Democrats take control of Senate as they win second race in Georgia

Democratic U.S. Senate candidates Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff are seen in a combination of photographs
Democratic Senate candidates Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff were both projected victors on Wednesday.
REUTERS/Mike Segar, Brian Snyder

Democrats on Wednesday completed a sweep of the two U.S. Senate seats up for grabs in runoff elections in Georgia, giving the party control of the chamber and boosting the prospects for President-elect Joe Biden’s ambitious legislative agenda.

Edison Research projected victory for Jon Ossoff, a documentary filmmaker, on Wednesday afternoon after fellow Democrat Raphael Warnock, a Baptist preacher, was projected as the victor in his Senate race in the early hours of Wednesday.

In Tuesday’s runoffs, Warnock defeated Kelly Loeffler, who was appointed a year ago to fill the seat of a retiring senator, and Ossoff beat David Perdue, who served a single term in the Senate.

Ossoff drew 50.3% and Perdue had 49.7% with 98% of the expected vote in, according to Edison. That pushed Ossoff’s lead beyond the margin needed to avoid a possible recount, and Edison said it expected his lead to grow.

The double Democratic triumph splits the Senate 50-50, with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris’s tie-breaking vote giving Democrats control of the chamber. Each of the 50 states is represented by two senators in the 100-seat chamber.

The sweep by the two Democratic candidates gives their party control of both chambers of Congress and the White House for the first time in a decade, dramatically shifting the balance of power in Washington.


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