President-elect Joe Biden campaigned in Georgia on Monday to secure the vote for two Democratic candidates for the U.S. Senate whose success or failure in statewide elections tomorrow will determine the direction of his presidency.
“People, that’s it. That’s it. It’s a new year and tomorrow will be a new day for Atlanta and for Georgia, ”Biden said at a rally with Democratic Senate candidates Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock.
“We need you to vote again in record numbers, to make your voice heard again and again, to change Georgia and to change America,” Biden said.
Biden won in Georgia in the November presidential election, the first time a Democratic presidential candidate has won the longtime Republican stronghold since 1992.
New black activism and voter registration campaigns led by former Georgia House leader Stacey Abrams have heightened hope for Ossoff and Warnock.
So far, both underdogs in the polls, Ossoff and Warnock are fighting neck and neck in second-round races against incumbent Republican Senators David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler who have garnered national attention in the United States.
“This is not an exaggeration. Georgia, the whole nation is looking to you, ”Biden said in his appeal to Georgia Democrats.
President Donald Trump will visit Georgia later Monday.
Currently, Democrats control 48 seats in the 100-member Senate and Republicans have 50. If Loeffler or Perdue win their race on Tuesday, Republicans will retain control of the Senate. But if they both lose, the Democrats will take control, with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris having the ability to settle any decisive vote in a 50-50 Senate.
A sweep for Democrats in the races would dramatically improve Biden’s chances of pushing through his legislative platform, as Democrats control the House of Representatives.
Beyond legislative goals, Democratic Senate control would also help Biden shape the early years of his presidency, as cabinet candidates and federal judges – including Supreme Court justices – are upheld by a simple majority in bedroom.
“ I just want to find 11,780 votes ”
Tuesday’s vote will be another step towards the end of a tumultuous election season that has seen Trump continue to allege, without evidence, widespread fraud and voting irregularities.
Trump continued his attempts to overturn the results in the state on Saturday, urging Georgia Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger on a phone call to recalculate the total to give him the victory.
“I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than us. Because we won the state, ”Trump told Raffensperger on the call, the audio of which was obtained by US media.
Biden won Georgia by 11,779 votes, according to the state-certified final total.
Loeffler and Perdue have both linked their political fates to Trump’s baseless allegations of electoral malfeasance, with candidates calling on Raffensperger to step down following the general election, citing “mismanagement and lack of transparency”, without providing further evidence .
In the final days of the race, Ossoff, Warnock and Loeffler were on a blitz, as Perdue waits in isolation after being exposed to someone infected with the coronavirus.
Biden campaigned in Atlanta a day after Vice President-elect Harris visited the city of Savannah. Biden had previously campaigned in Georgia on December 15.
The Senate dueling races drew $ 490 million in media spending by candidates, their parties and outside groups, according to tracking company AdImpact.
Early voting broke previous records in the second round, with over three million votes cast to date. Such a vote tends to favor Democrats, with a greater proportion of Republicans having to vote on election day.
Both parties have waged sweeping exit campaigns, with Democrats hoping that the increased turnout of the sizable black population will lead their candidates to victory.
Giving hope to Ossoff and Warnock, more than 110,000 voters who did not participate in the November general election have already voted in favor of the Democrats.
Will Trump help or hurt?
Trump, who is due to hold a rally Monday night in Dalton, a small town in rural northern Georgia near the Blue Ridge Mountains, randomly marched in support of Loeffler and Perdue.
On the same day as the phone call to Raffensperger, he tweeted that Tuesday’s second round was “illegal and invalid.” But soon after, he urged Republicans to “prepare to vote on Tuesday”.
A big question mark hanging over tomorrow’s vote is whether Trump’s chimerical attacks on voting in Georgia will be. help or hurt the two Republican candidates.
In his remarks in Atlanta, the state’s largest city, Biden explicitly linked Loeffler and Purdue to attempts by Trump and Trump to overturn the US election results.
“You have two senators who think rewarding wealth is more important than hard work,” Biden said of Loeffler and Purdue, both millionaires.
“You now have two senators who think they don’t work for you, they work for Trump,” he said.
“You have two senators who think their loyalty goes to Trump, not Georgia.”