GOP, Dems intensify Georgia special election fight

Dustin Chambers

Republicans and Democrats are keeping up a frenetic pace in the highly anticipated Georgia special election with just a week to go.

The investment comes as more election handicappers like Cook Political Report move the race to fill the 6th District seat left vacant by Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price from “lean Republican” to the “tossup” category.

The race, which President Trump won by only 1 percentage point, has become a center of Democratic efforts to show evidence of a growing anti-GOP wave.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) released a memo Monday detailing the group’s efforts in the district, noting that the number of paid staffers to help 30-year-old Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff has significantly grown, from eight staffers to more than 70 over the past month.

The DCCC also announced the launch of a get-out-the-vote blitz in the final stretch of the race, with a six-figure radio and digital ad buy aimed at boosting African-American turnout. The group is also spending six figures on a mailer that will be sent to every registered Democrat in the district.

{mosads}Ossoff, an investigative filmmaker, recently announced an unprecedented $8.3 million fundraising haul and he’s looking to win outright in the April 18 “jungle primary.” If no one reaches 50 percent, the top two finishers compete in a June 20 runoff, where Ossoff is expected to have a harder time.

For Republicans’ part, the Congressional Leadership Fund — a super PAC aligned with House GOP leadership — is making its latest splash into the race with a new radio ad featuring state Rep. Betty Price (R), Secretary Price’s wife.

In the ad, she encourages voters to keep her husband’s old seat in GOP hands. Neither Price has endorsed one of the 11 Republicans running for the Atlanta suburban district.

“It’s so important that we elect a conservative to fill Tom’s seat, to continue Tom’s fight for lower spending, lower taxes and a strong defense against America’s enemies,” she says in the ad.

CLF has spent more than $2 million in the district as well as funding and staffers from the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) and the Republican National Committee (RNC).

Most Republicans haven’t endorsed a candidate in the race, but instead of used resources to increase voter turnout or attack Ossoff. Some of the leading GOP contenders include former Georgia secretary of State Karen Handel, former state Sens. Dan Moody and Judson Hill and former councilman Bob Gray.

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