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Warnock campaign boasts confidence heading into Georgia Senate race

Warnock campaign boasts confidence heading into Georgia Senate race
© Courtesy Raphael Warnock

Democrat Raphael Warnock’s Georgia Senate campaign says it is in a strong position just over 100 days out from the Peach State’s critical election, saying the reverend is in a prime spot to make gains before November.

In a memo released Thursday, Warnock’s campaign touted their endorsements, fundraising and recent polling, indicating Georgia is primed to be a battleground state. The memo added that the campaign has a shot of at least making it to a January runoff in the jungle primary for the seat currently held by Sen. Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerLoeffler meets with McConnell amid speculation of another Senate run Herschel Walker skips Georgia's GOP convention Georgia agriculture commissioner launches Senate campaign against Warnock MORE (R-Ga.). 

“Looking ahead to Election Day, Reverend Warnock is the candidate positioned to win support across urban, suburban, and rural Georgia; capitalize on the state’s new battleground status; and provide Democrats the best chance to flip a U.S. Senate seat in a generation,” the campaign wrote. 

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Warnock, the senior pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Martin Luther King Jr. used to preach, is the Democratic Party’s chosen candidate in the race against Loeffler. Warnock has earned endorsements from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and a slate of high-profile Democrats, including Rep. John LewisJohn LewisCommemorating Juneteenth: Learn from the past to improve the present and future Joe Manchin keeps Democrats guessing on sweeping election bill Hundreds in West Virginia protest Manchin's opposition to voting rights legislation MORE (Ga.), former gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams and Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisHarris signals a potential breakthrough in US-Mexico cooperation Watch live: Harris delivers remarks on vaccination efforts Biden signs Juneteenth bill: 'Great nations don't ignore their most painful moments' MORE (Calif.), Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenDemocrats have turned solidly against gas tax Overnight Health Care: Takeaways on the Supreme Court's Obamacare decision | COVID-19 cost 5.5 million years of American life | Biden administration investing billions in antiviral pills for COVID-19 Democratic senators press PhRMA over COVID-19 lobbying efforts  MORE (Mass.) and Cory BookerCory BookerDemocrats introduce resolution apologizing to LGBT community for government discrimination Zombie Tax punishes farmers to fill DC coffers Rand Paul does not support a national minimum wage increase — and it's important to understand why MORE (N.J.) and more.

He has also boosted the party’s hopes of flipping the seat with strong fundraising.

Warnock hauled in nearly $3 million in the second quarter of the year, outpacing both Loeffler and Rep. Doug CollinsDouglas (Doug) Allen CollinsLoeffler meets with McConnell amid speculation of another Senate run Georgia agriculture commissioner launches Senate campaign against Warnock Poll shows tight GOP primary for Georgia governor MORE (R-Ga.), another top candidate in the race who Democrats hope could divide the GOP vote. Warnock raised more than $4.4 million for the cycle in total and has nearly $2.9 million cash on hand. 

The Warnock campaign’s memo highlighted recent polls suggesting the reverend is in contention for a potential runoff spot. A Public Policy Polling survey released in June found Warnock clustered with Loeffler and Collins near the top of the pack with 20 percent of the vote, compared with 21 percent and 23 percent for Loeffler and Collins, respectively.

A Civiqs poll released in May showed him in second place behind Collins in the November election and winning in head-to-head match-ups against either Republican in a runoff.

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The memo comes as Democrats increasingly look to Georgia as a battleground state up and down the ballot.

The party is hoping to seize on Democratic momentum from Abrams’s 2018 gubernatorial bid and shifting demographics to make gains in the state. Polling shows the presidential race to be a jump ball in Georgia, an alarming sign for Republicans in a consistently GOP-leaning state. 

Some Democrats also predict that infighting between Collins and Loeffler will not only open a lane for Warnock in the race but also filter into Georgia’s other Senate race, where Sen. David Perdue (R) is up for reelection. 

The Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan election handicapper, rates the race for Loeffler’s seat as “lean” Republican.