Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock has won the December Georgia runoffs with 51.4% of the vote to Herschel Walker’s 48.6%. The runoff elections were necessary as neither Warnock nor Walker managed to secure an excess of 50% of the votes during the November midterm elections.
Dems. Hold Majority
This triumph over Walker means that Democrats hold the majority in Senate with 51 seats while the Republicans have 49 seats.
Warnock held an election party on Tuesday where he addressed his supporters by thanking them for backing him through his campaigns and for voting for him.
Warnock is a Baptist minister and politician who has served as Georgia’s junior senator since 2021. On January 20, 2021, as a representative of the Democratic Party, he began office.
Big Win For Ds
Warnock launched his campaign for the special election for the United States Senate in Georgia in 2020 on January 30, attempting to unseat sitting Republican Kelly Loeffler.
On the election day, no contender earned a majority of the vote, thus Warnock fought Loeffler once more in a runoff election on January 5, 2021, where he triumphed by over 93,000 votes.
With his and Jon Ossoff’s wins, the Democratic Party regained the majority in the Senate for the very first time since 2014, a span of three years.
Warnock and Ossoff have become the first Georgian Democrats to be elected to the U.S. Senate since Zell Miller in 2000.
— ABC News (@ABC) December 7, 2022
Warnock is the only African American to serve Georgia in the Senate, the first Black Democrat to be elected to the U.S. Senate from the South, and the only Black Democrat to be elected to the Senate from a former Confederate state.
Previously, the Senate was evenly divided between the Democrats and Republicans and required a control-sharing arrangement, this is no longer necessary as the Democrats will now start 2023 with the majority and control. This means that Democrats have the advantage about passing legislation, absolute committee control, and getting rid of procedural hurdles.
Besides the fact that Vice President Harris will probably not be required to cast votes as mana tie-breaking vote, but the added seat has also altered their political calculus with Senator Manchin.
BREAKING: ABC News projects Sen. Raphael Warnock will win reelection in the Georgia Senate runoff, defeating Republican Herschel Walker. This is the crowd’s reaction at Warnock HQ pic.twitter.com/vD1OhDDTJZ
— Reena Roy (@reenaroy) December 7, 2022
In the formative days of Biden’s administration, the moderate from West Virginia frequently held his party at ransom, exploiting the Democrats’ slender majority to water down a number of the president’s legislative initiatives on votes that required complete Democratic cooperation to succeed. Manchin frequently states that he does not feel at ease voting against the preferences of his supporters.
Georgia Now a Swing State
This means that now, Democrats have sufficient leeway to lose one member in their caucus and still pass legislation through the chamber without obstruction.
The results of this runoff race make Georgia a swing state and this means that during future elections Georgia stands to become a tough political battlefield. This race has definitely been the most expensive of 2022 with approximately $425 million spent between both of the campaigns and those organizations supporting them and donating to them.