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Jon Ossoff

David Goldman / Associated Press

By now you've heard the 6th Congressional District special election made history in terms of spending on a U.S. House race.

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Among the groups that poured money into supporting the campaigns were those on both sides of the debate on abortion access.

Often though, the candidates found less than direct ways to talk about the issue.

Ian Palmer / WABE

Republican Karen Handel's victory in the 6th Congressional District runoff sparked several days of finger-pointing among Democrats who had hoped Jon Ossoff could flip a House seat that had been in GOP hands for decades.

Ian Palmer / WABE

Republican Karen Handel defeated Democrat Jon Ossoff in the June 20 runoff election to succeed Tom Price as the member of Congress from Georgia’s 6th District.  Handel’s margin of victory surprised many political observers and pollsters, who had predicted a neck-and-neck race.

For a look at the factors that contributed to the result, WABE’s Denis O’Hayer spoke with Professor Kerwin Swint on Morning Edition.  Swint chairs the political science department at Kennesaw State University.

Ian Palmer / WABE

A large overall turnout helped Republican Karen Handel sweep to victory in the 6th Congressional District runoff election. She defeated heavily-funded Democrat Jon Ossoff by a margin of 52 percent to 48 percent.

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Dr. Kerwin Swint, chair of Kennesaw State University's political science department, said that Handel took advantage of a big cluster of support.

Al Such / WABE

Republicans just got a big argument for sticking with President Donald Trump and pushing forward with dismantling Obamacare. And Democrats are looking almost incapable of translating the energy of their core supporters into actual election wins.

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ian palmer / WABE

The cheers started early at Karen Handel's election headquarters Tuesday night. They kept coming each time Fox TV updates showed the Republican holding her lead.

 

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After months of frenzied campaigning, 6th District voters decided to send Georgia’s first Republican woman to Congress.

 

Ian Palmer / WABE

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.

Her narrow victory Tuesday over Democrat Jon Ossoff in Georgia's 6th Congressional District allows Republicans a sigh of relief after what's being recognized as the most expensive House race in U.S history, with a price tag that may exceed $50 million.

David Goldman / Associated Press

As Georgia's 6th District voters get ready to decide between Democrat Jon Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel, H. Maxine Daniels, the director of voter registrations and elections for DeKalb County, is making the final preparations for tomorrow. 

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“There’s a little bit of concern about security with some of the things that have happened in recent times, and so we are beefing up security throughout the district,” Daniels said. 

Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

Initial tests show suspicious letters sent to a Georgia congressional candidate, news outlets and others did not contain dangerous materials. But the FBI says authorities will conduct additional tests.

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In a statement Friday, the FBI said the envelopes contained a white powder. The statement says all the letters contained "threat-based content" but have tested negative for hazardous materials.

Suspicious Package Sent To Handel’s Roswell Home, Neighbors

Jun 15, 2017
Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

Karen Handel, the Republican candidate in Georgia's 6th Congressional District special election, said on Thursday that a package containing threatening letters and a suspicious substance were sent to her home and to her neighbors.

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Handel said in a statement that her street in Roswell was being blocked off while law enforcement investigates.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / Associated Press

House GOP leaders warned their rank-and-file members Tuesday of the potential for heavy midterm losses next year that could cost Republicans their majority, and they urged renewed attention and focus to a positive agenda and message.

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The warning was aimed at encouraging lawmakers to stay focused and not be "chasing all the different other shiny objects," according to Republican Rep. Mark Walker of North Carolina.

Attention On Georgia

Al Such and Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

Early voting numbers continue to climb in Georgia's Sixth Congressional District special election.

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After this weekend, about 94,000 people had already cast their ballots in the runoff, with more than 10,000 voting on Saturday alone.

The total so far is almost double the roughly 55,000 early voters in April's election.

University of Georgia professor Charles Bullock expects even more people will be heading to the polls before early voting ends on Friday.

David Goldman / Associated Presss

Vice President Mike Pence says suburban Atlanta Republicans must elect Karen Handel to Congress to help President Donald Trump or risk a loss that could help hand House control back to Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi.

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"I don't see this race so much as a choice between Karen Handel and her opponent," Pence told a gathering of Republican donors who paid $1,500 per person to hear his pitch.

Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

The issue of climate change emerged as a new wrinkle in the 6th Congressional District race during a WABE debate Thursday.

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“Look, I think that clearly there have been changes in the climate. I am not a scientist, so I read all of that and take it all in,” said Republican Karen Handel. “What I am set on is making sure we do the right thing in the right way.”

Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

The candidates for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District seat Karen Handel and Jon Ossoff met in their second debate Thursday. The debate was hosted by PBA and moderated by WABE’s Denis O’Hayer.

Listen to the event above.

Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

The candidates for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District seat, Karen Handel and Jon Ossoff, met in their second debate at 9 a.m. Thursday. The debate was hosted by Public Broadcasting Atlanta and moderated by WABE’s Denis O’Hayer. 

