One of Georgia’s Senate races is officially headed towards a runoff election, and the second Senate race seems poised to do the same.
In the confirmed runoff election for one race, Republican Kelly Loeffler will face off against Democrat Rev. Raphael Warnock, after neither of them received more than 50% of the vote in the general election. In the second Senate race in the state, Sen. David Perdue is still defending his seat against Democrat Jon Ossoff, but it doesn’t appear that he will receive 50% of the vote. These two races in Georgia are significant for a particular reason above all else: they will decide the balance of power in the Senate in 2021.
Here’s a quick breakdown of the timeline of the two highly contested Senate races in Georgia.
On Wednesday, it was determined that Loeffler and Warnock were headed to a runoff race, after neither of them came close to receiving half of the votes for Senate. Loeffler received 26% of votes, Warnock received 32%, and Doug Collins, another Republican challenger, received 20% of the vote. Collins will not move forward to the runoff. Only Loeffler and Warnock will.
A day later, the second Georgia Senate race seems poised to be given the same verdict.
On Thursday, as the votes trickled in, Perdue’s vote count dipped below 50% of the total count. If both candidates receive less than 50% of the race, then he and Ossoff, who has received approximately 47% of the vote for most of the race, will head towards a runoff as well.
Here’s what you need to know:
How Does a Georgia Runoff Election Work? When Will the Runoff Election Take Place?
Georgia is one of two states that requires a candidate to receive at least 50% of the vote in order to achieve an election. The other state is Louisiana.
According to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, runoff elections for state and local races will take place on Dec. 1, and runoff elections for federal races will take place on Jan. 5, 2021.
This means that the outcome of the two Senate races for Georgia won’t be decided until the new year, if they both go to a runoff. Whoever receives the majority of the votes (since there are only two candidates, logic follows that one of them must receive at least 50% of votes) will receive the Senate seat.
Many people might feel a bit of deja vu over the news of these runoff elections. That’s because one of the biggest gubernatorial races in the country during the 2018 midterms began with a primary runoff in Georgia. Neither of the Republicans in the primary, Brian Kemp and Casey Cagle, received 50% of the vote.
That led to a runoff election in July, which offered Kemp a victory before he famously competed with Democrat Stacey Abrams for the gubernatorial seat in Georgia. Kemp won the controversial race; Abrams has since become a national player for Democrat politics.
Ossoff vs. Perdue Senate Race in Georgia: Who’s Winning? [LIVE Election Results & Map]
Heavy has partnered with Decision Desk HQ to provide live results for the Senate and Presidential elections this year. Here’s the current situation with the Ossoff vs. Perdue: