Jon Ossoff

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Millions of dollars have poured in to Georgia congressional campaign coffers in the last three months, as candidates look to show their viability a year out from the 2020 election.

The campaign finance reports submitted Tuesday show Democrats outraising Republicans in two key U.S. House races while needing to play catch-up in a U.S. Senate race.

AP Photo/David Goldman

On this edition of Political Rewind, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Jon Ossoff joins us live in studio as the latest guest in our series of conversations with David Perdue’s challengers. Will he be able to capitalize on the energy and campaign funds that animated his race for Congress two years ago or will the loss of the most expensive race in congressional history hold him back?

Four Democratic primary candidates have emerged in the race to challenge incumbent Republican Sen. David Perdue.
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On this edition of Political Rewind, our panelists discuss the increasingly competitive Democratic race in Georgia for U.S. Senate. So far, the four Democrats who have officially launched their campaigns are aiming for Sen. David Perdue’s seat. When will Democrats begin lining up for a shot at the seat that Sen. Johnny Isakson is giving up? Why has no African American candidate come forward to run?


Jon Ossoff announces his candidacy for U.S. Sen. seat currently held by David Perdue
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On this edition of Political Rewind, Gov. Brian Kemp has moved to revitalize the task force assigned to maximize participation among all Georgians in the 2020 census. We ask his press secretary, can immigrant communities be reassured they have no reason to fear being counted?

 


Candidate headshots. Graphic GPB News.

As you might already know, both of Georgia’s U.S. Senate seats will be on the ballot next November.

But questions about who Gov. Brian Kemp will pick to replace Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson on the ballot in 2020 (and, if successful, the governor’s reelection campaign in 2022) has created an unending cascade of speculation and game theory about who will mount campaigns for the elected offices.

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In June of 2017, writer Rebecca Traister traveled to Georgia to cover Jon Ossoff and Karen Handel's tight runoff race to represent Georgia's 6th Congressional District. Landing among the newly activated women campaigning for Ossoff, Traister wrote, "was like walking into the set of 'Thelma and Louise.'" She portrays these women, self-described closet liberals, as having tapped into their inner rage. In her new book, "Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women's Anger," Traister chronicles the historic shakeups and social movements sparked when women's fury turns into action. 


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Is Georgia turning blue? That question came up in 2014 when Jason Carter ran for governor, in 2016 when Hillary Clinton ran for president and in 2017 with Jon Ossoff’s campaign in the most expensive House race in history. Every time, however, Georgia remained a red state where Republicans won.


On this special edition of Political Rewind, we look back at the year in politics. From new leadership in Atlanta to the fight for a new governor of Georgia and an expensive fight for a congressional seat. There was also President Trump, tax reform, health care reform, the Mueller Russia investigation, the resignation of one Georgian from the president’s cabinet and the firing of another, plus the #MeToo movement that sent tremors through Washington. All were big stories in 2017, but which ranked as the biggest according to our panel?

Georgia Election Server Wiped After Suit Filed

Oct 26, 2017
Alex Sanz / AP Photo

A computer server crucial to a lawsuit against Georgia election officials was quietly wiped clean by its custodians just after the suit was filed, The Associated Press has learned.

David Goldman / AP Photo

On today’s "Political Rewind" we look at where the GOP race for governor stands in these early days of the contest. A new poll shows Lt. Governor Casey Cagle with a significant lead. But the poll reveals a surprising result in the battle for second place.

Georgia's Win List

Today on “Political Rewind,” in the aftermath of the Las Vegas massacre, both Democratic candidates for governor say they support action to curb gun abuses. How will that play with conservative Georgia voters?

Then, we look at the first face-off between those candidates, Stacey Abrams and Stacey Evans, which took place at the Carter Center Monday night.

Alex Sanz / AP Photo/File

Georgia's electronic touchscreen voting system is so riddled with problems that the results of the most expensive House race in U.S. history should be tossed out and a new election held, according to a lawsuit filed by a government watchdog group and six Georgia voters.

Some activists in Georgia were having flashbacks.

"It's like reliving November, right?" said Georgia resident Jessica Zeigler about Democrat Jon Ossoff's loss to Republican Karen Handel in the state's closely watched special election last week.

Republican Handel Wins Georgia House Seat In Key Contest

Jun 20, 2017
John Bazemore / AP Photo

Republican Karen Handel has won a nationally watched congressional election in Georgia, avoiding an upset that would have rocked Washington ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

Updated at 1:20 p.m. ET on June 21

Republican Karen Handel has won the costly and closely watched special congressional election in Georgia's 6th District, a blow to Democratic hopes of pulling off an upset in a district that President Trump only narrowly carried last year.

The former Georgia secretary of state won by almost 4 points, beating Jon Ossoff, a 30-year-old documentary filmmaker and former congressional staffer — 51.9 percent to 48.1 percent.

David Goldman / AP Photo

10:30 a.m.

A spokeswoman for Georgia's top election official says voting in the state's closely-watched 6th District is going smoothly but some issues have been reported.

Two voting locations in DeKalb County had the wrong equipment used to check voters in. Workers had to use paper lists as a backup.

Secretary of State spokeswoman Candice Broce said some voters were told to use provisional ballots. She wasn't sure how many people were given those directions.

The long-awaited special election in Georgia is finally happening.

On Tuesday, people will head to the polls to cast their votes for either Democrat Jon Ossoff or Republican Karen Handel in the sixth congressional district special election in the Atlanta suburbs to replace Republican Tom Price. Price left his seat to become President Trump's health and human services secretary.

Researcher Finds Georgia Voter Records Exposed On Internet

Jun 15, 2017
Alex Sanz / AP Photo/File

A security researcher disclosed a gaping security hole at the outfit that manages Georgia's election technology, days before the state holds a closely watched congressional runoff vote on June 20.

The security failure left the state's 6.7 million voter records and other sensitive files exposed to hackers, and may have been left unpatched for seven months. The revealed files might have allowed attackers to plant malware and possibly rig votes or wreak chaos with voter rolls during elections.

The Shifting Demographics Of Cobb County

Jun 15, 2017
David Goldman / AP Photo

Cobb County is the last metro county in Georgia with a white majority. But it’s expected to become "majority minority"—more than 50 percent non-white residents—in the next four years. Politically, the reliably Republican county is shifting to largely Democratic, and may flip in the upcoming 6th Congressional District election. We talk about the changing electorate in Cobb with Andra Gillespie, Political Science Professor at Emory University.

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Last Saturday in the 6th District, with just a few weeks to go before election day, a modest crowd gathered at a soccer field in Sandy Springs.

 

People lounged on blankets in the blistering sun sipping iced coffee, fanned themselves in the shade along the field’s edges, paid half-attention to the band playing jangly music up on stage.

 

“Thank you all for being here to rock your Ossoff!” the band’s leader called out to close their set.

 

Democratic candidate for Georgia's 6th Congressional District Jon Ossoff speaks to supporters during an election-night watch party in Dunwoody, Ga., in April.
John Ba

A special congressional election in the Atlanta suburbs won't be decided until June 20, but there's already a clear winner: local TV stations.

Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff face each other in a runoff that's become a referendum on President Trump, and with a month to go, the House race is already the most expensive in U.S. history.

So far, the candidates and outside groups are on track to spend at least $30 million just on TV ads.

On a recent Sunday afternoon, dozens of volunteers crammed into a small Jon Ossoff for Congress field office in Chamblee, Ga. They were there to canvass for the 30-year-old political newcomer, but they also got a treat: a speech from Ossoff himself. He only spoke for about four minutes, but he devoted almost a minute of it to women in particular.

David Goldman / AP Photo

Earlier this month, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law sued Georgia to extend voter registration in the congressional race for the 6th District. The group successfully extended the deadline, but now they want to permanently change Georgia law to reflect federal law. We talk about the controversy with Chris Joyner of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Watchdog column and Julie Houk with LCCRUL.

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Today on “Political Rewind,” fasten your seatbelts for another jam-packed day of political news! There was much comment over the weekend following President Trump's tweets about fired FBI Director James Comey. We're following the latest reaction.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Judge Orders Georgia To Extend Voter Registration For 6th District Runoff

May 4, 2017
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A federal judge has ordered Georgia officials to reopen voter registration in a suburban Atlanta congressional district ahead of a runoff in a heated special election.

Georgia set the registration deadline for March 20, which was 30 days before special election in April.

US Chamber Endorses Karen Handel In Special Election

Apr 26, 2017
Courtesy of Karen Handel for Congress

Republican Karen Handel has scored a key endorsement in her high-profile congressional campaign against Democrat Jon Ossoff.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce confirmed Tuesday it will put its muscle behind Handel ahead of a June 20 runoff in Georgia's 6th Congressional District that covers northern suburbs of Atlanta.

Chamber officials didn't say how much they'll spend on Handel's behalf, but the organization's endorsement usually precedes a heavy media blitz. The race is widely viewed as a potential preview of the 2018 midterm elections.

The political battle over Georgia’s 6th District could become the most expensive House race in history.

Last week, Democrat Jon Ossoff just missed an outright win in a special election to replace now-Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price. He faces Republican Karen Handel in a June 20 runoff that’s drawn the money and attention of both national parties, and has been called an electoral test for President Trump.

shadowbright3 / Flickr

A coalition of civil rights groups is challenging a Georgia law that doesn't allow new voters to register before the closely watched runoff election in the 6th Congressional District.

The Washington, D.C.-based Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law filed a federal lawsuit Thursday in Atlanta on behalf of the groups.

The registration deadline was March 20.

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