After a close call in Kansas' special election Tuesday, Republicans are focused on the special election in Georgia to make sure a solidly red slice of suburban Atlanta stays that way – but it's no sure bet, Politico reported.
Democrat Jon Ossoff, a former congressional aide, has become one of the best-funded House candidates ever – more than $8.3 million was raised for him in the first three months of the year – ahead of an all-party primary on April 18, Politico reported.
And he's used the money to carpet the district with ads and door-knockers, the outlet reported.
Though past presidential nominees and state candidates have typically won Georgia’s 6th District by wide margins, there's no room for the kind of squeaker that saw Republican Ron Estes win his Kansas race by less than 7 percentage points, Politico reported.
"I’d be an idiot if those results in Kansas didn’t cause me and Republicans concern” in Georgia, Justin Tomczak, a Republican political adviser and activist in the state, told Politico. "It’s a wakeup call."
Georgia’s special election rules make all candidates run in the same primary regardless of party; if no one reaches a majority, the top two finishers will meet head-to-head in a June runoff.
Some Republicans believe the natural conservative lean of the district will show through by Tuesday.
"By Democrats pumping in money here, they’ve awakened the sleeping giant that is the Republican base in the district," Jason Shepherd, chairman of the Cobb County Republican Party, told Politico.
"There are not enough Democrats here to win, unless the Republican base doesn’t turn out, but now the base knows that they need to turn out."
The top four Republican campaigns — former Secretary of State Karen Handel, former state Sen. Dan Moody, Johns Creek City Councilman Bob Gray and state Sen. Judson Hill — have collectively knocked on a combined 80,000 doors, according to Politico.
Democrats are "living in fantasy land" if they think they’re going to flip a district that once put former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and current Sen. Johnny Isakson to the national stage, Moody told Politico.
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