See photos above, taken as the debate unfolded, with the candidates tackling a variety of topics. 

Al Such and Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

No doldrums early this summer in Georgia politics!  With early voting already underway, and election day looming on June 20, the two candidates in the 6th Congressional District runoff are preparing for the next phase: at least two key debates.  

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(One of those debates will be on June 8 on WABE & PBA-30).  Meanwhile, the state's Republican party prepares to elect its next chairman at a weekend convention in Augusta.

Mobile users watch here.

The candidates for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District seat, Karen Handel and Jon Ossoff, meet in their second debate at 9 a.m. Thursday. The debate is hosted by PBA and moderated by WABE’s Denis O’Hayer.

Alex Sanz / Associated Press

Democrat Jon Ossoff wants to be the next congressman from Georgia's 6th District, but he doesn't live within its boundaries, which may be a political liability, even if it’s one many members of Congress overcame to be elected.

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Outside a polling place in Brookhaven, Republicans like  Gary Sams said they were bothered by Ossoff’s address. 

“I think it’s ridiculous,” Sams said. 

Al Such and Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

Republican congressional candidate Karen Handel confirmed today she’s willing to participate in four live debates throughout June. Her Democratic rival, Jon Ossoff, had previously challenged Handel to face him in six debates. Not all those debates overlap. In total, both candidates have agreed to only two debates against the other.

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The events confirmed by both campaigns are a June 6 debate hosted by WSB-TV and a June 8 debate hosted by WABE/PBA30.

Montana's Greg Gianforte Fundraises For Karen Handel

May 30, 2017
Bobby Caina Calvan / Associated Press

Greg Gianforte, a Montana congressman-elect, is trying to raise money for Georgia's 6th District congressional candidate Karen Handel. 

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Gianforte won Montana's lone congressional seat last Thursday. Last Wednesday, police charged him with assault. The allegations are that he body-slammed Ben Jacobs, a politics reporter for The Guardian newspaper, threw him to the ground and broke his glasses.

Al Such / WABE

Former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel barely made it out of the crowded April 18 special election to replace Tom Price as the U.S. House member from Georgia's 6th Congressional District.  But, in the weeks since, the Republican has waged a close battle with Democrat Jon Ossoff, who finished first in April.  The two face each other in a runoff June 20.  Their contest has become the most expensive U.S. House race ever.

Voter Registration Numbers Surge In 6th District

May 22, 2017
David Goldman / Associated Press

More than 5,000 people have registered to vote in Georgia's 6th Congressional District in the last 19 days.

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Earlier this month, on May 4, a federal judge order the state to reopen voter registration for the runoff between Republican candidate Karen Handel and Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff. It has become one of the most closely watched congressional races in the country. Registration for the June 20 runoff closed Sunday, May 21. 

Kaitlin Kolarik / WABE

 

 

A new ad in the Georgia 6th Congressional District runoff campaign is tackling thorny issues around women's health care. In it, Democratic candidate John Ossoff attacks Republican Karen Handel on her controversial time as the head of a prominent breast cancer nonprofit.

 

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Al Such / WABE

Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff nearly won the April 18 special election to replace Tom Price as the U.S. House member from Georgia's 6th Congressional District.  Now, he faces Republican Karen Handel in the June 20 runoff in a district that has been solidly Republican for years.  

On "Morning Edition," Denis O'Hayer talked with Ossoff about a wide range of issues, including reports of President Donald Trump disclosing classified information to Russian officials; healthcare reform; and whether Ossoff could take the independent course he has promised if he were elected.

Fenly Foxen / WABE

Tuesday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

John Bazemore / WABE

Voters in some suburban Atlanta communities are choosing their next state senator.

 

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Democrat Christine Triebsch and Republican Kay Kirkpatrick are on today's ballot in the 32nd state Senate district. The district includes portions of Cobb and Fulton counties.

 

Polls are open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.

 

Voters cast ballots in Georgia's primary election at a polling site in a firehouse Tuesday, March 1, 2016, in Atlanta.
David Goldman / Associated Press

There’s a small election Tuesday in Atlanta’s suburbs, but it could be a sign of big political changes coming to the Georgia Statehouse. State Senate District 32 in east Cobb County sits inside a political district getting a lot more attention, and money right now: Georgia’s 6th Congressional District.

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Susan Walsh / Associated Press file

Even in a world that is now accustomed to big surprises, it was a dizzying week in politics.

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President Donald Trump, who had just visited the Atlanta area to support Karen Handel's 6th Congressional District campaign, abruptly fired FBI Director James Comey. 

That event, in turn, could affect the close battle for the seat left vacant by Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price -- at least according to political strategists Brian Robinson and Tharon Johnson.

Al Such and Kaitlin Kolarik

It won’t be decided until June 20, but there’s already a big winner in the special election for Georgia’s 6th District Congressional race: Atlanta's local TV stations.  

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