Is Georgia now a swing state? Will Trump’s phone call to the secretary of state have an impact?
Georgia voters hit the polls on Tuesday to elect their U.S. senators. These votes will determine if a party will hold the majority or ends up 50-50.
But could President Donald Trump’s Saturday phone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger affect the outcome? The story is definitely clouding over the race as Trump and President-elect Joe Biden head to Georgia to rally voters.
Rallies and Polls
Biden will attend an event at 4:30 p.m. ET in Atlanta for Democratic challengers Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock.
Trump will have a rally for Georgia Republican Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue Monday night in Dalton. Vice President Mike Pence will speak at an event in the afternoon.
Polls show a tight race.
FiveThirtyEight has Ossoff ahead of Perdue, 49.3% to 47.9%. Warnock leads Loeffler 49% to 47.6%.
RealClearPolitics compiled the polling data from 12/14 – 12/27. All together it found Warnock leading Loeffler 49.8% to 48%.
That same data showed Ossoff ahead of Perdue, 49.3% to 48.5%.
Is Georgia becoming a swing state?. Some think it will be a blue state. No, it has nothing to do with Stacey Abrams. FiveThirtyEight pointed out that votes for Democrats have crept up since 2008 with President Barack Obama.
The change has to do with Atlanta:
The answer is pretty simple: The Atlanta area turned really blue in the Trump era. Definitions differ about the exact parameters of the Atlanta metropolitan area, but 10 counties1 are part of a governing collaborative called the Atlanta Regional Commission. Almost 4.7 million people live in those 10 counties, or around 45 percent of the state’s population.
Until very recently, the Atlanta area wasn’t a liberal bastion. There was a Democratic bloc that long controlled the government within the city limits of Atlanta and a Republican bloc that once dominated the suburbs and whose rise was chronicled in historian Kevin Kruse’s 2005 book “White Flight: Atlanta and the Making of Modern Conservatism.”
The Phone Call
The Washington Post published the phone call on Sunday. The conversation lasts about an hour with Trump insisting to Raffensperger that there is no way he lost Georgia.
President-elect Joe Biden won the state with 11,779 votes:
Throughout the call, Raffensperger and his office’s general counsel rejected Trump’s assertions, explaining that the president is relying on debunked conspiracy theories and that President-elect Joe Biden’s 11,779-vote victory in Georgia was fair and accurate.
Trump dismissed their arguments.
“The people of Georgia are angry, the people of the country are angry,” he said. “And there’s nothing wrong with saying, you know, that you’ve recalculated.”
Raffensperger responded: “Well, Mr. President, the challenge that you have is, the data you have is wrong.”
At another point, Trump said: “So look. All I want to do is this. I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have. Because we won the state.”
He later added: “So what are we going to do here, folks? I only need 11,000 votes. Fellas, I need 11,000 votes. Give me a break.”
Respectfully, President Trump: What you're saying is not true. The truth will come out https://t.co/ViYjTSeRcC
— GA Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (@GaSecofState) January 3, 2021
Georgia Republican Sen. David Perdue, who is fighting for his political life on Tuesday, does not think the phone call will affect the election. It “shocked” him “that a member of the Republican Party would tape a sitting president and leak it to the media.” From Fox News:
“It’s disgusting in my view,” he said. “But what the president said is exactly what he’s been saying the last few months.”
Perdue said that Trump has been consistent with his claims that there were voter irregularities and said Trump just “wants some answers.”
Perdue pointed out that he has already called on Raffensperger to resign. He said the secretary of state’s office and the state’s legislature both failed to answer Trump’s questions about voter fraud in the state.
Steve Hilton, the host of the show, pointed out that Trump was set to campaign in Georgia on Monday and Perdue said he welcomes the support.
“He’s going to call his faithful out here,” Perdue said. He said that Trump is going to remind voters in Georgia that the future of the country is in their hands.
“The people of Georgia will determine the future direction of the country. He’s going to remind them of that,” he said.
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