In the general election last month, candidates in two races failed to reach the required 50% vote threshold and were pushed to runoffs held earlier this month. In each race, the Republican candidates were declared victors, after the complete but unofficial results were reported by the Secretary of State’s office. Georgia Democrats were hoping to continue their “blue wave” in the metro Atlanta suburbs to push their last two candidates to victory, but efforts came up short.
In the Secretary of State’s race, the heir apparent to now Governor-elect Brian Kemp’s old post, Republican Georgia House Member Brad Raffensperger defeated former Democratic Congressman John Barrow by 55,806 votes. Republicans have held the Secretary of State’s office since 2007, when now lame duck Rep. Karen Handel (R-GA) first won the seat.
In the Public Service Commissioner race for District 3, Republican Chuck Eaton defeated Democratic businesswoman Lindy Miller by 51,286 votes. Commissioner Eaton has held the office for 12 years, after defeating incumbent Democrat David Burgess in 2006. In the week before the election, Commissioner Eaton was aided by an “independent committee” funded by a nuclear-power industry group, who provided at least $750,000 in financial support. The campaigns traded barbs over the dark money, but ultimately the Republican won out.
With all but a single House race in Georgia concluded, political operatives have their eyes focused on the 2020 race, which statewide election of the President and U.S Senator, should David Perdue seek re-election. The 2019 legislative session for the Georgia General Assembly commences on Monday, January 14th. Also, the 116th Congress will begin in Washington, D.C. on January 3, 2019.