reversed, and caused her to step down from her position.

"To me what's unbelievable is that we continue to see this level shift across the country, a 20-point swing, that puts about 123 Republican seats potentially in play".

"Despite major outside money, FAKE media support and eleven Republican candidates, BIG "R" win with runoff in Georgia".

Ossoff, 30, is a documentarian and a former congressional staffer who drew endorsements from the national party and from veteran Georgia congress members, including civil rights giant Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), for whom Ossoff once interned.

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez insisted Democrats have the momentum in the Georgia race, and made clear his party will not be shy about tying Handel to Trump. "And when they're following the ALEC playbook of the far right, they make it harder for people to vote", Perez said, referring to the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council.

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