Democrat Jon Ossoff has declared victory in the Senate election in the US state of Georgia via video message. We still have to wait for the official result, but that would mean that Joe Biden’s party, in addition to the presidency and the House of Representatives, also controls the Senate.
“This campaign was about health, jobs and justice for the people of this state, for all the people of this state, and they will be my guiding principles when I serve this state,” Ossof thanked the residents of the southern state of Georgia, in a video on Twitter.
At the time of writing, there is no media channel officially projecting him as the winner yet. With 98 percent of the votes counted, Ossoff leads the race with a 0.36 percent lead. A losing candidate can request a recount under local electoral law if the margin is less than or equal to half a percentage point.
No “lame duck“
The importance of this special ballot election can hardly be underestimated. Since no candidate obtained more than 50 percent in the first round of voting in November (at the same time as the presidential election), a so-called run-off election had to take place yesterday. It would determine whether Georgia’s two Senate seats fell into Republican or Democratic hands.
Control of the Senate was at stake. Before the run-off, Biden’s party had 48 seats, against 50 for the Republicans. If Ossoff does win – his party colleague Raphael Warnock already won the other seat this morning – both parties will have an equal number of seats. Under the US Constitution, future Vice President Kamala Harris will have the casting vote in that case. The Republicans thus lose their last bastion of power.
You bet that especially Joe Biden is now cheering. This election largely determines how much clout he will have as president. The Senate, one of two chambers in the US parliament, could block the legislative agenda of the future Biden government. In addition, a Republican Senate would no doubt have hindered Biden’s appointments as well.
Southern Georgia is traditionally a dark red state, which would make a Democratic victory all the more special. As a result, it looked as if Joe Biden had a so-called “lame duck presidentA head of state who cannot realize his agenda. If Ossoff actually wins, the future head of state could reverse many of the decisions of the flattener Donald Trump.