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Senate Republicans Nervous as Former Southern Stronghold Becomes Swing State

The times are changing, and there’s a new, bleak outlook in a former GOP stronghold.

The 2020 election has already been a spectacle like no other, as our nation devolves into an angst-ridden and ridiculous amalgam of racial tension, economic devastation, and power disparity.

And while the presidential race will almost certainly be cast as a referendum on the Trump years, (no matter which way it goes), there are plenty of congressional races out there that could also fall under this umbrella-sentiment.

This is where the State of Georgia has come into focus in an unprecedented way.

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Places like Johns Creek, says Mark Rountree, a Republican political consultant in Georgia, are leading a shift in the state’s politics. “That was a lily White suburb in the far north,” Rountree says. “It’s gone very Democratic.”

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Georgia is the only state with two U.S. Senate seats up for grabs in November, and both contests are competitive. One of the races is a special election that pits all candidates against each other, regardless of party; 20-odd candidates are vying for the seat vacated by Republican Johnny Isakson when he retired last year. The seat has been held since January by Kemp appointee Kelly Loeffler, who is running to keep it. Because of state election rules, at least one seat, and possibly both, could remain undecided until a runoff next January, raising the possibility of Georgia belatedly deciding control of the Senate.

Two Republican victories would have been a given a few cycles ago, but that no longer holds. “The demographics are changing so quickly,” says Seth Bringman, a spokesman for Fair Fight, a Georgia-based voting rights organization led by Abrams. “A very red state is rapidly becoming more and more blue.”

This has many political experts claiming that Georgia is now a certifiable swing state – a designation that the Peach State hasn’t held in several decades.

 

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