Jon Ossoff wins Georgia runoff, clinching Democratic control of Senate
Democrat Jon Ossoff has defeated former Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) in Georgia's runoff race for the U.S. Senate, AP projected Wednesday.
Why it matters: The projected victory came hours after Rev. Raphael Warnock defeated Sen. Kelly Loeffler and officially secures Democratic control of the Senate. The 50-50 split means that Vice President-elect Kamala Harris would be the tie-breaking vote after Jan. 20.
Background: Ossoff drew national attention in 2017 when he nearly flipped a Georgia congressional seat against former Rep. Karen Handel (R). At 33, he is now the youngest Senator.
- The House race drew in record fundraising and was seen as one of the first indicators of Democratic enthusiasm following President Trump's 2016 victory.
The AP call came as a mob stormed the Capitol building, halting the certification of Joe Biden's win and putting the Capitol complex into lockdown.
Between the lines: Democrats in the state may have benefited from Trump's attacks on Georgia Republicans in recent weeks.
- Trump, who lost Georgia by over 11,000 votes, falsely claimed the state's elections were rigged and has pressured Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) to overturn the results.
- Perdue's ability to campaign was also limited during the final days of the election. He and his wife are in quarantine due to coronavirus exposure.
Soon-to-be Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said sending $2,000 stimulus checks would be the first order of business in the new Congress once Ossoff and Warnock are sworn in.
President-elect Biden rallied for Democrats in Atlanta on Monday, focusing on the potential for more economic stimulus if Democrats take the Senate.
- "$2,000 checks will go out the door, restoring hope and decency and honor for so many people who are struggling right now," Biden said.
Correction: A previous version of this story said Ossoff will be the youngest senator in U.S. history. He will be the current youngest senator.